3524 Principal Museum Preparator

Recruitment #PBT-3524-067376



Asian Art Museum




Under the general direction of the Head of Preparation, serves as lead preparator on exhibition projects.  Assists in the management and coordination of the preparation of exhibition spaces, and the installation and deinstallation of art; supervises temporary staff.  Performs a wide variety of skilled and semi-skilled duties in the preparation, installation, and care of museum exhibits and works of art. Supervises departmental operations in the absence of the Head of Preparation.


1.         Oversees gallery lighting installation, maintenance, inventory and implementation of lighting design strategies.

2.         Supervises as needed and temporary preparators in the preparation, installation, and deinstallation of exhibition spaces; prioritizes activities and responsibilities; provides training as necessary in preparation duties.

3.         Assists in the preparation, construction, installation, and deinstallation of exhibits and/or works of art; paints; lays out, moves, and places walls, platforms, and casework; loads and unloads art objects; handles, moves, hangs, and installs art objects; installs labels, text panels, and other signage/graphics.

4.         Tracks and manages the preparation aspects of art rotations in the permanent galleries; coordinates with curators, registrars, conservators, and exhibition designer.

5.         Manages the ongoing monitoring of the condition and appearance of permanent galleries; provides regular walk-through of galleries to ensure maintenance of exhibits; identifies problem areas and recommends solutions; creates a punch list of preparation issues; oversees the necessary repair/maintenance or coordinates work with other museum departments as required.

6.         Participates in general shop operations including cleaning, preparing cost and material estimates, purchasing supplies, maintaining tools and equipment.

7.         Assists in the administrative work of the department.


•          Supervises department and day to day operations in the absence of the Head of Preparation. 

•          Performs other related duties as assigned.


Preparators’ Shop.  Physical strength and agility, good vision, and manual dexterity required to move art and operate tools/equipment.  Involves frequent climbing on ladders, scaffolds, and lifts; medium to heavy work requiring lifting, carrying, and moving materials, tools, and equipment, and finished exhibit and display fixtures and furniture.


Minimum Qualifications

Education:  Possession of an Associate Degree from an accredited college or university with major coursework in Art, Fine Arts, Museum Studies or a related field.

Experience:  Four (4) years of verifiable experience in the preparation, fabrication, installation and the care and handling of valuable art objects; making museum mounts for objects; building exhibition furniture and working closely with museum staff at a museum, gallery, or traveling exhibition program.

Substitution: Additional qualifying full time work experience (2000 hours equal one year) as described above may be substituted for the required education on a year-for-year basis. One year of work experience equals thirty (30) semester units or forty-five (45) quarter units.

Desirable Qualifications:

•          Strong knowledge of the techniques of exhibit design and lighting; the requirements specific to the lighting of art; all related safety codes, ordinances, procedures, and regulations; standard tools, practices, methods used in exhibit construction and installation

•          Knowledge of art handing procedures for two- and three-dimensional art objects in a variety of materials, sizes, and weights

•          Computer proficiency in Microsoft Office

•          Ability to explain and carry out methods and procedures relating to the handling of irreplaceable objects of art; to lift and move heavy objects up to 75 lbs.

•          Ability to plan, prioritize, schedule, and implement projects; simultaneously oversee a variety of projects

•          Ability to direct and work with other staff in the installation of exhibitions

•          Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with a variety of people both internal and external to the museum

•          Ability to operate genie lifts, forklifts, pallet jacks, and similar equipment

•          Skill in the use and care of standard hand and power tools

•          Creativity, flexibility, and resourcefulness

How To Apply

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit www.jobaps.com/sf to register an account (if you have not already done so) and begin the application process.

  • Select the desired job announcement
  • Select “Apply” and read and acknowledge the information
  • Select either “I am a New User” if you have not previously registered, or “I have Registered Previously”
  • Follow instructions on the screen

Computers are available for the public (from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday) to file online applications in the lobby of the Dept. of Human Resources at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco.

Applicants may be contacted by email about this announcement and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date.  Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter.  To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (@sfgov.org, @sfdpw.org, @sfport.com, @flysfo.com, @sfwater.org, @sfdph.org, @asianart.org, @sfmta.com, @sfpl.org, @dcyf.org, @first5sf.org).

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file.  Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records.  Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline.  Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Cynthia Burtson, by telephone at 415-581-3793or by email at cburtson@asianart.org 



Applicants may be required to submit verification of qualifying education and experience at any point in the application, examination and/or departmental selection process. Failure to provide the required verification when requested may result in rejection of application and/or removal from eligibility for referral and appointment in this class.  Verification may be waived if impossible to obtain. The applicant must submit a signed statement explaining why verification cannot be obtained. Waiver requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.


Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco


Selection Plan

Application Screening: (Qualifying):

 Applications will be screened for relevant qualifying experience.  Applicants may be contacted by telephone or email to provide further information or clarification in relation to their qualifications.  Applicants meeting the minimum qualifications are not guaranteed advancement in the selection process.

Supplemental Questionnaire (Weight: 100%)

Qualified candidates will be provided a supplemental questionnaire upon notification of their qualified status. The supplemental questionnaire will be used to evaluate and rank qualified candidates in their relative knowledge, skills, and abilities in job-related areas.  

Additional information on the examination process may be provided on the supplemental questionnaire. Failure to submit the supplemental questionnaire by the date requested may result in disqualification from the examination process.

The supplemental questionnaire is the sole component of the exam process. The supplemental questionnaire will be rated and scored. All relevant experience, education and/or training must be on the supplemental questionnaire in order to be reviewed in the rating process. Candidates will be placed on the eligible list in rank order according to their final score. The department may administer additional position-specific selection procedures to make final hiring decisions.


The certification rule for the eligible list resulting from this examination will be Rule of Three Scores.  Additional selection processes may be conducted by the hiring department prior to making final hiring decisions.

Eligible List:

The eligible list resulting from this examination is subject to change after adoption (e.g., as a result of appeals), as directed by the Human Resources Director or the Civil Service Commission.

The duration of the eligible list resulting from this examination process will be of 12 months, and may be extended with the approval of the Human Resources Director.

Upon approval of the Human Resource Director (see Civil Service Rule 111A.26.5), the eligible list resulting from this announcement may be used by other departments that also use this classification or a similar classification.  To find other Departments which use this classification, please see http://www.sfdhr.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentID=21246. Search that document by title or job code to see which departments use the classification.

Conviction History

As a finalist for a job, you will be fingerprinted, and your fingerprints will be sent to the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The resulting report of your conviction history (if any) will be used to determine whether the nature of your conviction (or arrest, in limited circumstances) conflicts with the specific duties and responsibilities of the job for which you are a finalist. If a conflict exists, you will be asked to present any evidence of rehabilitation that may mitigate the conflict, except when federal or state regulations bar employment in specific circumstances, such as:

  • Candidates applying for positions with the Unified School District and the Community College District may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under the California Education Code.
  • Candidates applying for positions with the Recreation and Park Department may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under California Public Resources Code 5164.

Having a conviction history does not automatically preclude you from a job with the City.

If you are selected as a finalist, the hiring department will contact you to schedule a fingerprinting appointment.

Disaster Service Workers

All City and County of San Francisco employees are designated Disaster Service Workers through state and local law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all Disaster Service Worker-related training as assigned, and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.


Reasonable Accommodation Request:
Applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum eligibility requirements for this job announcement can find information on requesting a reasonable accommodation at:

Veterans Preference:

Information regarding requests for Veterans Preference can be found at:


Seniority Credit in Promotional Exams:
Information regarding seniority credit can be found at:


General Information concerning City and County of San Francisco Employment Policies and Procedures:
Important Employment Information for the City and County of San Francisco can be obtained at
http://www.sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=20 or hard copy at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor.


Copies of Application Documents:
Applicants should keep copies of all documents submitted, as these will not be returned.


Right to Work:
All persons entering the City and County of San Francisco workforce are required to provide verification of authorization to work in the United States.


Terms of Announcement:
Applicants must be guided solely by the provisions of this announcement, including requirements, time periods and other particulars, except when superseded by federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations. Clerical errors may be corrected by the posting the correction on the Department of Human Resources website at

The terms of this announcement may be appealed under Civil Service Rule 111A.35.1. The standard for the review of such appeals is ‘abuse of discretion’ or ‘no rational basis’ for establishing the position description, the minimum qualifications and/or the certification rule. Appeals must include a written statement of the item(s) being contested and the specific reason(s) why the cited item(s) constitute(s) abuse of discretion by the Human Resources Director. Appeals must be submitted directly to the Executive Officer of the Civil Service Commission within five business days of the announcement issuance date.

Additional Information:
General Information concerning City and County of San Francisco Employment Policies and Procedures may be found online at:



Exam Type: CPE
Issued:  May 13, 2016


Micki Callahan
Human Resources Director
Department of Human Resources

Recruitment ID Number: PBT-3524-067376



All employees hired on or after January 10, 2009 will be required (pursuant to San Francisco Charter Section A8.432) to contribute 2% of pre-tax compensation to fund retiree healthcare. In addition, most employees are required to make a member contribution towards retirement, ranging from 7.5%-13.25% of compensation. For more information on these provisions, please contact the personnel office of the hiring agency.

For more information about benefits, please click here.


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