Executive Director

Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra
Providing tuition-free music education to Ypsilanti area children

The Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra (YYO) seeks a dynamic, entrepreneurial, and talented Executive Director to shape, inspire, and manage the organization’s future, and to collaborate with an Operations Manager, the next Music Director, and a dedicated team of teachers and mentors, board members, and parent volunteers. The YYO offers the prospective candidate the opportunity to provide critical leadership in overseeing all aspects of the organization’s operations and the advancement of our mission. The Executive Director reports directly to the YYO’s Board of Directors.



The part-time Executive Director will be tasked with:

  • Providing leadership for and working synergistically with the YYO’s Board, the next Music Director, instructors, volunteers, and Operations Manager, to achieve YYO’s goals;
  • Ensuring the YYO’s financial stability by creating and realizing—with assistance from the Board’s Development Committee—an annual fundraising plan including foundation and government grants, individual giving, and business contributions to support a budget currently near $80,000 with growth potential;
  • Preparing the annual operating budget and rigorously managing financial resources;
  • Growing and maintaining strong creative partnership in Washtenaw County with other nonprofits and schools, especially Ypsilanti Community Schools and Eastern Michigan University, and the community in general;
  • Celebrating the 22-year contribution of the YYO in the greater Ypsilanti community while setting the stage for new voices and ideas as part of the YYO’s future.


Along with these opportunities, the incoming Executive Director will need to address some fundamental challenges including:

  • Developing relationships to yield growth in core teaching programs, looking toward post-pandemic retention and organizational capacity building;
  • Building an infrastructure and culture that defines success as both an expression of closely tracked data and participants’ experiences;
  • Establishing a solid partnership with the next Music Director as the YYO transitions from twenty years of charismatic, selfless leadership by William Hayes and Verna Hayes, to a future crafted largely by the Executive Director.



The Executive Director will possess most, if not all of, these attributes, abilities, and characteristics:

  • Administrative experience with non-profit arts organizations and/or master’s degree in arts administration or music education;
  • Proven record of donor cultivation and successful grant writing;
  • Ability to build positive relationships with donors and volunteers, and a commitment to a long-term presence in Ypsilanti and the greater community;
  • Self-motivation and ability to work independently;
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills;
  • Knowledge of Google Suite and Microsoft Office required, familiarity with CRMs (Kindful) and QuickBooks Online preferred;
  • A passion for access and equity in music education, and a commitment to building the impact and visibility of the YYO.


The commitment is for 20-22 hours per week, with flexible though predictable hours, including Saturday mornings required and bi-monthly weekday-evening Board meetings.



This part-time position will be compensated at a range of $20,000-23,000 per year. Evening and weekend work hours are required as described above.


How To Apply

A cover letter, resume, and three references, along with any additional inquiries regarding the YYO or the position, may be directed toward Austin Stewart, Vice President and Chair of the Search Committee, at admin@ypsiyouthorch.org. Priority consideration will be given to those applications received by August 6, 2021.

We embrace diversity and equal opportunity seriously. We are an equal opportunity employer, without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin, disability, veteran or military status, genetic information, gender expression, or any other protected class.


About the YYO

Since 1999, the Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra has offered, in addition to the full Orchestra, pre-orchestra classes for students at varying stages in their musical journey, a Kindermusik class for our youngest students and their parents, music appreciation classes, a Jazz Ensemble, and a string quartet. To date, in the interest of maximizing equitable access to music education in the Ypsilanti area, the YYO has operated as a tuition-free organization, supported by individual contributions, foundations, and government agencies. Our mission is to cultivate our students’ creative needs and aspirations, preparing them for a life of engaged citizenship. The leaders of the YYO and its teachers strive to develop our students not only as musicians, but also as well-rounded and thoughtful individuals. Visit https://www.ypsiyouthorch.org/ for more info.