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Executive Chef - Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

Executive Chef - Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

The Momentary is a new Center for Contemporary Visual and Performing Arts and Culinary Discovery in Bentonville, AR, slated to open in spring 2020. The Center will operate as a subsidiary of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. The Executive Chef, for the Momentary will serve as a member of the management team and aid the Director of Culinary Operations. The position will be responsible for the organization, planning, and implementation of all culinary related services, collaborating with teams, developing/ fostering relationships with Brightwater and community partners.  The Executive Chef will work with both The Momentary and Crystal Bridges teams on development, management and operation of The Momentary test kitchen, facilities and food service outlets as well as events. Provides strategic direction to broaden mission and profile, increase revenue and profitability, and enhance overall visitor/ guest/ employee experience.


The ideal Executive Chef is forward thinking, organized and collaborative, with a passion for culinary arts and connecting to our guests and diverse communities. Excellent communication and public speaking skills, strong business acumen, customer service experience and operational efficiency.


Primary Responsibilities and Duties

The Executive Chef is charged with the transition from concept to execution of all culinary activities at the Momentary. Once established, the position will lead the BOH culinary operation to support the unique and ever changing needs of the Momentary.

  • Culinary Leadership - Undertake overall supervision of test kitchen and food related catering operations. Oversee the transition from concept to execution.

  • Financial Management - With aid of the Director of Culinary Operations develop annual budgets and sales goals for kitchen operations. Monitor expenses and revenues; report and adjust as appropriate

  • Collaboration - Interface with all management throughout the organization to maximize the overall visitor experience as it relates to Culinary Service via menu/product development, customer service, special events, and culinary programming.

  • Staffing - Directly supervise a highly efficient kitchen staff and continually develop a culture that follows the Momentary guiding principles. Develop and maintain hiring, training, disciplinary and reward processes and programs. Create inclusive channels to ensure proper staff communication at all times.

  • Operations - Oversee scheduling of kitchen staff. Work in collaboration with the Director of Culinary Operations and the Operations Manager to develop training manuals and standard operating procedures. Ensure safe work environment for all staff and guests. Develop and implement procedures to minimize food waste. Develop protocols, checklists, and standards to ensure high quality food at all levels of the production process. Ensure all kitchen equipment and assets are properly maintained in coordination with facility management. Develop procedures to ensure proper cleanliness, sanitation, and exceed health requirements as established by local, state, and national governing agencies.

  • Inventory - Manage kitchen inventories including development, procurement, shipping, receipt, storage, quality control, display, obsolescence, etc. Develop and maintain financial tracking and reporting systems for effective inventory management, cost control and profitable operations. Develop procedures for and oversee weekly/month end inventory process.

  • Public Events – Design and executive approximately 12 ticketed culinary/public programs per year, inspired by Momentary programs and mission.

  • Community - Support local food systems and partners including farmers, growers, and artisans. Implement, support, and maintain sustainability efforts including but not limited to product choices, recycling, composting, etc. Serve as an ambassador for the Momentary through various internal, community events and civic organizations. Maintain brand and quality throughout all areas and decisions. Engage with guests appropriately to build relationships and cultivate repeat business.

  • Perform additional duties as assigned.


Essential Qualifications

Education, Training, and Traits:

  • Associates degree from a recognized institute of culinary arts, or ACF certified executive chef or bachelor’s degree in hospitality management, business, marketing, or related field with extensive culinary training. An equivalent combination of relevant education and/or experience will satisfy the minimum requirements.

  • Strong background in culinary operations/ food service management and all applicable federal, state, local and industry regulations.

  • Creative skills in areas such as food presentation, R&D, menu development

  • Ability to work with basic mathematical concepts such as fractions, percentages, ratios, probability, portions, measurements, addition, subtraction and multiplication

  • Competent in computer applications and software including Microsoft Office, Outlook, POS, and payroll processing systems

  • Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common technical publications, financial reports, and legal documents

  • Good communication and public speaking skills on all levels, channels and platforms.

  • Current compliance certification/ ability to obtain- ServSafe Manager, CPR, First Aid

Work Experience:

  • Minimum of five (5) to seven (7) years prior experience in the culinary field with at least three (3) years as sous chef or executive chef experience.


Licenses and Certifications:

  • Valid driver’s license

Desirable Qualifications

  • Experience with opening new restaurants/ concepts is preferred

  • Experience in bi-/ multi-lingual work environment is desired

  • R&D/ concept development experience is a plus


Physical Demands and Work Environment:

The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Physical demands: In the work environment described below, position requires working in a high functioning kitchen for prolonged periods of time and good eye/hand coordination, bending and stretching for prepping, and physical stamina to lift a minimum of 25 pounds. Visual acuity to review written materials is required for this job. Additionally, this position requires meeting the public and the organization in a professional and courteous manner. Occasionally, while performing the duties of this job, the employee is required to independently travel in the local area.

  • Work environment: Work will be performed in a commercial kitchen environment, museum spaces, and in communities served. The physical arrangement of the kitchen may require the position to work in an open environment within close proximity to other colleagues. Work space must be organized and reflect efficiency. The noise level in the kitchen work environment is usually moderate to high. Frequent evening and weekend work hours and some local travel are required.

  • This position is eligible to participate in the Mobile Device Stipend Program. Your manager will explain the departmental expectations of returning calls, responding to texts and responding to emails. The expectations may vary depending on the needs of Crystal Bridges, the Momentary, and the responsibilities of the position. A signed agreement must be submitted to HR prior to participating in the program.

Application and Additional Information


To be considered for this position, please apply through this posting. Applications must be complete and include a resume and cover letter.


No phone calls please.

 The successful candidate will be required to pass a routine background and consumer credit check and drug screen.



Crystal Bridges/ The Momentary is committed to creating an institution that reflects the diversity of our region and nation.  We are especially mindful of those in our community impacted by inequity due to ability, language, class, age, gender, religion, sexuality, race and ethnicity, and are working diligently to address perceived and real barriers that keep anyone from fully experiencing the museum as a guest, volunteer, or employee.  To achieve true reform, we must have a diverse, highly qualified team. Crystal Bridges / The Momentary is proud to be an equal opportunity employer, and is committed to creating a diverse environment. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.


We actively encourage minority candidates to apply for this position.


Museum Overview:

Crystal Bridges is a museum of American Art located in Bentonville, Arkansas. We explore the unfolding story of America by actively collecting, exhibiting, interpreting and preserving outstanding works that illuminate the American heritage and artistic possibilities.

We are passionate about transforming lives through experiences that encourage the discovery of new ideas, expanded dreams and inspired actions.

As an employee at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, you will be empowered to think creatively, ask questions, and make suggestions to help move the institution forward.