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Director of Human Resources

Job Details

Chicago Shakespeare Theater - Chicago, IL
Full Time
$90,000.00 - $110,000.00 Salary/year

Job Description


The Director of Human Resources leads the Human Resources functions for Chicago Shakespeare Theater (CST), including employee relations, recruitment, onboarding, compensation, benefits plan design, performance management, professional development, separation, employment law compliance and other areas as assigned. This position directly plans, leads, and evaluates all human resources policies, programs, and practices in collaboration with the Executive Director.  The Director of Human Resources ensures CST’s work culture reflects its values and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion commitments. The Director of Human Resources supports the strategic priorities of the theater and serves as a member of the leadership team. This position also supervises the Company Manager and Human Resources Specialist and People Operations Assistant.

This position is expected to champion the organization's core values and strategic commitment to attract, retain, advance, and support a broadly diverse workforce of the highest level of excellence that thrives in a respectful, inclusive, and equitable workplace culture.



Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.


  • Compliance and Policy
    • Ensure human resources and employee policies are current and in compliance with legislation requirements (EEO, ADA, FMLA, ERISA, OSHA, etc.)
    • Regularly review and update Employee Handbook to keep current from a legal and institutional perspective.  Communicate all changes to staff.
    • Develop new policies as needed, in partnership with the Executive Director.
    • Educate managers in employment law issues as needed.
    • Supervise proper record retention and the maintenance of personnel files.
  • Administration
    • Build relationships of trust with all employees and departments and serve as a thought-partner for human resource related problem-solving.
    • Direct the administration of employee benefit plans; manage and control costs
    • Prepare government reports and coordinate audits related to compensation, EEO compliance and other human resources functions.
    • Maintain, analyze, and provide reports to leadership on recruitment and selection demographics to ensure alignment with organizational goals.
    •  Annually report EEO data to leadership.
    • Monitor and provide oversight for workers compensation and unemployment claims administration.
    • Direct Human Resources operations and systems. Collaborate with Finance Department on developing annual Human Resources budget and accomplish goals working within that budget.
    • Understand the union agreements and serve as a resource to management in union negotiations.  Lead processes when there is a union complaint or grievance related to a union employee.
    • Supervise Human Resources department employees.
  • Staff Development/Communication
    • Make recommendations to the Executive and Artistic Directors for professional development needs for employees.
    • Develop, design, and implement staff training and professional development opportunities such as general management practices, EDI training, and cultural competencies. Evaluate effectiveness of staff development programs.
    • Recommend and implement employee recognition opportunities that demonstrate meaningful appreciation and value of employees.
    • Ensure regular communication channels for employees and monitor staff morale through formal and informal strategies.
    • Working with the Executive and Artistic Director, provide recommendations for improvements to the working environment and employee engagement and wellness.
  • Performance Management
    • Develop and implement a performance management process in collaboration with Executive and Artistic Director and other department directors.  Lead and coordinate annual performance appraisal process.
    • Coach supervisors with performance management, employee relations, performance reviews and development plans for staff.
    • Assist managers in evaluating and updating employee job descriptions.
    • Ensure proper documentation of any employee performance concerns.
    • Personally participate in significant employee performance issues and keep Executive Director informed of any performance issues.
    • Conduct investigations when employee complaints or concerns are brought forth. Provide support and mediation with a mind for conflict resolution.
  • Recruitment
    • Assist hiring managers in identification and sourcing candidates generally and according to CST’s EDI commitments.
    • Ensure a consistent and equitable recruitment and selection process in hiring of employees at CST in alignment with the Theater’s values and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion commitments.
    • Develop innovative recruitment strategies and sourcing opportunities.
    • Research and provide compensation and benefits recommendations to ensure CST attracts and retains top talent.
  • Onboarding/Offboarding
    • Ensure an excellent and welcoming new employee orientation process, including reviewing employment policies and procedures.
    • Ensure employees gain an understanding of benefit plans and enrollment provisions.  
  • Inclusion, Equity, Diversity and Access and Culture (IDEA)
    • Champion the organization’s commitment to a respectful, inclusive, equitable, and safe workplace
    • Plan actions that drive CST’s commitment to EDI by engaging in committees and creating events, trainings, and other initiatives for personal and professional development.
    • Model CST’s core values of service, ingenuity, and collaboration as well as its customer service ethos.
    • Serve as a member of the Community and Culture team to develop and implement training to build the capacity of staff to work effectively, respectfully, and equitably across race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, gender orientation, and expression, and other social identities and diversity segments.
    • Develop, track, and communicate institutional progress toward IDEA goals with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Additional Duties
    • Serve as a member of the leadership team.
    • Create and implement any external professional development programs including intern and apprenticeship programs.
    • Proactively contribute to CST’s mission and values.
    • Positively contribute to the IDEA goals, creating a future where our theatre is a home for all people, reflective of our community.
    • As a member of the leadership team, work some evenings and weekends as needed to attend Board meetings, opening nights, and community engagement events. 
    • Performs other related duties as assigned.

Job Qualifications


  • Strong interpersonal skills, ability to work collaboratively and collegially within a multi-faceted performing arts organization while effecting and leading change where needed.
  • Service, ingenuity, and collaboration
  • High degree of emotional intelligence
  • Mission-driven sense of purpose
  • Passion for theater and for CST’s mission and commitment to supporting its diverse constituencies. 
  • Broad knowledge of and experience in organizational development, employee relations, recruiting, coaching and training.
  • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with senior leaders and a board of directors.
  • Demonstrated ability to operate and manage in a fast-paced, flexible, changing environment.
  • Evidence of the practice of a high level of discretion, tact, and confidentiality.



  • Work hours are generally regular business hours, Monday through Friday
  • Evening, weekend, and holiday hours will be necessary.
  • Worksite is primarily at the CST facilities on Navy Pier in Chicago
  • As a member of the leadership team, work some evenings and weekends as needed to attend Board meetings, opening nights, and community engagement events. 



  • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree or equivalent, preferably in human resources, organizational development, or related field.
  • Experience leading Human Resources functions, preferably some experience within the performing arts or other non-profit organizations.
  • Experience working with unions and collective bargaining agreements is a plus.
  • Experience and success in advancing organizational diversity, inclusion, and equity commitments including cultural competency and demonstrated commitment to advancing Anti-Racism and Anti-Bias efforts.
  • Specialized training in organizational development, employment law, compensation, employee relations, and staff training a plus.
  • SHRM or PHR certification is preferred.
  • Active affiliation with human resource professional networks and organizations is preferred.



Must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 which means 14 days has passed since obtaining 2 doses of a primary series with Pfizer, Moderna, or Novavax or a single dose of Johnson & Johnson. Proof of vaccination must be provided before beginning work with Chicago Shakespeare Theater or a request for a qualifying exemption must be submitted and approved prior to beginning work.



CST is dedicated to increasing equity, diversity and inclusion in our audiences, our programs and in all our hiring for staff and artists, We are committed to providing a work environment that is free from discrimination. CST prohibits discrimination in employment against any employee or job applicant because of that person’s race, color, creed, religion, ancestry, sex, national origin, disability, genetic information, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, familial status, veteran status, status with regard to public assistance, membership in a local human rights commission or any other legally protected status.