Washington State Arts Commission

Program Assistant

Salary: $2,778.00–$3,612.00 Monthly

Location: Thurston County–Olympia, WA

Job Type: Full Time-Permanent

Department: Arts Commission

Job Number: 2017-10728

Closing: Continuous

Program Assistant (Administrative Assistant 3)
Full-time position, available Monday-Friday, 8:00am-5:00pm.

 This position is Open Until Filled. Initial screening will be immediate and ongoing. Priority review will be given to applications received by Sunday, December 17, 2017

Here at the Washington State Arts Commission, in our Community Investments division, we have a fantastic opportunity for you to be a part of a team that supports our Arts in Education and Grants to Organizations programs. 
Who we are:

The mission of the Washington State Arts Commission, also known as ArtsWA, is to be a catalyst for the arts, advancing the role of the arts in the lives of individuals and communities throughout the state. Our Arts in Education programs focus on strengthening arts education as part of and fundamental to K-12 basic education; our Grants to Organizations programs focus on expanding arts participation across the state, with a particular interest in serving diverse populations and increasing equity and access in the arts. Interested candidates are encouraged to visit our website www.arts.wa.gov to gain insight into the agency's mission and strategic plan.

Who we are looking for:

We are looking for a team member with strong administrative skills and an enthusiastic interest in supporting the arts and arts education across Washington State. You need to have a strong "support" background, as you will be supporting two program managers in a busy office; the work requires strong attention to detail, excellent written and verbal communications skills, and the ability to manage multiple overlapping projects and deadlines.  You must appreciate the importance of relationship building as you will be interacting with outside constituents, grantees, and applicants.
When you come aboard, you will be working at one of our busiest times of the year for grants.  You will have the opportunity to participate in the development and launch of new programs and a new online platform. 

Why YOU would be interested in this position:

Do you feel a personal connection to the Arts and Arts Education?  In this position, you will have the opportunity to learn and understand the Arts landscape in our state.  If you enjoy working in a fast-paced environment where you will get to wear a variety of hats, this could be the place for you.  Because we are a small agency, you will have more opportunity to develop, grow, and be involved in the work that you won't find in a larger agency.  If you enjoy staying busy and like a variety of duties, we promise you won't get bored.  We work hard, but we truly enjoy what we do and we have pride in our work.


If this sounds like an opportunity to not miss, we encourage you to apply!



You will be performing the administrative and fiscal support duties for the Washington State Arts Commission's Community Investments division, which includes the Grants to Organizations (GTO) and Arts in Education (AIE) programs, and is a member of the agency's Administrative Team.
Specific duties include but are not limited to: 

  • Administers an online grants system to support five (5) GTO grant categories and two (2) AIE categories, including working with all necessary forms and reports;
  • Provides technical assistance to applicants;
  • Prepares for each grant cycle by building/updating the necessary forms;
  • Addresses concerns by users (and updates managers);
  • Tracks application submissions;
  • Screens grant applications for eligibility and completeness;
  • Assists with panel review of applications;
  • Coordinates, prepares, and distributes contracts;
  • Submits invoices, tracks payments, and reconciles program budgets;
  • Produces reports from databases to support state/federal reporting requirements;
  • Drafts, edits, and reviews program correspondence and materials;
  • Supports administrative needs of other AIE and/or GTO programs and projects, such as the Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards and Poetry Out Loud;
  • Provides administrative support to the agency through the Administrative Team; and
  • Occasionally provides back-up coverage for the front office.
Other Duties/Activities may include:
  • Manage program's working, permanent and archived files and records.
  • Maintain and update calendar of deadlines for activities.
  • Process and respond to mail, email, and phone calls.
  • Type and edit correspondence, compose letters, memos and forms.
  • Perform complex word processing tasks (merging, sorting, layout, spreadsheets, databases files, design and preparation of presentations and training materials).
  • Arrange meetings including room reservations, catering, and event reminders.
  • Prepare fiscal documents related to travel and reimbursement for team supervisors.



