Herbarium Curator & Field Botanist - RBG Canada

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Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG) is the largest botanical garden in Canada and one of the largest in the world. With over 2,700 acres of cultivated gardens and nature preserves, it is also one of the biggest urban nature sanctuaries and marshland restoration sites in North America. With its extraordinary land holdings, breathtaking landscapes, biodiversity, collections, facilities, educational and conservation programs, RBG is a top-rated regional tourist attraction and a global leader in its sector. RBG is a not-for-profit corporation and an agency of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport of the Province of Ontario.

Position description:

Royal Botanical Gardens seeks a self-directed researcher with a strong background in the botany of southern Ontario as its Herbarium Curator and Field Botanist. The successful candidate will be responsible for the curation and management of RBG’s Herbarium of wild and cultivated flora (known internationally as HAM), will undertake research and monitor plant diversity in RBG’s natural and horticultural areas, will provide plant identification services, help to verify species and cultivars in RBG’s living collections, and promote RBG’s position as a centre of botanical expertise. They will oversee the work of the Herbarium staff, including an annual intern, summer students, and volunteers, and be a vital member of the expert team of horticulturists, botanists, ecologists, and educators within RBG’s Biodiversity Programs Division. They will lead and further develop our plant identification, taxonomy, and field botany expertise and services. They will direct and manage herbarium curatorial procedures, work to update nomenclature and taxonomy for living and non-living collections, document and digitize collections, and manage the collection information in RBG’s botanical collections database (implemented in BG-Base).

Reporting to the Head of Science, the successful candidate will hold at a minimum a Bachelor of Science degree in botany or a related field (a graduate degree also is preferred), and a minimum of five years of experience applying this knowledge in botanical garden, natural area, museum, or conservation positions. They must demonstrate:

-          specialist skills in plant identification (including of fresh and herbarium specimens) of the wild and cultivated flora of our area, and in plant systematics, taxonomy and nomenclature

-          experience in the effective curation, development, and promotion of herbarium collections, and associated database management

-          skill in performing applied field research, plant inventories, collecting and interpreting data, publishing/reporting findings and making recommendations to management that support a sound environmental interpretation of the institutional mandate and strategic plan

-          experience in the research and recovery of plant species-at-risk in southern Ontario

-          experience in preparing content for and delivering or leading professional training workshops in plant identification

-          an ability to manage projects, budgets, and staff effectively (in scope, on time)

-          a superior ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, to a broad spectrum of stakeholders

-          a familiarity with ARC GIS (Geographic Information System) would be helpful

-          an ability to work in a fast-paced, challenging not-for-profit environment

-          excellent interpersonal/supervisory and public relations skills

Special Requirements and Working Conditions:

-          This position requires working a minimum 35-hour work week; however flexibility is required as some events are scheduled after hours.

-          Work takes place indoors at RBG Centre (680 Plains Road West, Burlington, Ontario) and seasonally outside for field work.

-          Ankle-high steel-toe safety boots are required for this position.

-          The Herbarium Curator and Field Botanist will require a class G driver’s license.

-          A clear Statement of Driving Record and Police Records Check will be required of the successful candidate, at their expense.

Qualified candidates are requested to forward your resume and cover letter to  by February 14, 2014

RBG is an equal opportunity employer, and is committed to fair and accessible employment practices. Upon request, suitable accommodations are available under the Accessibility for Ontarians Act. We thank all applicants however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.


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