Employment Opportunities

Deputy Director

George Mason’s Gunston Hall is seeking a strategic, resourceful, and action-oriented leader to serve as Deputy Director and to manage facilities and operations at its 554-acre educational campus. The Deputy Director will work closely with the Executive Director and serve on Gunston Hall’s Leadership Team. As such, the Deputy Director is expected to actively participate in strategic planning, organizational advancement, coordinated work with the Board of Regents of Gunston Hall and the Commonwealth of Virginia, and collaborative work with Gunston Hall’s dedicated team of staff and volunteers.

The Deputy Director is further responsible for the preservation and stewardship of the National Historic Landmark home of George Mason; leading and managing all capital and maintenance projects; creating a safe and secure physical environment; maintaining the efficient functionality of all facility and operational systems; and ensuring buildings and grounds are impeccably maintained. In performing these duties, the Deputy Director should demonstrate a commitment to, and knowledge of, historic preservation, environmental conservation, “green” strategies, and energy efficiency.

To be successful in this position, the Deputy Director must value authenticity, inclusiveness, stewardship, and civic engagement.  The Deputy Director should bring a positive attitude to their work and promote good will and wellness within the organization.  Finally, the Deputy Director should be an enthusiastic and willing learner, one who is committed to their own development and growth, and one who is passionate about facilitating the success of their colleagues.

Compensation will be based on qualifications. Performance will be evaluated based on the achievement of team and individual goals specific to the requirements of the position.

Additional benefits of employment at Gunston Hall include:

  • Opportunities to experience 554 acres along the Potomac River.
  • An organizational commitment to wellness and personal fulfillment.
  • Access to comprehensive professional development programs.
  • The ability to create flexible work experiences.
  • The opportunity to collaborate with a creative team of individuals committed to the organization, our mission, and to each other’s success.

Qualifications:

  • A Bachelors’ Degree in business, facilities management, museum studies, or a comparable degree and/or combination of work experience is preferred.
  • Progressive experience in leadership including strategic thinking, budget planning, project management, team building, and administration is preferred.
  • Experience creating, supporting, and sustaining an environment in which a unified team works for organizational excellence is preferred.
  • A minimum of 5 years progressive experience in physical plant operations and facility management is preferred.
  • Experience with historic sites, museums, cultural organizations, and/or parks is preferred.
  • Expertise in the operation of a complex and diverse organization is preferred.
  • Ability to manage multiple, concurrent projects and initiatives is preferred.
  • Experience identifying and implementing solutions when faced with challenges or obstacles is preferred.
  • Excellent people and communications skills are preferred.
  • Experience providing and supporting exemplary guest service is preferred.
  • A commitment to entrepreneurial and innovative initiatives is preferred.
  • Exceptional organizational skills are preferred.
  • Physical requirements include prolonged sitting and standing; must be able to balance, bend, climb, crouch, reach, and twist; must have dexterity to operate equipment; must be able to lift 30 pounds; and must exhibit mobility necessary to monitor and maintain sites and systems throughout Gunston Hall’s extensive campus.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Serve as the acting executive director during the Executive Director’s absence.
  • Lead and support the overall advancement of the organization including mission fulfillment, strategic plan implementation, and team development.
  • Work closely with and support all organizational departments.
  • Identify and implement strategic goals related to operations and facilities including budget planning and resource allocation.
  • Participate in fundraising and resource acquisition efforts including the preparation of funding requests to the Commonwealth of Virginia.
  • Lead, plan, and manage all capital and maintenance projects including coordinated work with the Board of Regents of Gunston Hall, the Commonwealth of Virginia, architects and engineers, contractors, staff and volunteers, guests, and the local community.
  • Monitor and maintain Gunston Hall’s physical plant including buildings and grounds.
  • Develop and implement time specific plans for building and grounds maintenance including preservation plans for all historic structures that comply with the Secretary of the Interior’s standards and professional best practice.
  • Plan and coordinate all building and system inspections and certifications.
  • Conduct regular inspections of the buildings and grounds to determine maintenance needs and make recommendations for improvements and repairs.
  • Serve as the information technology manager and ensure associated systems are functioning at maximum efficiency including the recommendation and planning of system enhancements and updates. This responsibility includes serving as the organizational liaison to the Virginia Information Technology Agency.
  • Work closely with various Commonwealth of Virginia agencies to complete and provide required facility, grounds, and operational reports, and maintain accurate files.
  • Create and disseminate information about operations and facilities, and associated projects and initiatives, to staff and volunteers to ensure a continuity of operations.
  • Help ensure the security and safety of people and facilities including serving as a first responder in the event of an emergency, the custodian of keys and locks, and the primary liaison with all security and fire system technicians.
  • Monitor, implement, and update Gunston Hall’s Emergency Response Plan and serve as the organization’s Emergency Operations Coordinator.
  • Build strong relationships with Gunston Hall’s broad constituencies including but not limited to the Board of Regents of Gunston Hall, the Commonwealth of Virginia, members, donors, peer institutions, service providers, and vendors.
  • Maintain knowledge of professional best practices in historic preservation, cultural resource management, natural resource stewardship, facility management, and museum operations.
  • Work collaboratively with the Gunston Hall team to facilitate a positive work environment and guest experience.
  • Actively pursue professional development opportunities.
  • Be on-call in the event of emergencies.
  • Be available for early morning, evening, and weekend work in support of project management, site stewardship, and events.

