Program Officer for Visual Art & Creative Practices - The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage

JOB TITLE: Program Officer for Visual Art and Creative Practices

DEPARTMENT:  The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage

REPORTS TO:  Director, Exhibitions & Public Interpretation


The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage (the Center) seeks a Program Officer for Visual Art and Creative Practices with expertise that grows out of the visual arts and that includes literacy in innovative uses of technology and virtual platforms for the public presentation of cultural programming. This position aims to advance the Center’s ongoing grant making efforts to foster a vibrant and inclusive cultural community in Greater Philadelphia. Based in our project grants program area of Exhibitions & Public Interpretation (EPI) and Performance, this position will work under the strategic leadership of the Executive Director. The Program Officer will report to and thoughtfully partner with the Director of EPI on the planning and implementation of the Center’s annual project grants cycle. The Program Officer will collaborate with the Directors of EPI and Performance , and as appropriate, with the Director of the Pew Fellowships in the Arts, in developing program strategy that actively generates ideas for capacity-building programming, editorial content, publications, and other activities that advance the Center’s mission.

The Program Officer will research and connect with artists, curators, scholars, and other practitioners across the fields of art practices served by the project grant funding areas. They will employ this knowledge in their work to contribute to the Center’s grant making processes and capacity-building programs, sharing their findings with Center colleagues, grantees and Pew Fellows, and other relevant Center constituencies. The Program Officer engages with Program Assistants across all funding areas; supports grants management staff on grants administration; develops content for and with the Center’s Communications department; and works with the Center’s core administrative staff as relevant to their support of the grant making programs. Critically, the Program Officer’s responsibilities include stewarding open grants and keeping abreast of constituent activity more generally, as well as tasks associated with implementing all phases of the Center’s annual peer review panels. This Program Officer will also collaborate with colleagues in support of the Center’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and access (DEIA).

The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage is funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts, part of its Philadelphia Program, and serves as Pew’s primary source of cultural funding. Our strategic agenda is determined for us by Pew’s board of directors. The Center is administered by the University of the Arts, Philadelphia. The University is the Center’s legal employer.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Candidates for this position should be a deep lover of art, culture, and community.
  • They must have a demonstrated commitment to DEIA, with high emotional intelligence and cultural awareness.
  • They are intellectually curious; rigorous in their work practices but always generous of spirit, patient, persistent, and personable with experience working and connecting with a variety of different kinds of people.
  • They are organized and self-motivated, capable of working alone but also capable of working collegially as part of a team.
  • Guiding constituents in program ideation and development, and developing original programming and content out of the Center proper, in a continued effort to de-silo program areas and reinforce the Center’s role as a hub and resource for knowledge on interdisciplinary cultural practice.
  • Candidates should be exemplary writers and able to articulate effectively complex creative content across genres, forms, and diverse practices.
  • Acts as a subject matter expert on contemporary visual art, maintaining up-to-date knowledge of cultural production and creative practices as they relate to the Center’s funding goals.
  • Report out on these practices to Program directors regularly.
  • Collaborates with grants management staff, support and monitor grantee activities and funded-project development through individual meetings, calls, site visits and other interactions, offering feedback and direction.
  • Documents project development meetings for grantee records.
  • Works closely with grant applicants on the development of letters of intent to apply and full applications for project grant funding.
  • Participates in meetings with applicants and potential applicants throughout the Center’s annual grant cycle.
  • Partners with Program directors and fellow Program Officers to create capacity building programs and resources that promote learning, exchange, and relationship building through activities such as convening’s, publications, and talks.
  • Participates in Communications editorial meetings with program colleagues and contribute to the development and production of material that serves the Center’s goals as a hub for knowledge-sharing on issues critical to artistic practice.
  • Cultivates relationships with potential eligible constituents to expand and enrich the Center’s portfolio of grant support.
  • Works with the Pew Fellowships Director to broaden the Center’s network of application reviewers and panelists, as relevant.
  • With guidance from Center’s senior leadership, support and amplify the work of the Center by acting as its representative at public events and participating in talks, panels, publications, meetings, and other forums, as appropriate.  
  • Participates in and recommend activities that might guide the evolution of your own and our collective work at the Center. 

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by the incumbent; they do not purport to describe all functions.  Incumbent may be assigned other duties, and the essential functions may change from time to time as necessary.


  • A graduate degree (preferred) or bachelor’s degree in curatorial work/arts administration/art history and/or equivalent work experience plus a minimum of 5-7 years of relevant work experience.


  • The Program Officer must have significant experience in successfully developing, ideating, and/or managing exhibitions, cultural programs, productions, and editorial initiatives and publications, with the ability to create capacity building resources for Center constituents in this area.
  • Candidates would benefit from additional experience in how organizations can successfully harness technology and online platforms to expand cultural programming, engagement, and audience development. Prior experience in grant-making is preferred.

Competencies, Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

  • Strong organizational skills and an aptitude for program development and administration as well as the ability to meet deadlines, handle and prioritize multiple tasks while maintaining attention to detail.
  • Strong field network/access to networks of people who can be potential resources for the Center’s work.
  • Effective interpersonal skills to successfully interact with a variety of people, including the cultural community, consultants, grantees, applicants, colleagues at The Pew Charitable Trusts, and the various publics with diverse cultures and backgrounds, as called upon.
  • They need to be appropriately thoughtful, respectful, and effective when expressing feedback. A sense of humility and humor are needed.
  • Ability to work strategically within existing and evolving organizational parameters as framed for us by our funder, The Pew Charitable Trusts. 
  • Ability to function with enthusiasm as part of a team.
  • Ability to delegate tasks to/monitor progress of, colleagues and junior staff to advance the workflow/schedule of the Center’s grant cycles.
  • Ability to exercise a high level of discretion and confidentiality in interactions with both internal and external people concerning all work-related information, and with understanding of the Center’s unique relationship to The Pew Charitable Trusts.
  • Professional working proficiency in technology and computer literacy; Microsoft Office Suite (including Office 365); Adobe Acrobat; and remote communications platforms such as Slack and Zoom.
  • Ability to periodically attend meetings and events which are after standard business hours or on weekends, as a Center representative.


The Center’s offices are located at 1608 Walnut St, Suite 18, Philadelphia PA

The Center operates each Monday - Friday from 5p.m.

Center staff have the option to work remotely each Monday and Friday only, but may be asked to work at the office on these days for occasional special assignments, deadlines, or activities. 


The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage (the Center) is a multidisciplinary grant maker and hub for knowledge-sharing, dedicated to fostering a vibrant and diverse cultural community in Greater Philadelphia. The Center invests in ambitious, imaginative, and catalytic work that showcases the region’s cultural vitality and enhances public life, and we engage in an ongoing exchange of ideas concerning artistic and interpretive practice with a broad network of cultural practitioners and leaders. Center funding has made possible thousands of performing arts events, history and visual arts exhibitions, and other public programs for audiences in Philadelphia and its surrounding counties. The Center is administered by the University of the Arts, Philadelphia. The University is the Center’s legal employer.

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TO APPLY: Interested, qualified applicants should submit letters of application and resumes to the Human Resources Department via email to Please ensure job title is in the Subject line.

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