Archivist, Sisters of Loretto Heritage Center

Full-time Archivist position, offering a competitive salary in the range of $39,000-$45,000,

Plus full health benefits, generous holiday and vacation schedule

Starting date: late Winter, 2019

Sisters of Loretto Heritage Center, rural Marion County, 40049 Kentucky

The Loretto Heritage Center at the Motherhouse of the Sisters of Loretto, in the heart of Kentucky’s earliest Catholic settlement (1785-1793), seeks a professionally trained archivist with well-honed skills across the full spectrum of archival functions.   Reporting to the Heritage Center Director, the successful candidate will have opportunity and encouragement to rapidly transition to full responsibility for the Heritage Center by successfully meeting a wide range of archival challenges.

The Loretto Heritage Center—consisting of both archives and museum–preserves and exhibits the documentary legacy of the Sisters of Loretto, a pioneering community of American Catholic sisters unique among religious traditions in the United States.  The Loretto Heritage Center’s standing among institutions of state and regional culture will give the Archivist of the Loretto Heritage Center ample opportunity to shape a long-term professional presence in the region.

The Loretto archival and artifact collections date from 1812, when three frontier women established a school and then a religious community among the first generation of Maryland settlers in Kentucky.  Loretto continues as a vibrant living community, actively adding to and using its archival holdings in collaboration with the Heritage Center staff.  The Archivist has major responsibility for managing the institutional archives, personal papers, and photograph collections which span Loretto’s 200-year history of education and social justice advocacy.   The collection and processing of personal papers of living members and active work groups forms a significant portion of the Archivist’s responsibility.

The Archivist’s duties span the full spectrum of archival practice:  acquiring and accessioning; processing, including composing comprehensive descriptions into a digital catalogue; preservation of documents and development of disaster plans; reference support for the Loretto Community and public researchers; writing and sharing the Loretto legacy through the Heritage Center blog (LOREtto) and other Loretto media; and collaborating on other outreach activities.  The archivist will have ample opportunity to explore and create digital solutions for capturing and preserving born-digital communications.

In 2012 the Loretto Heritage Center moved into a newly designed space, including new archival storage and an award-winning museum.  The Archivist will share duties as docent for the museum and will collaborate with the Museum Curator on the use of archival holdings in developing new exhibits and museum programming for the region.  The work week is 40 hours; once a month eight of these hours are weekend museum duty.

The Loretto Heritage Center periodically collaborates with regional public history and archival institutions.  The Archivist is encouraged and expected to develop a strong network of professional relationships and actively participate in professional archival societies.

Basic education and experience requirements: 

  • Masters degree or equivalent in Archival Studies, or a degree in Public History or Library Science with a concentration in Archival Studies;
  • A minimum of two years of full time, professionally supervised internship, and/or two years’ employment in archival practice.

Also required:

  • Supervised experience in all aspects of archival work: acquisitions and accessioning; processing and describing; reference; preservation;
  • Understanding of events and issues of United States history of the 19th and 20th centuries sufficient to contribute historical perspective and intellectual leadership in areas of women’s history, history of U.S. education, social activism, and American Catholicism;
  • A strong sense of responsibility, confidentiality, and collegiality;
  • Flexibility and openness to interactions with the resident community;
  • Ability to interact comfortably with individuals of all ages and from all kinds of backgrounds;
  • Ability to receive supervision, work collaboratively with others and self-confidence to give direction and support to colleagues, interns, and volunteers working with the collections;
  • Excellent oral and written communication, keen analytical skills, confident public speaking;
  • Full command of Microsoft Office applications, and the knowledge or ability to rapidly acquire functional skill in an Apple computing environment. Also highly desirable is experience with Filemaker Pro, image editing applications, and publishing applications;
  • Current knowledge and ability to move forward with digitization projects, born-digital records management, digital preservation and web-based catalogue sharing;
  • Ability to regularly lift 40 lb. boxes; comfortable standing on ladders;
  • A current Kentucky driver’s license or ability to attain one within 30 days of employment; occasional travel is required.

The Archivist will report to the Heritage Center Director and through her to the elected leaders of the Loretto Community.

Applications are now being considered and will continue until a suitable candidate is found.  For consideration and for further position details, please send a cover letter addressing experience and interest, detailed resume and contact information for three references to Sister Eleanor Craig, ecraig@lorettocommunity.org