Chief Information Officer

Job description

The Chief Information Officer (CIO) leads and promotes the strategic use of information technology (IT) that advances the overall mission of Lake Forest College.  Reporting to the Provost and Dean of the Faculty and also serving as a member of the President’s senior leadership team, the CIO’s direction and vision will be sought regularly as the College advances strategic academic and administrative initiatives.

This new position has been developed as a result of the impending retirement of the College’s longstanding Director of Library and Information Technology.  In anticipation, the institution has conducted its own self-study, as well as engaged the assistance of outside counsel, to assess the organization and staffing of information technology personnel, institutional IT governance, service management, administrative applications and data management, along with infrastructure and security.  As a result of this work, the College has decided to split Library and Information

Technology into two distinct divisions, providing the much-needed opportunity to hire a CIO with a strong IT background.     

The CIO will lead and manage the Information Technology Services division, including academic and administrative computing, networking, support services, classroom and instructional technology, programming services, and telecommunications.  Along with the new CIO, this division will include 13 employees. 

Serving as the principal technology leader for the institution, the CIO will provide the vision and leadership for developing and implementing information technology strategies across campus.  The successful candidate must be able to demonstrate an understanding of the centrality of technology for teaching and research in higher education institutions of the 21st century.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Anticipates and maintains a vision for future technology needs and recommends strategies, priorities and projects that will best achieve the strategic goals and objectives.
  • Selects and implements suitable technology to streamline internal operations and helps optimize their strategic benefits.
  • Leads IT strategic and tactical planning to address institutional goals designed to foster innovation, prioritize initiatives, and manages current and future IT systems and resources that assure continued high-quality services.
  • Manages execution of architecture plans, principles, policies, and standards and ensures architecture guidelines, legal and security policies, and standards are followed when developing solution/service architectures.
  • Maintains the integrity and strategic development of the institution’s information and communications infrastructure, and the systems infrastructure for mission critical functions ensuring optimal performance of the networks and computer systems.
  • Develops and maintains an IT organizational structure designed to meet institutional needs and demands, assessing and identifying the most cost-effective investment of financial resources toward IT systems, staffing, daily operations, project implementation, product purchases and/or contract negotiation.
  • Establishes and collaborates with direct reports to establish IT department goals, objectives and operating procedures.
  • Responsible for the annual budget process for institutional technology needs, develops annual IT operational and capital budgets, develops and maintains the institution’s IT plan.
  • Ensures IT data security, risk management, disaster recovery and business continuity planning processes are in place and receives regular review for currency and adequacy.
  • Responsible for developing collaborations among the academic and administrative constituents to advance the organization’s mission.
  • Perform other duties and responsibilities as required, assigned, or requested.

Core Competencies


  • Inspires confidence in people and creates a positive, mission and vision aligned working environment and understanding of purpose.
  • Motivates and encourages employees to achieve success serving as a role model for employees in both actions and words.
  • Drives for results and successes and steps forward to address difficult issues.
  • Stands firm when necessary, challenges the status quo and champions new initiatives.
  • Acts as a catalyst of change and leads effectively through change.
  • Effectively facilitates the work of employees by establishing priorities and creating efficient work structures and processes.

Performance Management  

  • Establishes long and short term strategic goals and assigns employee responsibilities appropriately.
  • Sets clear employee expectations, delegates effectively, and addresses performance issues in a timely manner.
  • Coaches to close performance gaps, encourages professional growth, and develops and retains talented people.

Resource Management

  • Effectively allocates available funds, equipment, time and human resources.
  • Provides budgetary recommendations and adjusts operations to work with assigned budgets.
  • Provides sufficient authority and available resources to support employees and enable them to act independently.

Strategic Thinking

  • Maintains long-term focus and understands trends impacting higher education and issues relevant to the entire college. Keeps that knowledge up to date and has and uses cross functional knowledge.

Adaptability and Composure

  • Adapts to changes, changes strategy in response to new information and responds appropriately without having all parameters defined.
  • Keeps others adequately informed and responds to others with tact, diplomacy, and composure.

Process Improvement

  • Looks for and makes changes to the way work is performed making process improvement recommendations to improve efficiency, productivity, and quality of work.


  • Actively attempts to collaboratively influence events to achieve the goals of the college.

Planning, Organizing, and Accountability 

  • Multi-tasks effectively in an environment characterized by multiple complex factors, competing priorities, ambiguous situations and resource challenges.
  • Holds self and others accountable for actions and responsibilities.

Initiative, Problem Solving, and Decision Making

  • Identifies a problem, obstacle or opportunity and takes action to address it.
  • Demonstrates consistent logic, rationality, and objectivity in decision making
  • Achieves appropriate balance between quick and more thorough decision-making approaches, shows common sense and anticipates consequences of decisions.

Communication, Teamwork, and Collaboration 

  • Establishes and clearly communicates priorities, seeks appropriate feedback, and fosters open, honest, two-way employee communication.
  • Listens effectively, shares information and resources with others to promote positive and collaborative work relationships, and does not remain passive in the moment but then opinionated later without readdressing an issue.

Constituent Service   

  • Acts with a spirit of service to all campus constituents, including faculty, administrators, and students, and is dedicated to meeting their expectations. Experience with and sensitivity to working in an environment of diverse races, ethnicities, nationalities, class statuses, sexual orientations, and gender expressions is preferred.

Functional and Technical Competencies 

  • Proven experience as CIO or similar managerial role
  • Excellent knowledge of IT systems and infrastructure; experience with student and academic information systems is preferred
  • Background in designing/developing IT systems and planning IT implementation
  • Solid understanding of data analysis, budgeting and business operations
  • Superior analytical and problem-solving capabilities
  • A strong strategic and business mindset
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal abilities
  • Proven team building success with an ability to develop, mentor, motivate and lead employees in a collaborative environment that fosters teamwork and excitement toward implementing new technologies.
  • Excellent organizational, interpersonal and leadership skills with ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with faculty, staff, and students

Education/Training and Certification, Licensure, Registration Requirements 

Bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, or relevant field required.

Master’s degree in information technology, business, computer science, or relevant field preferred.


Seven years increasingly responsible experience in information technology including demonstrated success as a department head or other senior management level. Direct experience managing large scale budgets and funding models of at least five years.

Lake Forest College embraces diversity and encourages applications from women, members of historically underrepresented groups, veterans, and individuals with disabilities.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.  To be assured of full consideration, an application letter and resume should be received by March 7, 2018.  All documents should be submitted electronically to [email protected] and be addressed, in confidence, to:

Philip R. Hood, Chair

Chief Information Officer Search Committee

Lake Forest College

555 North Sheridan Road

Lake Forest, IL  60045-2338




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Job No:
Posted: 2/16/2018
Application Due: 4/17/2018
Work Type: