« Back to all jobs Senior Collection Manager

  • Employer: Chicago History Museum, Chicago, IL
  • Salary: $50,000.00 - $55,000.00 per year


The Senior Collection Manager manages and coordinates all aspects of collection management for the museum collection including supervising collection management staff; supervises the processing, inventory, and housing of the museum collection to facilitate preservation and access; ensures the museum collections are handled, preserved, stored, and exhibited in a safe and prudent manner according to professional and institutional standards; implements preventive conservation measures including integrated pest management and environmental monitoring in an effort to maintain all collections storage areas, galleries, and work rooms; plans and implements large-scale collection moves and storage upgrades for the collection as a whole; develops and implements changes and improvements to internal processes; and sustains the collection as CHM’s most unique and significant resource.

Essential Responsibilities

  • Manage the day-to-day operations of the Collection Management unit.
  • Develop an in-depth knowledge of the scope, condition, and organization of the Decorative and Industrial Arts, Paintings and Sculpture, and Costume collections, including storage needs and associated documentation.
  • Work with Curators, Registrars, and other staff to plan and implement accessioning and deaccessioning activity to support collection development goals; maintain and update databases and other systems for documenting and tracking acquisitions activity and make work assignments.
  • Supervise and participate in the processing of accessioned museum holdings, including re-housing, storage, cataloging, and documentation.
  • Act as primary systems administrator to implement CHM’s collections management system, including maintaining data entry standards and workflows.
  • Participate in key partnerships within the Chicago collections community, including serving. on the Steering Committee for the Chicago region’s upcoming Alliance for Response (AFR) initiative
  • Coordinate and/or arrange for transportation of new acquisitions to CHM property and the return/disposal of unwanted materials in accordance with established procedures.
  • Respond to object research inquiries and guide researchers in their use of CHM’s museum holdings and direct them to pertinent documentation and related material within CHM as well as other institutions.
  • Develop and implement collection inventory and object movement protocols; coordinate, oversee, and participate in the movement of collection items for exhibition, photography, research, and conservation purposes
  • Monitor the condition of storage areas and maintain a secure, stable, and pest-free storage environment.
  • Collaborate with other departments to facilitate use of the collection to meet institutional goals and support CHM programmatic activities.
  • Participate in the development of institutional policies, procedures, and strategies governing the documentation, preservation, and use of the collection
  • Advise the Head of Collections and the Andrew W. Mellon Director of Collections and Curatorial Affairs in developing annual departmental goals, objectives, and budget
  • Conduct performance evaluations of staff; set goals and objectives for staff; identify opportunities for staff professional and technical development.
  • Recruit, train, and supervise Collection Management staff (including temporary project staff and interns); mentor staff to help them achieve their highest potential.
  • Lift, carry, and otherwise move collections objects weighing 40 pounds; ascend/descend ladders and lifts; transport collections using CHM van to off-site storage facilities or other locations.
  • Create a team spirit and enhance communication within the Collections Department so that staff members will work collaboratively and in a supportive manner across departmental and functional area boundaries.

Other Responsibilities

  • Conduct tours of storage areas and provide access to holdings for educational and fundraising activities.
  • Supervise and mentor interns, work-study students, and volunteers.
  • Participate in the planning and implementation of large-scale collection moves and other special projects related to the collections, including contributing to grant writing activity to support these initiatives.
  • Serve on interdepartmental staff committees.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

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