About George Mason’s Gunston Hall:

The mission of Gunston Hall is to stimulate the exploration and understanding of principles expressed by George Mason in the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights.  Accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and a National Historic Landmark, the site includes Gunston Hall, reconstructed outbuildings, a visitor center and museum, event facility, museum shop, and 554 acres of diverse landscape situated along the Potomac River in Fairfax County, Virginia.  For more information, please visit www.gunstonhall.org.

Application Process:

To apply please send a cover letter and resume to Scott Stroh, Executive Director, at sstroh@gunstonhall.org no later than December 31st, 2022.

Gunston Hall is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity, equity, belonging, and inclusion.  Qualified individuals who bring diverse perspectives and a wide range of experiences to the workplace are encouraged to apply.

Collections Management Technician

Are you a detail-oriented, energetic emerging museum professional interested in collections work? Are you interested in building your collections care skills in a part-time position?  

As a Collections Management Technician you use object handling skills to help preserve and make accessible both Gunston Hall collections and objects on loan to Gunston Hall.  You will report to the Curator.  To be successful, you will work well with others, be flexible, and be solutions-oriented.

As the Collections Management Technician you will 

  • Monitor temperature, humidity, pests, and light levels
  • Assist with efforts to prevent theft of or damage to collections items, including historic buildings
  • Assist with the transfer of objects from one location to another
  • Conduct preservation-level cleaning
  • Organize and monitor collections management supplies and equipment 
  • Contribute to exhibition installation and de-installation
  • Conduct regular inventories of collections items
  • Enter information into the collections management database.

Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated interest in museums. 
  • At least one year of higher education, including college-level classes in history, American studies, material culture or a related field. An Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree is preferred, but is not required. You may substitute professional or volunteer experience for this educational requirement. 
  • Awareness of professional standards and practices relating to museum collections management.
  • Ability to communicate and produce correspondence, spreadsheets, and reports using Microsoft Office and Google Workspace. 
  • Experience using databases to retrieve information or entering information into a database.  
  • Ability to climb stairs and ladders to perform preventative conservation on interiors and exteriors of a one and a half story historic building.  Ability to balance, and reach overhead to clean and install exhibition material. Ability to stoop, kneel, and crouch, in order to clean and move artifacts and architectural elements low to the floor.
  • Physical agility and strength required to lift and move artifacts and exhibit material up to 50 pounds.
  • Ability to tolerate indoor and outdoor working conditions while moving between exhibition spaces, a historic mansion, and several historic outbuildings. 

The job schedule is flexible.  It consists of 8-12 hours a week for an hourly wage of $11.50.  The position does not have health insurance or paid leave.   

The mission of Gunston Hall is to utilize fully its physical and scholarly resources to stimulate continuing public exploration of democratic ideals as first presented by George Mason in the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights.  We are a National Historic Landmark located on scenic Mason Neck in Fairfax County, Virginia.  The site includes the Gunston Hall mansion, reconstructed outbuildings, a visitor center, and 550 acres of diverse landscape situated along the Potomac River in Fairfax County, Virginia. Once a site of slavery, Gunston Hall is now a museum dedicated to telling the stories of all the people who lived on the 18th-century plantation, including enslaved women, men, and children, indentured workers, and George Mason, one of the leaders of the Revolution and new nation.  Gunston Hall uses stories of the past to help visitors better understand the ideas and contradictions that formed our nation.For more information, please visit www.gunstonhall.org.

To apply please send a cover letter and resume to Rebecca Martin, Director of Education and Guest Experiences at rebecca.martin@gunstonhall.org. 

Gunston Hall is an equal opportunity employer.

