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Employment Opportunities, Jobs & Internships in Preservation & Cultural Resources     


Employment Opportunities, Jobs & Internships in Preservation & Cultural Resources
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Deputy Executive Director for Collections and Interpretation, The Rhode Island Historical Society (Providence, RI)
Historic Preservation Blog from PreservationDirectory.com -
Contributed By: The Rhode Island Historical Society
Email The Author: jobs@rihs.org
Website: http://www.rihs.org/about-us/employment-opportunities/

The Rhode Island Historical Society invites experienced curators and library managers with special collections experience to apply for the position of Deputy Executive Director for Collections and Interpretation. 

The Deputy Executive Director (DED) for Collections and Interpretation will manage a team whose responsibilities include the day-to-day management of the RIHS’s collections, interpretation, and programs, such as cataloguing and technical services, visitor services, acquisitions, and conservation. The DED will also coordinate with the Director of the Goff Center for Education and Public Programs and the Director of the Museum of Work & Culture on exhibition planning and execution of the RIHS’s strategic plan as it pertains to interpretive, educational programs. 

The DED will report to the Executive Director, assisting the Executive Director in making strategic decisions related to the programs and activities of the RIHS, will advise on industry best practices and trends related to digitization and outreach, and will play a public relations role in the Executive Director’s absence, as well as being an integral part of the RIHS’s advancement team. As such, the DED will work closely with RIHS donors, cultivating new relationships and stewarding existing donors to our collections. The DED will work closely with the Deputy Executive Director for Finance and Administration in areas of budget development and oversight of departmental budgets, as well as areas of compliance. Additionally, the DED will work with both the staff and Board of Trustees Collections Committee to determine collections priorities, recommend accessions and deaccessions, approve loans, and identify conservation needs.

The successful candidate will have experience managing a professional staff – ideally in a special collections department or museum – as well as experience in areas such as collections development, research services, collection management, cataloguing and technical services, imaging, and exhibition planning. Applicants for this position should have an appropriate advanced degree such as an M.L.S., M.A., or Ph.D. in History or American Studies, or equivalent library/museum experience. 

Although this is not a position with curatorial responsibilities per se, scholarly or professional experience with historical collections that complement our areas of collecting – Rhode Island books, maps and prints, and manuscript collections from the colonial period through the 20thcentury, as well as extensive textile, furniture, decorative arts, and artifact collections – is necessary. 

Proficiency in caring for rare and fragile primary research material and experience working with digital surrogates in a research environment are desirable for this position. Other necessary skills include: excellent writing, communication, and interpersonal skills; knowledge of basic cataloguing principles; an ability to work independently and collaboratively with peers and colleagues within and beyond the institution; proficient computer skills in word processing, database, and webpage management, and the uses of technology in a research environment; and a thorough understanding of principles for arranging and managing special collections and/or museum collections. 

This position will also accomplish human resource objectives by recruiting, selecting, training, assigning, scheduling, coaching, counseling, and disciplining employees; communicating job expectations; planning, monitoring, appraising, and reviewing job contributions; planning and reviewing compensation; and enforcing policies and procedures.

The DED will supervise 7 FTE staff members directly (the Director of the Goff Center for Education and Public Programs, the RRC Reading Room Manager, the Registrar, the Librarian, the Rights and Reproduction Manager, as well as two new positions: Film Archivist/ Graphics and Media Curator and an additional Collections Manager). The DED will also have ultimate accountability for additional staff members who report to those aforementioned. The DED will represent the RIHS both in the Executive Director’s absence and at professional meetings. The DED will also meet regularly with his/her staff to coordinate institutional priorities including acquisitions, exhibitions, services to researchers, and outreach to local, regional, national, and international constituencies.

Qualifications:
  • Master’s degree in library/information science and/or graduate degree in a discipline relevant to the RIHS’s collection
  • At least seven years of experience with special collections services or museum collections and operations, ideally as a manager
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a leader, articulating a vision, setting a direction, and accomplishing new initiatives
  • Demonstrated knowledge of rare books, manuscripts, archives, special collections, or museum collections
  • Experience in working with curatorial, technical services, conservation, and digital library staff to develop goals for acquiring, processing, and making special collections fully accessible
  • Demonstrated understanding of and receptiveness to the uses of emerging technologies in archival and special collections
  • Ability to work collegially in a small group of senior administrators
  • Excellent oral, written, and interpersonal communication skills with experience in working collaboratively with others
  • Strong analytical, problem-solving, and decision-making skills
  • Evidence of success in fundraising and/or obtaining grantsEvidence of scholarly engagement and active participation within the profession
  • Ability to manage budgets and forecast accurately and appropriately to assist in annual budgeting process
About the RIHS:
The RIHS, a Smithsonian Affiliate, holds the largest and most important historical collections relating to Rhode Island. These collections include some 25,000 objects, 5,000 manuscripts, 100,000 books and printed items, 400,000 photographs and maps, and 9 million feet of motion-picture film. Headquartered in Providence, R.I., the RIHS owns and maintains the John Brown House Museum, a National Historic Landmark built in 1788; the Aldrich House, also a National Historic Landmark, built in 1822; and the Mary Elizabeth Robinson Research Center. The organization also maintains the Museum of Work and Culture in Woonsocket, devoted to the history of northern Rhode Island. The RIHS offers a variety of educational programs and community activities, including workshops, lectures, films, concerts, walking tours, and more.

TO APPLY:
Email cover letter, resume/CV, and the names of three references to jobs@rihs.org, attention C. Morgan Grefe, RIHS Executive Director, with “DED Collections and Interpretation” in the subject line. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis. No phone calls, please.



Posted: August 11, 2017
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