Work at The Vanderbilt

Current Openings

Director of Curatorial Affairs

The Director of Curatorial Affairs maintains and preserves the more than 40,000 artifacts and specimens in the original museum collection and interprets their historic and cultural contexts. Mr. Vanderbilt’s legacy includes his Estate, Mansion, marine and natural history specimens, ethnographic artifacts, fine and decorative arts, archives, and household furnishings.

Duties and Responsibilities

Manages Curatorial and Mansion staff, and the department’s policies, procedures, and budget.

Manages the Curatorial Department and all aspects of its operations and works in a collegial manner to build trust and respect in a team-centric department and throughout the Museum.

Develops civic, cultural, and philanthropic relationships to advance the Museum’s mission.

Represents the Museum by membership and active participation in professional museum organizations (regional and national) and, when necessary, at meetings and conferences given by those organizations.

Researches, authenticates, catalogs, and maintains original Museum artifacts and collections.

Prepares records of original artifacts, marine and natural history specimens, and ethnographic artifacts by updating and documenting the condition reports of all objects in the above-named collection subject areas – in accordance with American Alliance of Museums guidelines and accreditation requirements.

Acts as Collections Manager and Registrar for all artifacts and collections, and prepares documents for loan, acquisition, or deaccession of objects and specimens from such collections.

Plans, develops, implements (or assists with) production of exhibits, publications, educational programs, and events relating to original Museum artifacts, collections, or thematic disciplines that cover broad areas of marine and natural history.

Researches, authenticates, and interprets the life and times of the Vanderbilt family, including its historical importance, and its role in the study of the natural world and in global exploration.

Establishes historical contexts and thematic relationships for interpretive programs that relate to the former Vanderbilt Estate/Museum complex.

Prepares scripts for guided tours and interpretive programs relating to natural and marine sciences, and William Vanderbilt’s family history.

Assists with or prepares documentation and research relative to the Vanderbilt family, its Mansion and Estate, its original artifacts, and collections – and answers requests from the media, website, the public, Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum staff, and academic and scientific communities.

Prepares grant applications for departmental projects and exhibitions, administers awarded grants, submits required interim and final reports, and maintains proper documentation for Museum records.

Attends related meetings and functions and submits related articles of interest to the Museum newsletter.

Performs other museum duties as required.


Graduate degree required (Ph.D. a plus) in museum studies, art history, anthropology, history, biology or marine sciences, or related field.

At least five years of experience in increasingly responsible curatorial and museum and collections-management positions (publications a plus).

An awareness of, and sensitivity to, the prime importance of maintaining the historic integrity of the Museum site.

Extensive knowledge of museum curatorial principles, practices, and procedures.

Excellent knowledge of conservation techniques, materials, and equipment.

Digital literacy required. Ability to use technology in all aspects to perform successfully within each curatorial function.

Superior interpersonal skills, and ability to participate as an integral member of the Museum’s professional staff.

Ability to communicate effectively – orally and in writing.

Please send resume and cover letter via email to, subject line “Director of Curatorial Affairs”  

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