Skip to main content

University Librarian

We are no longer accepting applications for this recruitment


The University of California, Santa Barbara (UC Santa Barbara), a public research university and one of the ten campuses of the University of California (UC) System, seeks a gifted leader and experienced library administrator to serve as University Librarian (UL). Reporting to the Executive Vice Chancellor, the successful candidate will lead the University Library in providing outstanding services to support the UC Santa Barbara community, while also extending the University’s unique library resources to benefit researchers around the world.
UC Santa Barbara is a member of the 10-campus University of California (UC) system and the first university in the Association of American Universities recognized as an Hispanic-Serving Institution. Founded in 1944, the University enrolls about 24,000 students. UC Santa Barbara’s faculty includes six Nobel Laureates; numerous Guggenheim, Fulbright, National Endowment for the Humanities, and National Endowment for the Arts Fellows; National Science Foundation grantees; winners of the National Medal of Science, Fields Medal, and Millennium Technology Prize; and numerous elected members or fellows of leading professional associations. The preeminent scholarship, instruction, and public service that define the institution have led UC Santa Barbara to be nationally recognized as a top university, ranked 8th among public schools and 37th among all national universities in the 2017 U.S. News & World Report rankings. The University also consistently places among the top 10 in Leiden University’s annual rankings of the 750 best major universities in the world, in terms of impact in the field of the science.
The UL will be joining UC Santa Barbara at a time of great opportunity: the Library has recently undergone a major addition and renovation project and is well-poised to serve as a leading institution in the UC system and national university library landscape. The Library’s physical location at the core of the campus echoes its role as the intellectual center of the campus. It serves as both a physical and digital gathering place for campus events and shared scholarship. UC Santa Barbara seeks an individual who exhibits strong and inspiring leadership, the ability to articulate a vision and provide strategic direction for libraries in the rapidly changing information environment, and to lead at regional and national levels on research library issues. The successful candidate will bring significant leadership experience and achievement in a research library. This individual will be committed to building, supporting, and sustaining a diverse workforce, and will possess effective budget management skills, knowledge of assessment tools to evaluate programs and services, and a strong understanding of the issues of scholarly communication and open access, among other topical challenges.
To be successful, the ideal candidate will address a set of key opportunities and challenges, listed below and detailed in this document. The University Librarian will:

  • Provide visionary, strategic leadership for the Library
  • Grow and leverage the Library’s resources and collections for maximum impact -Nurture and continue the growth and retention of a strong, user-oriented staff and an open, transparent culture in the face of the changing nature of expertise required of librarians and staff
  • Build coalitions and partnerships across the campus to further align Library services with the University’s academic mission, including teaching and student retention and success
  • Identify, support, and partner on the implementation of technology that advances information access, student learning, and scholarship
  • Represent, advocate for, and advance the Library on campus, in the UC System, in other professional settings, and in the community

Qualifications and Characteristics
This position represents an outstanding opportunity for an experienced library leader with a history of decisive and innovative leadership, including managing human, financial, and physical resources. The successful candidate will have a Master of Library Science (MLS) degree from an ALA-accredited library school, or equivalent degree, and will possess most if not all of the following qualities and characteristics:

  • Proven ability to serve as an effective leader and manager of an academic research library;
  • Outstanding interpersonal and communication skills;
  • Familiarity with various standards and best practices used in academic libraries today;
  • Ability to be an effective, outgoing spokesperson and advocate for the Library and the University;
  • Excellent fiscal management skills;
  • Experience working with a system or consortium of libraries;
  • Familiarity with various standards and best practices used in libraries today; -Experience in fundraising and developing research grant funding;
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, inclusion, and social justice; -Successful track record in promoting innovative and effective applications of technology to support, enhance, or replace traditional library services;
  • Commitment to digital experimentation and partnership that enables the creation, archiving, and delivery of information;
  • Experience leading the renovation or development of one or more campus facilities;
  • Successful history of developing staff; -Commitment to create a climate where a diverse constituency of faculty, undergraduate and graduate students are supported and served through the facilities and resources of the Library;
  • Track record implementing and supporting programs that promote student retention and success;
  • Record of supporting scholarship and research through library collections, programs, and services.

Applications, Inquiries, and Nominations
Screening of complete applications will begin immediately and continue until the completion of the search process. Inquiries, nominations, referrals, and CVs with cover letters should be sent via the Isaacson, Miller website for the search: Electronic submission of materials is strongly encouraged.

The University is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching and service as appropriate to the position.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Job location

Santa Barbara, CA