Educator

As an educator at Gunston Hall, you will create meaningful visitor experiences through personalized tours and family-focused public programs.  You will divide your time between the visitor center and the 18th-century historic house.  

Educators are part of a highly collaborative, energetic staff dedicated to the power of place, historical objects, and storytelling for visitors of all ages.  Once a site of slavery, Gunston Hall is now a museum dedicated to telling the stories of all the people who lived on the 18th-century plantation, including enslaved women, men, and children, indentured workers, and George Mason, one of the leaders of the Revolution and new nation.  Educators invite visitors to explore the past to better understand the ideas and contradictions that formed our nation.  

Educators:

  • foster a welcoming environment; 
  • use their creativity to lead distinctive tours that are accurate and engaging for visitors of all ages; 
  • facilitate informal learning experiences, including during public programs and special events;
  • assist with the development of and preparation for public programs and special events;
  • participate in a variety of activities that support educational initiatives, including conducting historical research, writing social media posts, creating pre- and post-visit materials for teachers;  
  • promote and relay accurate information about planned programs and events; 
  • provide support for volunteer-run school programs;
  • take a positive and problem-solving approach to the daily challenges that arise in a visitor-centered organization;
  • take the lead on opening museum buildings, and provide access for part-time staff members, on weekends and holidays;
  • serve as a point of contact between staff on-site and supervisors if no supervisors are present;
  • monitor the museum exhibitions in the visitor center, period room installations in the mansion, and reproduction outbuildings; 
  • interact with visitors throughout their time on the property; 
  • answer telephones; 
  • schedule tours and special events; 
  • keep accurate records, including admissions records; 
  • reconcile cash and charge receipts; 
  • support other projects related to Gunston Hall’s educational mission. 

An ideal candidate will be interested in history, solution-oriented, detail-oriented, able to adapt to changing circumstances, and committed to serving as an effective ambassador for Gunston Hall and its content, whether the candidate is working with teachers, students, program attendees, museum visitors, or other members of the general public.  The candidate will be dedicated to ongoing learning.  Furthermore, an ideal candidate will excel at thinking creatively about how to convey historical material in ways that reach diverse audiences. 

This position reports to the Education Manager. It requires:

  • excellent communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with people of different backgrounds and ages;
  • excellent customer service skills; 
  • commitment to telling stories from multiple perspectives and to talking about difficult subjects;
  • responsibility and trustworthiness; 
  • knowledge of basic office procedures; 
  • ability to read and write the English language and to understand, follow, and give oral instructions; 
  • knowledge of computers, telephone systems, audio-visual equipment, and cash registers;
  • ability to reconcile cash and credit card receipts; 
  • ability to maintain an electronic calendar in order to schedule events; 
  • exhibition of professional manner and dress at all times; 
  • ability to multi-task; 
  • ability to work both outside and inside; 
  • ability to lift up to 25 pounds. 

This position includes regular weekend days and some holidays.  It is full-time and non-exempt, paying an hourly rate of $15-17, depending on qualifications.  Benefits include paid annual and sick leave, health insurance, life insurance, a retirement plan, and a discount in the museum shop.  Additional benefits of employment at Gunston Hall include opportunities to enjoy 554 acres of outdoor recreational and environmental amenities along the Potomac River, an organizational commitment to wellness and personal fulfillment, access to comprehensive professional development programs, and the opportunity to collaborate with a creative, innovative, and fun team of individuals who are all enthusiastically committed to the organization, our mission, and to each other’s success.

To apply please send a letter of interest and resume to Rebecca Martin, Director of Education and Guest Experiences, at rebecca.martin@gunstonhall.org.  Applications should be submitted by July 22, 2022.

Gunston Hall is an equal opportunity employer. 

Horticulturist

As Gunston Hall’s horticulturist, you will have the rare opportunity to help recreate an 18th-century garden and to share it with the public.  Your efforts developing, maintaining, and teaching with the one-acre space will contribute to outstanding experiences for visitors to this historic site.

You will work with a passionate team of professionals, collaborating with educators, the curator, the archaeologist, and volunteers.

Responsibilities

Gardening: The horticulturist 

  • Takes the lead role in all garden and historic landscape work at Gunston Hall.
  • Will complete the implementation of the riverside garden planting plan.
  • Maintains the riverside garden, including planting, pruning, replacing, harvesting, seed collecting related to a variety of flowers, fruits, vegetables, herbs, trees, and shrubs. 
  • Identifies, controlling, and treating weeds, diseases, and pests.

