Western Reserve Historical Society seeks a Director, Crawford Auto Aviation Museum.

The Western Reserve Historical Society (WRHS) in Cleveland, Ohio is looking for a visionary and collaborative leader to direct the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum (‘the Crawford’), a leading automotive and transportation museum dedicated to collecting, preserving and sharing the rich history of transportation in Greater Cleveland, the United States and the world. The Director of the Crawford will direct museum operations (budget management, staffing, exhibitions, programming, fundraising, earned revenue initiatives) and lead Crawford external affairs to expand overall exposure locally, nationally, and internationally in ways that benefit and sustain the museum, collection, and WRHS.

Responsibility: Responsible to the WRHS President and CEO for:

  • All aspects of Crawford museum operations, including preservation, budget, maintenance, programs

  • Financial controls, including meticulous and responsible management of Crawford annual budget

  • Drives regular Crawford Strategic Plan updates with CEO and key stakeholders.

  • Aligning Crawford experiences with the WRHS strategic plan, and creating synergies between the Crawford and other areas of WRHS

  • Role modeling WRHS values - Integrity, Innovation, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Stewardship and Excellence

  • Creating and stewarding an inclusive environment consistent with WRHS’s strategic plan, core values and code of conduct

  • Engaging stakeholders in the Crawford

  • Elevating Crawford and WRHS’s positive reputation in the community and museum field

Classification: This position is classified as a full-time professional and is exempt from overtime compensation.

Supervision: Supervises Crawford staff and interns


  • In close consultation with the WRHS President and CEO and SVP of Advancement, proactively works to secure resources - cash and in-kind donations - for Crawford projects and programs

  • Coordinates museum operations and use with Director of the Cleveland History Center (CHC) and Director of Experience Design

  • Coordinates marketing and communications with marketing team

  • Coordinates exhibitions of collections and collection management with collections team

  • Is liaison to the Crawford Committee

  • Is liaison for WRHS to various auto/aviation/transportation museums, shows, and organizations


  • Directs all aspects of the Crawford’s operations, programs, exhibits, and collections

  • Develops and manages annual operating budget

  • Maximizes existing and develop new earned and contributed revenue opportunities

  • Provides visionary leadership in a supportive, inclusive team-centered workplace

  • Organizes and facilitates research into the history of automobiles and aviation of Cleveland and Northeast Ohio within the context of urban, social, and technological history

  • Responsible for the ongoing review, care and management of the collection, including recommendations for artifacts and materials in automotive and aviation history for acquisition or deaccession

  • Creates and maintains records on WRHS automotive and aviation collections, utilizing the database, cataloging, and project management software 8. Coordinates with the Collection Management Team (CMT) the donation and lending of materials to and from WRHS for use in museum exhibits, programs, and publications

  • In collaboration with WRHS collections, exhibition, and education staff leads the development of exhibits and programs on the history of automobiles, aircraft, and related transportation technologies. Assists in the installation of exhibits and the delivery of programs

  • Prepares oral, written, and visual historical lectures, essays, and summaries for use in exhibits and publications as well as public presentations, both internal and external to WRHS

  • Serves as WRHS’s community liaison for the automotive and aviation collections; serves as the spokesperson for the Crawford through participation in professional conferences, meetings, and organizations and with the media

  • Performs appropriate professional duties as assigned and requested by the President and CEO


  • Minimum 4-year college degree and/or graduate degree preferred

  • Expertise in classic automobiles, automotive and transportation history

  • Leadership experience, including 5 years in a management or leadership role in a museum, company, or related field

  • Sales, marketing and promotional experience

  • Knowledge of online cataloging systems and web-based information-sharing technologies and social media preferred

  • Budget development, management, fundraising and planning skills are essential

  • Demonstrated excellent writing, editing, and verbal communications skills

  • Ability to translate ideas into action

  • Exemplifies WRHS’s Core Values of Integrity, Innovation, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Stewardship and Excellence Personal characteristics essential to this role include transparency, honesty, diplomacy, self-awareness, respect, creativity, loyalty, enthusiasm, flexibility, and the capacity to work well independently and with cross functional teams.

Salary range: $65,000 - $75,000

Job classification: full-time, salary

To apply: Please submit a cover letter and resume to Emily Poznako at [email protected]. Deadline to apply is September 30, 2021. For more information, visit www.wrhs.org/about/employment.

Posted: August 13, 2021
Deadline: September 30, 2021

Support OMA with your
tax-deductible donation!

A contribution to the Ohio Museums Association will help us continue to provide important programs and services to Ohio’s Museums.