Chief Executive Officer

Application Deadline: March 27, 2024

Harbourfront Centre is Canada’s premier destination for contemporary culture, the place where creative thinking thrives, ideas are shared, and the next generation of artistic talent is nurtured. Situated on 10-acres of Toronto’s central waterfront, offering creative connections by the water, Harbourfront Centre is committed to nurturing Canada’s creative future.

Harbourfront Centre is a vibrant cultural hub that immerses individuals in diverse, contemporary experiences led by professional artists. We are also a dedicated community that actively fosters interdisciplinary collaboration, supports artist growth, and prioritizes inclusive programming.

Apart from year-round artistic presentations and residency programs, Harbourfront Centre hosts one of Canada’s largest single-site camps, accommodating 5,000+ campers in diverse summer and winter break camps. Our School Visits program engages 26,000+ students annually in curriculum-based arts exploration. Additionally, we provide waterfront recreation, including boating rentals and lessons.

Through numerous partnerships with artistic organizations, as well as popular food and beverage tenants, Harbourfront Centre serves as a family-friendly space where diverse communities gather to experience culture.

Established in 1972, Harbourfront Centre, initiated by the first Trudeau Government, operates year-round, seven days a week, supporting international and local artists and communities. Approaching our 50th anniversary, Harbourfront Centre plays a vital role in the cultural fabric of Canada, contributing to the overall wellbeing of Canadians through arts and culture.

As we embark on a new chapter of growth and impact, we are seeking a visionary leader to serve as our Chief Executive Officer.


Position Title: Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Department: Executive

Reporting To: Board of Directors

Direct Reports: 10

Employment Type: Full-time

Location: Toronto


Summary of Responsibilities

  • Provide visionary leadership, shaping and executing a strategic vision that aligns with the organization’s purpose, fosters artistic excellence, engages diverse audiences, and ensures the long-term sustainability of the organization.
  • Clearly communicate and promote the vision, purpose, and strategy, fostering organizational alignment, and serving as the primary advocate for enthusiasm and optimism within the organization.
  • Personally engage with major individual donors, growing fundraising efforts by making persuasive pitches at events, and cultivating a fundraising culture within the organization, ensuring effective storytelling and strategic fundraising moments.
  • Cultivate a strong partnership with the board and communicate effectively to provide essential information for informed decision-making and organizational success.
  • Showcasing proficiency in comprehending and overseeing financial documents, including budgets, tax returns, audits, and compliance, to ensure a clear understanding of the organization’s financial landscape and adherence to financial controls.
  • Build and lead a high-performance team to drive organizational success, foster innovation, and achieve strategic goals through collaboration and effective leadership.
  • Prioritize and actively engage in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts, working to address biases, dismantle inequities, and create an inclusive culture, recognizing that DEI is integral to achieving the organization’s mission, securing funding, and building a diverse and respected base.
  • Develop and maintaining robust relationships with stakeholders, peers, donors, and the media, fostering transparency and collaboration with other organizations, and ensuring regular communication through impact reports, public events, or newsletters to seize opportunities for organizational growth and support.
  • Serve as a leader to all employees, fostering a positive organizational culture, and providing guidance to inspire and align the entire organization towards the achievement of the company’s purpose and goals.


Skills and Requirements

  • Demonstrated success of over 10 years in a senior-level executive position within an organization of comparable scale and complexity.
  • Must have a diverse educational background and pathways to success, including but not limited to bachelor’s degrees, advanced degrees such as MBAs, executive education, relevant industry certifications, or equivalent experiential learning opportunities.
  • Proficient in or possessing a comprehensive understanding of the nonprofit sector.
  • Extensive experience in the development and communication of organizational strategy and vision, providing clear direction for all stakeholders.
  • Political acuity, strong financial acumen and robust experience in budgeting and financial management.
  • Proficiency in fundraising strategies and donor relationship management essential for achieving organizational financial objectives.
  • Ability to identify emerging trends and opportunities, bring in new income, and build partnerships for tangible organizational development and growth.
  • Passion for the arts and a commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Experience in leading organizations with multiple stakeholders, building and maintaining relationships to achieve organizational goals.
  • Substantial experience and demonstrated success in initiating and managing significant organizational change.
  • Demonstrable leadership in managing staff, fostering a collaborative and supportive work environment, and a successful track record of building and inspiring highly effective teams.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, to be effective working with internal and external constituencies: Board of Directors, professional and support staff, related government bodies, the corporate and local community, major arts supporters and volunteers, and the many diverse communities with whom Harbourfront works.
  • Leads through values-based leadership – culturally aligned with Harbourfront Centre’s values of open, brave, rigorous, and kind.
  • Applicants must be Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or legally permitted to work in Canada.

Our Values

We’re friendly, welcoming and inclusive, with an experimental attitude that thrives on collaboration.

To achieve our bold ambition we empower and support imaginative risk and we always try to learn from our mistakes.

We are committed to excellence in all we do, ensuring every visitor encounter is safe, memorable and enriching.

We value and respect each other and all our visitors, celebrating difference and striving to realise potential.

How To Apply

Harbourfront Centre is currently seeking qualified candidates for this position, and a dedicated selection committee will be thoroughly reviewing applications to ensure a fair and comprehensive assessment of all applicants.

Harbourfront Centre is committed to diversity and inclusiveness, and we encourage qualified candidates from all backgrounds to apply. Interested applicants can apply by submitting a cover letter and resume to the attention of the Chief Human Resources Officer at by no later than April 5, 2024. Please quote Chief Executive Officer in the subject line of your email.

We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those being considered for an interview will be contacted. Suitable accommodation will be available upon request during the hiring process.