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Chief Information Officer (CIO)

Lake Forest College
Lake Forest, IL
Closing date
Jun 23, 2021

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Chief Information Officer (CIO) March 04, 2021

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.

The CIO leads and manages the Information Technology Services division, including academic and administrative computing, networking and telecommunications, support services, classroom and instructional technology, and campus printing services. This division is comprised of 13 team members.

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 learning in higher education as well as best practices for maintaining information security.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Maintains a vision for future technology needs and recommends strategies, priorities and projects that will best achieve the College’s strategic goals and objectives.
  • Selects, implements, and optimizes suitable technology to streamline internal operations.
  • Leads IT strategic and tactical planning in order to address institutional goals that foster innovation and prioritize strategic initiatives.
  • Manages IT systems and resources to ensure continued high-quality services.
  • Manages execution of architecture plans, principles, policies, and standards and ensures legal, compliance, and security policies and standards are followed.
  • Maintains the integrity and strategic development of the institution’s information and communications infrastructure for mission critical functions, ensuring optimal performance of the networks and computer systems.
  • Continuously improves an IT organizational structure designed to meet institutional needs and demands.
  • Collaborates with team members to establish IT department goals, objectives, and operating procedures.
  • Identifies the most cost-effective investment of financial resources for IT systems, staffing, daily operations, project implementation, product purchases and/or contract negotiations.
  • 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 processes are in place for IT data security, risk management, disaster recovery and business continuity, and that these processes are reviewed regularly to remain current and comprehensive.
  • 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 staff to achieve success, serving as a role model for team members 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 staff by establishing priorities and creating efficient work structures and processes.

Performance Management

  • Establishes long- and short-term strategic goals and assigns team responsibilities appropriately.
  • Sets clear staff 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

  • Efficiently allocates available funds, equipment, time, and human resources.
  • Provides budgetary recommendations and adjusts operations to work within assigned budgets.
  • Provides sufficient authority and available resources to support team members 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 uses cross functional knowledge in decision making.

Adaptability and Composure

  • Adapts to change and exhibits ability to change 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, to improve efficiency, productivity, and quality of work.


  • Actively collaborates with key constituents to influence process and procedure improvement 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 proactively 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 and 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 team 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 needs. Experience with and sensitivity to working in an environment of diverse races, ethnicities, nationalities, economic 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 implementations
  • Solid understanding of data analysis, budgeting, and business operations
  • Superior analytical and problem-solving capabilities
  • A strong strategic and business mindset
  • Proven team building success with an ability to develop, mentor, motivate and lead staff in a collaborative environment that fosters teamwork and excitement toward implementing new technologies.
  • Excellent organizational, interpersonal and communication 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 required with preference for a Master’s degree in information technology, business, computer science, or relevant field.


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 April 16, 2021. All documents should be submitted electronically to [email protected] and be addressed, in confidence, to:

Lori Sundberg, Chair

Chief Information Officer Search Committee

Lake Forest College

555 North Sheridan Road

Lake Forest, IL 60045-2338


Working at Lake Forest College 

A highly selective liberal arts college located on Chicago’s North Shore, Lake Forest College enrolls approximately 1,450 students from over 45 states and 65 countries. 

At Lake Forest College, the quality of a faculty member’s teaching is the most important criterion for evaluation.  The College also expects peer-reviewed publications and active participation in the College community.  Lake Forest College embraces diversity and encourages applications from women and other members of historically underrepresented groups.

The College’s 107 acres are spread out across three campuses that are divided by wooded ravines. It is home to more than 250 species of naturalized plants and 187 bird species.
With classic 19th and 20th Century architecture, mature oak trees, and numerous green spaces, the College has been and remains a popular place to film movies.

Our students come from 47 states, Washington D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands, and 78 countries.

Lake Forest professors regularly include undergraduates in their primary research and supervise independent research projects.

They receive fellowships and grants from such notable organizations as the Fulbright Program, National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, National Endowment for the Humanities, Freeman Foundation, Mellon Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, Getty Trust, Goldsmith Foundation, and Kemper Foundation.

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