Director of Finance

  • Part Time
  • Chicago

Website Chicago Humanities Festival


Title:                         Director of Finance

Classification:          Part-time, 20 hours per week

Reports to:               Executive Director

Manages:                 Accountant / Bookkeeper

The Chicago Humanities Festival (CHF) presents the most compelling authors, artists, thought leaders and thinkers of our time, connecting people to the ideas that shape and define us. Insightful, entertaining and interactive, Festival events are a platform for authors, journalists, scholars, policy makers and other thought leaders, as well as for artists, actors, musicians, comedians and cultural figures. Our programs provoke conversations, celebrate creativity, build community and explore the boundaries of contemporary knowledge and culture. CHF values programming that reflects multiple viewpoints and lived experiences, is accessible and inclusive, and speaks to diverse audiences. We program across Chicago, bringing people and ideas together in a variety of neighborhoods. CHF seeks to facilitate an engagement with ideas that transcend individual concerns, to enable empathy and connection through shared experiences. We are a hybrid office, working together remotely and in the office; evening and weekend availability required during festival seasons. More information at

The Director of Finance provides vital financial and budget oversight and works closely with the Festival’s Executive Director, Board of Directors, and Senior Management. The Director provides financial advice and guidance for the Festival’s daily operations and strategic planning, ensuring strong financial systems and high performance metrics are set within each area of the organization.

The Director has oversight and responsibility for: financial planning, budgeting and goal setting; accounting and auditing oversight; accounts payable/receivable; and, other related concerns. They are responsible for: timely, accurate, and useful monthly reports reflecting the Festival’s financial position and activities, maintaining accurate and proper corporate records, and assuring compliance with state and federal regulatory requirements.

Strategy, Planning and Management

  • Acts as financial and strategic business partner to Executive Director, Board of Directors and Senior Management, setting and helping deliver the Festival’s annual objectives and long-term financial goals.
  • Serves as liaison to Board Finance and Audit Committee—which oversees annual budget, financial protocols, audit review, and investments (endowment and operating), ensuring the Festival’s financial considerations are conducted in accordance with  GAAP, the policies and procedures set forth by the Board, and city, state and federal laws.
  • Works with Senior Management and individual departments to prepare budgets maximizing financial resources and ensuring proper investment in the Festival’s staff, program and strategic initiatives.
  • Invests the Festival’s Endowment, Board Reserves and excess operating funds in accordance with the Investment Policy and Procedures set forth by the Board’s Finance and Audit Committee.
  • In partnership with the Development team, assists in the preparation of letters of inquiry, grant budgets and proposals, compliance and grant reports for institutional and individual donors.
  • Maintains Festival’s relationships with investment advisors and financial institutions (operating funds, endowments, and lines-of-credit).
  • Oversees risk management including insurance coverage.

Financial Analysis, Budgeting and Forecasting

  • Develop and maintain annual and monthly operating budgets.
  • Prepare and present monthly financial reports (e.g. forecast to budget, cash flow by account and department), analyzing results and providing recommendations.
  • Identify, develop and execute analysis of business initiatives (e.g. ROI).
  • Assesses and evaluates financial performance with regard to long-term strategic and operational goals, budgets and forecasts. Provides insight and recommendations on both short-term and long-term financial concerns and growth.

Accounting, General Ledger, Operations and Cash Management

  • Oversees Festival part-time Accountant / Bookkeeper, managing accounts receivable/payables, maintaining records of all business transactions and contracts (including: capital investments; rental and lease agreements, communications equipment, hardware and software; presenter and production agreements, etc.).
  • Reviews and ensures application of appropriate internal controls and financial procedures.
  • Oversee month-end reconciliation and closing activities including general ledger account, and monthly and annual financial statements.
  • Oversees financial management systems:
    • Implements policies, procedures and processes as appropriate for the Festival’s goals.
    • Identifies, acquires and implements systems and software to provide critical financial and operational information.
    • Evaluates departments and makes suggestions for automating processes and increasing efficiency.
  • Manages and prepares support documentation for annual audit and federal Form 990, serving as key point of contact with auditors.
  • Oversee weekly cash management and accounts payable, approves all payables (e.g. sign checks), authorize wire transfers, and process stock transfers from donors.
  • Ongoing review of procedures while eliminating inefficiencies, and monitoring Festival assets.
  • Supervise accounts receivable and provide guidance relating to the collection process.

Professional Requirements

  • Excellent planning, budgeting and financial management skills.
  • Experience in stewardship and accounting requirements for individual, institutional, and government grants.
  • Outstanding communication and presentation skills.
  • Desire to work in a collegial, mission driven organization focused on improving quality, reducing costs and developing people and systems to enhance the organization
  • 8–10 years of experience in business and financial management.
  • Master’s degree in Business Administration, CPA, or equivalent preferred.
  • Strong technical skills and experience with Quickbooks and Blackbaud’s Raiser’s Edge preferred
  • A personal interest in the arts and humanities is helpful in understanding the Festival’s culture and vision.
  • Experience working with external auditors and internal controls and compliance issues, including Single Audits.

This is a part-time position (20 hours per week) with a salary of $60,000.  The position receives paid time off at the rate of10 days per fiscal year. The Festival is also closed for 10 observed holidays and allows for 1 floating religious holiday, in addition to winter break (December 25 through New Year’s Day) as time off.

We work in a hybrid model with two days (at the moment) in the office and other days working remotely. While working remotely, you will have access to a laptop computer and a $25 per pay period ($50/month) stipend to offset home internet and personal phone expenses.

As part of our commitment to providing a healthy and safe workplace, CHF is requiring employees to provide proof that they are vaccinated against COVID-19 within the first week of employment. If a vaccination is not possible, a request for a medical or religious exemption can be made with Human Resources.

The Festival is committed to providing a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace, where all employees and volunteers, whatever their gender, race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation or identity, education or disability, feels valued and respected. We are committed to a nondiscriminatory approach and provide equal opportunity for employment and advancement in all of our departments, programs, and policies. We respect and value diverse life experiences and heritages and ensure that all voices are valued and heard.

Instructions to Apply:

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, and three references via email to  by August 19, 2022.

Please format subject lines as follows: 2022 Director of Finance: [Your Name]. Please know that we won’t consider incomplete materials or those received through a different channel.

Candidates who are selected for an interview will be notified via email. No phone calls, please. We look forward to reviewing your materials. Thank you!

The Chicago Humanities Festival is an Equal Opportunity Employer

To apply for this job please visit

Pay Rate/Range*: 60,000