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Executive Director

Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts



Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts (PVLA) seeks an Executive Director to lead PVLA into the next chapter of its storied existence. Working with its committed Board, the Executive Director will implement an ambitious, sustainable vision for PVLA’s continued success, empower its volunteer team, cultivate and enhance relationships with donors, and provide overall organizational leadership.


PVLA was established in 1978 when a popular Philadelphia Bar Association program was spun-off as a separate entity.  For over 40 years, PVLA’s core activity has been recruiting, training, and providing on-going support to its large, diverse community of volunteer attorneys who in turn provide pro bono legal services to PVLA clients (low-income artists and arts organizations).  PVLA has connected tens of thousands of individual artists and arts groups with volunteer attorneys whose legal representation has enabled our clients to move forward.   PVLA also seeks to provide meaningful educational opportunities to lawyers and to artists, and to participate in community events and other opportunities to interact with its key legal and arts community constituencies.

In 2009, PVLA became a program of the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce’s Arts & Business Council, and has recently returned to its status as an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit entity.  More information about PVLA, including our annual reports, financial statements, and Form 990s, is available here.


PVLA’s Executive Director will lead a well-functioning organization that is ready to chart its future course. PVLA has an engaged Board consisting of experienced attorneys and working artists, and an active volunteer corps of over 500 attorneys throughout the Philadelphia metropolitan area.   PVLA is also closely involved with the nationwide VLA network.  The Executive Director will be charged with continuing to focus on PVLA’s overarching strategic goal of coordinating excellent legal services on a timely and efficient basis to all eligible clients, by expanding PVLA’s volunteer pool, staff capacity, and revenues. The Executive Director will also work to strengthen PVLA’s connections to local and national arts organizations, relevant governmental agencies and thought leaders in the arts and culture world.  The Executive Director will also create, steward, and strengthen PVLA’s relationships with its funders, including foundations, local government, law firms, corporations, and individuals.

The Executive Director position is full-time and exempt, with established employee benefits and the support of an active and engaged board of directors.


Passion for access to volunteer legal services for low-income artists and low budget arts organizations. Prior relevant professional or volunteer experience strongly preferred.

Significant professional work experience, with progressively increasing responsibility, and preferably demonstrated leadership experience.

Demonstrated fundraising/development experience.

Excellent written and oral communication skills.

Exceptionally close attention to detail, strong organizational skills, and demonstrated ability to manage multiple, simultaneous projects and deadlines.

Significant supervisory experience.

Collaborative; able to build effective working relationships with people from diverse backgrounds.

Strong analytical and technological skills. Demonstrated ability to design, implement, and refine processes and systems based on data.

Ability to “roll with the punches” and be flexible.

License to practice law in PA & NJ a plus.



Mission and Strategy:

In partnership with the Board, establish and implement a clear vision for PVLA, emerging from its prior structure and fully engaging with the arts and culture community;

Ensure that all programs hew closely to PVLA’s vision and mission and achieve strategic goals; and

Lead and motivate PVLA’s talented volunteers to achieve program goals.


In conjunction with the Board and using outside consultants as appropriate, serve as a primary fundraiser for the organization; and

Develop and implement a rigorous and continuous fundraising plan – inclusive of funding from entities (e.g., foundations, government, law firms, and corporations) and individual donors – to meet resource objectives; continually seek new sources of funding; and steward all funder/donor relationships with the utmost care.

Board Partnership:

Work with the Board to achieve PVLA’s mission;

Work with the Board President to set Board meeting agendas to ensure timely communication of program, development, financial and strategic matters; and

Create opportunities for Board and volunteer interaction on a regular basis to build knowledge of the organization’s programs and key staff.

Communications and External Relations:

Cultivate relationships with key stakeholders, law firms, community and business leaders, funders, and legal services agencies;

Build PVLA’s profile and brand recognition;

Manage the planning and execution of major events;

Oversee organizational communications; and

Direct the social media presence of the organization.

Program Management:

In partnership with the Board and Board President, oversee legal team to ensure programs align with mission and achieve strategic goals;

Demonstrate substantive knowledge of issues and best practices related to legal volunteerism;

Serve as a strategic recruiter for all volunteers; and

Be personally engaged in the delivery of programs and services, including recruitment and retention of volunteers.

Financial Management:

Manage the budget and ensure the stewardship of organizational financial resources;

Ensure appropriate controls and financial systems are in place; and

Ensure the timely preparation and filing of all financial and tax-related documents.

Operations Management:

Oversee and guide PVLA’s strategy for recruiting, hiring, and retaining talented, committed, and diverse team members;

In partnership with Board and Board President, manage the organization’s physical space, infrastructure and assets, including lease negotiations and lease compliance, technology needs and security; and

Ensure sound risk management policies and practices including compliance with applicable laws and securing appropriate types and levels of insurance coverage.

Evaluation and Measurement:

Foster a culture of accountability, evaluation, and measurement;

Establish policies and practices for evaluating program performance against stated goals; and

Strong commitment to diversity and serving diverse communities.

Education Level: 
Bachelors Degree required; PA/NJ Law License a plus
To Apply


Email cover letter and resume to  No calls, please. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, with a priority deadline of May 20, 2021.

What to include in your cover letter: All applicants should include their salary requirements and potential start date. We invite you to include a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of PVLA’s organization. References will be requested prior to an offer of employment.