Senior Events Manager: Job Description

The Mellon Foundation (“Foundation”) believes that the arts and humanities are where we express our complex humanity, and we believe that everyone deserves the beauty, transcendence, and freedom to be found there. Through our grants, we seek to build just communities enriched by meaning and empowered by critical thinking, where ideas and imagination can thrive. It makes grants in four core program areas (Higher Learning, Arts and Culture, Public Knowledge, and Humanities in Place). The Foundation seeks a Senior Events Manager in the Communications department.


The Senior Events Manager is a full-time position that is primarily responsible for the development and flawless execution of internal and external-facing strategic events, which may include conferences, panel discussions, seminars, retreats, film screenings, board meetings, celebrations, or other convenings both at the Foundation’s offices and at off-site locations across the US (and occasionally abroad). Under the supervision of the Director of Events, the Senior Events Manager is responsible for leading and project managing all aspects of events as assigned. The individual will work both independently and as part of a team following guidelines and processes in accordance with established policies and procedures.

Position Details

Primary responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Independently lead the event planning and production process from inception to completion for small and large-scale in-person, hybrid and virtual events as assigned.
  • Apply a strategic lens to contribute new event ideas to the team that align with the overall goals of the broader Communications and Events teams, as well as the Foundation’s strategic direction.
  • Work with the Director of Events and the Communications team to develop compelling event experiences through storytelling and visual elements that feature the Foundation’s focus areas, important topics, and grantee work.
  • Work with the Director of Events, Communications team and PR team to create event promotional plans for external-facing events inclusive of email and social media campaigns.
  • Work with internal teams to brainstorm and collaborate on event objectives and to curate event formats to create innovative, inspirational, and educational events.
  • Create and manage event work plans to ensure clear delineation of responsibilities (during the planning process and on-site) by coordinating with Foundation staff and external consultants so that deliverables and deadlines are met.
  • Forecast, manage, update, and reconcile budgets for events.
  • Plan and oversee logistics associated with the venue, vendors, production/AV, IT, registration, speakers, F&B, design/décor, transportation, accessibility, sustainability, etc., related to the event.
  • Conduct venue site visits and create room and space layouts as needed for in-person events.
  • Identify, qualify, and manage relationships with venues, vendors, and service providers, while utilizing strong negotiation skills for cost management and inclusion of necessary contract terms.
  • Act as the primary contact and on-site liaison responsible for all aspects of the event, including staff and speaker management, vendor oversight, safety and security protocols, and problem solving any issues that may arise.
  • Create and manage event production schedules and run-of-shows for minute-by-minute movements that integrate presentations, video and other media for in-person and virtual events.
  • Develop and analyze attendee feedback surveys to adapt and improve events based on learnings
  • Track industry and event trends to help create cutting-edge ideas for events.

Required Skills and Experience

  • The ideal candidate would hold a bachelor’s degree with 7+ years of prior experience with event planning and production of small and large-scale, in-person, virtual and hybrid events. Prior Foundation and/or non-profit experience is a plus.
  • Exceptional budget management, negotiation, organizational, and presentation skills. 
  • Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to anticipate next steps, take initiative, exercise discretion, manage up, and apply sound judgment.
  • Prior experience supervising team members.
  • Experience with interdepartmental collaboration and managing vendor and other external relationships.
  • Proven project management skills, including the creation of work plans and timelines.
  • Flexible, highly organized, and proven ability to juggle multiple and competing tasks and demands, as well as impeccable follow-up and attention to detail.
  • Experience managing projects with short lead times and time sensitive deadlines in a productive and professional manner, with strong attention to detail and a positive attitude.
  • Work with minimal direct supervision and manage multiple events/projects, while being a committed team player and who can manage and mentor other members of the team.
  • High degree of proficiency with Microsoft Office applications (particularly Excel, Word, Power Point). SharePoint, Splash, Box, Monday, and Salesforce experience a plus.
  • Integrity, intelligence, flexibility with a can-do attitude.
  • Understanding of and commitment to the goals of the program and the Foundation.

The Mellon Foundation is committed to providing compensation that is competitive and equitable within the philanthropic sector. The estimated salary range for this role is $110,000–$125,000. The amount of pay offered will be determined by a number of factors, including but not limited to qualifications, unique skills, credentials or experience that is expected to impact the candidate’s contribution to the role. We will also consider market data as well as the Foundation’s internal pay equity framework. Mellon is an equal opportunity employer and offers a generous total reward package that provides base salary as well as a comprehensive benefits program, and an excellent working environment. 

Contact Information

Candidates should apply by submitting a thoughtful cover letter describing fit for the position together with a resume HERE.

The Foundation will consider each response carefully, but only contact those individuals it believes are most qualified for the position.