A bachelor's degree in public administration or closely allied field
AND three (3) years of administrative experience.
Two years as Administrative Assistant 2 for the state of Washington
(Administrative or managerial work experience may be substituted for education on a year-for-year basis)

  • Skills and abilities with basic office equipment (including fax, copier, and printers)
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite (incl. Word, Excel, Access, and PowerPoint), proficient use of email and the internet
  • Proficiency with an online grants system
  • Two or more years of administrative experience in support of a recognized arts, cultural, philanthropic, or educational program.

A successful candidate will possess the following abilities, experience and skills, and qualities:
  • Perform well under pressure with high volume workload and short deadlines.
  • Work effectively as a team member and independently.
  • Initiate work projects, work independently, and follow-through on directions.
  • Support two managers and balance priorities for two multi-faceted program areas.
  • Communicate effectively.
  • Prioritize multiple projects.
  • Provide high standards of professional conduct and customer service skills (corresponding professionally with customers and agency personnel in person, over the telephone, or by e-mail.)
  • Create, draft, proofread, and edit letters, brochures, handouts, meeting materials, bulletins and other program documents.

  • Microsoft Office Suite - Excel, Word, and Outlook (intermediate to expert level). Use Word and Excel for processing tasks, merging, sorting, and integrating text with graphics, spreadsheets and data files. Microsoft Access would be a plus.
  • Various internet browsers and web-based office tools.
  • Travel coordination.
  • Coordinating meetings, including working with facilities, catering, audio and visual equipment needs and setup, rosters, handouts, associated travel needs for participants and management of all details regarding the event.
  • State compliance regulations, procedures and processing as related to purchasing, travel, contracts and meetings preferred.
  • A self-motivated individual with a positive work ethic.
  • Consistent and reliable attendance.
  • Strong organizational skills.
  • Clear communication skills.
  • Ability to flexibly accommodate changes in program decisions.
  • A desire to identify areas of improvement in program processes and willingness to help implement solutions. 


Supplemental Information

In addition to completing the online application, applicants must attach the following documents to their profile in order to be considered for this position:

  • letter of interest, describing how you meet the specific qualifications for this position.
  • A current resume, detailing experience, and education.
  • A list of at least three (3) professional references with current telephone numbers.

NOTE: As a condition of employment, the candidate accepting this position will be required to comply with the Union Security clause contained in the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the state of Washington and the Washington Federation of State Employees. This means that, as a condition of employment the candidate must either join the union and pay union dues, or pay the union a representational or other fee within 30 days of the date you are put into pay status.

  • The initial screening will be solely based on the contents and completeness of the "duties summary" section of your application in Careers.wa.gov, completeness of the application material submitted, and the supplemental questionnaire.
  • A resume will not substitute for completing the "duties summary" section of the application. Responses to the supplemental questionnaire regarding work experience must be reflected in the "duties summary" section of the application.  
  • By submitting materials you are indicating that all information is true and correct. The state may verify information. Any untruthful or misleading information is cause for removal from the applicant pool or dismissal if employed.

Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications and wish to claim Veteran's Preference MUST attach a copy of their DD214, or other verification of military service. Please black out any personally identifiable data such as social security numbers.
For additional information on Veteran's Preference and guidance on how to determine if you are eligible, click here.

We thank you and are grateful for your service

The Washington State Arts Commission is committed to values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and creative expression. Our strategic plan includes an objective to increase our specific and intentional efforts around social justice by ensuring that ArtsWA-funded activities and work are reflective of Washington's diverse populations including cultural diversity, artistic disciplines, geographic locations, and underserved populations. People of diverse backgrounds, including diversity of race, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation are encouraged to apply. 

Should you have any questions regarding this position or the online application, contact Angie Anderson at (360) 407-8446 or jobs@des.wa.gov.
The State of Washington is an equal opportunity employer. Persons with a disability who need assistance with their application or that need this announcement in an alternative format, may call (360) 664-1960 or toll free (877) 664-1960. TTY users should first call 711 to access the Washington Relay Service.

Contact Information

Angie Anderson,
Contact Phone: 
(360) 407-8446
Contact e-mail: