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Emory Healthcare/Emory University Visiting Archivist for Geoffrey Holder and Carmen De Lavallade Papers in Atlanta, Georgia



Position Summary

Reporting to the Head of Collection Processing, the Visiting Archivist leads the processing of the Geoffrey Holder and Carmen De Lavallade papers and creates descriptive tools for the collection including a MARC catalog record and Encoded Archival Description (EAD) finding aid. The Visiting Archivist is also responsible for providing reference services to researchers, which may include Emory students and faculty, visiting scholars, and members of the public. The incumbent is expected to provide outreach on behalf of the Rose Library, through social media, contributions to Rose Library publications, and/or the creation of exhibits based on the project.

Geoffrey Holder (1930-2014) was a Trinidadian-American actor, voice actor, dancer, choreographer, singer, director, and painter. Carmen De Lavallade is an American actress, dancer, and choreographer. The Rose Library acquired the papers of the couple in 2018 and the collection includes art portfolios, awards and honors, books and periodicals, correspondence, ephemera, family papers, memorabilia, photographs, printed material, scripts, and audiovisual recordings.

Key Responsibilities & Duties


  • Arranges and describes over 300 linear feet of personal and professional papers of performers Geoffrey Holder and Carmen De Lavallade,includes art portfolios, awards and honors, books and periodicals, correspondence, ephemera, family papers, memorabilia, photographs, printed material, scripts, and audiovisual recordings.

  • Analyzes collection and determines appropriate levels of arrangement and description for each component.

  • Develops and implements work plans with proposed arrangement schemes and timelines, and adjusts or modifies as needed.

  • Leads a team of graduate students to arrange and describe collection in accordance with current library and archival standards.

  • Performs basic preservation work such as removing rusty metal hardware, unfolding and flattening documents, and transferring material to new, acid-free folders and boxes.

  • Conducts appraisal of material within collections, a process by which the permanent, archival value of materials are evaluated.

  • Writes finding aids for collection, describing the creator of the records as well as the subject content of the collection. Finding aids also include detailed box and folder inventories.

  • Encodes finding aids in XML according to the Encoded Archival Description (EAD) standard.

  • Loads and maintains XML records in the EmoryFindingAids database.

  • Creates MARC format bibliographic record for collection, which are included in both WorldCat and the library's local catalog.

  • May also produce other descriptive tools such as local indexes as needed.

  • Coordinates with the conservation unit regarding preservation issues with the collection.

  • Works with Rose Library conservation liaison to send materials to the conservation unit.

  • Coordinates recruitment, hiring, orientation, training, supervision, and evaluation of student employees.

  • Coaches, mentors, and counsels student employees in order to develop students in a positive and proactive manner ensuring individuals have opportunity to develop broad knowledge of library operations and services as well specialized skills.

  • Provides oral reports on the progress of the project on a bi-weekly basis.

  • Provides written reports on the progress of the project on a periodic basis or as needed.


  • Provides reference assistance in person and by phone to Emory students and faculty, visiting scholars, and the public as needed and assigned, including 4-6 hours of weekly reference desk shifts and a rotating 8 hour Saturday shift.

  • Occasionally answers written reference questions relating to collections of which the incumbent has special knowledge.

  • Oversees reading room security by monitoring use of materials in the reading room as well as working with researchers of to explain the rules of care and handling for special collections material.

  • Guides researchers through the completion of annual registration forms, manuscript use forms, and other paperwork.

  • Provides occasional oversight for service providers working in secure, non-public areas of the Rose.


  • Coordinates with the digital curation team regarding the digitization of materials within the collection.

  • May collaborate with curatorial and exhibit staff in the planning, curation, and design of exhibitions based on the collection that comprises the grant project.

  • Writes articles and blog posts about manuscript collections, especially upon completion of processing projects.


  • Participates in appropriate professional and scholarly associations and organizations including maintaining membership and/or accreditation; attending meetings, conferences, workshops; and serving in appointed or elected positions.

  • Maintains up-to-date professional knowledge and skills in areas related to primary job assignment as well as maintains general knowledge of current trends in higher education, academic libraries, and information and educational technology.

  • Provides reference assistance to Emory students and faculty, visiting scholars, and the public as needed and assigned.

  • Adheres to guidelines outlined in the Handbook Governing the Librarian series for Faculty-Equivalent Librarians to ensure appointment, appointment renewal and promotion-in-rank

  • Participates in library and campus committees as appropriate for service purposes.

Required Qualifications

  • ALA-accredited master’s degree in Library and Information Science or Archival Studies OR equivalent education and experience (relevant subject expertise combined with professional library education and/or experience).

  • One to two years of experience arranging and describing archival or manuscript collections in an academic library setting.

  • Knowledge of arranging and describing archives and manuscript collections, preferably in a special collections library in an academic environment.

  • Knowledge of issues relating to archives and manuscript collections.

  • Knowledge of current national archival and descriptive standards and best practices, including working knowledge of MARC, EAD, DACS, and other archival descriptive standards.

  • Knowledge of conservation and preservation needs of archival collections.

  • Ability to build and sustain effective interpersonal relationships with library staff, faculty and students, off campus faculty and administrators, campus administrators, etc.

  • Ability to work creatively, collaboratively, and effectively both as a team member and independently and to promote teamwork among colleagues.

  • Evidence of analytical, organizational, communication, project, and time management skills and demonstrated ability to set priorities, meet deadlines, and complete tasks and projects on time and within budget and in accordance with task/project parameters.

  • Commitment to fostering a diverse educational environment and workplace and an ability to work effectively with a diverse faculty and student population.

  • Capacity to thrive in an ambiguous, future-oriented environment of a major research institution and to respond effectively to changing needs and priorities.

  • Demonstrated knowledge of current trends and issues in academic libraries, higher education, and relevant subject disciplines.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Background in African American history and culture.

  • Familiarity with XML schemas and the use of XML editors (such as XMetal or oXygen).

  • Familiarity with the use of bibliographic information systems (such as Alma).

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Job Number 46736

Job Type Regular Full-Time

Division LITS: Library and IT Services

Department LITS: Rose Lib. Collection Ser

Location : Name Emory Campus-Clifton Corridor

This position may involve the following Health and Safety issues: Not Applicable

Required Documents Cover letter, List of References