Vice President of Advancement

Elmira, New York
Jan 28, 2021
Executive Administration Jobs
Vice Presidents
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Elmira College

Vice President of Advancement

Academic Career & Executive Search is pleased to assist Elmira College in their search for a Vice President of Advancement (VPA).  

This is an outstanding time to join the Elmira team. The College is undergoing exciting changes including a new partnership with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) and a new sustainability program.  

The ideal candidate is a builder and change agent who desires an opportunity to shape the future of Advancement and leave a lasting and positive impact on Elmira College. The next VPA is a strategic, results-focused fundraiser and relationship cultivator with demonstrated experience in building successful, long-term relationships with external and internal key stakeholders as well as the ability to articulate the value of a liberal arts education.

Leading a team of eight, the VPA is responsible for the planning and execution of all programs to engage and solicit philanthropic support. The VPA will develop, execute and manage a strategic plan to increase fundraising and gift giving. The next VPA will be well-versed in current trends and best practices as it relates to the achievement of the College’s advancement goals.

The VPA is the chief government, public, community, advancement and alumni relations officer of the College, responsible for the oversight of the Offices of Advancement and Alumni Relations, and works with the President to provide strategic leadership in these operational areas.

This position reports to the President and serves as a key member of the College’s senior leadership team and President’s Cabinet. This position offers generous benefits.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  • Senior advisor to the President on fundraising, alumni relations, community relations
  • Staff to the Board of Trustees Governance and Institutional Advancement & Alumni Relations Committees, attending meetings and reporting on advancement and public relations activities as needed
  • Serve as a member of the Senior Officers executive team and collaborate on major initiatives to advance the mission of the College
  • Lead the College’s work in identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of donors, governmental agencies, and philanthropic foundations to secure financial support for the College
  • Lead the College’s work in stewarding the relationship between the College and its alumni, including oversight of the College’s annual alumni reunion and the Alumni Association Board of Directors meetings and activities
  • Oversight of donor relations and advancement services to maintain responsible stewardship protocols, such as timely gift acknowledgment and accurate donor records management and to sustain efficient and transparent financial tracking and reporting processes
  • Oversight of departmental activities related to the College’s strategic plan, including evaluating progress and implementing needed strategies and initiatives to ensure optimal progress toward goals.
  • Represent the College and the President externally, including serving as the College spokesperson and on regional boards and task forces, at the discretion of the President
  • Evaluate the performance of department staff
  • Manage the department’s budget
  • Provide leadership, motivation, and staff service to the President, Chairman and other board members in carrying out development and governance responsibilities

Required Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree preferred
  • Ten to fifteen years of experience with increasing levels of responsibility in higher education or non-profit management
  • Appreciation for the small liberal arts college experience in American higher education
  • Advanced understanding of fundraising strategies, ethical principles and practices for a complex organization
  • Leadership experience representing an organization to external and internal audiences
  • Experience with staff and board management, engagement, and development
  • Excellent written and verbal communication and influencing skills
  • Excellent strategic planning, project and budget management skills
  • Strong relationship management skills with diverse groups of stakeholders
  • Strong analytical skills including the ability to analyze trends from quantitative and qualitative data
  • Extensive knowledge of policies rules and regulations governing charitable giving
  • Ability to understand and apply state and federal laws relating to information practices, charitable organizations, and the tax benefits of charitable giving

About Elmira College:

Elmira College is a private, coeducational, Phi Beta Kappa college located in Elmira, New York. Founded in 1855, Elmira was the first college for women with a course of study equal in rigor to the best men's colleges. Becoming coeducational in 1969, today Elmira College offers rigorous academic programs with an undergraduate enrollment of approximately 800 full-time, mostly residential students. The College also offers advanced certificates, master degree programs, and non-credit courses for professional development. 

Named by U.S. News & World Report 2020 as sixth among the Best Regional Colleges and second among Best Value in the Northeast. The Best Value Colleges list also takes into account a school's academic quality. The College was also ranked fifth in the Most Innovative Schools and Top Performers on Social Mobility lists. Other accolades includes Princeton Review, Best 385 Colleges in the nation; Washington Monthly, #17 on the list of the Top 200 Bachelor's Colleges; Colleges of Distinction, renowned Colleges of Distinction; and Forbes, list of America's Top Colleges.

As the guardian of Quarry Farm, where Mark Twain summered for twenty years and wrote many of his most iconic novels, Elmira College is home to the Center for Mark Twain Studies, one of four nationally recognized Twain sites which serves as a research center for visiting Twain scholars. 

Living in the Area:

With a population of nearly 30,000, Elmira, NY is located in the Southern Finger Lakes. The area is surrounded by scenic hills and hardwood forests and boasts a cost of living over 25% less than the national average. Elmira is 90 minutes south of Rochester and about 4 hours from Philadelphia, New York City and Toronto.


Applications will be reviewed as they are received and should include a cover letter and CV. Please do not email applications. To be viewed by the firm, you must apply directly at:  Elmira College- Vice President of Advancement - Academic Career & Executive Search (

Inquiries, referrals, and nominations are treated confidentially and can be sent to Jennifer Muller, Managing Partner at Academic Career & Executive Search at [email protected].

In compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and all other applicable non-discrimination laws, Elmira College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran’s status, or genetic information in its educational programs and activities, admissions, and with regard to employment.