Executive Director, Foundation and Vice President, External Affairs

Job description

Category:: Administrative Positions
Department:: President's Office
Locations:: Valhalla, NY
Posted:: Dec 7, 2020
Closes:: Open Until Filled
Type:: Full-time
Ref. No.:: EDFVPEA12720
Position ID:: 126868

About Westchester Community College:

About the Opportunity:

Founded in 1946, Westchester Community College is unwavering in its mission to provide accessible, high quality, and affordable education to meet the needs of its student community. The College hosts a diverse student population of 26,000 and is the first State University of New York campus to receive the Minority and Hispanic Serving Institution designation. Led by President Dr. Belinda Miles, the College is poised to continue its commitments to student success, academic excellence, workforce development, economic development, and lifelong learning.

Westchester Community College Foundation (WCCF), a separate 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation, was founded in 1969 in support of student needs. The Foundation is committed to supporting the College's values of success, excellence, and opportunity, and consistently ranks among the top ten highest performing community college foundations in the nation for overall fundraising. Since 2013, the Foundation's philanthropic and programmatic support for the College has assisted in a 55% increase in the three-year graduation rate and a 58% increase in college readiness.

WCCF is at a pivotal and exciting milestone in its history. As the College approaches its 75th anniversary in 2021, the Foundation seeks to further refine and expand the scope of its philanthropic and programmatic work.

About the College:

Westchester Community College, a non-residential suburban institution 30 miles north of New York City, is committed to helping its diverse student population receive a college education. As a Minority and Hispanic Serving Institution, the College has a student body that reflects the diversity of Westchester County: 50% of students are above age 22, 60% are first-generation students, 69% of students are non-white, 49% attend part-time, and 61% of students receive federal, state, or institutional financial aid.

In addition to its traditional academic coursework, the College is committed to providing workforce education for "middle skill" employment opportunities in industries that requires at least an Associate's degree and provides family-sustaining wages and opportunities for professional growth. To prepare their students for success, the College offers academic programs in cyber security, information technology, health careers, and culinary management.

To act on its vision, the College and its employees are committed to a series of institutional values:

To better ourselves and our relationships, the College is committed to:

  • Personal Excellence - Promote life-long learning, academic growth and intellectual development.
  • Respect - Support an environment of open, honest and collegial communication.
  • Integrity - Expect personal accountability through ethical behavior.

To better our community and collective efforts, the College is committed to:

  • Collaboration - Work together on the achievement of a common goal.
  • Civic Engagement - Advance active involvement in the life of the community.
  • Innovation - Encourage and empower a creative environment.

To better our society and our world, the College is committed to:

  • Diversity - Fostering an inclusive community through acceptance and understanding.
  • Environmental Sustainability - Protect, preserve, and conserve resources for the future.
  • Empathy - Respond to each other's views and opinions without judgement.

College Leadership:

Dr. Belinda S. Miles, President

Belinda S. Miles serves as president of the largest college in Westchester County, New York -- one of the nation's largest metropolitan regions. The college educates and trains more than 26,000 students in credit and non-credit programs annually and is the State University of New York's (SUNY) first Hispanic Serving Institution. Since her arrival in 2015, President Miles has galvanized multiple teams to realign college structures, policies, and procedures to reflect an agile organization committed to more directed and supportive pathways for students. Reforms have contributed to a 42% increase in IPEDS graduation rate; up to 20% more college readiness; and an 11% increase in retention for First-Year Experience (FYE) cohorts. Among the top strategies has been new cohort management systems, improved placement in college level math and English courses, college-readiness bridge programs, and improved student orientation and onboarding strategies.

President Miles has led cross-functional teams that have attracted external support from government, foundation, and private sources. With Hispanic student enrollment exceeding one-third at the most diverse of 64 SUNY campuses, the college was able to compete successfully for a $2.7 million Title V grant from the U.S. Department of Education to transform the student experience from entry to completion. Additional funded projects include replication of CUNY's Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP); participation in the Achieving the Dream network of community colleges committed to improving student outcomes; Honors College founded; nationally recognized Center for Cybersecurity founded; expansion of undergraduate research, internships, and project-based curricula; and collaboration with regional industry partners and high schools on Pathways in Technology (P-TECH) programs in cybersecurity, electrical engineering, and civil engineering.

President Miles serves on several boards focused on workforce development, expanding mobility, and the impact of technology on the future of work. Regionally, she is a member of the Board of Directors for the Business Council of Westchester, the Westchester-Putnam Workforce Investment Board, and Hudson Valley Patterns for Progress. Her national leadership includes board or advisory roles at the American Association of Community Colleges, American Association of Colleges & Universities Presidents' Trust, and the Block Center for Technology and Society at Carnegie Mellon University.

Recognized by City and State NY as one of Westchester's Power 50 (2018), President Miles' numerous awards include YWCA Education Champion Award (2020); Westchester County Federation of Women's Clubs and F. Willia Davis Women's Clubs Woman of the Year (2019); and 914INC Magazine Women in Business (2017), among many. Dr. Miles is a highly regarded regional and national presenter on a range of topics including community colleges as a disruptive innovation in academia that fosters an equitable and inclusive democracy.

Prior to joining Westchester Community College, President Miles served as provost and executive vice president of Access, Learning, and Success at Cuyahoga Community College with oversight of four campuses and multiple extension sites serving 60,000 students in the Greater Cleveland, Ohio area. Her other roles at Cuyahoga included president of the Eastern Campus, dean of Academic Affairs, and assistant dean of Liberal Arts. Other previous positions include faculty and administrator roles at LaGuardia Community College, Nassau Community College, and Columbia University.

About the Foundation:

Created in 1969, the Westchester Community College Foundation advances the College's pursuit of excellence in education, research, and public service. The Foundation, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, has a singular mission: to support Westchester Community College.

WCCF consistently ranks amongst the top ten highest performing community college foundations in the nation for overall fundraising. To date, the Foundation has raised over $100 million in philanthropic funds, awarded $24 million in scholarships, invested $3.25 million in faculty excellence, received 250,000 volunteer hours, added 72,000 square footage of instructional space to the College campus, established 40 endowed faculty chairs, and created the Native Plant Center.

Amongst their fundraising and programmatic accomplishments to date, WCCF has:

  • Distributed $2 million in scholarship awards for the 2018-19 academic year;
  • Raised $20 million to match country and state funds to build the Gateway Center, Westchester County's first Gold LEED Certified green building, which opened in 2010;
  • Hosted special events, including Celebrity Salons and the President's Forum, to raise philanthropic funds for student scholarships, featuring celebrity speakers including President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Madeline Albright;
  • The Native Plant Center at WCC, the first affiliate of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, promotes education about and the use of native plants throughout Westchester County. It celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2018;
  • Over 600 community members make up our Volunteer Corps, who work directly with students through programs such as Conversation Partners (language acquisition), tutoring, the Writing Center, and corporate mentoring through our Volunteer Center;
  • Established and supported the Virginia Marks Children's Center, which has provided award-winning early childhood education for student parents and the community for almost 30 years; and
  • Identified 80,000 alumni who are encouraged to give back by helping current students through mentoring, job placement, and philanthropy.

Pathways: The Campaign for Student Success:

Westchester Community College's commitment to student success, academic excellence, and scholarship is producing dramatic results. The College is creating, piloting, and bringing to scale new initiatives that increase college readiness, ensure a strong start, and provide appropriate support along the way - all roads that lead to success.

To act on the College's core values of excellence, WCCF leads Pathways: The Campaign for Student Success, which is anticipated to raise $50 million for 13 student success projects by 2021. These success projects include mentorship programs for high school seniors, veterans, and current students; the creation of the College's Honors College; the expansion of the College's Cyber Security program, which designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security; scholarships and student support services; and, the creation of a workforce development center to provide certification in healthcare, information technology, and the culinary arts.

Foundation Board of Directors:

Westchester Community College Foundation's Board of Directors is comprised of 55 dedicated and engaged leaders committed to the mission, vision, and continued growth of the Foundation and the College. The Board is a diverse group of professionals, philanthropists, academic, business, government, and community leaders.

To view the complete list of the Board of Directors, visit:


Job Description:

Executive Director, Foundation and Vice President, External Affairs:

WCCF seeks an exceptional strategic and mission-driven Executive Director, Foundation and Vice President, External Affairs (EDVP) to collaborate with the Foundation Board of Directors to further expand the public image and visibility among targeted philanthropic constituencies.

Building upon the College's record of success and the leadership of a dynamic Board of Directors, the EDVP will have the opportunity to help shape the Foundation's strategic fundraising vision for the future. The ideal candidate will be a strong leader and collegial professional, with the development expertise to effectively inspire historic philanthropy. In addition, the successful candidate will be responsible for the College's external affairs related to philanthropy.

The successful EDVP will actively mentor his or her staff, providing strategic support and ongoing guidance while maintaining best fundraising practices and clearly defined goals. In addition, s/he will manage a personal portfolio of selected prospects. Leading by example, the EDVP will creatively design and execute identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies.

Westchester Community College Foundation has retained Freeman Philanthropic Services, LLC to assist in this recruitment.

Reporting and Important Relationships:

The EDVP will be equivalently accountable to the College President and the Foundation Board of Directors. S/he will be the primary steward supporting the Foundation's Board of Directors. The selected candidate will be a dynamic leader of a team responsible for personnel, budget, operations, and communications. S/he will work closely with the Office of the President and collaboratively with the President's Leadership Team to inspire historic philanthropy.

The EDVP will have oversight of a team of 14 and have seven direct reports: Chief Financial Officer, Director of Development and Leadership Giving, Director of Annual Giving, Director of the Native Plant Center, Director of Alumni Engagement, Interim Volunteer Coordinator, and the Assistant to the Executive Director.

To achieve WCCF's ambitious goals, the EDVP will strategically engage and support the President, Foundation Board of Directors members, College leaders, board members, faculty, volunteers, community leaders, alumni, colleagues, and staff to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward individuals, foundations, and corporations.

Key Opportunities and Challenges:

Westchester Community College Foundation seeks a passionate, innovative EDVP with both the capacity and demonstrated track record to respond effectively to the following key opportunities and challenges:

  • Collaborate and engage with the Foundation Board of Directors and other high-level volunteers to gain an understanding of substantive priorities and translate those priorities into strategic initiatives;
  • Guided by WCCF's priorities and vision for the future, provide inspirational and effective fundraising leadership through teamwork, collaboration, and dedication;
  • Working closely with the Foundation Board of Directors, design and execute a comprehensive, strategic fundraising plan to expand philanthropic support from individuals, foundations, and corporations;
  • Responsible for the College's external affairs related to philanthropy;
  • Manage all aspects of development and alumni engagement including budgeting, staff supervision, evaluation, development, recruitment, and coordination. Evaluate and direct improvements to development operations including database systems, gift processing, reporting requirements, and related infrastructure;
  • Serve as chief development officer and maintain a personal portfolio of top donors and prospects: focus on the identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major gifts;
  • Lead the strategic integration of functions (e.g., major gifts, direct mail, e-philanthropy, annual fund, foundation, corporate, alumni, planned giving) among the Foundation to further increase efficiency and ensure a comprehensive, collaborative approach to all functions, with the goal of increasing philanthropic opportunities and revenue;
  • Strategically engage the President, the Foundation Board, and other stakeholders in public outreach and fundraising activities, providing meaningful engagement opportunities and effective support;
  • Provide professionally mature, effective, and transparent management; implement policies and best practices that will ensure greater staff collaboration and accountability through quantitative measurement of results;
  • Model behaviors and create a culture that is comfortable with clearly defined goals and reliable methods with which to measure success;
  • Establish policies and practices that will ensure fundraising staff accountability through quantitative measurement of results, assessments of efficiency and effectiveness, and the replication of best demonstrated practices; and
  • Deepen and broaden relationships with alumni and donors; further the loyalty and engagement of the community to encourage higher levels of support and involvement.


Ideal Experience and Qualities:

The ideal candidate will possess strong management abilities, including effective motivation, mentoring, and team building: the talent to leverage team members' existing capacity and strengthen performance, while maintaining best practices, camaraderie, and shared accountability. Along with strong communication and interpersonal skills, s/he will have a track record of providing strategic direction, leadership, and daily management of successful fundraising initiatives.

In addition to the demonstrated ability to meet and exceed the responsibilities listed in the preceding section, the ideal candidate will possess the following experience and attributes:

  • Strong commitment to the community college mission;
  • Proven ability to provide fundraising leadership;
  • Inspirational and effective management, including the demonstrated ability to motivate, mentor, and leverage a team's existing capacity to strengthen performance and deepen dedication;
  • Experience working with external affairs;
  • Ability to set priorities, manage time, leverage limited resources, and meet deadlines;
  • Demonstrated track record of building a comprehensive advancement operation, including major gifts, foundation and corporate relations, planned giving, annual fund, and special events;
  • Successful track record of building and maintaining a prospect portfolio, including the ability to effectively identify, research, cultivate, solicit and steward prospects and donors;
  • Confidence and fundraising acumen to effectively recruit, engage, and support volunteer leaders;
  • Excellent communication skills (oral, written, and listening), the ability to effectively and creatively share the case for support with diverse constituencies;
  • Collaborative style and flexibility - able to adapt to changing priorities and refine strategies;
  • Unquestioned integrity and sound judgment, as well as a sense of perspective; and
  • A Master's degree and eight years of professional experience, three years of which must have been devoted to teaching and/or administration. An advanced degree is strongly preferred.

Additional Information:


The salary range is $153,617-$167,891, commensurate with the successful candidate's background and experience, plus excellent benefits.

Application Instructions:

Applications and Nominations:

Westchester Community College Foundation has retained Freeman Philanthropic Services, LLC (FPS) to assist in this executive recruitment. FPS is a national leader in recruitment for the nonprofit sector and related concerns and brings a proven track record of recruiting top talent to diverse institutions.

Please send all confidential inquiries, applications, and nominations directly to FPS via email at [email protected].

All applications must include (1) an up-to-date resume (2) a letter of intent (addressed to FPS) that specifically cites the experiences that best prepare the applicant for this role and why this particular opportunity is the logical and desired next step in their career, and (3) a list of references. Additional materials and information will be requested during the search and interview process.

Workplace Diversity and Equal Opportunity:

The Foundation is committed to equal employment opportunity. They will not discriminate against employees or applicants for employment on any legally recognized basis ("protected class") including, but not limited to: veteran status, uniform service member status, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, physical or mental disability, or any other protected class under federal, state, or local law.

In New York, the following are a protected class: age (18 and over), race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, disability (including use of a guide dog, hearing dog, or service dog), predisposing genetic characteristics, military status, marital status, and previous conviction of criminal offenses, unless directly related to employment or would involve an unreasonable risk to property or to the safety or welfare of specific individuals or the general public




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Job No:
Posted: 12/8/2020
Application Due: 6/7/2021
Work Type: Full Time