IBMM launches Executive Director search

International Bluegrass Music MuseumThe International Bluegrass Music Museum has announced the official launch of their search for a new Executive Director to replace Gabrielle Gray, who had announced that she would be stepping down in December.

Gray will continue to manage the organization’s annual music festival, ROMP, but the new director will have their hands full helping to bring their new International Bluegrass Music Museum Center (IBMMC) online, and oversee the greatly expanded scope of the IBMM once the center is open and operating.

Assistant Director Carly Smith will serve as Interim Director until a new Executive Director comes onboard. She has been with the Museum since July 2013.

To kick off the search, the Museum’s Board of Trustees has created a list of Responsibilities and Qualifications, and is requesting that potential candidates send a resume and cover letter to express their interest in the position. These can be sent by email to, or by postal mail to:

Mr. Mike Simpson, Vice-Chairman, Board of Trustees
International Bluegrass Music Museum
207 E. 2nd Street
Owensboro, KY 42303

IBMM Executive Director


The Executive Director:

  • Will participate in strategic planning and evolution of existing and new programs.
  • Act as an effective advocate and spokesperson for IBMMC to obtain broad support in the local, state and international communities.
  • Cultivate and strengthen relationships and communications with the constituents, Board, donors and supporters of the IBMMC.
  • Operate the IBMMC in a financially prudent and ethical manner so as to achieve the specific revenue and expenditure goals set forth in the annual budget approved by the Board of Trustees.
  • Operate the IBMMC with a team-building approach to instill a culture of mutual respect and trust throughout the organization (artistic, staff, Board, donors, subscribers, volunteers). Value and recognize contributions made by all stakeholders.
  • Establishing an IBMMC “brand” through groundbreaking programs that generate regional, national and international recognition.
  • Lead an ongoing strategic planning process that identifies the short and long term goals and objectives of the IBMMC.
  • Execute Board approved policies.
  • Manage and oversee all fundraising efforts including:
    • Maintain working knowledge of funding sources including annual campaign, grants, fundraising events, and planned gifts.
    • Research, develop and monitor grant, gifts and endowment contributions.
    • With the Board, continue the Capital Campaign for the development of the new IBMMCenter.
    • Develop, manage and implement a comprehensive fundraising program consistent with the IBMMC current needs and long-term goals.  This includes oversight of the current fundraising needs, as well as strategic long-range planning for organizational growth and development.
    • Develop a budget and establish a calendar that outlines all fundraising events and campaigns.
  • Hire and provide leadership to organization personnel through effective objective setting, delegation and communication.
  • Develop a marketing and public relations campaign with Marketing Director under the guideline set forth by the Board of Directors.
  • Protect and preserve the Museum archives, records and displays.
  • Keep abreast of industry trends, music awards, news related to artists and donors.
  • Oversee the creation of Procedure Manuals, employee Job Descriptions, Benefits, Performance Appraisals, and corrective measures.
  • Ensure compliance with all regulations and guidelines pertinent to the IBMMC role as an employer and non-profit agency.  Submit all information, reports and records as required, including the annual financial reports and audit, and endowment investment information.
  • Work with the Board of Directors to develop and improve policies and procedures.
  • Maintain an effective and cost effective environment.
  • Ensure the accuracy and integrity of the complete financial, statistical, and accounting records of the IBMMC.
  • Provide administrative oversight for events and services.
  • Establish timeline and financial plan for annual events.
  • Maintain regular contact with the Board via (minimum monthly) email updates.  Schedule meetings as directed by Chairman of the Board and bylaws.
  • Develop and manage quarterly and annual reports for the Board incorporating all income/expenses of IBMMC.


Preference will be given to those individuals who can demonstrate:

  • Strong business management experience coupled with a passion and knowledge of the IBMMC mission and for the “Roots and Branches” of Bluegrass music, with proven fundraising experience.
  • An entrepreneurial spirit, specifically, vision coupled with motivation and execution, with the ability to be both a leader and team player.
  • Excellent communication skills, both orally and written.
  • An ability to be a strategic planner with willingness for innovative thinking and take direction from the Board of Trustees.
  • A successful track record for managing a non-profit organization.
  • A personable and inclusive management style that optimizes staff resources through effective leadership and delegation.
  • An ability to effectively communicate with the Board of Directors to implement the policies and directives of the Board.
  • Experience in creating and monitoring budgets and seeking best practices for profit and sustainability.
  • A professional demeanor, ethical and trustworthy.

Compensation:  Commensurate with experience.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.