Preservation Job Board

(VA) Executive Director 

18 days ago

Deadline: March 1, 2018
Offered by: Oatlands Inc.
Location: Leesburg, Virginia
Salary: Salary and benefits competitive.

The Board of Directors of Oatlands Inc. seeks qualified candidates to be the property’s next Executive Director. Oatlands Historic House and Gardens is a 400-acre estate located in the Piedmont region of Virginia between Washington, D.C. and the Shenandoah Valley within Loudoun County, one of the nation’s fastest growing areas over the past two decades. Once part of the extensive Carter family holdings, Oatlands tells the stories of a 19th-century working plantation, an early 20th century country house, and the people who lived and worked there, including enslaved laborers and artisans. In addition to the mansion, Oatlands property includes magnificent formal terraced gardens, one of the earliest extant greenhouses in North America, barns and other outbuildings, and the recently established Inn at Oatlands Hamlet. Oatlands is owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and operated by local residents who founded Oatlands, Inc. to ensure that Oatlands remains a vibrant regional resource. For more information about Oatlands, please see

Job Summary:
The executive director reports to the Oatlands Board of Directors and manages a full-time paid staff of about 15 and part-time staff of 25. The Executive Director leads the staff and volunteers, and works with the Board of Directors to fulfill Oatlands’ vision and mission, ensuring that the site is both culturally and financially sustainable.

The executive director is responsible for all aspects of operations, preservation, programming, development, finances, marketing and communications for Oatlands. Details in each area follow:

Operations, Preservation and Programming

  • Conceive, implement and oversee:
    • Public programs, including visitor center, daily tours, educational programs and special events.
    • Earned income activities such as on-site museum store, site rentals and private events.
    • Maintenance and conservation of the site’s buildings, gardens, landscape and collections.
    • Research and interpretation of buildings and collections, including archaeology and archival research 
  • Manage, motivate and guide the staff and volunteers.
  • Serve as the principal liaison to the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

  • Engage vigorously and effectively in fundraising and development including:
    • Individual donors, annual appeal and board giving
    • Corporate and business sponsorships
    • Specific grant proposals
    • Capital campaign and other targeted fundraising initiatives

Marketing and Communications
  • Oversee a robust communications plan of paid and free media (print and radio advertising, direct mail, Web site/blog, social media and public relations) reaching a diverse audience including the local community, local visitors, tourists, donors and others while raising the profile of Oatlands regionally and nationally.
  • Partner with other organizations in the community, such as Chamber of Commerce, tourism board and other not-for-profit organizations.


  • Oversee the development and management of the annual budget and operations plan and oversee annual audit in partnership with the Board Treasurer.
  • Share key responsibility for fundraising, including alignment of programs and events with generation of gifts and revenues.
  • Provide Board with regular financial reporting.
  • Control expenditures and ensure that budgeted financial objectives are met.

  • Education: The candidate should at a minimum hold a Bachelors degree. Candidates having experience suggesting special aptitude to lead an institution such as Oatlands, and/or candidates with a Masters degree in history, historic preservation, museum studies or a field directly relevant to the mission of Oatlands and the responsibilities of its Executive Director, are likely to be preferred.
  • Experience: Relevant experience working with a board and leading a staff; minimum of eight years of successful and progressively responsible, executive experience. Knowledge of and experience with managing a historic house museum, historic preservation best practices, historic property management of a site similar in size and scope to Oatlands (or larger), and/or not-for-profit institutions would be ideal.
  • Skills: Exceptional abilities in communications, management, team-building, and fundraising. In particular, ability to effectively articulate the organization’s strategic mission and vision is essential. Ability to inspire and work comfortably and effectively with a variety of people. Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Personal characteristics: creativity, energy, entrepreneurial spirit and a passion for history.

Application Instructions
Please email your cover letter and resume in Word or PDF format to Please, no phone calls. Applications will be considered as received and the position will remain open until filled. The Search Committee would prefer to receive applications by March 1, 2018. Oatlands is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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