Current Opportunities

Chief Operating Officer

Job Summary:
Working as a strategic thought partner to the Museum Director and CEO, the Chief Operating Officer (“COO”) is a newly created position that will be an integral part of the museum leadership team with responsibility for the oversight of Finance, Campus Operations (Security and Facilities), Information Technology, Human Resources, and Earned Revenue (Shop and Café). The COO plays an important role in a broad range of activities related to institutional planning and resource management and is expected to be a leader in organizational matters, working with the Museum Director and CEO as well as members of Senior Management Team and other staff to direct policies and procedures related to museum operations and leading efforts for improvements throughout the organization. The COO guides cross-functional teams and works to achieve institutional goals in a manner that promotes collaboration and recognizes and celebrates the efforts of dedicated and talented staff.

While providing strategic and daily operational leadership to Honolulu Museum of Art (“HoMA”) in areas of Finance, Campus Operations, Information Technology, Human Resources, and Earned Income revenue generation, the COO will be expected to interface and build trusting relationships within the organization, including staff, Board of Trustees, Board Committee members, local and state officials, and other key stakeholders.

As HoMA approaches its centennial in 2027, it is poised to embark on a new chapter guided by a renewed vision and Strategic Plan that focuses on the Museum’s core purpose: to be a home for art and education that exists for the benefit of the entire community, presented in a setting that prioritizes beauty, harmony, and promotes learning, self-awareness and connection. The Strategic Plan, along with a supporting Operational Plan that outlines major activities and timelines, provide the necessary structure and focus to carry HoMA through the next five years and beyond. Working in collaboration with the Director and CEO to champion and implement the Strategic and Operational Plan to streamline, unify and elevate the Museum’s daily operations will be a core responsibility of HoMA’s COO.

About the Honolulu Museum of Art:
HoMA is dedicated to the collection, preservation, interpretation and teaching of the visual arts, and the presentation of exhibitions, performing arts and public programs specifically relevant to Hawaiʻi’s ethnically diverse community. The Museum was founded in 1927 by Anna Rice Cooke, who sought to establish an encyclopedic art museum for the community that was designed to reflect the unique attributes of Hawaiʻi’s multicultural makeup. Not bound by the traditional western idea of art museums, she also wanted to create an institution that showcased the island’s natural beauty and climate in an open and airy environment. Her thoughtful consideration is evidenced in the charming courtyards that interconnect the various galleries throughout the architecturally significant Museum, situated in the heart of downtown Honolulu.

Since its founding, the Museum’s permanent collection has grown from 500 works to more than 50,000 pieces spanning 5,000 years. The Museum has one of the largest single collections of Asian and Pan-Pacific art in the United States, including an unrivaled collection by artists of Hawaiʻi and the Pacific. The collection also contains significant holdings in American and European painting and decorative arts, 19th- and 20th-century art, an extensive collection of works on paper, Asian textiles, and traditional works from Africa, Oceania, and the Americas. Other highlights include the Samuel H. Kress collection of Italian Renaissance paintings and the James A. Michener collection of ukiyo-e prints. In July 2011, The Contemporary Museum gifted its collections and assets to HoMA, merging the two art museums and ushering in a renewed commitment to the art of our time. Today, HoMA has an operating budget of $13M-$15M, with an endowment of approximately $70M and a staff of 120-150.

FLSA Status: Exempt
Work Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00am – 5:00pm, Some evenings and weekends

Minimum Qualification:

