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Executive Director

Nebraska State Fair
Full Time
Grand Island, NE 68801
Posted 11 days ago
Job description

Position: Executive Director,
Nebraska State Fair

Overview of Position:
The Executive Director is responsible for implementing the policies and visions of the Nebraska State Fair Board, overseeing daily operations, and ensuring a superior visitor experience at Nebraska State Fair, all in a manner that assures the sustainability of the event. This position requires an energetic individual who is team-oriented and problem-solves at a high level in a challenging environment.


A. People Management
Oversee the management of (or directly manage) all Fair staff, and ensure appropriate employment policies, procedures and performance expectations are implemented and followed. Build an effective leadership team by providing guidance and coaching.

Ensure consistent, inclusive and effective communication to staff regarding Fair goals, policies, procedures and expectations.

B. General Management
Responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Nebraska State Fair. Oversee and/or negotiate, draft, and review all contracts necessary for Fair operation. Implement and manage capital improvements. Prepare and present reports requested by the Board of Directors, including financial and budget reports. Act in the capacity as official spokesperson of the Fair, representing the Fair in a professional and positive manner at all times.

C. Financial Management
Prepare an annual operating budget and ensure operating expenses remain within the constraints of the budget approved by the Board. Ensure sound and proper accounting practices and procedures are followed. Develop plans and procedures to accurately report and manage Fair assets, and to ensure correct and proper stewardship of all Fair funds.

D. Community and Board Outreach and Engagement
Interact with the business community, civic organizations, government entities and officials, the press, and members of the public to promote goodwill and success of the Fair while developing beneficial relationships. Appear before legislative committees when necessary regarding the needs and operation of the Fair. Serve on committees and be involved with associations as necessary to the position.

E. Event Coordination
Oversee all activities, programming and staff for the Fair, ensuring the highest possible attendance and best possible experience for attendees.

F. Marketing
Oversee, plan, direct and coordinate marketing efforts ensuring content positively and effectively promotes Nebraska State Fair.

Act as public speaker and public relations representatives of the Fair.


  • Understand the practices and principles of fair or event management. Exhibit the leadership necessary to implement plans for the annual State Fair.
  • Form, build, and maintain key business relationships including those in the agricultural community.
  • Leadership in strategic planning including inclusive teamwork, collaboration and consensus building.
  • Competencies in public relations, human relations, organization restructuring, finance and budgeting, business development, marketing and strategic planning.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with a wide range of constituents for the purpose of promoting Nebraska State Fair.
  • Significant supervisory and management skills in fairgrounds operations with a demonstrated ability to lead and motivate with constructive diplomacy and inclusivity.
  • Ability to use professional judgment to address complex issues and accomplish established goals and objectives.
  • Effective personnel supervisory and management skills.
  • Strong organizational, communication, delegation, and relationship-building skills.


  • Ability to effectively communicate in public and to individuals and groups.
  • Ability to physically lift, pull, push at least 50 pounds when the Fair is in operation
  • Ability to walk and stand for long periods of time.
  • Ability to regularly utilize a computer to prepare reports, communicate and perform other duties.
  • Ability to work at least 40 hours a week and significantly more when the Fair is in operation.
  • Ability to drive a vehicle and be available to travel frequently.
  • Ability to read and interpret documents such as financial statements, contracts, procedures and policies.
  • Work effectively and efficiently and remain poised in high stress and conflict situations.
  • Reason logically and make sound decisions.
  • Simultaneously address multiple complex problems.
  • Meet time sensitive deadlines.


Four year college degree from an accredited university preferably in public administration, business administration or a similar degree.

Significant experience in an executive management position, preferably 5 to 7 years. Experience working collaboratively with a board of directors, preferably with a not-for-profit, non-profit, or government entity. Significant management experience with a fair, festival or major annual public event hosting more than
100,000 people, preferably with at least 5 years experience in that position.

*While the Board seeks these qualifications for this position, the Board reserves the right to consider experience in lieu of education to determine the best combination of education and experience appropriate for the position.

NECESSARY SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS Must be 18 years of age or older. Must possess a valid driver’s license. This position requires an acceptable background check.

COMPENSATION Competitive benefits package. Compensation depends on experience.

TO APPLY Send resume, cover letter and salary requirements to:
Tammy Baker, Business Administrator
Nebraska State Fair
PO Box 1387
Grand Island, NE 68802

Resumes due on or before November 11.

Job Type: Full-time


  • Dental insurance
  • Health insurance
  • Paid time off
  • Vision insurance


  • Monday to Friday
  • Self-determined schedule

Ability to commute/relocate:

  • Grand Island, NE 68801: Reliably commute or planning to relocate before starting work (Required)

Work Location: One location

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