Associate Vice President for Alumni Relations

Virginia Commonwealth University
Richmond, VA
Commensurate with experience.
Jun 06, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Virginia Commonwealth University is an emerging force in American higher education. With expanding brand awareness, nationally ranked academic programs and a compelling mission as the premier urban, public university in the commonwealth of Virginia, VCU is an institution very much on the move toward success in every aspect of its operations. As its reputation expands, the university seeks to engage alumni as the closest members of its large, diverse family to support its expanding influence in worlds ranging from medicine to the arts. The university seeks an associate vice president of alumni relations (AVP) to serve as its chief alumni relations officer.

Reporting to the vice president for development and alumni relations, the leader of alumni relations will work in close concert with the president and senior leaders from across the institution, as well as volunteer alumni leaders. The AVP will lead the program from its current stage of development toward the level of best and breakthrough practices among peer institutions. The AVP will have broad authority to work with university leadership to identify key deliverables, to develop the measures of effectiveness for the program, to reconstitute the volunteer governance and leadership of the organization and thus to move VCU into the vanguard of alumni organizations nationally. In accomplishing these important tasks, the AVP will establish strong, trusting relationships across and beyond the university, thereby building an organization and program whose whole exceeds the sum of its parts.

The ideal candidate for this position will be an experienced alumni relations or development professional with a strong working knowledge of and experience in creating the current best practices in the profession. Also considered will be candidates who have outstanding analogous experience and a current, actionable understanding of VCU and its constituencies. Above all, the successful candidate will demonstrate a track record of at least 10 years of progressively responsible leadership of people and programs, along with key competencies in volunteer management, membership programming, special events management, academic and athletic programming, fundraising, constituent relations, communications, marketing, branding and budget management. Outstanding communications and interpersonal skills are indispensable attributes of the successful candidate.  An advanced degree or training and work experience at a level that equates to an advanced degree is required, as is demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse environment.

VCU’s new chief alumni relations officer will join the university at a time when conditions favor positive changes. With the support of a committed university leadership and a high degree of involvement and interest among key alumni, the AVP will have an opportunity to make a contribution to the growing national reputation of VCU.

Inquiries, nominations and applications are invited. The search will be conducted with a commitment of confidentiality for candidates until finalists are selected.

Witt/Kieffer is assisting Virginia Commonwealth University in this search. A full position description can be found at  Initial screening of applications will begin immediately and will continue until an appointment is made. Submission of materials as PDF attachments is strongly encouraged. These materials should be sent electronically via e-mail to VCU’s consultants Dennis M. Barden and Elizabeth K. Bohan at email address Basic personal and demographic information must also be submitted to VCU’s job site at:  The consultants can be reached by telephone in care of Laurie Adams at (630) 575-6152.

Virginia Commonwealth University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action university providing access to education and employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, political affiliation, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or disability.

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