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Genealogy and Local History Specialist/Librarian: Fort Smith Public Library, Fort Smith, AR

25 Oct 2021 7:04 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

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Genealogy and Local History Specialist/Librarian

The Fort Smith Public Library is seeking a team-oriented, customer-focused, highly knowledgeable professional to provide leadership for the Barbara Jones Walker Genealogy and Arkansas History Department at the Fort Smith Public Library.  

The Genealogy Specialist/Librarian is responsible for managing all aspects of the library’s genealogy and local history department including services to the public, programming, collection development, preservation, and digitization of print materials.

This position also supervises support staff and ensures a proactive, customer service-focused environment serving both internal and external customers.  The person in this position works under the supervision of the library director and assistant director.  As a member of the library’s leadership team, the Genealogy Specialist/Librarian also works with the library’s department heads and branch managers on library-wide projects, issues, and initiatives.



·         A bachelor’s degree from an accredited university.  A combination of professional experience, education, and extensive knowledge of the field may be accepted in lieu of a 4-year degree

·         Demonstrated experience with genealogy research and knowledge of genealogy research techniques, approaches, and resources
·         Knowledge of special collections and preservation of historical materials


·         A master’s degree, especially an MLS from an ALA-accredited library degree program

·         Library experience with a focus on genealogy, special collections, or historical research

·         Experience in organizing, indexing, and digitizing historical materials

·         Supervisory experience

Essential skills and aptitudes:  The ideal candidate for this position has a thorough knowledge of genealogy resources and research methods and is passionate about sharing that knowledge with the public.  They have strong leadership, teaching, and training skills.  They have excellent technology skills, strong problem-solving skills, and sound judgment.  They enjoy learning new technology and keeping up to date in the field, possess excellent verbal and written interpersonal and communication skills, and demonstrate an enthusiasm and passion for public libraries and local and family history research.  They demonstrate a positive attitude toward library staff and the public, can positively represent the library in the community, have strong organization and planning skills, have an eye for detail, can manage multiple projects, and have proven success as a team leader and team member.

Routine schedule is Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., with some weekends and evenings to cover staffing or programming needs.  Salary is commensurate with experience and qualifications; minimum salary is $35,000 a year.  In addition, the Fort Smith Public Library offers a competitive package of benefits including health, dental, and vision insurance, paid vacation, paid holidays, and paid retirement.

Fort Smith Public Library: The Fort Smith Public Library is a city library system with a $2.9 million budget and a 67,000 square foot main library and three neighborhood branch libraries. The library is a dynamic presence in the community, serving over 88,000 people in the Arkansas River Valley area of western Arkansas and offering a wide range of materials and services including books, DVDs, audiobooks, downloadable audio, eBooks, streaming video, and other digital resources, meeting space, and programming for children, teens, and adults.

Located in the Arkansas River valley, Fort Smith offers a low cost of living, affordable real estate, and reasonable commute times for work.  The city features parks, walking trails, and good access to outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, canoeing, and camping.  Billed as the place “where the new south meets the old west,” Fort Smith celebrates its rich history and frontier spirit while also building for the future.

To apply, send a cover letter and resume to: Jennifer Goodson, Library Director, Fort Smith Public Library, 3201 Rogers Ave., Fort Smith, AR, 72903 or by email to 

Review of applications will begin November 10, but applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

For more information about the Fort Smith Public Library, visit

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