Now Hiring: Community Development Process Facilitator

EmcArts is recruiting an experienced Process Facilitator who has deep experience in Community Development, Organizing and System Change processes. Applications due by March 21st, 2016.



Through EmcArts’ biggest current initiative, the Community Innovation Labs, we are developing partnerships with local communities who wish to address complex community challenges via extended processes of community participation and experimentation. To strengthen our New York-based team in 2016, we are recruiting an experienced Process Facilitator who has deep experience in Community Development, Organizing and System Change processes. We are looking for someone who will be able to join our team approximately four days a week.

EmcArts is looking for candidates who have experience leading diverse stakeholders in complex group processes, as well as in training workshops and small-group coaching sessions. Candidates will also be interested in learning the frameworks and techniques of EmcArts’ Community Innovation Lab process and the curriculum for our New Pathways program. Coaching, observation and documentation will be provided to the successful candidate, and he or she will then contribute to putting these approaches into practice. Through this appointment, we are focused on bringing into our team of facilitators and staff someone with deep experience of working at the community and system level with stakeholder groups that embrace a wide range of social, ethnic, cultural and economic difference. We are therefore particularly interested in candidates who have a background in community organizing and/or community development, and who have utilized systems thinking as a foundational framework to foster change. We also strongly urge candidates of color, and those with up to fifteen years of post-college professional experience, to consider applying.

The successful candidate will have a developed practice in active listening and deploying a flexible set of techniques to assist wide-ranging community groups in learning, adapting, and discovering new directions together. He or she will also have experience working across the social sector, deep investment in community development and change processes, knowledge of applied systems thinking, and interest in community and/or organizational innovation and adaptive change. Some experience working in the arts and culture field will be an asset. Suitable candidates may have an individual facilitation/consultancy practice of their own, but also desire to join and work as part of a close-knit creative team.


Professional expertise

  • Experience as part of a team working on community development and facilitating community change processes, with a particular focus on adaptive change
  • Knowledge of systems thinking and its application to community change, including the design of systemic interventions

People savvy

  • Sophisticated people skills, great listener, open and generous, with the agility to navigate challenging interpersonal dynamics and manage difficult conversations with people from varying socio-economic, ethnic, cultural and educational backgrounds

Dynamic, confident, and welcoming presentation style

  • Ability to keep 40-80 diverse participants engaged and invested in workshop content

Good facilitation skills

  • Ability to respond to and advance the thinking of large and small groups
  • Experience building relationships in communities, and assisting community participants to develop their dialogue skills in order to discover and implement new approaches
  • Ability to develop exercises that inspire confidence in large groups and maximize community learning
  • Build trust and spark morale while displaying open, transparent and credible behavior within group process facilitation
  • Ability to read power relationships in order to strengthen the capacity of civil society and community groups to manage their own development process and projects


  • Ability to sense the needs and interest levels of groups of participants and respond accordingly, balancing the needs of the individual, the group, and the process framework


  • Ability to change design and/or approach in response to participant feedback and/or logistical constraints
  • A tool-kit of techniques and moves that is always expanding and adapting

Background and experience in community development and/or community organizing

  • Ability to “riff” off participant contributions from personal experience + knowledge
  • Experience working alongside communities to bring together leaders, activists, and citizens to affect change
  • Bonus: Specific knowledge in areas of economic development, housing and land use, asset-based development, place-making, and/or navigating local politics a plus.
  • Bonus: background and experience in the arts and culture field

Strong commitment to continual learning and professional development

  • Desire to extend and enrich personal practice, as well as learn from others
  • Ability to absorb theory and translate it into effective practice

Desire to and ability to travel. Sense of humor!

Minimum 7 years of professional experience in a similar or equivalent position


Compensation will be developed by understanding the Process Facilitator’s previous experience and practice, and how much training will be needed prior to direct delivery. Availability in relation to EmcArts’ needs for 2016 and 2017 will also be a factor. We expect the position will be salaried, likely working an average of four days a week.

The position reports to EmcArts’ Managing Director, Melissa Dibble, but closely interacts with EmcArts’ President and Director of Strategic Initiatives as well as other team members depending on project roles and tasks required.

To Apply:

Applications are only accepted via email.

Please send both a letter of interest and resumé as a single document to Maura Cuffie, Operations and Program Coordinator at

EmcArts will begin reviewing resumés after the close of business on Monday, March 21st and will continue reviewing them until the position is filled.

Your application must be saved as a single Word or PDF document with your full name in the document title. In addition, the subject line of your emailed application must read as follows: Process Facilitator Application. Please note that no unaccompanied resumés will be reviewed.

If you have questions about the position that you would like to discuss prior to applying, please also email Maura Cuffie at so she can find a time that works for both you and Melissa. It is NOT an application requirement to have such a conversation – and know that Melissa’s schedule can be a bit overstuffed!

About EmcArts:

EmcArts Inc. is a leading social enterprise for learning and adaptive change in the arts and across the social sector. We work alongside people, organizations, and communities as they take on their most complex challenges. Our partners include many of the USA’s leading cultural institutions and funding agencies, and our work is expanding into the Canadian arts and culture system.

EmcArts is an energetic firm that offers an informal, constantly learning, and hard-working office environment, based on effective teamwork. We work collaboratively internally as well as externally to design and deliver community and organizational adaptive change processes.

Learn more about EmcArts at and

To read more about our Community Innovation Labs program, visit our program page, and read our blog series chronicling the journey of the Labs from conception and design through piloting.


Melissa Dibble is the Managing Director and Lead Facilitator at EmcArts, bringing over two decades of experience in cultural administration and development of new strategies in organizational innovation within the arts sector.