Karamu House

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Position: Finance Director

Reports To: President + CEO

Department: Administration

FLSA Status: Full-time, Exempt


In 1915, Oberlin College graduates Russell and Rowena Jelliffe opened the Playhouse Settlement in a Cleveland area called The Roaring Third. The Jelliffes wanted to build an environment where people of different races, religions, and social and economic backgrounds could come together to seek and share common ventures through the arts, and Karamu House was established as a gathering place for racially diverse members of the surrounding community at that time. As the community became predominantly African American, Karamu responded with programs geared to their needs and interests.

Today, Karamu is evolving to be reborn as a beating heart for the entire community, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identification, or age, as it embarks on its second 100 years, retaining its historical identity as “a place of joyful gathering.” Core programs include a five-performance, socially relevant and professional quality theatre season; arts education in drama/theatre, music, and dance for all ages; and community programming, such as a lecture series, and spoken word and music performances, that invites participation and engagement, reflection, and a re-commitment to cultural values.

FINANCE DIRECTOR | Karamu House (Cleveland, Ohio) seeks a full-time Finance Director responsible for the efforts, results, and success of Karamu’s finance department. The Finance Director provides strategic financial guidance and support to help senior executives make key decisions. The Finance Director will oversee financial statements like balance sheets, invoices, accounts payable, and accounts receivable. The Finance Director is also responsible for directing accounting staff and department operations, compiling financial reports based on financial statements, and implementing policies and procedures for timely and accurate financial reporting. Other duties will include all accounting activities related to income auditing, daily banking/reconciliation of cash accounts, corporate credit card management, tax compliance, payroll, and activities in support of grants management.


• Provide strategic direction for all financial decisions including financial modeling + projections.

• Oversee, review, and adhere to the budgets for each product line and business department.

• Lead out on company-wide budgetary planning and maintain the detailed, compiled budget worksheets.

• Ensure that all institutional financial practices are in line with statutory regulations and legislation.

• Manage cash from any outside grants or other funding and work with Advancement to produce custom reporting documents for each grant, as necessary.

• Analyze and stay current on the financial climate and market trends. • Interpret complex financial information and provide updates and information as needed.

• Monitor cash flow, accounts, and other financial transactions daily (i.e., Weekly Cash Needs Report).

• Supervise Bookkeeper/Accountant and other employees in the facilitation of day-to-day operations, including tracking financial data, invoicing, payroll, etc.

• Prepare official reports on a monthly and annual basis.

• Seek out methods and practices to minimize financial risk.

• Maintain Fixed Asset spreadsheets; calculate depreciation and record related journal entries.

• Support the maintenance of Gift Shop inventory; record monthly Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) journal entry.

• Serve as liaison between Karamu House Senior Leadership and the Board of Directors’ Finance Committee.

• Present board report financial statements during Board Meetings, highlighting key items and responding to board member inquiries.

• Calculate, file, and pay (if owed) monthly sales tax returns online with the State of Ohio.

• Research upgrades to current accounting systems and provide recommendations to President + CEO.

• Calculate semi-monthly payroll and enter/process via Paychex Flex.

• Prepare, complete, and submit reports including monthly Dept. of Labor statistics report and annual “true-up” of Bureau of Workers’ Compensation reports.

• Contract auditing services to ensure financial monitoring is up to date.

• Create and maintain relationships with service providers and contractors, including banking institutions and accountants.

• Maintain an updated policy manual for the finance department and implement financial policies and procedures.

• Work with human resources staff to secure candidates who will be assets to the finance department.

• Establish and implement an onboarding process for new finance employees.

• Other related duties as necessary. SUCCESS IN THIS POSITION REQUIRES:

• Ability to accomplish priority tasks and remain flexible with rapidly changing needs.

• Strong ability to maintain effective working relationships with representatives of various groups, vendors, co-workers, and others.

• Ability to perform occasional irregular working hours.


The successful candidate will possess the following:

• Minimum of bachelor’s degree in business management, finance, accounting, or related field

• Master’s degree and/or CPA preferred

• 5+ years’ experience in a senior finance position

• Proficiency in Microsoft Suite and other business software including QuickBooks Online, Paychex Flex, and PatronManager/Salesforce products (CourseStorm, etc.)

• Significant knowledge of financial forecasting, accounting principles, and financial data analysis

• Strong interpersonal skills with the propensity to successfully foster new and maintain longstanding business relationships

• Employee/staff management and development experience to encourage professional growth, and acquisition of new skills

• Excellent communication skills, both oral and written; skill in the art of negotiation

• Ability to multitask, prioritize and delegate responsibilities in an effective and efficient manner

• Outstanding integrity, solid moral judgment, and the ability to make important decisions under pressure

• Expert problem solver, analytical thinker, and decision maker

• Possess strong leadership skills and business acumen.

COMPENSATION Salary range: $90K – $110K. Benefits include medical, paid time off, paid federal holidays, paid sick time and complimentary production tickets.

TO APPLY – No Phone Calls Please.

Applicants for the position should send resume, cover letter to:

Karamu House

2355 E. 89th Street

Cleveland, Ohio 44106

careers@karamuhouse.org – include Administration in the subject line.

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