The following advertisement was printed in the NY Review of Books on November 1, 2001.

Page # 74.





The Folger Shakespeare Library

Washington , DC

THE FOLGER SHAKESPEARE LlBRARY invites nominations and applications for the position of Director (Chief Executive Officer). Founded in 1932, the Folger is home to the world's largest collection of Shakespeare-related materials and the finest collection early Continental and British printed works outside England. It offers a wide range of scholarly, cultural, and educational outreach programs that inform, enrich, and entertain nearly 100,000 individuals each year. With an endowment of $175 million, the Library is administered by the Trustees of Amherst College under the terms of its founder's bequest.

The Library's governing board seeks an individual who is a strategic thinker, persuasive communicater, seasoned and collegial manager, skilled fundraiser, and excellent relationship builder. He or she should hold a Ph.D. degree in English, History, or a subject field relevant to the Library's collections, a solid record of publications in Renaissance and/or Early Modern studies, and significant experience in a nonprofit or academic environment.

As chief executive officer, the Director is responsible for providing leadership and for articulating and implementing a strategic vision that enables the institution, consistent with its mission, to make the fullest possible contribution to its various and diverse constituencies. The Director is also responsible for all legal, budgetary, human resources, facility, publication, and security issues, as well as for institutional fund-raising.

Nominations and applications should be sent to:


FSL Search Committee
11051 Birdfoot Lane,
Reston, VA 20191-4603

Candidates should send a confidential cover letter describing their interest in and qualifications for the job, a curriculum vitae, and the names and telephone numbers of three professional references. References will not be contacted until candidates have been notified.

Competitive salary and generous benefits: frequent travel required. EO/AA.

The position is available on July 1, 2002. Additional information about the Folger Shakespeare Library is available on the web at

Many such ads in the NY Review of Books are purchased / printed several times. This ad appeared only once... suggesting that the "search committee" is not really searching.

Even if the choice has already been made (...all too often, for a richly endowed chair...) the advertisemtent for the "open" position must be printed. At least once. Somewhere. Most likely this is the situation at the Folger Shakespeare Library.

The ad is boiler plate which provides a legal shield; appointing a new "inside" director without placing such an ad would have legal implications.

If members of the "search committee" have not already made their "inside"choice for a new director... a choice will be made that will protect all of the insiders who have their hand in the till...Look to the Dead Sea Scrolls for a close comparison. The search committee is "protecting" $175,000,000... a lot of money for any institution.

If you check you will find a lot of fluff... but there is no mention on their web site that they are searching for a new director. The new head at the Folger should be someone committed to resolving the ongoing SHAKESPEARE - BACON debate. Remember this: "Shakespeare" is the world's greatest hero. In 1999 public opinion poles decided that "Shakespeare" is the greatest person of the past 1,000 years.


send comments & suggestions to


Folger Shakespeare Library
201 East Capitol Street, S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20003
Phone (202) 675-0333; Fax (202) 544-4623







 - Sir Francis Bacon's New Advancement of Learning