Department: VC for Research
Position Summary: The responsibilities of the Director of the Office of Federal Affairs include developing and executing UNC Chapel Hill's federal affairs strategy; advocating for university priorities affecting higher education and the university's research enterprise; developing and managing university relationships with Congress and federal research funding agencies; advising and informing university officials and faculty on federal activities, policies and funding opportunities; identifying and developing opportunities for faculty to participate in federal policy discussions and development; serving as UNC Chapel Hill's liaison to national higher education and research organizations and to other federal and governmental affairs offices in the larger UNC System; coordinating activity in Washington, DC involving UNC Chapel Hill leadership and faculty; and supervising and directing university federal affairs personnel and contractors. The Director reports to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Research and maintains a working relationship with the Chancellor's Chief of Staff. The Director interacts internally with a broad spectrum of university administrators and faculty and with student organizations. He or she also interacts externally with organizations that represent university interests and influence higher education and research policy at the national level. The position is based in Chapel Hill and requires frequent travel to Washington, DC.
Education Requirements: The position requires, at a minimum, a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and three years of experience. Candidates holding a professional degree or a master's degree are preferred for this position. Training in law, government, or public policy, and experience with research, particularly biomedical research or similar disciplines, will be advantageous.
Qualification and Experience: The position requires a minimum of three years of experience working in government relations at the federal level. Candidates with professional experience working in Washington, DC for Congress or in the Executive Branch, and those experienced with the issues and operations of major research universities, are preferred. Experience working for major federal science and research funding agencies, in a liaison capacity with such agencies, or with the University of North Carolina or the state's elected leadership will also be considered favorably, but is not required for consideration. Qualities desired in the Director include a working knowledge of congressional and federal research funding agencies' processes and procedures; familiarity with academic environments and decision-making; proven track record in building relationships and forging alliances both internally and externally; skill at organization and management of multi-party advocacy efforts, creative problem-solving, networking, internal communications, and project organization, leadership and management; the ability to understand a wide variety of subjects for purposes of effective advocacy; the ability to quickly develop deep knowledge of unfamiliar subject matter to perform particular tasks; the ability to communicate clearly and concisely in written and oral form and to understand and communicate complex topics to laypersons; a strong sense of judgment, discretion, and ethics; and the ability to execute strategy in ambiguous or shifting environments.
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