  • Master’s Degree in Business, Organizational Leadership, Non-Profit Administration or related field and 5-10 years’ experience as a Chief Operating Officer or equivalent leadership role in a non-profit, mission-driven organization of comparable size and complexity to HoMA.
  • 10 years applied knowledge of professional museum principles, practices and procedures at a Museum of comparable or larger size than HoMA; 10 years’ experience managing substantial departments, projects and program budgets with a track record of demonstrated success leading cross-functional teams to the successful attainment of measurable goals.
  • Best practice knowledge of current standards within the museum field.
  • Possess strong experience in project planning, budgeting, definition of critical path dependencies, organizational design, and project accounting. Many of these projects will involve budgeting across departments; strong experience overseeing cross-functional teams dedicated to developing and delivering on major capital projects; an understanding of how to assure smooth back-of-house operations.
  • Proven managerial, problem-solving and planning capabilities and significant financial, administrative, human resources, and day-to-day operating responsibility in a museum or similar institution of comparable size and scope; prior experience as a COO, CFO or equivalent leadership role.
  • Facility and comfort with technology; an ability to successfully integrate financial and information systems to support HoMA; knowledge of and experience with financial, project accounting, project management and other applications systems.
  • A mature level of judgment and decision-making in a changing, forward-thinking operating and customer service environment; the ability to collaborate and explain financial and project workflow management concepts; exercises tact, skill and diplomacy when engaging in negotiations with colleagues, trustees, officials, contractors and employees.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to address issues professionally and with tact; the presence and credibility to serve as an effective spokesperson for HoMA.
  • A confident leader with skills to motivate and direct a diverse group of staff with different work styles; comfortable managing conflict and solution-oriented with the wellbeing of the Museum at the forefront of their efforts.
  • Must be an excellent listener comfortable receiving input from many internal and external sources, and able to analyze and formulate information into sound, well-organized strategy and plans; a graceful communicator and tactful administrator who acts as an ambassador for the HoMA and engages the active support of diverse constituents.
  • Results-oriented, adept at seeing the big-picture, planning, prioritizing, organizing, and following through with an ability to maintain balance and perspective.
  • Must have exceptional people qualities, knows when to be flexible and adaptable so that information can be shared in a practical and straightforward manner.


Desired Qualifications:

  • Commensurate experience that demonstrates exemplary strategic financial acumen.
  • Strong knowledge of corporate and/or non-profit governance with significant experience.
  • Experience successfully designing and implementing a large-scale, comprehensive earned revenue strategy.

Strategic Leadership and Management Acumen
With previous senior-level museum experience expected, the COO is skilled at building and leading high-performing, diverse teams of the highest degree of professionalism and guiding team members’ growth and development; has the ability to set clear priorities, delegate, and guide investment in people and systems. The ideal candidate will provide a productive work environment that matches the skill set and abilities of staff members as well as professional growth opportunities that result in team cohesion and engagement. The COO will foster a culture of collaboration, mutual respect, and teamwork throughout the institution. The successful candidate will be an inclusive leader and manager of the highest integrity, with the ability to motivate, inspire, and engage staff around a shared vision; able to encourage and celebrate the talents of the team while also holding each accountable to mutually agreed-upon goals. Additionally, the COO will approach the departments s/he manages with focus and balance and will make decisions based on a clear understanding of the strategic objectives of the Museum. The COO will have excellent interpersonal skills, be systematic, detail oriented, patient, a self-starter, and work well under pressure. This individual manages time efficiently, analyzes and solves problems collaboratively.

Administration Leadership
The COO will have a passion for arts, culture, and community: will be adept at working with the staff to bring the best out of them; has an ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects simultaneously; brings a robust network of colleagues and collaborators in and outside of the art museum field, is comfortable in the broader arts and cultural community to advance the mission of HoMA locally, nationally, and internationally. This leader will have excellent presentation, verbal, and written communication skills.

Building Relationships and Using Influence
The successful candidate must establish rapport and cultivate relationships across all levels of the Museum, including serving as a consultative thought-leader and partner to the Director and CEO. As a leader that brings an executive presence, the COO must be highly articulate and a strong communicator. This individual will foster trust and collaboration among team members and will possess the ability to manage through change with flexibility and poise; will be a strong leader, communicator, and collaborator who is skilled at listening to and learning from leadership and staff. This leader will embrace the culture of HoMA, while always having an eye on opportunities to foster best-in-class practices in a productive manner with colleagues. The COO will naturally inspire fellow leaders and staff to develop deeper relationships, leading the charge by example.

