Director, Human Resources

Arena Stage | Washington, DC



Arena Stage was founded August 16, 1950 in Washington, D.C. by Zelda Fichandler, Tom Fichandler and Edward Mangum. Over 70 years later, Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Producer Edgar Dobie, is a national center focused on American artists. Our productions are innovative and representative of stories from across the country. We nurture new plays and reimagine classics. We celebrate our democracy and diversity through a multitude of voices in our productions and community engagement programs to inspire people to action. We produce all that is passionate, exuberant, profound, entertaining, deep and dangerous in the American spirit. Arena Stage impacts the lives of over 10,000 students annually through its work in community engagement and serves a diverse annual audience of more than 300,000.

Job Summary

The Director of Human Resources will oversee all strategic and functional Human Resources operations of Arena Stage. As a member of the senior staff and reporting to the Executive Producer and President of the Corporation, the Director of Human Resources will develop and implement strategic human resource initiatives related to recruiting, hiring, and retaining staff, including diversity, equity and inclusion concentration. The Director will be instrumental in creating and fostering a work culture that reflects and borrows from the culture of the rehearsal hall which values experimentation and collaboration.

Reports To

Executive Producer




  • In coordination with the Executive Producer and Senior Staff, develop and implement strategic human resource initiatives related to recruiting and hiring, including concentration of diversity and inclusion.
  • In coordination with the Executive Producer and Senior Staff and working with the staff, create and implement a code of conduct, “Culture of the Rehearsal Hall”.
  • Conduct periodic audit of salary and titles to ensure consistency within the organization.
  • Manage an external job and compensation analysis to review market-value of positions.
  • Propose human resources initiatives to the Executive Producer and Senior Staff that will move the HR department and organization forward.


  • Oversee the recruiting and hiring process for all regular and seasonal positions (full and part-time), including managing the ApplicantPro database.
  • Post all regular and seasonal positions internally and externally.
  • Initial review of all candidates, including screening candidates for experience and salary requirements.
  • Work with hiring managers to ensure a consistent recruiting process, including a focus on diversity and inclusion.


  • Communicate initial job offers to prospective employees.
  • Compose and send offer letters and benefits information, set start date.
  • Communicate on-boarding information to appropriate departments (i.e., Operations, IT, etc.)
  • Conduct New Employee Orientations, as necessary.
  • Maintain and expand new employee orientation materials.
  • Ensure all new hire paperwork is up to date and forwarded to the Payroll Manager in a timely manner.
  • Draft and send new hire announcements to all staff.


  • In coordination with the Chief Financial Officer, work with the benefits administrators on the annual insurance renewals and open enrollment process.
  • Ensure compliance with FMLA, ADA and all benefit-related regulations.
  • Answer employee’s benefits questions.
  • Enroll employees, process change requests, terminate coverage.
  • Administer COBRA Benefits and manage current participation in COBRA.
  • Coordinate periodic 403(b) representative visits to Arena Stage.
  • Act as a point of contact between employees and 403(b) representative.


  • Administer all worker’s compensation Benefits.
  • Track all active claims.
  • Submit claims for processing and communicate necessary information to worker’s compensation insurer.


  • Audit and maintain Arena Stage regular and seasonal employees, former employee personnel and medical files.
  • Complete EE01 reports, and fulfill other Government reporting requirements.
  • Respond to employment verification requests.


  • Review, update and create organizational policies to ensure compliance.
  • Communicate all policies clearly and effectively to staff.


  • Counsel staff on personnel matters, including coaching and development opportunities.
  • Counsel managers on procedures relating to performance review and development, including performance improvement plans, as necessary.
  • Communicate with Executive Producer and Senior Staff regarding personnel issues, as necessary.
  • Review and update performance evaluation process, work with managers on the evaluation timeline, ensuring evaluations are completed and documented annually.


  • Attend weekly Internal Communication meetings.
  • Solicit agenda items for All-Staff meetings and schedule accordingly.
  • Lead the Events Committee to plan the holiday party, summer picnic, chili cook-off and other events as needed.
  • Set up and execute Employee Recognition event annually, including review of recognition dates and gifts.
  • When appropriate, organize retirement recognition events.



  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • 8-10 years of human resource generalist experience.
  • Passion for theater and arts administration.


  • In-depth knowledge and understanding of HR compliance, benefits administration, records retention, HR policies and procedures and personnel management.
  • General understanding of employment law.
  • Excellent organizational skills and the ability to multi-task and time manage effectively.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and a professional work manner.
  • Ability to act with discretion.
  • Must be a strong self-starter and project manager with the ability to see projects to their conclusion.



Arena Stage values diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and is an equal opportunity employer.

Salary is competitive commensurate with experience. Benefits include vacation, medical and dental insurance, and 403(b) plan and life insurance/long term disability coverage upon eligibility.

For more information about Arena Stage, visit

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Organization: Nonprofit organizations