University Library Dean, San José State University

San José State University (SJSU) seeks an experienced, visionary and creative leader to serve as its next University Library Dean.

Founded in 1857, San José State University is the oldest public institution of higher education on the West Coast. Located in the heart of California’s Silicon Valley, SJSU is the fifth largest of the 23 campuses of the California State University (CSU) system, the largest four-year university system in the United States. It is both a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and Asian American and Native American Pacific-Islander Serving Institution (AANPISI), as well as one of the largest international-student serving institutions in the CSU. As one of the 200 top research universities in the nation, San José State has robust NSF and NIH-funded research programs and one of the highest levels of research funding in the CSU system. SJSU offers rigorous coursework to more than 35,000 undergraduate and graduate students in seven colleges.

SJSU Martin Luther King, Jr. Library (SJSU King Library) is a fundamental player in advancing SJSU’s educational, research and public service mission. Through its collections, expert personnel, technology and spaces, both physical and virtual, SJSU King Library provides students and faculty with collaborative experiences and services that adapt to the institution’s learning, teaching and research needs. In 2019, SJSU King Library launched Ready for Transformation, its five-year strategic plan, which aligns to the goals of SJSU’s Transformation 2030 strategic plan. The work of SJSU King Library and its many dedicated faculty and staff underpins the scholarly and educational activity across the entire institution. SJSU King Library has an annual operating budget of $9.2M employs 29 faculty librarians, just over 55 staff members, and more than 80 student workers.

SJSU seeks a dean worthy of representing the vision of diversity and inclusion symbolized in the library’s name. The dean serves as the senior administrator for the University Library, providing leadership and strategic direction. This position requires strong leadership qualities, ability to engage and build strong support for the library’s vision for the future, solid management skills, effectiveness in resource acquisition and allocation, ability to build partnerships within the university and throughout the community and possession of a clear understanding of national trends in higher education and the academic library profession. Student learning and success should be at the forefront of the new dean’s priorities, while also promoting and supporting an increase in research activity and scholarship across the university. As co-manager of SJSU King Library, the university library dean will be expected to partner with the director of the San José Public Library (SJPL) system. Together they collaborate to effectively offer quality services and resources to both the university and the broader San José community.

Furthermore, as a member of the provost’s leadership team, the dean works with the university president, provost, other deans and senior administrators to manage the university’s resources to enhance the accomplishment of library and university goals. The dean must work effectively with faculty, staff and other administrators to define and articulate the library’s academic mission, vision and educational philosophy. Responsibilities include: develop an innovative vision, leadership and strategic direction for the library and its collections and services for faculty and students; lead library strategic planning; assessment (of operations, services and instruction); recruitment and evaluation of a diverse library faculty and staff in a collective bargaining environment; increase professional development opportunities for faculty, staff and students; management of funds and budgeting process; and allocation and use of facilities. The next dean will work to develop resources from internal and external sources to further the goals of the library and university, and represent the library and university in community, corporate and professional organizations. An earned M.L.S. from an accredited ALA institution or equivalent is required. A second master’s or Ph.D. is strongly preferred.

Click here to view a detailed leadership profile.

Candidates should provide, as two separate documents, a CV and a letter of application that addresses the responsibilities and requirements described in the leadership profile. Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal here. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by August 31, 2020.

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to consultants Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D., Jessica Herrington and Julia Venetos at

SJSU commits to inclusive excellence by advancing equity and diversity in all that we do. We are an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer, and particularly encourage applications from members of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, LGBTQ community members, and others who demonstrate the ability to help us achieve our vision of a diverse and inclusive community.

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