Passion for the Mission
Fully embracing the mission of HoMA and the commitment to its various stakeholders, the COO will be passionate about working in partnership with the staff, and other partners to advance the mission of HoMA. 

Essential Duties:

  • Act as the thought leader for campus operations, finance, human resources, information technology, earned revenue with an eye towards holistic needs of the organization.
  • With guidance from the Director and CEO, assist with developing an in-depth understanding of  HoMA’s Strategic Plan; partner with the Director and CEO to transform the Strategic Plan into discrete actionable projects with budgets, assigned staff and resources, discrete measurable objectives and timeframes; manage project implementation;
  • Direct and coordinate campus operation’s planning, human resources, finance, information technology, earned income and implementation of policies in support of the museum.
  • As part of the senior management team, engage in strategic planning and visioning for the Museum’s strategy and long-term goals and ensures that they are carried within the appropriate functional areas.
  • Assess department functions, priorities, and processes to ensure efficiencies, excellence, and alignment with museum best practices and AAM accreditation standards.
  • Spearheads the long-term strategic and financial planning of HoMA and continually monitors financial performance.
  • Ensure that the museum has effective and appropriate Human Resource policies and operations at the highest ethical standard appropriate and ensure that legal compliance, business practices and Museum policies are met. 
  • As a member of the senior staff, contribute to the strategic planning, planning for the master site plan, policymaking and organizational management of the Museum.
  • Coordinate legal oversight in all museum areas and employment issues with Director of HR, CFO and counsel.
  • Encourage and celebrate the talents of the team while holding each accountable to institutional goals. Serve as a mentor and coach to staff in order to strengthen leadership skills, team dynamics, and collaboration and across HoMA’s departments.
  • Attend board committees meetings and acts as liaison to any board committees as directed by the Director/CEO.
  • Develop and monitor departmental budgets, contracts, agreements, and other administrative documents.
  • Recruit, hire, manage performance, and facilitate the training of staff as necessary.
  • Perform other tasks and duties as assigned.

Traits and characteristics:

  • Strong yet collegial management; broad experience with a full range of strategic development and planning, and the ability to take charge of a wide range of situations and address or overcome misunderstandings or concerns.
  • Ability to analyze the impact of a strategic direction, understand its long term impact and advocate for either keeping course or modifying direction.
  • Must be diplomatic, analytical, of the highest integrity, and possess sound judgment.
  • The successful candidate should demonstrate an ability to initiate and sustain momentum without close supervision.

Working Conditions and Atmosphere:
Members of the Senior Management Team at the Honolulu Museum of Art are expected to devote significant amounts of time and energy to the successful pursuit of their jobs. The Chief Operating Officer must be prepared to work evenings and weekend hours on an occasional basis, in addition to fulfilling the performance obligations of a routine workday. Occasional travel may also be required.

The Chief Operating Officer works with minimum supervision. Work will often be performed with short deadlines and situations sensitive to the Museum. Regular office hours are required. Due to the nature of the responsibilities, evening and weekend work is sometimes required, and at times may be on an emergency basis.

The statements contained herein describe the scope of the responsibilities and essential functions of this position, but should not be considered to be an all-inclusive listing of work duties and requirements.  Individuals may perform other duties as assigned including work in other areas to cover absences or relief to equalize peak work periods or otherwise balance the workload.

The Honolulu Museum of Art maintains a policy of nondiscrimination in all employment practices and decisions, ensuring equal employment opportunities for all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, including gender identity and expression, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, reproductive health decisions, marital status, arrest and court record, citizenship, credit history, military service, victim of domestic or sexual abuse status, genetic information, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local law.  This applies to both Honolulu Museum of Art employees and applicants for employment with the Museum.  Any form of harassment of any employee because of any protected status is also prohibited.

To be considered for this position please complete an application through the following link:


Salary Range: 

About This Job

  • Honolulu Museum of Art
  • Honolulu, HI
  • Category: Professional
  • Salary Range: 180000.00
  • Posted: May 28, 2021