Albuquerque Library Jobs
Copyright © 2015 Albuquerque Journal
The dean of the University of New Mexico’s libraries, who was hired last year at a salary of $195, 000, has created a new director-level position that he would like his wife to step into.
On Thursday, Dean Rick Clement and Provost Chaouki Abdallah confirmed that UNM’s letter offering Clement the deanship contained a “spousal accommodation” that would allow the university to hire his wife, Susanne – provided she was deemed well qualified in the university hiring process.
“I’ll be honest, ” Clement said. “I avoided doing that, because there’s always the implication of favoritism.”
But the process for hiring his wife would be “no different from conducting a national search, ” he said.
If she is considered by the university, Clement said, he would be “totally cut out of the selection process.”
Clement said he didn’t know what the director’s salary will be, but that it might be based on the average assistant or associate professor’s pay, which according to a university spokeswoman are $70, 261 and $57, 788, respectively.
On top of that, $10, 000 would be added as the director’s stipend, an administrative supplement. If hired, Susanne Clement would report to the provost’s office because of the obvious conflict of interest, her husband said.
“You have to recognize that, the conflict of interest, and deal with it, ” he said. “It’s an awkward situation.”
Clement said he has the full support of the provost – not in a plan to hire his wife, but to give her “the opportunity to be considered.” Should she be deemed qualified for the position, the search committee would have to consider her, he said. But if the committee rejects her nomination, the university would then launch a national search.
“I support the hiring of Susanne Clement if it is determined that she is well qualified for the position and the (libraries) faculty support her hiring, ” Abdallah said.
One of the changes Clement made to the hiring plan for the College of University Libraries & Learning Sciences after taking the job in July was to elevate the description of a vacant collections librarian position to “director of collections.”
The vacant position most recently was filled by Steven Harris, whose title when he left UNM two years ago did not include “director, ” but for most of his time at UNM his title was director of collections. He did not receive a stipend for the added responsibility.
When the couple moved here from Utah, Clement said, they had no idea the employment situation in New Mexico was as depressed as it is. His wife applied for some 15 librarian jobs, he said. Nothing materialized.
In hiring family members, UNM is guided in the process by the Office of Faculty Affairs and Services and the Office of Equal Opportunity, Abdallah said. OFAS reports to the provost, but OEO doesn’t.
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