Chief Financial Officer

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra - St. Louis, MO4.7

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra (“SLSO”)
Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”)

Executive Bridge has been retained to recruit the next Chief Financial Officer for the SLSO ( The current CFO is highly regarded and plans to retire in early 2019 when this position is expected to be filled. The current CFO has been with SLSO for 15 years and was part of the team that stewarded the organization through near bankruptcy to the financially stable and well-endowed institution it is today. The SLSO was founded in 1880 and is the second-oldest orchestra in the country, having performed in Powell Hall for over 50 years. With a budget of roughly $30MM, a sizeable endowment, and significant success in both the quiet capital campaign (which has already achieved nearly $85MM of donations) and the most successful annual campaign ever, SLSO is well-positioned for the future. Enriching lives through the power of music, the SLSO operates under a five-year strategic plan that outlines specific artistic, audience development, and community/educational initiatives along with strengthening institutional culture and capacity.
For more information or to submit your resume in confidence, contact - Cindy Kohlbry, Executive Bridge, Inc.


The CFO is a key member of the executive team and reports to the dynamic and visionary President and CEO who was recruited over three years ago to lead the SLSO. The CFO oversees a team of approximately 14 employees in three departments: finance, information technology and human resources. Direct reports to the CFO include: Controller, Director of Human Resources, Director of Facilities and Director of Information Technology. The CFO is a partner to the President/CEO and interacts regularly with the rest of the nearly 65 SLSO staff. In addition, the CFO serves as liaison to two Board Committees – Audit & Finance and Pension – in addition to serving as liaison to the SLSO Endowment Trust, a separate 501c3 that includes 4 SLSO trustees and 3 independent trustees.
The critical responsibilities of this role include Financial Strategy and Planning, Audit and Risk Management, Accounting and Control, Facilities, Human Resources and Information Technology. The CFO is responsible for overseeing all financial aspects of the SLSO and as a true business partner, the CFO will be proactive in strategy, planning, management information and providing the necessary tools for each aspect of the business not only to realize and measure success, but also to advance artistic and operational initiatives. This includes explaining the financial ramifications of management’s collective decisions both on an ongoing basis as well as with future projections, and championing solutions to move the organization forward. The CFO must be rigorous, show integrity and consistency in managing policies and procedures, understanding the critical nature of serving as an excellent steward of an institution that relies heavily on contributed revenue as a significant source (2/3) of its operational budget. In addition to the typical suite of financial functions, the CFO is expected to oversee the Endowment Trust of approximately $220MM, different pension plans, extensive insurance and business risk and an aging facility with constant challenges and costs. A technology audit is currently underway to better evaluate information and systems and it is expected that there will be many areas for increased automation and efficiency throughout the organization. Labor agreements with various unions are in place through 2021. Each team reporting to the CFO has functions that are well managed with long-tenured and experienced people. These teams also understand the resource dynamic of a not-for-profit (“NFP”).

For more information or to submit your resume in confidence, contact - Cindy Kohlbry, Executive Bridge, Inc.

SLSO is first and foremost an artistic institution. The successful candidate will be a strong, inspiring leader known as a proactive and collaborative business partner. In addition, their personal and professional track record will make obvious their alignment with a dynamic, mission driven culture of organization like SLSO. Other requirements include:
  • 10+ years of experience as a CFO in a business of similar magnitude and scope. NFP experience a plus.
  • Known as a business and financial strategist and collaborator with strong analytical skills and presence
  • Confident, unwavering in following standards and best practices. Acknowledged for their expertise and willingness to take a stand. Willing to share and educate other business heads regarding finance and budgeting issues.
  • Engaging, proactive, with a love of music and the arts. Committed to the success of a complex organization with competing agendas.
  • Able to convert vision (their own and others) into sound financial models.
  • Acknowledged as a good manager of people, able to recruit, mentor, coach and retain a high quality professional staff
  • CPA or comparable experience. Oversight of the Controller function is important. MBA desired.
  • Effective oral and written communicator skills.
  • Highly organized, able to work under pressure with time limitations. Self-sufficient and technology savvy. Accustomed to the more-limited resources of a NFP.
For more information or to submit your resume in confidence, contact - Cindy Kohlbry, Executive Bridge, Inc.