S. H. Sohmer ssohmer at BRIT.ORG
Fri Feb 20 17:02:41 CST 1998

Due to the growth of our collections and a recent reorganization to better
position us for the future, we are seeking a person to fill the position of
Collections Manager at BRIT.  This organization, with some 860,000
specimens and an outstanding floristic, taxonomic and horticultural libary,
is a free-standing, not-for-profit, privately funded entity with a wide
range of programs in research (floristics, systematics, ethnobotany,
sustainable development, and other endeavours in what could be called
applied botany), education and public outreach. We have an outstanding
press that publishes the journals SIDA and SIDA, Botanical Miscellany.
There are presently research projects in the Philippines, Papua New Guinea,
Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica as well as in Texas and other U.S. States.  We
like to work in collaboration with other organizations and people on
projects, such as in the Flora of Texas Project.

The Institute is based in Fort Worth, a dynamic city that serves as a model
for downtown development.  We are located in a marvelous, old, renovated
warehouse building right in downtown.  There are 12 full-time staff
members, one of whom is stationed in Papua New Guinea.

BRIT is a new and dynamic organization with great potential. The incumbent
would play a very significant role in the growth and scientific development
of the collections.  This is an outstanding opportunity for someone with
the right mix of skills and the ability to work effectively with people.
One of the most important skills must be in the area of grant proposal
development and writing.  The particulars for the position are given in the
job description.

The position is available 1 July 1998 and will remain open until filled,
assuming the present availability of funds.  I would suggest that anyone
interested, or who knows someone who might be, get in touch with me by
email, phone or fax (all particulars are given below) to initiate an
application which will ultimately require a c.v. and the names of three
referees.  The salary and benefits for the position are competitive.

        Position Description

TITLE:          Collections Manager


Seeks external funding for development and maintenance of collections, and
in support of database, equipment and facilities.  In consultation with
Director and Head of Research, creates long-term scientific goals for
development of collections in accordance with BRIT's research and education
needs.  Oversees the care and maintenance of collections and associated
records; supervises collections staff and oversees the activities
associated with collections use to provide access.  Formulates collections
policy in consultation with Director.


1.  Creates long term collections development plan, in consultation with
Director, Head of Publications/Library and Head of Research.
2.  Seeks external funding for support of Collections staff, equipment and
3.  Supervises and coordinates the training and work of collections staff
and volunteers and encourages their professional development to manage the
collections efficiently and effectively.
4.  Supervises and participates in processing of specimen transactions to
ensure that additions to and deletions from the collections are in
accordance with Institute policies and procedures, and federal and state
law.  Receives collections offered by potential donors.
5.  Supervises and participates in the identification, recording, and
organization of the collections according to Institutional and disciplinary
standards to enhance access and retrieval of materials for study and
6.  Plans and supervises the arrangement and maintenance of storage
systems, environmental controls, and security to ensure the physical
welfare of the collections and associated records.
7.  Develops and supervises the maintenance of  retrieval systems to
enhance access to and use of the collections, and associated information.
8.  Assists the staff, lay and scientific public in safe collections access
to facilitate and control use, and responds to inquiries to provide
accurate and appropriate information.
9.  Provides guided tours and explanations to public groups to demonstrate
the collections' care and use, and to inform the public of Institute's
10.  Interacts with Institute and extramural professionals to enhance
professional development and collections management skills.
11.  Participates in professional organizations and/or publishes papers
relating to collections management or particular scientific discipline to
disseminate information to advance the museum profession and to enhance
BRIT's professional image.
12.  Actively pursues development of exchange and specimen acquisition
programs in consultation with Director; Publications/Library and Research
13.  Whenever practicable, collaborates with Publications/Library by
serving as a reviewer of scientific articles.
14.  Formulates and monitors Collections budget.
15.  Interacts with Resident Research Associates to maximize BRIT/Associate
benefits to collection improvement.
16.  Sets priorities in specimen processing, curation and other collections
17.  Performs other duties as requested to accomplish the goals of the


Ph.D. degree or equivalent and 3-5 years of related experience.  Grant
proposal writing experience a pre-requisite.  Knowledge of database
systems, pc software (windows, wordprocessing, spreadsheets) and
internet/Worldwide Web use required.  Knowledge of use and maintenance of
collections-related equipment (e.g., microscopes, freezers, plant driers,
herbarium cases, etc.) and fumigation procedures.  Knowledge of health and
safety standards, CITES regulations, import/export procedures; Latin and
Spanish reading and writing comprehension a plus.



S. H. Sohmer              Botanical Research Institute of Texas
ssohmer at brit.org                        509 Pecan Street
Tel: 1-817-335-8158                     Fort Worth, Texas 76102-4060
Fax: 1-817-332-4112                                              USA

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