Curators, Rancho La Brea
The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM) seeks two Curators to lead the research programs and steer the public engagement of its renowned Late Pleistocene Rancho La Brea collections housed at the La Brea Tar Pits & Museum. The successful candidates will conduct collection-based research in evolutionary biology and paleoecology including systematics, biogeography, climate change, and biodiversity science. The NHM, the largest natural history museum in the western United States, has recently finished a dramatic transformation including new ground-breaking exhibitions and a 3 ½ acre wildlife garden. It anticipates completing a similar transformation at the La Brea Tar Pits & Museum during the next decade. The NHM’s mission is to inspire wonder, discovery, and responsibility for our natural and cultural worlds. Our strategic intent—“To be the best at communicating how our planet and life on it changes over time and why this matters”— guides our priorities over the next decade. The successful candidates will have a record of outstanding research as well as excellent communication skills, a talent for collaboration across disciplines, and an innate ability to engage and enthuse the public and stakeholders through their work.
The La Brea Tar Pits & Museum constitutes one of the world’s richest Ice Age fossil sites and has yielded an estimated 5 million specimens representing more than 600 species of animals and plants of Late Pleistocene age. These collections afford a huge potential for a broad array of research and public programs and are continuously growing through ongoing excavations. The successful candidates will be responsible for developing a dynamic, productive, and scientifically significant program of research to build a growing scientific and public profile, overseeing the development and curation of important collections, maintaining and strengthening the NHM’s presence in key professional and governmental networks, and establishing active internal NHM collaborations, especially with the Education and Exhibits, Marketing and Communications, and Advancement Departments.
The successful candidates will have a Ph.D., a strong track record of published research, and experience in generating funding. Experience in collections management would be an advantage, as would an interest in creative ways of engaging the public in research (e.g., citizen science). The Curators will be expected to develop an active and publically engaging research program, develop working relationships with local universities, professional associations, mentor students and postdoctoral fellows, and maintain research through obtaining competitive grants and/or funding from other external sources. They will manage the collection’s growth and undertake research in ways that increase both its scientific and public appeal. The Curators must have the vision and capability to build a research program that can be integrated within the NHM’s ongoing efforts to document and interpret biotic responses to environmental change.
The ability to communicate effectively and engage with a wide variety of audiences, including the public and the NHM’s various stakeholders is paramount. The successful candidates will be expected to help oversee staff and supervise the NHM’s Rancho La Brea program including the collections and excavations. They will actively participate in a broad range of museum activities, such as exhibits, education, outreach, training of educators, public communications, and fundraising. More specifically, the successful candidates will be expected to play a key role in the ongoing transformation of the La Brea Tar Pits & Museum, developing a future vision for this unique fossil site.
This is a full-time position with a salary and title commensurate with experience, plus excellent benefits (http://www.nhm.org/site/about-our-museums/working-at-nhm/employee-benefits).
Application deadline is December 15th, 2015. The starting date is July 1st, 2016. Applicants should send a cover letter, curriculum vitae, salary history, and the full contact information of at least three professional references to firstname.lastname@example.org, La Brea Tar Pits & Museum Curatorial Search, Research & Collections, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007, USA.
The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Please, No Phone Calls, No Fax.