Job Opportunity: Kohler Foundation - Director of Preservation

Posted on 04/25/2019


APPLY NOW - Visit the Kohler Co. careers page to apply.

Under the direction of the Executive Director, the Director of Preservation leads and grows Kohler Foundation’s active preservation program. This includes all phases of preservation projects, including the search, identification, acquisition, and preservation of art collections and art environments. The Director of Preservation is involved in the coordination of the work of art conservators, museum professionals, technicians, contractors, and interns to complete the projects in a timely and professional manner with respect for budgets and other financial targets. The Director coordinates the work of the preservation team, including KFI preservation staff, interns, assistants, technicians, and vendors. The Director of Preservation is also the primary liaison internally with accounting and externally with art appraisers. 

Individual must have project management experience, flexibility, high proficiency with computer software, excellent interpersonal skills, and the ability to interact with individuals from a variety of fields of discipline and backgrounds. Must have a strong interest in art and preservation initiatives.

 • Provides leadership for the Kohler Foundation preservation program. Takes the lead role in identifying potential projects and negotiating with recipients. The director, with preservation managers, prepares proposals and strategizes restoration plans. This is a “hands on” position and involves face-to-face meetings with artists/families and studio visits including working on in situ restoration projects.

• Manages the relationship with the preservation committee, including setting regular meetings and establishing lines of communication. Works closely with Executive Director to present potential projects to the preservation committee and prepares project proposals for board approval.

• Coordinates the preservation process for all preservation projects, including supervision of staff, contract employees, interns, and coordination of all resources. Communicates clear specifications for all necessary work.

• Strict adherence to budgets, financial targets, and timelines is critical. Maintains an awareness of non-cash financial targets for all projects and adheres to KFI financial models.

• Sees that accurate records of all phases of the project and a permanent project file, including signed proposals, acquisition documents, declarations of gift, appraisals, etc. are maintained.

• Oversees all materials for the appraisal process. Works closely with staff and appraisers to provide needed documentation and background information.

• Responsible for preservation budgets. Works closely with the accounting staff to keep estimates as accurate and timely as possible.

• Prepares a wide variety of presentations, reports, and spreadsheets on a frequent basis. Contributes to Annual Meeting book. Writes annual meeting narrative for preservation.

• Periodically travels to preserved sites to maintain contact with past project recipients. Shares best practices, coordinates collaborative efforts, and maintains a strong relationship with site directors.

• Occasionally makes presentations on topics related to art preservation and completed projects.

• Works to establish a network of outside professionals: curators, appraisers, conservators, artists, museum directors, etc.

• Works collaboratively with SPACES staff to provide information and expertise on art sites, artists, and availability of archives, photographs and other materials.


Supervisory Relationships

• Reports to Executive Director

• Manages KFI Preservation Staff

• Supervises the work of contract employees and others

•Works closely with interns and casual labor to provide direction Organization Relationships

• Constant contact with all KFI staff

• Frequent contact with KFI Preservation Committee and other board members

• Regular contact with staff of John Michael Kohler Arts Center and other museum professionals

• Frequent contact with art conservators and other contract employees

• Regularly works with outside experts



• Bachelor’s degree in related field required, Master’s degree preferred.

• Substantial experience in the field of art or architectural preservation with knowledge of preservation ethics and best practices.

• Arts management experience desired.

• Exceptional organizational and project management skills desired along with attention to detail.

• Must have excellent follow through, be attentive to detail and have familiarity or experience with art related projects.

• Strong ability to multi-task, self-direct work and prioritize.

• Strong interpersonal skills, sensitivity to others, and comfort with public speaking.

• Proficiency in MS Office applications.

This is a full-time, salaried position, with benefits. The Director of Preservation is an employee of the Kohler Foundation and not Kohler Company. Kohler Foundation is a private, non-profit charitable organization, committed to the preservation of art environments and important collections across the U.S. We also support art and education initiatives in the state of Wisconsin. To learn more, please