Florida softshell turtle, Apalone ferox, photo by J.D. Willson

Curator of Ichthyology

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Los Angeles, California
Closing Date
1 October 2018

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHMLA) seeks a Curator to lead its research on fish, to oversee the growth and care of its extensive ichthyological collection, and to provide content for a variety of public programs. The successful candidate will conduct collection-based research in evolutionary biology and/or ecology broadly defined, to include systematics, biogeography, global change, and/or biodiversity science. NHMLA is seeking applicants who have demonstrated experience and commitment working with a diverse community. This is a full-time position with a salary and title commensurate with experience. The starting date is July 1st, 2019.

NHMLA’s fish collection is one of ten internationally recognized ichthyological collections in the United States. Completely compactorized, the collection contains approximately 177,000 lots encompassing some 3 million specimens, including representatives of most fish families. All catalogue records are digitized and georeferenced. The geographic emphasis of the collection is the Pacific Rim, with particular strengths in fishes from the Eastern Pacific, Galapagos, Hawaiian, and Philippine islands, the Antarctic, and the freshwaters of North, Central, and South America. The Ichthyology Department also holds special collections of fish eggs and larvae, otoliths, frozen tissues, skeletons, cleared and stained specimens, and radiographs; and the Vertebrate Paleontology Department houses extensive collections of Mesozoic and Cenozoic fishes.


The successful candidate will have a record of outstanding research, excellent communication skills, and a demonstrated ability to engage the public and stakeholders. A Ph.D. and a strong track record of peer-reviewed publications that focus on evolutionary biology and/or ecology are required. He/she will be expected to build an active and publicly appealing research program, to oversee all NHMLA’s programs on extant fishes, and to supervise the staff and volunteers of the Ichthyology Department. Additionally, the successful candidate is expected to develop working relationships with local universities, mentor students and postdoctoral fellows, strengthen NHMLA’s presence in key professional and governmental networks, and maintain research through competitive grants and/or other funding from external sources.

The successful candidate will be expected to participate actively in a broad range of museum activities, including exhibits, education, community science programs, training of educators and volunteers, public communications and media interactions, and fundraising activities. A vision and capability to build a research program that can be integrated within the NHMLA’s ongoing efforts to understand local biodiversity, and to shape the collections and research in ways that activate both its scientific and public appeal, is paramount.

To Apply:

Applicants should send a cover letter, vision statement, curriculum vitae, and the full contact information of at least three professional references as a single PDF document to thayden [at] nhm.org, Ichthyology Department Curatorial Search, Research & Collections, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007, USA.

Application deadline is October 1st, 2018.

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Please, No Phone Calls, No Fax.

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