Working with others: The horticulturist

  • Maintains and expands the volunteer corps; directly supervising volunteer and contractor gardeners, while fostering a climate of teamwork.
  • Establishes a safe workplace for all those helping in the gardens.
  • Fulfills requests for produce for museum programs.
  • Cultivates and maintains professional relationships with other historic gardens and greenhouse facilities to exchange ideas and information.
  • Prepares the annual horticulture budget and work plan.

Supporting the mission: The horticulturist 

  • Conducts research on Gunston Hall’s gardens, plants, and landscapes.
  • Provides tours of the historic gardens and historic landscapes.
  • Interacts with visitors to help create a welcoming and learning environment..
  • Serves as the authority on Gunston Hall’s horticultural efforts, representing these initiatives and work to visitors, donors, the media, and the general public.

Qualifications

  • B.S. degree in agricultural sciences, horticulture, or a closely related field.
  • Two to three years of progressive experience at a historic site, park, or comparable facility.
  • Understanding of the principles, theories, and best practices of horticulture and landscape management.
  • Commitment to and success in engaging and educating the public.
  • Ability to establish and maintain strong lines of communication.
  • Ability to safely operate a variety of hand tools and gas-powered equipment, including shears, blowers, chain saws, tractors, string trimmers, loaders, and trucks.
  • Ability to obtain a Virginia pesticide applicator’s license.
  • Must be available to work weekends, holidays and evenings as needed.
  • Ability to lift 30 lbs.
  • Ability to work outdoors for long periods in various weather conditions.

This position is full-time, salaried, and classified as exempt. The salary range is $50-60,000.  Benefits include paid annual and sick leave, health insurance, life insurance, a retirement plan, and a discount in the museum shop.  Additional benefits of employment at Gunston Hall include opportunities to enjoy 554 acres of outdoor recreational and environmental amenities along the Potomac River, an organizational commitment to wellness and personal fulfillment, access to comprehensive professional development programs, and the opportunity to collaborate with a creative, innovative, and fun team of individuals who are all enthusiastically committed to the organization, our mission, and to each other’s success.  Performance will be evaluated based on the achievement of collaboratively determined team and personal goals specific to the requirements of the position.  The horticulturist works under the direct supervision of the director of education and guest experiences.

The mission of Gunston Hall is to stimulate the exploration and understanding of the principles expressed by George Mason in the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights.  Accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and a National Historic Landmark, Gunston Hall was built from 1755-1759.  The almost 6000-acre plantation was the home of George and Ann Mason, their children, and hundreds of enslaved people, indentured servants, wage workers, and tenant farmers.  Today, the site strives to tell the stories of these diverse people and how their stories contribute to our greater American narrative.  The physical plant includes the house called Gunston Hall; five reconstructed outbuildings; a visitor center with a museum, event facility, and museum shop; an on-going restoration of the 18th-century garden; and 550 acres of diverse landscape situated along the Potomac River in Fairfax County, Virginia.  For more information, please visit www.gunstonhall.org.

To apply please send a cover letter and resume to Rebecca Martin, director of education and guest experiences, at rebecca.martin@gunstonhall.org.  Gunston Hall is an equal opportunity employer.

Garden Apprentice

Gunston Hall is accepting applications for a seasonal garden apprentice to spend up to 10 weeks assisting with the restoration of the riverside garden.  Gunston Hall is a small museum with a highly collaborative, energetic staff dedicated to the power of place, historical objects, and storytelling to create meaningful experiences for visitors of all ages.  Once a site of slavery, Gunston Hall is now a museum dedicated to telling the stories of all the people who lived on the 18th-century plantation, including enslaved women, men, and children, indentured workers, and George Mason, one of the leaders of the Revolution and new nation. In this unparalleled project, staff are using archaeological and documentary evidence to recreate the 18th-century garden space that will become a key location for helping visitors better understand the past.   

The apprentice will work under the direction of the Horticulturist.  The apprentice’s main projects will relate to the riverside garden restoration.  The apprentice will also assist with the maintenance of the courtyard garden and other cultivated areas.  The apprentice will build horticulture skills in areas such as weeding, watering, pruning, deadheading, mulching, pest management, and plant identification and will learn other aspects of maintaining a garden as an educational space.  The apprentice will also gain experience in working with volunteers and talking with visitors.  The garden apprentice will receive a weekly stipend of $500 for a full-time schedule.  The stipend will be prorated for a part time schedule.  For either a full or part time schedule, the stipend will be paid on a semi-monthly basis.

