Open Positions

Head Librarian

The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) seeks an inspiring, imaginative, and accomplished Head Librarian for its Phillips Library. Reporting to the Chief of Collection Services and Ann C. Pingree Phillips Library Director, the Head Librarian will oversee one of New England’s most venerable research libraries, enhancing scholarly access, visibility and reputation, strengthening collections and operations, and integrating the library fully into one of North America’s largest and most distinctive museums. The Head Librarian will have a unique opportunity to transform a respected research library into an innovative and active intellectual hub supporting the overall mission and global scope of PEM.

Working closely with the Library Director, the successful candidate will make the Phillips Library an intellectual and research center that reinforces and complements the Museum’s strengths, integrates the Library into the overall fabric of the Museum, and advances the scholarly standing of the institution as a whole. Together, the Library Director and the Head Librarian will develop a collecting plan and priorities for the Library that build on its collection strengths, reinforce its most important holdings and support the museum’s collecting and research interests. The Library Director and Head Librarian will work together to develop a staffing structure and digitization plan that will most effectively further these goals. S/he will also provide day-to-day leadership for a staff of 6 professional librarians.

S/he will work to achieve these goals by:

  • Adding a new dimension of leadership to the Phillips Library;
  • Reinforcing the museum's commitment to creativity and intellectual leadership;
  • Leveraging the most important facets of the Library's collections;
  • Increasing the Library’s responsiveness to the needs of local, regional, national and international researchers.
  • Monitoring current trends and best practices across the field of librarianship.

The Museum seeks in its Head Librarian a leader with at least seven years of professional research library experience who can work within the framework of a successful and innovative museum of art and culture that serves multiple audiences, locally, regionally, nationally and internationally. It is looking for both entrepreneurial leadership and managerial competence. An MLS is required, and candidates should demonstrate an ability to lead and direct the library’s operations and its programmatic development, as well as community engagement. Experience with fundraising and grant writing is required. Strong staff supervisory experience and communication skills are also required. Personal integrity, a lively intellect, and a collaborative disposition are essential.

All applications and nominations are kept confidential. Email cover letter and résumé (Word documents preferred), salary requirement, and names of 3 references with contact information: Marilyn Hoffman, Museum Search and Reference, mail to: References will not be contacted without prior permission of the applicant. PEM is committed to diversity among its employees and encourages qualified candidates from all backgrounds to apply.