Archives Assistant (temporary/part-time)

Lambda Archives of San Diego (LASD) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that holds a wealth of historical and contemporary materials documenting the LGBTQ+ community in the San Diego, Northern Baja California, and Imperial County region. We are seeking a temporary ARCHIVES ASSISTANT (part-time) to begin work immediately on a project from January to June 2022. Applications will be reviewed as they are submitted, so it is recommended that you apply ASAP. If we would like to set up an interview with you, we will contact you via email.

Lambda Archives of San Diego is carrying out a grant-funded project that is aligned with our ongoing, intentional efforts to preserve the histories of Black and Indigenous people and People of Color (BIPOC) in the LGBTQ+ community, as well as to create a physical environment that nurtures accountability. Archives are ultimately about people, so as archives workers, not only do we have a responsibility to the records that we preserve, but we have a responsibility to address historical and present harms in the spaces in which we interact. This project has two interconnected parts: 1) to collect and/or process and preserve materials or small collections donated by and/or feature BIPOC in the LGBTQ+ community; and 2) to help further develop an antiracist/anti-oppressive approach for all aspects of archival work, including interpersonal engagement. It is our hope that our work will provide insight into building and fostering an organization-wide system of doing that acknowledges and continually works towards preventing, mitigating, addressing, and redressing harm as an archival imperative. This project is not intended to be a solution to any extent nor a how-to initiative; it is one exploratory element intended to inform how we approach archival work and to foster resistance to the ways in which archives might reproduce harm.

Position Description
Under the direction of the Head Archivist, the Archives Assistant will process, describe, and preserve materials that show histories of BIPOC in the LGBTQ+ community. Because our process is as significant as what we produce or accomplish, the Archives Assistant will reflect on and take robust, organized notes about their own work activities and processes, including affective responses to the materials they work with, their work environment, and interpersonal communications. To help further develop our approach to all aspects of archival work, the Archives Assistant will regularly engage in critically reflective discussions with the Head Archivist about topics that can be challenging, such as the ways in which harm is reproduced in archives; identifying tools of white supremacy in archives; the ways in which archives workers hold power; and the (in)visibility of trans narratives in historical documentation. The Archives Assistant will also communicate with BIPOC in the LGBTQ+ community to learn how LASD can continue to build an equitable space for the community, as well as how LASD can support their archival interests. The Archives Assistant will also engage with the community via short blog posts on our website, our listserv and/or social media, and in person once LASD reopens. Towards the end of the project, the Archives Assistant will provide a final report of their reflections, the knowledge and skills they gained, challenges they experienced, and recommendations for the future. Other duties may be assigned in support of our mission.

Please note: The Archives Assistant can carry out some work remotely, but other tasks must be done onsite and per safety guidelines concerning COVID-19.

–Proof of full COVID-19 vaccination
–In-depth knowledge or familiarity working or volunteering with an organization or informal initiative that explicitly serves Black or Indigenous communities and/or communities of color
–In-depth knowledge or familiarity working or volunteering with an organization or informal initiative that explicitly serves the LGBTQ+ community
–Demonstrated ability to take clear, concise and highly organized notes
–High level of comfort to: 1) assist users of the archives; 2) reflect on and document your work activities on a daily basis; 3) discuss how archives intersect race, racism, ableism, class, gender, gender expression, sexuality, settler colonialism, white feminism, and/or white supremacy
–A sincere interest in archives, oral histories, storytelling, LGBTQ+ history, and/or capacity-building in the LGBTQ+ community
–Ability to work independently and collaboratively with the Head Archivist, and communicate clearly with staff members, interns, volunteers, and/or users of the archives
–Excellent organization skills
–Ability to work remotely and communicate via Zoom

Preferred requirements
–General experience (as staff, a volunteer and/or intern) working in archives or with historical materials and/or describing people in images
–Comfortable using WordPress or Weebly, Excel spreadsheets and/or social media sites
–Ability to communicate via Slack (project management tool)

The pay rate of this temporary part-time staff position is $19.00 per hour. Work hours will not exceed 12 hours per week, but are flexible Monday-Friday. Working on a Saturday and/or Sunday may be permitted upon approval by the Head Archivist.

Work environment
Lambda Archives of San Diego is currently led by a formally-trained/degreed archivist who is a queer, nonbinary person of color and concerned with systemic issues that impact people and records in archives, particularly BIPOC. Currently, all staff members are part of the LGBTQ+ community, as are most of the Board of Directors.

Lambda Archives acknowledges that some people are sensitive to chemicals/scents that are found in everyday products. Therefore, we work towards a fragrance-free environment in order to make our physical space more accessible. Aside from chemicals/scents that are associated with archival materials and supplies, we do not use scented cleaning products or air fresheners. We ask that staff and visitors refrain from using perfume, cologne, and other scented products such as deodorant, lotion and hair products. For more information, please visit Think Before You Stink.

All staff members are fully vaccinated, continue to wear masks, and practice social distancing.

Complete the application form and upload the requested materials listed below. Due to the pandemic, we cannot accept applications in person.

[1] A current resume -OR- an organized list of main points outlining your experience, knowledge, and skills through education, internships, jobs, parenting, projects that you led, training, and/or volunteerships.

[2] A statement that addresses all points below. This can be in the form of a one-page letter (Word or PDF), slides (5 max), or a YouTube or Vimeo video of you (5 minutes max).
●  How did you find out about the Archives Assistant position and why are you
interested in it?
●  Describe how your experience, knowledge and skills will help you carry out
the responsibilities of the position. This can be a reflection on your
activist work, education, internships, jobs, parenting, personal projects, and/or
●  Describe for us something that you came across recently that immediately impacted
you in some way. This could be a book, news story, photograph, piece of art,
podcast, scene from a television show or movie, social media post, something
that a friend or relative said the other day, something in nature, or a song. The
possibilities are endless.

[3] The contact information of two (2) people who you are not related to and can attest to your experience, knowledge, abilities, and interpersonal skills. Include their name, pronouns, email address, telephone number, and one word or sentence that describes their relationship to you.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status, or genetic information. To request a reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, please email or call (619) 520-1922.

[Posted 12/10/2021]