Kansas Collection Curator

Updated: 4 months ago
Location: Kansas City, KANSAS



Position Overview

KU Libraries seeks an enthusiastic, experienced professional to lead the collection development and outreach efforts of the Kansas Collection, in the Kenneth Spencer Research Library. The Kansas Collection documents the history and culture of everyday Kansans from territorial days to the present, with current emphases on the experiences of the African American and Latinx communities in the state.  The curator will spearhead efforts to build collections reflecting the lives and experiences of all Kansans, and that support the teaching and research missions of the university.   Reporting to the Director of the Spencer Research Library, the curator will be responsible for directing the development of the book and manuscript collections which comprise the Kansas Collection, actively supporting the processing of materials added, and for teaching and outreach programs in this local history program.  The curator will coordinate the work of faculty who support the African American experience and Latinx experience in community outreach and collection-building.   

This is a full-time, 12-month, tenure-track faculty position.

Rank considerations are based on professional performance, research, and service experience sufficient to qualify for appointment at the rank of Assistant Librarian or Associate Librarian. For additional details, see KU Libraries’ Criteria for Ranks  and the Promotion and Tenure Procedures .

The University of Kansas Libraries support a safe and inclusive environment for all members of our diverse communities at KU.  We are committed to building a diverse and pluralistic workforce and strongly encourage applications from diverse candidates.  This position will demonstrate a commitment to advancing diversity efforts in the Libraries and contributes to an inclusive environment.

Job Description


  • Partner with library and university colleagues to integrate original resources and perspectives from the regional history collections into classes across the KU curriculum
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues across the Libraries to promote the collections through digital initiatives, social media, community events, K-12 outreach, and other means
  • Engage with social, business, and political communities and individuals across the state to develop the Kansas Collection resources through deposits purchases, donations, and other types of acquisition
  • Provide reference service and answer questions related to collections as part of team, working both in person and remotely
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues in processing to make newly acquired collections accessible quickly and efficiently
  • Actively communicate issues implicit in scholarly communication and open access in discussions with colleagues and with the KU community. Attends training and events designed and developed to promote understanding of trends and best practices in scholarly communications. Reflects this understanding in his or her work as a librarian at KU
  • Actively participate in, and advocates for, the educational role of the Libraries through dynamic engagement in campus teaching and research, campus collaborations, or staff development and training.  Identifies and makes use of teaching opportunities in any circumstance, promotes the Libraries instructional resources and support, and obtains instructional expertise from colleagues as appropriate
  • Share in leadership of Spencer Research Library as part of the team reporting to the Associate Dean for Distinctive Collections / Director of Spencer Research Library
  • Supervise a faculty member devoted to outreach to the African American community in Kansas and a proposed position to work with the Latinx community in Kansas

  • Contribute to the profession’s collective knowledge by engaging in scholarly research activity.
  • Research may involve the publication of articles, books, book reviews, grant-supported inquiry, or editorial work (see Discipline Expectations for Librarians at KU, July 2014).

  • Engage in service to the Libraries, the University and to professional organizations by participating in committee work, projects, and other contributory achievements.
  • Represent KU Libraries in regional, national, and/or international professional organizations of relevance to higher education and academic libraries.  Participate in regional, national, and/or international consortial collaborations.

Required Qualifications

  • ALA-accredited master’s degree in Library/Information Science or equivalent from a foreign institution by time of appointment. In the closely related, specialized field of archives, a graduate degree (may be master’s or Ph.D. depending on position requirements) in an appropriate field OR an archival certification by the Academy of Certified Archivists may be considered for a recognized exception.
  • Three to five years of progressively responsible experience in a library, museum, historical society, or similar environment.

  • Preferred Qualifications

  • Fluency in Spanish
  • Experience working with individuals and organizations in donating materials
  • Academic background in a relevant subject area such as American history, or American Studies, or Kansas history
  • Experience working effectively and collegially with a diverse population
  • Excellent, written, oral and interpersonal communication skills
  • Demonstrated interest in using primary sources to engage with diverse audiences, including students and community members, as evidenced by application materials.

  • Contact Information to Applicants

    Mike Broadwell

    Additional Candidate Instruction

    An online application must be completed to be considered for this position. Applicants should attach a cover letter, resume/CV, and contact information for three professional references (at least one should be a current or previous supervisor) to the online application. Please address in your cover letter how you meet the required and preferred qualifications.

    The application deadline has been extended. To be considered, applications must be received no later than June 7, 2019.

    Application Review Begins


    Anticipated Start Date


    Work Location

    University of Kansas - Lawrence

    Advertised Salary Range

    Commensurate with skills and experience


    The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information and retaliation in the University's programs and activities. Access to information regarding equal opportunity and diversity worksite posters is available at http://www.humanresources.ku.edu/policies_procedures/category_details/index.aspx?category=8 or you may contact 785-864-4946 or employ@ku.edu for alternate access options.  Any  inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies should be directed to: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY

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