Director – West Virginia University Art Museum

Director of the Art Museum of West Virginia University- College of Creative Arts 22621 


To Apply:

The College of Creative Arts at West Virginia University, located in Morgantown, WV, seeks to hire a full-time, twelve-month Director of the Art Museum of West Virginia University.

Tentative start date for this position is January 2, 2024.

We are looking for an engaged and visionary leader with significant museum experience to provide administrative, artistic, and intellectual leadership for the museum. The Director of the Art Museum of WVU reports directly to the Dean of the College of Creative Arts and manages six full-time professional staff members.

The Art Museum of West Virginia University provides a welcoming and stimulating educational and research environment for diverse audiences to experience the transforming power of art. Exploring contemporary artistic innovation as well as artistic traditions of different cultures helps us to understand ourselves, our communities, and our world. The Art Museum serves both the WVU campus and the region through a robust slate of exhibitions, programs, and educational outreach initiatives across two 2,500-square-foot galleries, a collection research room, the Nath Sculpture Garden, and the adjacent Museum Education Center—designed by architect Michael Graves. Opened in August 2015, the museum has a growing collection numbering nearly 5,000 objects with particular strengths in prints and works on paper, contemporary ceramics, and 19th and 20th century painting, in addition to smaller holdings of contemporary art, photography, sculpture, Asian and African art, and works by self-taught Appalachian artists. Recent acquisitions include work by Wendy Red Star, Roberto Lugo, Vanessa German, Derrick Adams, and Jaune Quick-to-See-Smith. The Art Museum stewards the largest public holding of works by American Modernist Blanche Lazzell (1879-1956) —a graduate of WVU and key figure among the Provincetown white-line, color woodblock printmakers—and is currently planning the first national traveling exhibition of her work.
The Art Museum’s aim–within the larger mission of West Virginia University with its R1/very high research activity–is to foster a vibrant, inviting, and inclusive environment in which visitors can study and learn from the direct experience of works of art. The museum’s educational programs emphasize cross-disciplinary, inquiry-based learning for all ages. Many visitors make their first visit to an art museum by walking through our doors. In that spirit, the Art Museum explicitly embraces WVU’s land-grant mission of campus and community engagement.  In addition to lively, thematic exhibitions curated from the museum’s collection, temporary or touring exhibits have included the work of Nina Chanel Abney, Shepard Fairey, Marie Watt, Robert Rauschenberg, the African American artists of Paulson Fontaine Press, Walker Evans, Chinese master ceramists, and Peter and Sally Saul.

We strongly believe in work-life balance and keeping time for things we love outside our work. WVU offers generous benefits, including:

37.5-hour work week

13 paid holidays (staff holiday calendar)

24 annual leave (vacation) days per year

18 sick days per year (for when you’re ill, for when you need time to care for sick family, for your own, or your family’s, regularly scheduled medical appointments. Who is family for the purpose of this leave? A lot of people in your life including immediate relatives and in-laws as well as others considered to be members of your household living under the same roof)

WVU offers a range of health insurance and other benefits (this position is a benefits-eligible non-classified staff position)

401(a) retirement savings with 6% employee contribution match, eligibility to continue health insurance, and other retiree perks. Looking for more retirement benefits information? Check out retirement health insurance benefits, retirement income, and FAQ’s.

Wellness programs

What you’ll do:

The Director must provide collegial and collaborative leadership and be committed to integrating the museum into the University’s overall educational mission by providing opportunities for teaching and learning through exhibitions and outreach activities, and enhancing the connection to, and collaboration with, the university’s academic programs, faulty, students, and staff.

Operations – 30%

Oversee day-to-day operations, including Museum budget and facility, in accordance with standards in the museum field and in compliance with the University’s policies and procedures.

Work collaboratively with the College of Creative Arts’ Dean and Directors to establish a shared vision and conduit between the College and the Museum.

Oversee Museum staff, comprised of six full-time employees. Responsible for recruitment, supervision, reclassification, and evaluation of staff in accordance with university personnel policies and procedures.

Chair Museum Collections Committee to approve potential acquisitions for collections in keeping with the museum’s mission and collection policies. Develop collecting priorities to strengthen the museum’s collections.

Programming – 30%

In collaboration with the Curator, oversee exhibition development from concept to implementation including related programs and publications.

In collaboration with the Curator of Educational Programs, develop visitor-centered, inquiry-based programs for adults and WVU students. Assist with K-12 tours groups and leading small groups on an as needed basis.

Collaborate with the CCA Communications and Marketing staff to develop plans for promoting exhibitions and programs to the public to raise the visibility of the museum and attract new visitors.

Futures/Planning – 20%

Advance an innovative vision for the Art Museum through strategic long-range planning, in collaboration with staff and other stakeholders.

Keep abreast of current thinking and issues in the museum field.

Pursue and achieve accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums.

Fundraising/External Support – 10%

Provide leadership for fund-raising and development with annual goals set with the Dean and WVU Foundation. Maintain regular contact with donors and work with Director of Development to identify and cultivate prospective donors. In addition, seek outside funding through pursuing, securing, and managing appropriate grants.

Serve as leader of the Friends of the Art Museum group and work to expand and diversify its membership.

Meet regularly with Museum Advisory Council to provide guidance as they advocate and fund-raise for the Museum.

Outreach – 10%

Pursue professional development opportunities, maintain membership in professional

organizations, and cultivate diverse professional contacts.

Engage in the state and regional arts community.

Serve on CCA + University Committees as appropriate.


Advanced degree in Art History, Arts Administration, Museum Studies, or a related field from an accredited institution.

Five years of senior administrative experience, directly related to the responsibilities outlined above, at least two years of which were in a museum setting.

Record of success in donor relations, fundraising, grant-writing and/or capital campaigns.

Demonstrated knowledge of professional art museum principles, standards and best practices, including but not limited to the areas of exhibition development, museum education, educational outreach, and audience development.

Demonstrated knowledge of professional colleagues in the museum field, and service to the museum profession.

Willingness to work nights and weekends as needed to accommodate programmatic and development needs.

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