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Douglas County  3510
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Pay Range GC16


This classification performs professional duties in acquisition, research, conservation and cataloging of items in either the history or natural history areas. Within assigned program area, curators research, design, construct and install exhibits which could include reproducing photographs; manage the preservation and storage of collections; print photo orders for the public; provide information to the public; develop educational programs. Curator may direct staff and/or volunteers assigned to program area.


(Duties assigned to this classification include, but are not limited to, the following examples. Any one position may not perform all listed tasks.)

1. Receive, research, catalog, conserve historical and/or natural history items.

2. Plan, research, design, construct, and install historical exhibits at main museum and changing gallery areas. This includes utilizing existing items and photos; contacting individuals or other museums for specific items; mounting and framing photos; preparing labels and text. Provide for maintenance of exhibits. Assist other staff with exhibit preparation.

3. Plan, research, design, construct, and install natural history and scientific exhibits. This includes utilizing existing items and photos; obtaining appropriate permits to collect field specimens; performing field collection; preparing specimens by standard taxidermy and freeze dry methods; constructing display cases; recreating natural habitats; preparing labels and text. Maintain photo record of collection. Provide for maintenance of exhibits. Assist other staff with exhibit preparation.

4. Prepare darkroom and develop negatives, duplicate negatives, use old negatives in poor condition to produce a master copy for preservation purposes; develop prints for exhibits and/or the public.

5. Receive requests from public, research and provide information.

6. Determine appropriate storage for collection, ensuring preservation of both stored and exhibited items.

7. Provide information to tour groups, outside agencies and individuals or lectures and written material.

8. Maintain automated record keeping for program area.


Knowledge of: Thorough knowledge of theories, objectives, principles, and practices of history or natural history as relate to establishment, development and development of museum collections; thorough knowledge of research techniques; considerable knowledge of conservation of a wide variety of artifacts and specimens; considerable knowledge of artistic concepts and techniques of design, artistic concepts, graphic art, use of art mediums and carpentry for construction and installation of exhibits; considerable knowledge of techniques, processes, principles, and practices of photography as related to museum photographic collection; considerable knowledge of photographic and developing equipment and materials; considerable knowledge of appropriate preservation of photos and negatives; considerable knowledge of taxidermy and freeze-dry methods; basic knowledge of photography and related equipment. Skill in: Use of a wide variety of wood shop equipment, small hand tools, photographic and developing equipment, freeze-dry equipment; preparation of historical artifacts and collect natural history specimens in order to produce an appropriate exhibit; operating automated systems. Ability to: Communicate effectively in both oral and written forms; establish and maintain museum registration records, reports, and statistical data; estimate time and materials and manage time efficiently; conduct research; utilize problem identification and resolution techniques; make decisions independently in accordance with established rules and regulations and use initiative and judgment in carrying out tasks and responsibilities; courteously meet and deal effectively with other employees, public agencies, museum professionals, vendors and the public.

Education, experience and training: Bachelor's degree in history, natural history, or related field with two years progressively responsible work experience which includes experience in managing a photo collection OR a satisfactory equivalent combination of education, experience and/or training. At time of appointment, must possess a valid Oregon driver's license.

Desirable qualifications: Master's degree in history or natural history.


Work is performed under the guidance of the museum director. The employee works independently in administering a complex area of responsibility and confers with supervisor for professional advice. Discretion is required in applying general goal and policy statements, in development of recommendations, policies and procedures and in resolving program problems. Work is accomplished within a broad framework, with authority and responsibility in area of service. Periodic reviews of work performance are conducted in terms of expected results.


Work is performed within established museum policies and procedures, accepted museum procedures within the museum and scientific profession, historical, natural history, scientific and photographic reference materials, and manufacturer handbooks. The employee uses independent judgment in determining appropriate procedures, interpreting guidelines and contributes to modification of existing guidelines by recommending changes and is responsible for producing an acceptable finished product.


Regular and consistent attendance is required.  Work is performed both at the museum complex and field locations which may require bending, climbing, digging, gripping with hands and fingers, hammering, hearing voice conversation, keyboarding, kneeling, lifting up to 60 pounds, pulling, pushing, standing, stooping and walking. Work is performed in an environment with common exposure to paints and chemicals; involves everyday risks and discomforts and sometime adverse weather conditions requiring safety precautions. A reasonable amount of driving is required.

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please email the Human Resources department.