Chief Financial Officer

The Whitney Museum of American Art
March 21, 2024
New York City, NY
Job Type
Annual Base Salary
$250,000 - $300,000
Location Type


Reporting to the Deputy Director, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) serves as a key member of the management team at the Whitney Museum of American Art. The CFO is responsible for planning and oversight of the Museum’s financial activities, including an annual operating budget of approximately $70 million. Working closely with the Museum’s leadership team, colleagues across the Museum, and with the Finance, Audit and Investment Committees of the Board of Trustees, the CFO will have responsibility for organizing short- and long-term financial planning activities, performance analyses, risk management, financial reporting, and cash/ liquidity management.

The CFO oversees all Finance, Treasury and Accounting functions including, but not limited to, operating & capital budgets, annual audit, financial reporting systems, insurance and tax related information.  In addition, the CFO has oversight of the Museum’s investment portfolio under the direction of the Investment Committee of the Board. Above all, the CFO will be a proactive strategic partner with the Museum’s leadership team in enabling the Whitney’s institutional priorities through proactive & rigorous financial planning.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Direct, supervise, and improve the Museum’s financial and budget planning processes to sustainably fund programs and operations, deliver on high-priority capital projects, and increase efficiency
  • Monitor financial performance across the Museum through clear and consistent metrics and measures of success. Advise on opportunities for revenue enhancement, cost efficiencies, process improvements and related policy changes
  • Drive long-range financial planning initiatives across the Museum to enable diversified revenue growth and a positive operating bottom line
  • Working closely with the General Counsel, design and oversee museum-wide financial risk management policies and procedures
  • Provide periodic updates on the Museum’s financial performance to staff with a view to reinforcing connections between departmental/ project budgets and the Whitney’s mission and strategic priorities
  • Provide periodic updates and financial reporting to the Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees including operating results, emerging financial opportunities, risks, trends and key performance metrics
  • Engage the Board’s Finance Committee in review and approval of short- and long-term financial goals and related strategies
  • Working with senior management, continuously develop and recommend course-corrective actions to address emerging financial risks
  • Provide financial leadership and support in the execution of the Museum’s strategic plan.
  • Manage the Whitney’s ongoing debt program with strategic guidance from the Museum’s leadership team and Board of Trustees. Working with external advisors and the internal finance team, oversee the negotiation, execution, and management of tax-exempt bond financings and credit facilities, including ongoing compliance with legal and reporting requirements
  • Enable data-driven decision making across all Whitney functions; help clarify links between departmental operations and the financial results of the organization
  • Partner with department leadership teams in developing performance targets, monitoring performance, and creating remediation plans
  • Act as a fiduciary on the Retirement Plan Investment Committee
  • Oversee the Museum’s Controller in coordinating the annual audit of the Museum’s financial statements and tax filings including the annual IRS Form 990
  • Strengthen the capabilities of the Finance organization, through a combination of people development, retention and recruiting efforts


  • Bachelor’s degree in Finance, Accounting, Economics or other quantitative or business-related discipline required; MBA/CPA preferred
  • Minimum ten years of progressive experience in a senior level financial management role
  • Experience at a cultural institution or other mission-driven non-profit organization preferred
  • Excellent analytical, verbal and written communication, and presentation skills required
  • Strong communicator with ability to make financial information accessible and comprehensible to stakeholders from a variety of backgrounds. Must be able to connect finance to the Museum’s mission and values.
  • Strong executive presence and demonstrated ability to develop positive executive relationships. Experience working with governing boards and committees is helpful but not required
  • Excellent planning, financial management, and organizational skills
  • Strong work ethic along with effective leadership, management, team building, and supervisory skills; accustomed to working in a team-based/collaborative environment
  • Able to operate with transparency and with the highest degree of ethics at all times
  • Operationally oriented, with the ability to bring practical insights and solutions to critical financial decisions and initiatives across the Museum
  • Able to manage and develop financial talent within the organization

Compensation & Benefits

  • Salary range is $250,000 - $300,000 and will be commensurate with experience
  • Medical, Dental, Vision, 403(B) elections
  • Generous Paid Time off benefits
  • Commuter benefits - parking and mass transit
  • Admission to world-renowned museums across the city and nationally
  • Pet insurance and discounted membership for Citibike

The advertised pay scale reflects the good faith minimum and maximum salary range for this role. The advertised pay scale is not a promise of a particular wage for any specific employee. The specific compensation offered to a candidate may be dependent on a variety of factors including, but not limited to, the candidate’s experience, education, special licensing or qualifications, and other factors.

Not sure you meet 100% of our qualifications? Research shows that men apply for jobs when they meet an average of 60% of the criteria. Yet, women and other people who are systematically marginalized tend to only apply if they meet every requirement. If you believe that you could excel in this role, we encourage you to apply. We are dedicated to considering a broad array of candidates, including those with diverse workplace experiences and backgrounds. Whether you’re new to arts and culture administration, returning to work after a gap in employment, simply looking to transition, or take the next step in your career path, we will be glad to have you on our radar. Please use your cover letter to tell us about your interest in the arts and culture space and what you hope to bring to this role.

About the Whitney:
The Whitney Museum of American Art, founded in 1930 by the artist and philanthropist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, houses the foremost collection of American art from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. From her vision arose the Whitney Museum of American Art, which has been championing the most innovative art of the United States for 86 years. The core of the Whitney’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret, and exhibit American art of our time and serve a wide variety of audiences in celebration of the complexity and diversity of art and culture in the United States. Through this mission and a steadfast commitment to artists themselves, the Whitney has long been a powerful force in support of modern and contemporary art and continues to help define what is innovative and influential in American art today.

EEO Statement:
The Whitney Museum of American Art is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The Museum does not discriminate because of age, sex, religion, race, color, creed, national origin, alienage or citizenship, disability, marital status, partnership status, veteran status, gender (including gender identity), sexual orientation, or any other factor prohibited by law. The Museum hires and promotes individuals solely on the basis of their qualifications for the job to be filled. The Museum encourages all qualified candidates to apply for vacant positions at all levels. This description shall not be construed as a contract of any sort for a specific period of employment.

Application Instructions

Please apply through the Whitney Museum of American Art's careers page.

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