Public Programs Producer

Job Type

Full Time




820 Washington Street
New York
New York
United States



Public Programs Producer

18-month freelance agreement

The High Line is a non-profit organization founded in 1999 to save the historic, elevated rail line from demolition. After a significant and successful campaign the organization converted the rail line, which is owned by the City of New York, into a vibrant public park in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. With an annual visitorship of nearly 8 million people to its park, the High Line strives to provide an essential, accessible public space for the residents of New York, as well as to be a community asset that benefits our surrounding neighborhood.

For the last ten years, the High Line has organized a considerable roster of public art and community engagement programs that serve New Yorkers of all ages. Working with emerging and established artists across genres-- from sculpture and video to performance and spoken word-- the High Line has been a site of creative experimentation and a commissioner of new works by exciting voices in contemporary art.  As we near our 20th anniversary, we want to strengthen this work by creating a more dynamic set of opportunities for the diversity of our audiences and constituents to engage with the artists, projects, and ideas that our public art programs put forward.

The Opportunity

The High Line seeks a freelance Public Programs Producer to help curate and organize a calendar of dynamic experiences throughout 2019 that allow audiences to connect with the themes of our anniversary season and its established schedule of artist-led projects. Those themes span from the liberated black body, to the interrogation of monumentality and memorializing history, to the possibility for radical joy and healing. The Public Programs Producer will be charged with creating multiple pathways for a diverse public to engage with the artist projects that reflects these (and other) ideas. These pathways should be insightful, enlightening, and fun. It is particularly important that resulting programs and materials are culturally, intellectually, and physically accessible whether onsite, offsite, or online. The Producer is to bring a compelling curatorial vision for interpretive programs with an equal capacity for excellent execution.  


The role will report to the Vice President of Public Engagement and will collaborate with other members of the High Line’s Program Division (as well as our Communications, Operations and Production teams) to collectively realize all events.

This engagement would be structured as an 18-month agreement to allow time for the planning, execution, and debrief of the inaugural season of interpretive programs. The contractor agreement will specify a more precise scope of work along with key deliverables and due dates. Creative freedom is granted as public programming can take the form of workshops, conversations, audio tours, podcasts, panel discussions, installations, screenings, or some other compelling format.  

The following is a broad sketch of the responsibilities of this role:

Key Responsibilities

  • Conceptualize and implement a roster of equitable and audience-centered participatory experiences that drive understanding and interpretation of the High Line’s 2019 season
  • Ensure that these experiences encourage audiences of varying backgrounds, knowledge levels, and learning styles to make relevant connections with their own lived experiences
  • Create learning opportunities that invite visitors to shift previously held views and expectations through intentional, respectful, and mindful provocation  
  • Ensure program content is consistent with the values, tone, and key messages the organization seeks to convey in its anniversary season     
  • Adhere to the established production budget for each experience
  • Participate in outreach and marketing efforts to generate and grow audiences for public programs, including contributing to related materials and printed matter
  • Champion the experience of program audiences and participants
  • Serve as an ambassador for the High Line, ensuring that all communication and correspondence with staff, visitors, and vendors reflect the organization’s values   
  • Ensure all digital media products follow the branding guidelines supplied by the High Line
  • Apply best practices in audience engagement, interpretive planning, and evaluation

Required Qualifications

  • 5-7 years experience in public programs and interpretive experiences in a cultural setting
  • Familiarity with the landscape of NYC-based cultural organizations and the experiences they afford
  • Track record of mounting compelling public programs that attract a diverse public, as well as a strong network that can yield participation of compelling artists, creative thinkers, and subject matter experts
  • An approach to audience engagement that understands and embraces diversity across cultural and economic backgrounds, racial identity, gender expression, and physical abilities  
  • Experience coordinating large groups of people
  • Maturity in judgment with the ability to take initiative and follow through while remaining accountable to a larger team and vision
  • Attention to detail
  • Strong priority setting and project management. This includes being able to effectively manage multiple, time-sensitive projects, as well as a demonstrated capacity to deliver projects on time and on budget
  • Strong interpersonal skills with positive demeanor and comfort working with people of all backgrounds  
  • Sufficient availability and commitment to participate in events, weekly project meetings, in-person touch points, phone calls, web-based meetings and other related activities
  • Ability to work outdoors in all safe weather conditions including evenings and weekends, as needed
  • Must have all necessary equipment to perform the work independently. Laptops, printers, telecom, etc. are not supplied by the High Line. However, access to drop-in workspace and equipment within the High Line offices can be provided as needed    


  • Non-profit experience  
  • Ability to build on a history of experimentation  
  • Effective approach to collaborating with community organizations, artists, performers, and other professionals around public programming interpretation and education
  • Spanish or Mandarin language skills

To Apply

Submit a completed application via our online portal: that includes press clippings, collateral, or other evidence of past program successes. Cover letter should be addressed to Risë Wilson, Chief Program Officer. Only those whose applications are being considered will be contacted. No phone calls please.

Friends of the High Line is a proud equal opportunity employer and considers applicants for all positions without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, national origin, age, disability, marital or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other legally protected status.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply

Submit a completed application via our online portal: that includes press clippings, collateral, or other evidence of past program successes. Cover letter should be addressed to Risë Wilson, Chief Program Officer. Only those whose applications are being considered will be contacted. No phone calls please.