Director and University Librarian

University of Chicago Chicago, IL

The University of Chicago, one of the nation’s preeminent institutions of higher education, seeks its next Director and University Librarian. Reporting to the Provost, the Director will lead one of the nation’s most prestigious research libraries.

The University of Chicago Library is a center of intense intellectual inquiry. It shares with the University an aspiration to be the most dynamic research and learning environment in the world, supporting research and teaching in the sciences, social sciences, humanities, law, business, and medicine. One of the world’s largest research libraries, it houses over 12 million volumes in print and electronic format in six locations, including the recently opened Mansueto Library. In building the new library on campus rather than a depository off-site, the University opted to combine innovative, rapid access to digitized and rarely used collections with continued browsable access for monographic materials. It was also an early leader in centralizing its libraries, thereby providing better and more integrated access to all types of resources. Chicago’s Library has become a leader in the transformation of research libraries, sustaining its commitment to collections in the context of its users’ increasingly mixed patterns of usage. The University is committed to the future of a strong library and is responsive to the varied and changing research requirements of its faculty and students.

Founded in 1892 by John D. Rockefeller, the University of Chicago is one of the world's leading universities, with an extraordinary history of world-renowned research and education across a broad spectrum of fields. More than 80 Nobel laureates are associated with the University of Chicago, including eight current faculty members. One former senior lecturer is currently President of the United States. The University of Chicago is known for its excellent faculty, an increasingly strong and diverse student body, and a distinctive urban campus with strong community connections. In 2013, US News and World Report ranked the University of Chicago 5th in its annual survey of the Best Colleges.

The University is home to over 2,200 faculty and academic personnel and students from 50 U.S. states and 72 countries. In the fall of 2013, the University enrolled 5,692 students in its undergraduate College and 9,502 students in its graduate and professional schools. There are also approximately 2,000 students enrolled in off-campus programs, including the Booth School of Business campuses in London and Singapore.

The Director will oversee a professional and support staff of 302 and will manage in a large and complex academic environment, engaging effectively with other university leaders and constituencies to advance the overall University mission. The Director oversees an annual operating budget of over $35M with over $18M in expenditures for acquisitions.

The University seeks a Director for the Library who will build on an impressive forward-thinking record of expansion, consolidation, and service. The new Director will be an experienced and effective advocate for the essential role of the Library. The successful candidate will bring to this role:

  • Substantial experience in research library leadership and a proven capacity to develop and sustain relationships with administrators, deans, faculty, staff, and students;
  • An understanding of the major challenges facing academic research libraries, in areas such as collection development, technology integration, space planning and utilization, and the need for effective staff and organizational development to support rapidly changing user needs and expectations;
  • A record of innovation, creativity, and invention, not delivered top-down, but achieved by working collaboratively with others;
  • Knowledge of emerging digital technologies and their potential within the domains of scholarship and scholarly communication;
  • Proven managerial ability in a complex organizational setting, including the effective management of fiscal, human, and physical resources;
  • The ability and eagerness to work in a highly collaborative setting with faculty, staff, and students;
  • A successful history of staff development and team building, including a demonstrated commitment to building and supporting a diverse staff;
  • Public presence and the ability to represent the University effectively for purposes of outreach, development, and inter-institutional cooperation;
  • The ability and willingness to engage with potential donors and to seek funds and resources for the Library, with demonstrated success in personally cultivating, stewarding and soliciting gifts preferred;
  • Academic credentials appropriate to the leadership of a library in a research-intensive environment.

Confidential inquiries, nominations, and resumes with cover letters should be sent in confidence via the links on this page.

Nancy Maull is leading this search with Beverly Brady.

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity / Disabled / Veterans Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, protected veteran status or status as an individual with disability.