Open Position: Preservationist at Mount Auburn Cemetery

August 18, 2022

The Preservationist is responsible for coordinating, supervising, and implementing preservation and conservation work on monuments and built structures. Assists in assessing materials and conditions, prioritizing preservation projects, and planning work schedules. Oversees and works with full-time and seasonal workers, interns, and contractors monument preservation projects in and fulfilling perpetual care obligations, including washing, pointing, repair and resetting of memorials. Ensures all work on site appropriately reflects the Statement of Preservation Values and Commitments approved by the Trustees of the Cemetery on December 12, 2007, and is performed in accordance with appropriate standards and best practices in preservation and conservation.

• Responsible for supervising and performing maintenance and repair of the highest quality on all historic masonry, including mausolea, monuments and other grave markers. Must be versed in the use of commercial pointing and patching materials. Carries out the proper and safe use of lead as a pointing and anchoring material. Must perform high quality letting in of stone repairs.
• Supervises preservation department staff including preservation technician, seasonal workers and interns and reviews their work for quality and thoroughness. Trains department staff in proper masonry, cast iron, bronze and carpentry repair techniques and procedures and use of related equipment.
• Works closely with the Vice President of Preservation and Facilities and Preservation Manager to ensure all work is performed according to best practice and precedents set by the Cemetery’s historic preservation program.
• At all times works and acts according to the values and standards of Mount Auburn Cemetery, communicating and interacting with all visitors, volunteers and staff in a respectful and dignified manner.
• Responsible for enhancing safety in the workplace by ensuring that all employees under supervision are following safety rules and procedures, including wearing personal protective equipment. Brings unsafe conditions to the attention of the management and makes suggestions to improve safe working practices. Responsible for making sure that required procedures related to employee accidents are carried out in a thorough and timely manner.
• Coordinates and performs ongoing survey of the Cemetery for leaning, loose, or otherwise potentially unsafe memorials and compiles a prioritized list of repairs to be completed.
• Performs preservation and contemporary carpentry projects.
• Performs repairs to cast iron fences.
• Manages the Preservation Services Building workshop, keeping tools and equipment maintained and functioning properly. Ensures that materials are stocked and stored in an organized and safe manner.
• Assists and communicates effectively with onsite contractors.
• Ensures thorough record keeping of repairs made, maintaining field notes and photo documentation of work performed and downloads this information into the appropriate preservation department database.
• Responsible for making sure that all employees in the crew follow the posted work schedule including lunch or coffee breaks.
• Works cooperatively with members of other departments and acts as a “team player”, assisting other staff as necessary when short-handed or requiring additional help. Among other things, assists with snow removal, facilities maintenance, and/or the set-up or breakdown of chapels for memorial services, meetings or events.

Qualifications and physical demands include but are not limited to:

• High School diploma required.
• Three to five years of preservation training or the equivalent of preservation field work or schooling.
• Experience supervising a team of skilled craftspeople and ensuring work is performed at a high level.
• Demonstrated ability to train and mentor staff or interns with limited experience in hands on preservation work. Patience, good communication skills, and enthusiasm for training future craftspeople is required.
• Ability to also communicate effectively with other cemetery staff, lot owners, visitors and outside contractors or vendors.
• Ability to identify stone types, evaluate conditions and recommend repairs and treatments.
• Ability to balance efficient maintenance needs with sensitive preservation concerns.
• Functional English language reading, writing and speaking skills required. Knowledge of Spanish language desirable.
• Must be able to operate a variety of hand and power tools safely and effectively including but not limited to cordless and corded drills, circular saw, table saw, miter saw, angle grinder, reciprocating saw, and bench grinder.
• Basic computer skills and familiarity with Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook) required.
• Valid driver’s license required.
• Ability to access all areas of the Cemetery grounds and buildings including walking up and down stairs, entering confined spaces, and navigating varied terrain.
• Ability to climb and work from all manner of ladders, scaffolding, and aerial work platforms and move both within a workshop and normal office environment.
• Ability to bend, walk, kneel, stoop, crouch, stand and reach over head for long periods of time plus lift and carry heavy materials (maximum 80 lbs.).
• May be required to work outdoors in any season or weather conditions.

Hours of Work:
7:30 AM to 3:30 PM from Monday to Friday. Occasional evenings and weekends as required.

How to Apply:
Please send a cover letter stating your career goals and objectives with a current resume, as Microsoft Word documents, and include “Preservationist” in the subject area, to:
Or by mail to: Human Resources
Mount Auburn Cemetery
580 Mount Auburn St.
Cambridge, MA 02138

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. No telephone calls please.

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