Arts OutWest is Seeking New Board Members

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APPLICATIONS NOW OPEN: Arts OutWest (AOW) seeks applications from people interested in becoming board members.

Arts OutWest is a not-for-profit incorporated association and the board positions are voluntary, unpaid positions with a two-year term.

We are looking for some specific skills as well as ensuring that the board has diversity across gender, location, age and cultural background.

Applicants must be based in the Arts OutWest region.

Since moving to a skill-based board in 2018, each year Arts OutWest has a number of board positions that become vacant as board members complete their two-year term.  Sometimes some of these board members will re-apply as they are able to complete up to 3 terms before they are required to step down, but we are always open to new people coming into the organisation. Based on the two years in which we have already undertaken board selection, the process has been highly competitive.

Applications for board membership must be received by Wednesday 6 May 2020.

Applicants are asked to:

  1. Address the skills listed at the end of this document by filling out a separate skills form
  2. Submit a description of your strengths, what you would bring to the board and why you are interested in the position (around 1 page long)
  3. A short CV showing any qualifications and a brief work history


  • Thursday 9 April 2020
    Applications for board positions open. 4 positions available.
  • Wednesday 6 May 2010
    Applications close.
  • Friday 8 May 2020 (tbc)
    Applications for board membership are assessed by the selection committee (online meeting).
  • Friday 15 May 2020
    Applicants are informed of outcome of assessment meeting.
  • Sunday 24 May 2020
    New board members are confirmed at the Arts OutWest AGM (online meeting).


Arts OutWest is the organisation responsible for arts and cultural development in the communities of the NSW Central West, covering the council areas of Bathurst, Blayney, Cabonne, Cowra, Forbes, Lachlan, Lithgow, Oberon, Orange, Parkes and Weddin and is supported by Charles Sturt University provide the organisation with office space and facilities on the Bathurst campus. Arts OutWest receives core funding from the NSW Government through Create NSW and through the Federal Government through the Department of Communication and the Arts and their Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support program as well as contributions from the 11 councils. Additional project funding is gained through a variety of sources and the organisation manages around $500-$650K each year. The organisation was established in 1974. In 2020 we currently Arts OutWest have 7 staff members (3.8 FTE). The current strategic plan names three priority areas: Arts and Health; Aboriginal art development; Cultural tourism.


Arts OutWest is an incorporated association, which is a not-for-profit organisation and a registered charity.  The board (or technically, committee of management) is responsible for overseeing the governance of the organisation and makes decisions about the strategic direction and ways of achieving the best outcomes for arts in the region. The Board meets four times a year in February, May, August and November, currently on the second Tuesday of the month at 5.00pm; twice in Bathurst and twice in Orange. There is also an Annual General Meeting, usually held on a weekend in May or early June each year.

The skills based board model established in 2018 involves a two-tier structure consisting of a Board and an Advisory Council.

The Advisory Council works on a representational basis, consisting of a member for each contributing council and one for CSU.

The Board is made up of:

  • 7 members appointed on a skills and diversity basis, selected through an application and assessment process
  • 1 Advisory Council member (the Chair of the Advisory Council)
  • Up to 2 co-opted members (optional) if additional skills are required

Board members complete a 2 year term. At the end of the 2 year term the board member may either retire from the board or apply for another term. A board member may complete no more than 3 consecutive terms (6 years), but does have the right to re-apply after a break of two years.


It is possible that some of the applicants may be existing board members. While the experience and knowledge of the existing board members will be highly regarded, Arts OutWest would like to make it clear that we are looking for new members as well.

Applications must show how the applicant is able to demonstrate strengths in at least one skill area. Applications will be assessed by a panel that will consist of 2 current board members, one Advisory Council member, the Executive Director of Arts OutWest and an external panel member.


Applicants are asked to submit three documents:

  1. A filled out AOW Skills Form
  2. A submission about your strengths
  3. A short CV

Document 1: Skills Form

Arts OutWest Individual Skills Form
You will need to go to the separate Word document Arts OutWest Individual Skills Form (link above) and fill the form out, self-assessing yourself on the skills listed.

Below are the four sections from the Arts OutWest Skills Matrix. We will collate the information from existing board members and applicants to ensure that we are covering the range of skills needed.

Section 1 of the skills form: Below are the skills and competencies that you will be asked to address when you fill out the Arts OutWest Individual Skills Form. Some of these areas are already covered by existing board members and we are particularly interested in people with expertise and willingness to fundraise. You only need to show competency in one of these areas, although you are welcome to demonstrate skills in more than one area.

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Law
  • Marketing
  • Human resources
  • Arts industry knowledge
  • Management (CEO or similar) experience
  • Strategy development
  • Experience as an arts practitioner
  • Experience as an arts manager
  • Fundraising
  • Community work
  • Aboriginal cultural awareness
  • Local government knowledge

Section 2 of the skills form: If you are new to going on a board you may not have some of these skills, while if you experienced you may be able to show expertise in all of them. It doesn’t matter if you can’t do all of these things, but you must show a willingness to develop skills in some of the areas that you are not experienced in.

  • Experience as a board member on a not-for-profit
  • Financial literacy – ability to read and understand a balance sheet
  • Strategic thinking from a governance perspective
  • Governance related risk management experience
  • Staff performance management experience
  • Profile / reputation in your field

Section 3 of the skills form: We are interested in attracting people to the board who have strengths in several of these fields.

  • Team player / collaborative
  • Ability / willingness to challenge and probe
  • Common sense and sound judgement
  • Integrity and high standards
  • Mentoring abilities
  • Interpersonal relations
  • Listening skills
  • Verbal communication skills
  • Understanding of effective decision making skills
  • Willingness and ability to devote time and energy to the role

Section 4 of the skills form: We need to understand who you are in relation to gender, location, age and background. You won’t be assessed on these points but it could affect the final decision because we want to ensure that the board does have diversity.

  • What gender do you identify as?
  • Geographic location: which council area (LGA) are you located in?
  • Geographic location: do you live in a regional city / town / village / country?
  • Age range (20s / 30s / 40s / 50s/ 60+
  • Cultural background: do you identify as being Aboriginal or from a particular CaLD (culturally and linguistically diverse) background?

Document 2: Submission about your Strengths

Please go to the Arts OutWest Individual Skills Form and select one strength from Table 1, one from Table 2 and one from Table 3 and provide a paragraph showing how you demonstrate skills and experience in each of those areas.

You may also provide a fourth paragraph that covers any other strengths that you would like us to know about. Other brief notes can be filled out in the comments section of the form.

Document 3: Short CV

We would prefer this to be only one or two pages and relevant to being on the board of an arts organisation.

Please submit by email to: by Wednesday 6 May 2020

If you would like to discuss the process or have further questions, please contact the Executive Director, Tracey Callinan at or 0418 618 688.

Image: Arts OutWest Board Members attend the 2019 Annual General Meeting held at the Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum in Bathurst.

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