The Flea Theater seeks a visionary and collaborative leader to execute the NYC based company’s vision and operating model as Executive Director.

About The Flea Theater


We support and invest in experimental art by Black, brown, and queer artists. We provide space, financial support, producing partnership and other resources so that they may develop and share their vision in community with audiences.

Mission Amplifier

We work to create a culture where Black, brown and queer artists and their audiences can commune, create art on their own terms and live in their full expression and cultural truths. We will support work that is not strictly defined by traditional designations like “off-off-Broadway” or “theater”. While we are a NYC based company, we encourage artists to be unbound by geography or physical buildings. We also create opportunities for audiences to deepen their knowledge, practice and interest in experimental art by Black, brown and queer artists


Core Values

Human centered

We invest in people before things. We recognize that people are at the core of our work and will create opportunities that are equitable, fair and promote open access. When making decisions, we will consider everyone’s humanity, unique life experiences and circumstances.

Anti-racism & Anti-oppression

We actively work to dismantle structures that reinforce systemic racism and we replace them with structures that empower all of our community members and stakeholders. We are pro-Black, pro-brown, pro-woman/femme and pro-queer, at a minimum. We acknowledge this list is not exhaustive, and embrace the multitude of ever-evolving identities and intersections.


We work together and we are not siloed. We value when artists, staff and stakeholders participate in the development of the organization. We invite heterogeneity and differences of opinion.


We believe in pushing boundaries and challenging the status quo, on stages and in our operations.


We are accountable for our impact on the environment. We will do our part to sustain our planet for future generations.


We communicate clearly and don’t speak in coded language. We are honest about what we can and cannot provide, and about how resources are divided. We invite our community to hold us accountable to our expressed values and mission.

Who’s who on The Flea Team

Niegel Smith, Executive Artistic Director, is a Bessie Award winning theater director and performance artist. His work for the stage has been produced at The Alley Theater, The Barbican, Classical Theatre of Harlem, The Flea Theater, The Goodman Theatre, HERE Arts Center, Hip Hop Theatre Festival, The Invisible Dog, Luna Stage, The Melbourne Festival, Magic Theatre, Mixed Blood, New York Fringe Festival, New York Live Arts, Phoenix Theatre Ensemble, Playwrights Horizons, Pomegranate Arts, The Public Theater, St. Ann’s Warehouse, Summer Play Festival, Todd Theatre and Under the Radar, and his participatory walks and performances have been produced by Abrons Arts Center, American Realness, Dartmouth College, Elastic City, The Invisible Dog, Jack, The New Museum, Prelude Festival, PS 122, the Van Alen Institute and Visual AIDS.

In the spirit of two fisted political singer songwriters such as Nina Simone and Joni Mitchell, Nona Hendryx, Board Co-Chair tackles social issues, love and politics with a smoky vocal tessitura somewhere between funk and the end of the stratosphere. Hendryx’s legendary career spans six decades of sound and style evolution. Fans know her as a founding member of the girl group, Patti LaBelle & the Bluebelles (with Sarah Dash, Cindy Birdsong and Patti LaBelle) known as “the Sweethearts of the Apollo Theatre” and inducted into the R&B Hall of Fame in 1999. In the 70s, the group morphed into the Rock & Funk Glam Diva’s ‘Labelle’ with the #1 record, Lady Marmalade.  Nona Hendryx emerged as the chief songwriter of the group’s socially conscious and illuminating message songs. An activist and vocal supporter for women’s rights, social, political and criminal justice.  Helping to raise funds and awareness of HIV/AIDS from the outbreak of the epidemic and still involved today.  Dreaming of being an educator because of her English Teacher and mentor Mrs. Lottie Dinkins, Nona worked with education organizations supporting women in prison, a school in Chicago founded by Monica Haslip, Little Black Pearl, taught Stage Craft at The Clive Davis Recording Academy and founded in 2016 her own Non Profit, to bridge the gap in Science, Math, Art, Technology and Robotics for young women of color.

Tony Tramontin, Board Co-Chair, is the Chief of Operations and Strategy at Holmusk; a healthcare company working to help patients who live with poor mental health. Before Holmusk, Tony was the Chief Scientific Officer at Axcella Health, a Boston biotechnology company focused on metabolic modulation. Prior to Axcella, Tony was a Partner in McKinsey & Company’s Global Healthcare Practice.

For more information about our staff and board, please this webpage.

Who are we looking for?

