National Museum of Nuclear Science & History Director

Company Name: 

Sandia National Laboratories


PO Box 5800
MS: 1515
Albuquerque, NM 87185

Contact Name: 

Taylor Dye


Job Description: 



Do you enjoy teaching people of all ages about science and explaining nuclear energy and history in a balanced way? Do you like directing a team of museum professionals with a wide variety of skills, leading them to explore innovative ways to teach scientific and historical concepts to visitors from around the nation? If so, Sandia National Laboratories, the nation’s premier science and engineering lab for national security, seeks an experienced and transformational museum director to lead the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, a congressionally established, American Alliance of Museums-accredited, Smithsonian Affiliation Program member museum.

This museum is chartered by Congress as “America’s museum resource for nuclear history and science.” In existence for 53 years, the museum presents exhibits and programs to people of all ages with an emphasis on history and science education. The museum’s foundation opened the privately operated and owned state-of-art museum facility in 2009.

The successful candidate will provide the leadership, vision, critical thinking, and tactical planning to lead the museum, which is supervised by Sandia National Laboratories and operated by a nonprofit organization, the Board of Trustees of the National Atomic Museum Foundation, a 30-year-old 501c3 organization. You will direct and supervise all museum operations, coordinate with the museum foundation, lead exhibition development and management, guide new acquisitions and museum expansion, and supervise educational outreach programs, including a long-standing, vibrant summer camp. You will also support Sandia National Laboratories in hosting distinguished visitors and represent the museum and Sandia in formal and informal presentations and briefings, tours, interviews, and speeches, and implement institutional standards, policies, and procedures to ensure visitor and employee safety and security.

On any given day, one may be called upon to:

  • Lead the team’s vision for exploring and explaining nuclear science and history in a balanced way by suggesting possible exhibits, events, and public programs
  • Share one's experience with collections management, property management, large object preservation, and volunteer supported service relationships with the 22-person museum staff
  • Drive long-range planning, program innovation, and institutional growth and development, including serving to lead future capital construction development efforts in current strategic plans
  • Be responsible for implementation of all operational programs, create and present annual budget, administrate long-range planning, public program development, fundraising, communications, public information, and exhibitions including serving as chairperson of the international steering committee for Nuclear Science Week
  • Maintain collaborative working relationships and report the team’s successes and challenges to the senior manager at Sandia National Laboratories and the Board of Trustees of the National Atomic Museum Foundation
  • Act as the designated representative for Sandia contract services, all government property administration actions, public and staff safety, and radiation and classification protocols
  • Fundraise as needed with the board of trustees and the development department to help meet financial goals, and interact with donors to fund new exhibits and capital efforts
  • Act as the primary interface for community relationships, showing ease with media interactions, public speaking, presentations, and customer service
  • Manage goal setting and performance, and professional development with museum staff


  • A Bachelor’s degree in education, history, museum studies, public administration, science, history of science, or a closely related field; or equivalent experience and/or achievements that demonstrate the knowledge, skills and ability to perform the duties of the job
  • 8 years of senior nonprofit management and museum leadership experience
  • Proven and demonstrable fund-raising experience and deployable technical capabilities in gift cultivation
  • The ability to acquire and maintain a DOE L-level security clearance


  • An advanced degree (Master's or PhD) in fine arts, museum administration, museum studies, museum science, museum education, science, history of science, or a closely related field
  • Demonstrated curatorial experience and museum operations administration experience
  • A highly developed level of board of trustee interface and guidance experience
  • Experience developing and maintaining museum exhibits and public information and handling and preserving historical materials
  • A solid track record in organizational management, including human and financial resources, business development, and operations
  • Proven hands-on skills and creativity as a nonprofit executive
  • The ability to lead the identification of funding sources, such as major gifts, grants, and planned giving, organize fundraising events, and cultivate and retain donors and partnerships
  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including the ability to present on technical topics to diverse audiences
  • The ability to communicate with transparency to keep Sandia Labs and the Board of Trustees informed of significant events
  • A demonstrated ability in multi-tasking and being well-organized; obtain results in a fast-paced museum environment with multiple projects
  • Experience with digital collection management and administration
  • Strong interpersonal skills; act as the primary interface for community relationships
  • An ease and comfort with media interactions, public speaking, presentations, and customer service
  • Comfortable working within a large bureaucracy and federal government experience
  • The demonstrated ability to drive long-range planning, program innovation, and institutional growth and development
  • A proven track record in leading teams to implement business and operational strategies, to plan content for new exhibits, and to envision and carry out expanded museum facilities
  • Comfortable with motivation of team interactions, work planning, and strategy and topics involved in military history, nuclear energy, and other technical fields
  • Knowledge of nuclear science and history or national security issues
  • A commitment to inclusion and diversity among museum patrons, volunteers, and staff
  • The ability to train and lead teams to go beyond compliance with regulations and requirements, and to be proactive with environmental, safety, security, and health criteria in relation to the museum facilities, staff, and visitors
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office and Rasier’s Edge; a familiarity with Past Perfect, Word Press, and QuickBooks
  • Knowledge and experience with the use of varying metrics to analyze and inform strategy
  • Experience working with or within U.S. government agencies or federal contractors
  • The ability to model behaviors that reflect Sandia values, including diversity and inclusion


The Sandia National Laboratories Communications Center is responsible for all public and Labswide communications functions for a $4 billion national security lab with about 15,000 employees. This management position is a contributor to a diverse and engaged laboratories communications management team. This manager serves primarily as an independent executive for a separate, vibrant, not-for profit organization.