Quill and Quire

Executive Director

Telling Tales Published: January 15, 2023
Job Type
Date Posted
Application Deadline
Salary Range


Submission Deadline: February 28, 2023, by 5pm EST

Telling Tales is Ontario's pre-eminent children's literary festival and a series of year-round literary programming designed to celebrate excellence in Canadian authors, illustrators, storytellers and musicians. The primary goal of Telling Tales is to raise awareness of the importance of literacy and to inspire a love of reading. Telling Tales is seeking an experienced and passionate Executive Director to take on a leadership role with the organization as it enters its 15th anniversary year in 2023 and into 2024.


Telling Tales chooses to nurture an equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment for everyone who attends, presents at, and or works for/with our organization. We have a responsibility as lovers of storytelling to uplift marginalized voices and stories within our community. We commit to integrating equity principles into our decision-making regarding policies, practices, programs, partnerships and services and will continue to address systemic barriers and historical challenges. Equity and diversity should inform strategic planning discussions, AGM and conference planning and all other planning and activities. We recognize that committing to these values involves ongoing work, and every individual within the organization will continue to strive toward building a more equitable future for the entire community.


The Executive Director (ED) has responsibility for overseeing the development, administration, execution and analysis of Telling Tale's strategic plan. The ED also oversees operations as well as partner and stakeholder engagement. Of significant importance is the ability of the ED to provide the artistic direction for programming the annual festival and year-round literary programming. The ED reports directly to the Telling Tales Board of Directors' Chair. This is a home-based remote position that requires in-person meetings in the Hamilton, Halton region.


Status: Permanent Full-Time (35 hours per week) with flex and lieu time provisions
Vacation: Recognized statutory holidays and 20 paid vacation days per calendar year
Benefits: Wellness Package
Location: Hybrid. Remote home-based with regular meetings in the Hamilton, Halton region.
Development: Professional development opportunities available
Salary: $58,000 to $65,000 range


Strategic Leadership

▪ Develop a strategic plan with the Board of Directors that guides the organization to sustainable growth with a creative and compelling vision that inspires and motivates the entire organization.
▪ Work with the Board and staff to ensure the Telling Tales' mission is fulfilled through programs, strategic planning and community outreach.
▪ Responsible for leading Telling Tales in a manner that supports and guides the organization's mission as defined by the Board of Directors.
▪ Communicate effectively with the Board and provide, in a timely and accurate manner, all information necessary for the Board to function properly and to make informed decisions.
▪ Responsible for working with the Development Coordinator, Manager of Communications and Marketing and Grant Writer to oversee the creation and execution of the fundraising and marketing plans.
▪ In collaboration with the Equity Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) Committee, implement and update the EDI strategy and plan.
▪ Serve as Telling Tales' primary spokesperson for constituents, the media and the general public.
▪ Attend high-level meetings and events on behalf of Telling Tales (e.g., liaising with government/ministry officials, promotional opportunity events, networking with industry sector professionals).
▪ Work collaboratively with the Board regarding policy decisions, fundraising and marketing to increase the overall visibility of Telling Tales throughout the region, province and beyond.

Operational Responsibilities

▪ Oversee all operations to ensure effective and efficient operation of the organization
▪ Develop and ensure successful implementation of operational policies and administrative structure
▪ Lead in the designing and monitoring of the efficient workflow of interrelated projects using projectmanager.com
▪ Develop detailed project plans, assign tasks and enforce deadlines and analyze cost efficiency
▪ Responsible for hiring and retaining competent and qualified staff and related Human Resources functions.
▪ Signatory for all notes, agreements and other instruments made and entered into on behalf of the organization.
▪ Responsible for the fiscal integrity of Telling Tales, including submission to the Board of a proposed annual budget and, in conjunction with the Treasurer, delivering quarterly financial statements, which accurately reflect the organization's financial condition.
▪ Responsible for fiscal Management that generally anticipates operating within the approved budget, ensuring maximum resource utilization and maintaining the organization's positive financial position.
▪ Seek legal opinion/assistance when required.
▪ Provide input and support to the Program Manager and team regarding volunteer needs
▪ Establish employment and administrative policies and procedures as required, including day-to-day operations of a non-profit organization.
▪ Supervise and collaborate with staff.
▪ Oversee marketing and all other communications efforts in collaboration with MCM.
▪ Oversee the organization of board and committee meetings.
▪ Review and approve service contracts.


▪ Virtual Programming Management: Organize and manage/direct production, workflow and staging with the contractor and the support of the Manager of Program and Operations (POM)
▪ Live Festival and Partner Event Management: Collaborate with the Selection Committee Chair to curate each season's lineup. Directs and oversees the design, production, logistics, workflow, and
staging of performance/event(s) with the support of POM and seasonal Event Coordinator.
▪ School and Community Events (Live or Digital): With support from POM and School liaison, supervise smooth execution of all community and school programming. Supervise the collection of audience data via surveys.

Partner & Stakeholder Engagement

▪ Responsible for enhancing Telling Tales' image by being active and visible in the community and working closely with other professionals and civic and private organizations.
▪ Share the artistic vision for Telling Tales with stakeholders, partners and donors.
▪ Assist with the recruitment of volunteers.
▪ Work with DC and GW to determine the strategic direction for fundraising/sponsorships.
▪ Establish and maintain relationships with various organizations throughout the region, province, and country and leverage those relationships to enhance Telling Tales' mission strategically.


▪ Three (3) + years of management experience at a senior level preferably within in a not-for-profit environment in the publishing/book business, children's literary scene and/or arts organization
▪ Experience developing strategic plans and organizational visions in a collaborative manner
▪ Strong written and oral communication skills, including public speaking
▪ Experience building and maintaining relationships with multiple stakeholder groups: sponsors, donors, audiences, volunteers, staff and vendors
▪ Experience curating and collaborating in the development of artistic programming
▪ A passionate advocate of EDI policy, lens/understanding
▪ Exceptional organizational and project management skills - Change Management and calm problem-solving skills
▪ Demonstrated experience in budget and financial reporting
▪ Enthusiastic and collaborative visionary
▪ Respected community leader
▪ Comprehensive understanding of fundraising practices
▪ Working knowledge of governance procedures, bylaws and reporting to a board
▪ Knowledge of learning curriculums
▪ Appreciation of the importance of marketing and brand building
▪ Highest level of integrity, honesty and transparency
▪ Rotarian and/or appreciation for Rotary philosophy

How to apply: Send covering letter (mandatory) and resume to TTExecutiveDirectorSearch@gmail.com 

Telling Tales is committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons, women, Indigenous people, persons with disabilities, S2LGBTQIA+ persons, and others who may contribute to furthering the organization and its programming. Telling Tales is also committed to providing an accessible, barrier-free recruitment and selection process.

Research shows that women and racialized candidates often only apply to positions when they feel 100% qualified. If you are interested but don’t see yourself 100% reflected in the posting requirements, we still encourage you to apply or reach out to TTExecutiveDirectorSearch@gmail.com to learn more.