We are seeking someone who is excited about envisioning and actualizing innovative models and methods to support our new mission, who is excited to work in deep collaboration with our staff, board, artists, and community, and who is deeply committed to the advancement of black, brown, and queer people. This person should work in an entrepreneurial way, suited to the daily operations of a small organization. The Flea Theater is excited to welcome candidates with a diverse array of backgrounds and skills, and we are excited to invest in your growth and professional development.

While not all required, we encourage candidates to apply who have the following:

  • Experience with human-centered and collaborative leadership
  • A foundation in people-centered institutions, particularly in the arts, humanities and/or cultural sectors
  • Experience leading an innovative or “turnaround” cultural institution
  • Success developing and executing major fundraising strategies through all funding segments – individuals, foundations, corporations, and government
  • Financial management acumen in budget design and implementation, accounting, and regulatory controls and reporting
  • Expertise in developing and implementing a strategic plan that aligns with the mission and combines internal expertise with external resources and support
  • Political savvy and comfort with broad-based constituencies including artists, legislators, business and community leaders, and others of influence; the ability to generate excitement that leads to buy-in from diverse sectors
  • Outstanding oral and written communications, and negotiation skills
  • Entrepreneurial experience and/or work in a start-up environment
  • Familiarity with the historical and contemporary work of black, brown and queer artists

What will you do?

In full partnership with the Artistic Director, Board of Directors and staff, The Executive Director will help resource and operationalize The Flea’s mission as it continues to deepen the impact of its new vision and focus.

Areas of Responsibility


  • Serve as chief advancement officer managing an existing grants writer and community development assistant
  • Build and manage development infrastructure and fundraising capacity
  • Design and lead fundraising strategies in collaboration with the Board of Directors, staff, and consultants
  • In partnership with the Artistic Director, cultivate and steward relationships with funders and key individual donors
  • Expand, contributed revenue streams, especially grants and individual donors
  • Lead upcoming Capital Campaign

Organizational Infrastructure & Business Administrative Management:

  • Serve as chief financial officer and chief operations officer, working in collaboration with the General Manager
  • Build, lead and continually develop a committed team with the expertise and networks to opportunistically realize artistic and operating goals and efficiencies
  • Ensure organizational financial sustainability through financing operations and programs and strong financial management

Marketing, Communications, Branding:

  • Serve as chief marketing officer managing a marketing consultant, social media and marketing associate and a graphic design consultant.
  • Build and manage marketing, messaging, communications, and branding infrastructure and capacity
  • Design and lead marketing, messaging, communications and branding strategies in collaboration with the Board of Directors, staff, and consultants
  • Lead rebranding efforts
  • Identify, develop,  and pursue new earned income opportunities (ticket sales, rentals, etc.), including leveraging nontraditional opportunities

Cultural Leadership:

  • With Artistic Director:
    • co-lead the execution of the Mission, Vision and Strategies of The Flea.
    • deepen and expand services to black, brown, and queer communities (hub for activism, professional development, community parties, etc.)
    • develop mission aligned and sustainable programming model
  • Build and manage operations (HR, finance, facilities, IT) infrastructure and capacity
  • Foster generative relationships with the Board of Directors via productive communications and responsiveness to issues affecting The Flea’s strategic direction, governance, and operating health
  • Identify and cultivate new Board members whose talents and resources will advance the Flea’s mission and artistic development
  • Lead strategic planning process

How much are we paying?

Annual Salary: $95,000 – $110,000


  • You will be entitled to participate in The Flea’s health and dental insurance plans, with eligibility upon date of hire.
  • At The Flea, we take pride in our employees’ incredible work ethic, and we want to reward and recognize that by offering an unlimited vacation policy. Instead of a traditional vacation or sick day policy, you can request time off as you see fit. No vacation days will accrue, no time off will expire, and you won’t see any mention of vacation time on your pay stubs.
  • Professional development support will be provided during your first year on the job, including trainings, continuing education and workshops.

Start Date:

October 2023

How do I apply?

Visit to submit your application. Application deadline is Saturday, July 15, 2023 by 5 pm PST/5 PM MST/6 PM CST/7 PM EST.

EEO Commitment

Equal employment opportunity and an inclusive and representative staff are fundamental at The Flea Theater. Our employment and promotional opportunities are based upon individual capabilities and qualifications without regard to race, color, religion, gender, pregnancy, sexual orientation/preference, political position, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status, or any other protected characteristic as established under law.