Responsibilities:

  • Plant and maintain decorative flower borders and kitchen garden spaces.
  • Monitor plants for issues and report concerns to the Horticulturist.
  • Perform general horticulture tasks such as weeding, fertilizing, disease and pest control, mulching, and deadheading.
  • Maintain and repair tools and equipment. Report equipment issues to the Horticulturist. 
  • Work with volunteers.
  • Greet, interact with, and provide information to visitors.
  • Maintain the security and integrity of the grounds.
  • Follow safety policies and procedures. Keep everyone’s safety and experience at the forefront.

Qualifications:
The ideal candidate will have completed some training in horticulture, landscape architecture, botany, environmental science, or a related field.

How to Apply:
Please send a cover letter and resume to Rebecca Martin, director of education and guest experiences, at rebecca.martin@gunstonhall.org.  The position will remain open until filled.  Gunston Hall is an equal opportunity employer.

Request for Proposals: Contract Archaeologist

Gunston Hall seeks a contract archaeologist to work with its on-going archaeology program. The contractor will work with Gunston Hall staff on long-term and short-term projects.

The museum’s archaeology program began more than 40 years ago and has had varying levels of full-time staffing.  Currently, the program includes one full-time staff archaeologist and more than a dozen volunteers.

Scope of Work

The contractor will assist Gunston Hall as outlined below:

  • Survey Best Practices

Work with the staff archaeologist to develop the annual work plan and specific scope of work for individual survey projects to ensure consistency with DHR’s Guidelines for Conducting Historic Resources Survey in Virginia.  Help determine which technologies or techniques are most appropriate for each project or project phase.  Be available to answer questions from the staff archaeologist, director of education and guest experiences, and executive director related to archaeological projects at Gunston Hall

  • Collections Care Best Practices

Work with the staff archaeologist to ensure that Gunston Hall is engaged in best practices for handling, processing, and storing archaeological materials

  • Reviewing Reports

Review and contribute to reports required by the state and requested by the executive director or director of education and guest experiences

Deliverables

  • A minimum of two visits each month to Gunston Hall to observe and consult on surveying–including excavating–and processing.  At least four visits a year must be on a weekday.

  • At least one report each quarter on work observed and any recommendations.  The report may be sent as an email and should go to the staff archaeologist and the director of education and guest experiences.

Requirements

This contract begins July 1, 2022 and extends through June 30, 2023.  It may be renewed if both parties are in agreement.  The contractor may use shared work space at Gunston Hall.  A computer will be available intermittently.

Required qualifications include:

  • Must meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation –  Professional Qualifications Standards for Archaeology (48 FR 44739)

  • Experience working with 18th-century archaeology

  • Demonstrated knowledge of landscape archaeology

  • Demonstrated knowledge of care and handling of archaeological artifacts

  • Demonstrated ability to use collections databases

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills

Preferred qualifications include:

  • Knowledge of late colonial and early national history

  • Knowledge of 18th-century material culture

  • Knowledge of 18th-century Chesapeake region slavery

  • Experience working with volunteers

Reporting and Timeframe

The contractor will report to the director of education and guest experiences and will work with the staff archaeologist and volunteers.  Reports will be due September 30, 2022, December 31, 2023, and March 31, 2023.  The last report of the year must be submitted no later than June 15, 2023.  Reports must include an account of the work performed in the previous period, recommendations for the program, and a time log of hours worked on-site and off-site.

Proposal Preparation Instruction

Proposals should be submitted in their entirety by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, July 6, to Rebecca Martin, Director of Education and Guest Experiences at rebecca.martin@gunstonhall.org.

Proposals should include

  • Full name, Street Address, Telephone Number, Email Address

  • Plan of Accomplishment

The proposal should include a two-five paragraph description of the plan for completing all work.  This narrative explanation should include the potential contractor’s approach to the tasks and deliverables and how the potential contractor will proceed with the project to ensure that it is completed on time.

  • Schedule

A schedule of deadlines for deliverables

  • Capability to Perform

Up to five paragraphs describing the potential contractor’s ability to perform the work required, including at least one example of similar work conducted for another museum that demonstrates specialized expertise and technical competence

  • Resume of potential contractor or group of people planning to fulfill the contract together

  • Cost Proposal

Cost proposals should include an hourly rate and an estimate of the total number of hours required to complete the project, broken down by deliverable.  The cost proposal should be all-inclusive.

Proposal Evaluation

Proposals will be evaluated based on their strength in the following areas:

  • Experience working as an archaeologist at 18th-century sites

  • Ability to monitor the work of others at an archaeological site

  • Quality and clarity of the plan of accomplishment

  • Appropriateness of the cost proposal