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Senior Vice President, Public Engagement
Linda Hall Library in the Kansas City, Missouri
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Date Posted August 28, 2019
Philanthropy-Senior/Executive Management
Employment Type Full-time
Application Deadline Open until filled

The Linda Hall Library for Science, Engineering & Technology seeks nominees for or confidential expressions of interest in the new position of Senior Vice President for Public Engagement. Reporting to the President of the Linda Hall Library, the Senior Vice President for Public Engagement provides leadership, guidance, expertise, and encouragement for the departments of Communications, Development, and Public Programs.

The Linda Hall Library has established this Senior Vice President role at an exciting moment in its evolution.  The Board of Trustees has enthusiastically embraced a strategic plan that will transform the Library into a Center for Science and Society.  As a Center, the Library will open itself up to the Greater Metropolitan Kansas City Community as a public venue where issues pertaining to and/or arising from the intersection of science, engineering, and technology with contemporary life will be explored, investigated, examined, and discussed.  The Senior Vice President for Public Engagement will be a crucial member of the senior management team that will lead the Library through this evolution.


The Library

A member of the Independent Research Libraries Association (IRLA), Linda Hall’s collections include over half a million monograph volumes, more than 48,000 journal titles, conference proceedings, reference works, government publications, and technical reports, as well as 200,000 industrial standards and engineering society conference papers. The Library’s history of science collection, containing printed books from the fifteenth century to the present, is particularly strong in cosmology, geology, biology, and mathematics. More than 40,000 titles are currently represented, including a complete set of the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London and important volumes by Copernicus, Galileo, Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton, and Charles Darwin. The Library has also recently formed a strategic partnership with the Center for Research Libraries (CRL) to preserve and develop historical  research collections comprised of American and foreign scientific and technical publications, and to make the combined 50,000 journal  titles available  electronically  through  on-demand  digitization  and  traditional document delivery for the more than 200 CRL-member research libraries throughout the world.

The Linda Hall Library is on solid financial footing, with an endowment of over $200 million.  The facilities are in good repair, growing to their current size upon completion of an expansion in 2006. The buildings now comprise 220,000 square feet of library space and include over thirty-two miles of shelving. The addition also includes a cosmology "mini-theatre" where images and views of the cosmos from the Hubble Space Telescope and NASA science missions are delivered daily.

The Position

The Senior Vice President will have three direct reports, the Vice President for Communications, the Vice President for Development, and the Vice President for Public Programs.  The Senior Vice President will collaborate with the President and other senior staff in advancing and implementing the Library’s strategic priorities with the primary goal of strengthening the Linda Hall Library’s stature as a national and international destination for resources and learning in science, engineering, technology, their histories, and related and emerging areas. Among her or his responsibilities, the Senior Vice President will be asked to:


  • Act as a key member of the senior management team charged with transforming the Library into a Center for Science and Society;

  • Lead and coordinate development of a cohesive public engagement strategy that includes all fundraising, communications, and public programming strategy;

  • Increase key metrics of success for the Library, including annual fundraising and amount of participation in public programming;

  • Raise the profile of the Library within the broader Kansas City community;

  • Review and redesign workflows and work assignments with the goal of increasing efficiencies;

  • Prepare annual budget recommendations, monitor departmental budgets; consult with colleagues on budgetary matters as needed;

  • Prepare quarterly, annual, and statistical reports documenting departmental activities; conduct annual performance appraisals for direct reports;

  • Participate in discussions and decision-making as a member of the senior management team; and

  • Other duties as required.

Professional Experience/Qualifications

The Senior Vice President for Public Engagement will have:

  • A minimum of 15 years professional experience, with a preference for experience in a 501c(3) organization;

  • Depth of understanding of development/fundraising, communications and marketing, and public programming;

  • Experience working with senior management teams to execute upon a strategic plan;

  • Strong advocacy for the role of libraries and non-profit organizations in community enrichment;

  • Experience in interacting with partner organizations and other external constituencies;

  • An ability to recruit and development senior professionals in the fields of development/fundraising, communications and marketing, and public programming;

  • Exceptional interpersonal skills and superb communication skills;

  • Ethical integrity;

  • A bachelor’s degree in a relevant field, with a preference for a graduate degree in a relevant field.

  • A natural curiosity and/or interest in science and its influence on daily life


For a full position description, or to express confidential interest or to nominate a candidate, please contact:

Jonathan Fortescue, PhD, Managing Partner

 or Kyle Meingast, Principal

Park Square Executive Search



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