About Artistic Noise

Artistic Noise exists to bring the freedom and power of artistic practice to young people who are incarcerated, on probation, or otherwise involved in the justice system.

Through visual arts and entrepreneurship programs in Massachusetts and New York, our participants give voice to their experiences, build community through collaborative projects, and learn valuable life and job skills. Artistic Noise creates safe spaces where court-involved youth are seen, heard and supported on their path to adulthood. We believe the practice of making art offers opportunities for young people and communities to transform.

By working with youth while incarcerated or confined as well as back in the community Artistic Noise provides continuity for young people who are often experiencing trauma and upheaval in their lives. Our staff of teaching artists and licensed art therapists works with our participants to create safe, challenging spaces for creative expression. Using a variety of artistic mediums, youth explore themes such as friendship, loss, sexual violence, community, freedom, identity, mass incarceration, systemic racism and their dreams for the future. This structured artmaking fosters critical thinking and problem solving skills that are beneficial to the teens' healthy psychological development. As a part of Artistic Noise’s program model we hire many of the young people who participate in our programs through our innovative Art, Entrepreneurship and Curatorial Program.

In 2001, Artistic Noise was founded in Boston as collaboration between a juvenile defender, an artist and a young incarcerated woman, under the fiscal sponsorship of the Juvenile Rights Advocacy Project (JRAP) at Boston College Law School. In 2008, we expanded to open Artistic Noise New York and became an independent non-profit. Over the years, Artistic Noise has grown to serve hundreds of children, teens and young adults affected by the justice system in both Boston and New York every year.  Artistic Noise NY is based in a small storefront space in Harlem. We run programs in all five boroughs. Artistic Noise is well respected by our partners in the field of juvenile and criminal justice, including other grassroots organizations, formerly incarcerated activists, city agencies and national advocacy organizations. Since our inception we have been committed to working with small groups of young people for long periods of time, often over several years. Many of the young people who have come through our programs are now in leadership and staff positions within the organization.

We are looking for an Executive Director who will be based in Harlem to transition our organization from our current founding ED and lead us in our next stage of growth. Artistic Noise NY has been growing steadily for the past few years and we are currently in an exciting time of change. We are seeking a visionary, passionate and creative candidate to usher in this new period of growth.

Who we are looking for:

Our ideal candidate believes deeply in the mission of Artistic Noise and that the voices of young people involved in the justice system must be heard. You believe that our youth can and should be leaders in their communities. You understand that in order to support their leadership development we, as a society, must provide long-lasting support systems and safe spaces for young people to positively develop. You understand that the youth in our programs are extremely valuable and have a unique and important perspective on themselves and their communities. You believe in the power of art.

You are committed to social and racial justice. You are committed and interested in how art-making can support these ideals. You have knowledge and experience with the communities we work in and with, professionally and/or personally. You are able to approach this work with vigor, passion and energy, while understanding this work also requires patience, flexibility and humility. You are honest and sincere, kind and consistent.

You are a leader. Inspiring those you work with and supporting all who work with you. You are interested and skilled in developing and leading creative fundraising strategies for a small non-profit. You are a talented manager, with a demonstrated ability to bring out the best in the people you supervise and to build and oversee organizational operations with clarity and vision.  Working in a small grassroots organization excites and inspires you. You understand the challenges of an organization like ours and are willing to take these on. You have the creativity and desire to grow our small organization.



●      Evaluate, assess and oversee programming and regularly report program activities and outcomes to the Board.

●      Supervise, annually review, and lead Artistic Noise NY’s senior staff which currently includes: Director of Art & Entrepreneurship Programs, Program Director of Residential Placement, Director of Art Therapy and Associate Program Director. These staff positions supervise all Teaching Artists and Art Therapists.

●      Recruit and hire new staff as needed.

●      Coordinate monthly staff meetings and bi-monthly Director’s meetings.

●      Organize professional development opportunities for our staff through the year.

●      Visit all workshops throughout the year.


●      Responsible for invoicing for fee for service programs

●      Manage reports needed by our funders and government contracts.,

●      Collaborate with Boston ED on annual budgets, bookkeeping and other fiscal management

●      Manage all aspects of NY budget, including payroll.

●      Oversee our Harlem storefront space

●      Manage additional administrative tasks as they arise for a small non-profit organization.

●      Collaborate with the Board of Directors and Boston ED to envision and work towards Artistic Noise’s future.


●      Serve as the main fundraiser for Artistic Noise NY.

●      Continue to strengthen our relationships with our current funders and partners.

●      Identify and cultivate new funding sources (individual, institutional and others)

●      Work with our Board of Director’s and Board’s Development Committee on development and fundraising campaigns.

●      Work with our Boston ED on annual appeal and other organization wide fundraising campaigns.

●      Oversee our individual donor database system.

Board of Directors:

●      Keep the Board well informed regarding the management and condition of Artistic Noise and crucial issues affecting its present and future.

●      Encourage excellence in Board performance through collaboration, communication and education.

●      In cooperation with the board, facilitate the orientation of new board members. 

●      Mobilize the board to implement its fundraising responsibilities.

●      Work with the board to ensure effective and efficient committee structure and staff committees as appropriate.

●      Support and encourage board development, including supporting a growing practice of youth involvement, growing knowledge and practices around racial and social justice, and strengthened fundraising skills.


This is a full-time 40hr/ week salaried position with the possibility for a flexible work schedule. Compensation is commensurate with experience.

Reports to:

This position reports to the Board of Directors.

Minimum Experience and Education Requirements:

Minimum of five years of non-profit experience and five years of supervisory experience. A master’s degree is preferred but work experience may substitute for education. Strong writing skills.

How to Apply

This position is open until filled. We seek to have someone begin no later than October 16th.

Please e-mail submission materials to Lauren Adelman – and include EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - NY in the subject line.

●      Cover Letter

●      CV

●      Names and contact information of 3 References

●      Any other relevant materials (e.g, writing sample, teaching portfolio, publications, etc.) are welcome but not required

●      Letters of recommendation are welcome but not required

Artistic Noise is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on race, creed, color, religion, ethnicity, national origin, party or political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, veteran status, marital status, or any illegal or prohibited factor. Our organization is deeply rooted in racial and social justice and looks forward to finding the next member to join us.