Custom House Maritime Museum

25 Water Street
Newburyport , MA 01950

Date Posted:
February 07, 2022

Eastern Massachusetts



Executive Director


The Custom House Maritime Museum (CHMM) invites nominations and applications for the position of Executive Director (ED) to lead our work protecting, preserving, and interpreting our maritime heritage and how it relates to American history. This position calls for a dynamic, innovative, inclusive leader to help grow this community-oriented organization by expanding our vision by ensuring compelling educational and development programs.

A key resource will be our strategic plan. We are excited about launching our 2022 exhibition, Legendary Newburyporters. Much of the CHMM collection is displayed beautifully throughout the main floor and second floor of the building, but there is still work to be done by the new leader with the balance of the collection.

The Custom House Maritime Museum, founded in 1975, is located on Water Street along the beautiful Newburyport waterfront. Designed by renowned Federal architect Robert Mills, The Custom House was erected in 1835 and has a varied history following its original role as a custom house. After decades of disrepair and neglect, the Newburyport Redevelopment Authority and the CHMM spent years renovating and preserving the building. The building and land, which were deeded in 2018 to the Newburyport Maritime Society Inc. (NMS) dba Custom House Maritime Museum, is an important piece of our collection and houses a museum shop and offices.

Today, The Custom House Maritime Museum, devoted to our members and visitors, is an active supporter of the Newburyport community and collaborates with several local nonprofits. We host events and programs both inside the museum and outside on our waterfront lawn. Our programs have ranged from lectures and music programs to internships and archival research, scavenger hunts to afternoon local history teas, Maritime Days and Maritime Tree fundraisers. Beautiful weddings, family celebrations and other festive events are part of our event rental program.

Our ideal candidate will be a hands-on manager with proven ability to facilitate, organize, and deliver results while keeping the big picture in mind, combined with a track record of building consensus and camaraderie among staff, volunteers, and board. The role requires a lifelong learner energized by the opportunity to gain expertise in Newburyport history and an appetite for playing a major, active role in fundraising, working in close collaboration with staff and board. Success will require managing the challenges of a small historical museum. A commitment to fostering a culture that is welcoming and inclusive of all is essential. The preferred candidate has had increasingly responsible roles leading and managing in nonprofit settings or other relevant leadership and management experience.

Newburyport, a vibrant, coastal New England city, honors its diverse maritime history and preserves its authenticity while being passionately engaged in shaping its future. It is a boating community with a working seaport, locally owned shops and restaurants, excellent culture, engaging outdoor activities, and unique local character that attracts visitors from all over. The whole-life, healthy environment of this walkable community provides residents and visitors an urban experience within a sustainable and progressive business environment.

How To Apply:

Please send a letter describing your interest in this position and an outline of your experience with and commitment to community, non profits and maritime history,

- your resume, and

- contact information for three references


Review of applications will begin February 21, 2022 and continue until the position is filled.

Apply by:
February 20, 2022
$65,000 - $75,000
About this Organization:
The CHMM is a dynamic maritime history museum; education and cultural center; emerging research facility; and a meeting place for people seeking a unique venue for professional or social gatherings. We connect our vibrant past to our living present through our relationships with local educational, artistic, business, and environmental organizations. Housed in this historic structure, the CHMM’s unique collection of maritime objects, art, models, and historical documents reflect the rich history of the region from the seventeenth to the twentieth century.