Director of Art Museum – SUNY New Paltz

External Posting (Professional)

Applications are invited for consideration for appointment to the following position:

Department: Art Museum

Budget Title: Director of Art Museum 

Local Title: Neil C. Trager Director 

Posting Date: December 18, 2019

Classification: SL-5 



Located at the geographic center of campus, The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz is one of the largest museums in the State University of New York (SUNY) system with more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space distributed over six galleries.

The Dorsky’s permanent collection comprises approximately 6,000 works of art, with a concentration on American art, especially of the Hudson Valley and Catskill Region, as well as photography and metals. A small but excellent “world collection” of objects dating back to antiquity and representing diverse cultures enhances the museum’s exhibitions and educational programs. Significantly, The Dorsky will celebrate its twentieth anniversary in 2021.

Through its collections, exhibitions, and public events, The Dorsky Museum supports and enriches academic life at the College, presents a broad range of world art for study and enjoyment, and serves as a center for Hudson Valley arts and culture, focusing on two centuries of the region’s artists. The museum has gained wide recognition beyond the campus as one of the region’s leading museums, welcoming visitors of all ages to its exhibitions and programs.

The Dorsky maintains an ambitious year-round exhibition program. There are eight to ten shows per year, curated both in house and by guest curators and scholars. These exhibitions have been regularly reviewed in The New York Times, ArtNews, Art in America, and Hyperallergic, and on National Public Radio. The museum also hosts a series of BFA and MFA student thesis shows at the end of each Fall and Spring semester.

The Dorsky has an active publication program and produces scholarly catalogues for most of its exhibitions that are distributed through SUNY Press ( In addition, the museum is the lead partner in the Hudson Valley Visual Art Collections Consortium, which consists of five Ulster County-based arts organizations that have together developed a digital database of the works in their permanent collections ( and that work together on other projects of mutual interest.

For additional information, please visit the museum’s website:


The Neil C. Trager Director of The Dorsky Museum will join an institution that has grown significantly in the last ten years. The museum has a talented 6-person staff, an active and engaged 16-member Advisory Board, and strong support from the College’s faculty and administration. Working with the staff and the Advisory Board, the new director will articulate the museum’s future goals and objectives informed by the College’s Strategic Plan and major constituent’s input will ensure that the resources exist to accomplish them together with the College and in particular with the SUNY New Paltz Foundation.

The director oversees all collection, exhibition, education and related artistic programs and activities while serving as administrative head of finances, fundraising, audience development, communications and staff development.


  • Embrace, evolve, and communicate the museum’s mission, core values and vision to all internal and external constituencies.
  • Work closely with staff and the Advisory Board to provide leadership for the museum’s artistic and educational programs.
  • Maintain a collaborative, transparent and supportive environment, celebrating a culture of collegiality and working as a team with the staff and with the College.
  • Assume overall stewardship of the museum’s finances and operations.
  • Enthusiastically participate in identifying, cultivating and soliciting donors; work with the Advisory Board on the annual museum benefit; connect with stakeholders, civic and government leaders, foundations, businesses and all current and potential sources of funding for the museum, working closely with the SUNY New Paltz Foundation.
  • Expand the museum’s capacity to engage with its diverse constituencies especially students, artists, scholars, educators and the larger community locally, regionally and nationally.
  • Work in partnership with the Advisory Board as a whole, and in committee.
  • Cultivate and sustain robust professional networks and campus partnerships.


• A minimum of a master’s degree in Art History, Museum Studies, Arts Administration or a related field
• Evidence of a deep commitment to the arts and humanities with a desire to work with and support artists
• Demonstrated understanding of and experience in fundraising, marketing, as well as developing and managing annual and project budgets
• Proven strong communication skills, both oral and written, and the ability to serve as the museum’s ambassador to all its various constituencies
• Evidence of a commitment to achieving diversity, equity, and inclusion in personnel and in the development of the collection, exhibitions, educational programs, and audiences

• Previous experience as a museum professional with expertise related to The Dorsky’s mission, collections, exhibitions, and educational efforts. Although an art museum background is preferred, the search committee is open to reviewing candidates from related disciplines.
• The ability to develop trust and rich collaborative partnerships with staff, Advisory Board members, students, faculty and administration, as well as with other institutions, community groups and professional organizations
• Innovative problem-solving skills and enthusiasm for working with learners of all ages
• A positive, energetic, transparent and welcoming manner with self-confidence and a sense of humor

Contact Information:

Electronic submissions required. Candidates will be required to submit a cover letter, resume and contact information for three professional references.

Please apply by visiting

Individuals with disabilities who need assistance with the application process should call (845) 257-3675.


Applications accepted until position is filled, priority given to those received by 2/1/20.

Other important information about this vacancy:

This position offers a competitive salary and full NYS benefits, which are among the most comprehensive in the nation.

Located in the heart of a dynamic college town in the beautiful Hudson River Valley, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students. One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Education, Fine & Performing Arts, Liberal Arts & Sciences, and Science & Engineering. New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with scholars and artists who love to teach.

SUNY New Paltz recognizes the unique skills, perspective, talents and passion that each employee contributes to its learning community. To work here is to accept an invitation to participate in the growth and development of all campus members—students, faculty and staff. The College’s commitment to inclusive excellence is an important part of our mission of public education and our culture. New Paltz continues to work on building a community that supports freedom, mutual respect, and civility. We seek others who support these values of diversity and inclusiveness, and candidates of all diverse backgrounds who wish to participate in our cultural aspirations are welcome and encouraged to apply.

The State University of New York at New Paltz is an AA/EOE/ADA employer.

Federal law and regulations require notice to all prospective employees regarding crimes that have occurred on campus in the current three-year period. Please refer to the University Police Web site for the complete Annual Security Report (“Clery Report”) at


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