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Director, Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African and African American Art

Harvard University, Faculty of Arts & Sciences
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Feb 14, 2022

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Arts, Art, Art History, Administrative, Academic Affairs, Arts Administration, Executive, Executive Directors, Other Executive
Employment Type
Full Time
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Job Summary

The Hutchins Center for African & African American Research seeks a director for the Cooper Gallery of African & African American Art, the only art space at Harvard University entirely dedicated to exhibiting works by artists of African descent.
The director will be an engaging leader who will support the Hutchins Center’s mission to support research on the history and culture of people of African descent the world over and to provide a forum for collaboration and the ongoing exchange of ideas. The Cooper Gallery provides a unique platform for the study and celebration of the role of the visual arts across the African Diaspora and by which the visual arts are connected to other fields of inquiry and engagement.

The director of the Cooper Gallery manages its daily operations and reports to the executive director of the Hutchins Center. Chief responsibilities include leadership in the development and implementation of the overall exhibition program, stewardship of financial resources, facility management, oversight of the Hutchins Center’s extensive art collection, and supervision of one full-time staff member and other contingent and contracted staff.

Auto req ID


Job Code

361058 Administrative Manager


USA - MA - Cambridge

Business Title

Director, Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African and African American Art



Salary Grade


Time Status



00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Basic Qualifications
  • BA required.
  • At least five years of relevant professional experience in a university museum or gallery, or similar institution, including some experience in a supervisory capacity.
Additional Qualifications and Skills

Master’s preferred, ideally in related field.

A deep commitment to and knowledge of African and African American art, including but not limited to contemporary art.

Broad and deep connections in the art museum world.

A deep commitment to and understanding of diversity as a force for academic and artistic excellence and as a deeply held commitment at the heart of the institution’s mission.

Ability to work cooperatively and effectively with Gallery staff and Hutchins Center administrative leadership and events and finance staff.

Strong acumen in management of operations, including financial stewardship and the administration, development and oversight of personnel.

Ability to work collaboratively and independently, and to handle multiple priorities.

Experience with museum collections software.

Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.

Ability to attend evening and weekend events.

Ability to manage change a plus.

Demonstrated success in donor relations and other skills and experience related to fund-raising a plus.

Knowledge of collection development practices in art and architectural history, art, design, and curatorial studies a plus.

Knowledge of digital technologies, web design and social media; demonstrated ability to learn and use emerging technologies in innovative ways a plus.

Some travel may be required.

Additional Information

All formal offers will be made by FAS HR.


Hutchins Center for African and African American Research

Pre-Employment Screening

Criminal, Education, Identity


M-F 9AM to 5PM, with the possibility of adjustment going forward.

Job Function

General Administration, Museum

Position Description

Duties and Responsibilities:
  • Manages operations of the Gallery, including the supervision of one full-time staff, contingent and contracted staff (including security), and student interns.
  • Collaborates with external curators on exhibition scope, design, and implementation.
  • Provides direction for events and programs.
  • Serves as liaison to Harvard Art Museums and university programs and departments in the area of visual arts, art collections, and exhibitions. Contributes to the goals and initiatives of the University's art community and broader campus.
  • Builds and maintains advisory boards in exhibitions and collections.
  • Manages Hutchins Center’s art collection.
  • Prepares and operates within annual Hutchins Center budget.
  • Oversees promotion of the Gallery to increase audiences and participation. Oversees publications, website and social media. Fosters a welcoming atmosphere for visitors.
  • Actively engages the community, locally and regionally. Is the face of the Gallery and visible at internal and external events. Creates new partnerships and beneficial collaborations.
  • In conjunction with faculty and administrative leadership of the Hutchins Center, University development and grants departments, may assist with cultivation of donors and engage in efforts to initiate, write and submit grants for Gallery initiatives.

Faculty of Arts and Sciences

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Working Conditions

*Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement and exceptions may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage: .

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

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