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Employment Opportunities, Jobs & Internships in Preservation & Cultural Resources     

Employment Opportunities, Jobs & Internships in Preservation & Cultural Resources
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LAHM seeks Executive Director, Los Altos History Museum & J. Gilbert Smith House (Los Altos, CA)
Historic Preservation Blog from - History, Museum, Historic House, Executive Director
Contributed By: Julie DeVere

Los Altos History Museum & J. Gilbert Smith House
51 South San Antonio Road
Los Altos, California 94022

Contact information for this position:

Executive Director Position Description
The mission of the Los Altos History Museum is to gather and present compelling stories and artifacts that bridge the past and the present, and challenge established narratives to produce engaging educational programs and exhibits for our community. The Executive Director provides inspirational leadership to engage and motivate Los Altos History Museum staff, volunteers, supporters, and the broader community to fulfill that mission. Most importantly, the Executive Director understands and demonstrates a passionate appreciation of the Museum's role as an active community cultural and educational resource.

The Executive Director role includes five primary areas of responsibility:
1. Leadership and management; 2. Exhibits and programs; 3. Development and fundraising; 4. Community outreach; 5. Operations and administration

The Executive Director is appointed by the Board of Directors of the Association of the Los Altos Historical Museum, and works under the direction of the Board President and in concert with the staff and volunteers to carry out the Museum's mission. Our vision: We aspire to be the premier local center for intergenerational and intercultural connections.

Leadership and management
Work closely with the Board to define the strategic vision, to identify priorities and goals, and to implement and monitor progress towards achieving those goals.
Hire and develop a professional staff with the skills and experience required to implement the goals of the Museum. Manage staff to ensure efficient operation of the museum and utilization of the Museum resources.
Cultivate volunteers, particularly volunteer leaders (e.g. committee chairs), to work in partnership with the professional staff.
Foster a mutually respectful and collaborative working environment between the professional staff and volunteers.
Provide guidance and growth opportunities in alignment with the career goals of the professional staff.
Support Board initiatives and serve as primary liaison between the Board and staff.

Exhibits and programs

Provide leadership and guidance to the professional staff and volunteers regarding the strategic direction and its connection to Museum’s programs and events.
Maintain and, as appropriate, update and extend the Permanent Exhibition, the J. Gilbert Smith House, and the outdoor displays and interpretation, including the Los Altos Heritage Orchard.
Plan and execute a program of changing exhibits in the main building, the J. Gilbert Smith House, and other appropriate spaces.
Plan and execute a calendar of events for members and the public, including educational, cultural, and social offerings.
Deliver high-quality programs and events that are aligned with the organization's mission and core values, with particular attention to telling stories that represent the diversity of our community and ensures that everyone in our community feels a sense of belonging at the Museum.
Development and fundraising
As a contractor to the City of Los Altos, which owns the Museum, the J. Gilbert Smith House, the collection, and the Heritage Orchard, ensure that the elected representatives and city staff are well informed about the value to the community, and maintain confidence that the Museum is a good steward of the resources entrusted to it.
As the leading development executive, maintain a sustainable financial foundation for the Museum, working with existing and potential backers to convey a compelling vision that invites and encourages their ongoing financial support.
Work closely with the Board to advance donor relations and to develop and implement effective fundraising efforts.
Conduct an effective annual campaign to inform and update the broader community about the work of the Museum and invite them to support that work.
Support fundraising events that bring in funds and build community.
Encourage local businesses and large corporations to support the Museum as a component of their connection with the community.
Apply for grants from appropriate community organizations and foundations, and fulfill the terms of such grants.
Leverage the assets of the Museum, particularly the courtyard, as event spaces attractive to prospective renters.

Community outreach

Collaborate with schools and educational institutions, including elementary, secondary, and college level, as well as continuing studies, to develop joint projects that leverage the Museum’s exhibits and collections and extend its mission beyond its physical location.
Maintain and grow the membership of the Museum, recognizing members as especially loyal and enthusiastic supporters in the community.
Oversee the creation and implementation of marketing initiatives to strengthen community awareness, perception, and support.
Communicate via all appropriate methods, including print and electronic communications (brochures, newsletters, emails, advertisements), as well as the website, social media, mobile applications, and other tools and channels.
Ally with other organizations that share common community goals, and seek opportunities to expand such joint efforts. Examples include other museums and historical associations, service organizations, and chambers of commerce.
Serve as the ambassador of the Museum, delivering engaging presentations to community groups, service clubs, and businesses upon invitation.

Operations and Administration

Through well-organized planning and appropriate processes, ensure the efficient and effective operation and utilization of all Museum resources, including financial and physical assets, and staff and volunteer time, talent, and enthusiasm.
Measure the progress and impact of Museum programs, services, and operations, make improvements when appropriate, and identify new solutions for changing needs.
With the staff, volunteer leaders, and Finance Committee, prepare an annual budget for Board approval to ensure that the organization works within a sustainable financial framework.
Establish strong financial controls, and maintain consistent and transparent financial records.
Deliver financial reports to the Board, the City of Los Altos, the public, and appropriate tax and regulatory authorities.
With the City staff and with facilities and garden volunteers, maintain and repair all Museum structures, landscaping, and gardens on the property.
With a professional orchardist and orchard volunteers, maintain and cultivate the heritage orchard in a flourishing state.
Maintain and develop an information technology environment appropriate for the work of the Museum community, with particular care to safeguard the information assets from loss or breach.
Ensure appropriate safety, emergency response, and risk management policies and procedures.
Manage the human resources of the organization according to authorized personnel policies and procedures that fully conform to current laws and regulations, and ensure the safety and dignity of everyone involved with the Museum.

Masters degree or beyond in Museum Studies or related field.
Ongoing professional development in the Museum field and other needed expertise.
At least 5 years of senior management experience in a leadership role, ideally with volunteer-based nonprofit organizations.
Demonstrated ability to lead harmoniously and productively in a hybrid environment comprising professional staff and volunteers.
Strong operational skills with the ability to handle multiple simultaneous tasks, as typical in smaller organizations, while maintaining good order and morale.
Proven development and fundraising leadership experience, preferably including annual appeals, capital campaigns, grant applications, and business partnerships.
Track record of representing organizations for compelling community outreach and public relations.
Familiarity with efficiently managing budgets and finances of comparable organizations.
Conversant with human resources operations, particularly compliance with federal and state employment regulations.
Experience in property management and facility rentals for events preferred.
Eagerness and excitement to work with others to advance the mission of the Los Altos History Museum.

$95,000 minimum salary range. 


Keywords: History, Museum, Historic House, Executive Director

Posted: May 12, 2024
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