Company Name: 

Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals


26385 NW Groveland Drive
Hillsboro, OR 97124

Contact Name: 

Julian Gray


Job Description: 

Organization: Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals

Position Title: Curator

Job Classification: Full Time, Salary, Exempt

Reports To: Executive Director

Salary Range: $30,000-$40,000

Closing Date: October 8, 2018


The Curator will manage, maintain, and promote the Rice Museum’s collection of rocks, minerals, fossils, gems, and meteorites.  The Curator must have the technical and managerial skills and expertise required to maintain, display, and enhance the Museum's extensive collections and associated records. The position requires a dynamic person with a proven ability to translate a mineral collection into accessible and compelling exhibits and teaching tools or programs.  The Curator will formally report to the Museum Director and will also be responsible to the Museum Board of Directors. 

Essential Functions:

  • Organization, documentation, storage, security, and conservation of the collections of minerals, gems, rocks, meteorites, fossils, and related objects and records.
  • Processing and documentation of incoming and outgoing specimen transactions, including purchases, donations, exchanges, and loans.
  • Conservation of collection objects including performing or overseeing cleaning, stabilizing, and repairing specimens as required.
  • Numbering, cataloging, photographing and labeling specimens already in the collection as well as those added to the collection.
  • Active participation in specimen acquisition through purchase, donation, exchange, and field collecting.
  • Handling of collection-related and general inquiries from researchers and the public.
  • Development, planning, installation, and maintenance of permanent and temporary exhibits at the museum.
  • Promoting the scientific and educational value of the Museum by developing and implementing exhibition and outreach programs.
  • Selecting and displaying Museum objects for exhibit at regional gem and mineral shows, Friends of Mineralogy symposia, NW Federation shows, Denver and Tucson shows.
  • Cultivating relationships with regional mineral collectors for the mutual benefit of the museum and enthusiasts.
  • Active participation in professional organizations such the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals and Friends of Mineralogy.
  • Developing the Museum’s public programs and ensuring the integration of exhibition and education objectives; introducing new ideas, hosting traveling exhibitions and programs, and partnering with peer museums for new programming.
  • Writing grant applications for programs and projects.
  • Organizing and promoting public museum events including Mystery Mineral Day, Thunder-Egg-Stravaganza, and collaborative events with outside speakers.
  • Delivering educational presentations to local interest groups and professional symposia.
  • Overseeing K-12 school tour content, training host staff, and providing staff enrichment.
  • Maintaining and expanding our K-12 Portable Programs.
  • Building an open and responsive relationship with all Board members when discussing issues concerning the Museum’s collection and outreach programs.


  • Proficiency in basic personal computer applications such as word processing, multi-media presentations, Adobe Creative Suite, and database management (Filemaker Pro).
  • Basic knowledge of scientific mineralogical equipment including petrographic microscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, X-ray fluorescence analysis and SEM/EDX techniques.
  • Proficiency in verbal and written English language.
  • Physical ability to do basic bending, stooping, and climbing, with strength to lift up to 50 lbs.
  • Flexibility in work schedule, including working occasional weekends and travel out of town.
  • An ability to convey excitement about the value of earth sciences to scholars and novices alike.  They must be as comfortable with people as with minerals and be capable of introducing one to the other.  The curator should be accessible and amicable, with the ability to share information easily.
  • The curator must demonstrate the ability for energizing the community in support of the museum.  They should enjoy the public demands made on their position.

Supervisory Responsibilities:

The Museum Educator reports to this position. This position must recruit and supervise volunteers.

Work Environment:

General small office environment. The Museum is education-oriented and has several school tours each week with groups of students from preschool through college. Must be able to work in an occasional noisy setting.

Physical Demands:

Frequently will work seated at a computer.  Must walk, stand, bend, kneel, ascend and descend stairs, and be called upon to assist in moving objects up to 50 lbs.

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work:

The working hours for this position are typically from 9am-5pm Monday-Friday. Occasional weekend and evening hours will be required for outreach programs, mineral shows, and special events.


This position will require occasional travel to mineral shows regionally, nationally, and internationally. Expenses for travel will be reimbursed. Occasionally may have to drive personal or rental vehicles between shows. Occasionally will have to drive locally for education and supply purchase purposes.

Required Education & Experience:

  • Minimum of a Bachelors degree in geology, Masters or PhD preferred.
  • At least 2 years technical experience in mineral sciences involving education, curation and/or collection management with a detailed knowledge of mineral collection management.
  • Extensive systematic knowledge of minerals and working knowledge of gemology and fossils.
  • Experience handling “high-end” minerals.

Special Provisions:         

  • The curator is prohibited from having a second job without express permission of the Board, or a business of selling minerals.
  • All minerals, gems or books given to the curator are considered property of the museum unless approved by the Board.
  • A personally owned mineral collection cannot be expanded while in service of the museum, unless approved by the Board.

Equal Employment Opportunity:

The Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals is an Equal Employment Opportunity organization that hires without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, veteran or other protected status.