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Chief of Staff

University of Colorado - Denver and the Health Sciences Center
Denver, CO

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Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Employment Type
Full Time
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Four-Year Institution
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University of Colorado | CU Denver

Chancellor’s Office

Chief of Staff

Position #00792327 – Requisition #24188

* Applications are accepted electronically ONLY at *

The University of Colorado has a requirement for COVID-19 vaccinations and full completion thereof by 9/1/21 or upon start date.  Information regarding this requirement, and exemptions can be found at:

CU Denver:

Exemptions vary by campus location/department.

Campus/Unit-Specific Exemptions:

CU Denver Campus - Exemptions are allowed for medical, religious, or personal reasons.

The University of Colorado Denver seeks individuals with demonstrated commitment to creating an inclusive learning and working environment. We value the ability to engage effectively with students, faculty and staff of diverse backgrounds.

The Chancellor’s Office has an opening for a full-time University Staff (unclassified) Chief of Staff position.

About CU Denver

Part of the University of Colorado System, CU Denver is home to nearly 15,000 students (over 10,000 undergraduate and 4,700 graduate), has over 1,100 faculty members across eight schools and colleges, and offers 117 degree programs both in-person and online. The most diverse research university in Colorado, over 70% of the fall 2021 entering class were students of color or first generation. In 2021, the campus received federal designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and is on track to be classified as an Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI). It is also ranked #1 in Colorado for social mobility (U.S. News & World Report 2022).

Nestled in the center of one of America’s most vibrant and fastest-growing cities, the University of Colorado Denver is Denver’s public urban research university. It educates a diverse student body through quality academics, ambitious research, creative work, and civic engagement in the city it calls home. Leveraging its proximity to and partnership with so many public, non-profit, and private-sector employers, CU Denver graduates gain the powerful combination of immersive classroom and real-world applied experiences that are in demand today. CU Denver provides well-educated top talent and a new generation of knowledge to fuel the future of Denver and the region.

As part of the state’s largest public university system, CU Denver is a major contributor to the Colorado economy, with nearly 2,500 employees, an annual budget of $330 million, and an annual economic impact exceeding $800 million.

CU Denver is located in downtown Denver, Colorado, and shares the Auraria campus with two other distinct and separate institutions: Community College of Denver and Metropolitan State University of Denver. Each institution has its own neighborhood, and the three institutions maintain and manage the campus with a shared-governance model through the Auraria Higher Education Center (AHEC).

Strategic Priorities

The 2030 strategic plan is a profound repositioning of CU Denver to be a public urban research university that works for learners of all kinds and at all stages of life, industries and employers that need talent ready to hit the ground running, and communities requiring new solutions and discoveries.

In June 2021, the university’s radically new plan laid out five bold goals to accomplish by 2030 to: 1. Become the nation's first equity-serving institution.
 2. Become known as the "university for life."
 3. Be internationally known for research and creative work that impact society.
 4. Serve as the anchor institution for an open innovation district in Denver.
 5. Be known as a people-centered "best place to work."

About Chancellor Marks

Since joining CU Denver in July 2020, Chancellor Michelle Marks has pursued an ambitious vision for the future of CU Denver and its impact as a leading urban public research university.

An innovator dedicated to making higher education equitable for the good of society, Dr. Marks believes the urgent national need for equitable education, amplified in this time of great societal challenge, demands long-term solutions. She is leading CU Denver to address long-standing structural inequities through a reimagined approach to lifelong learning.

Dr. Marks began her tenure at CU Denver with a 100-day listening tour and continues to listen through ongoing engagement with the University community. In fall 2020, she convened an Equity Task Force to address long-term equity issues at the University, and in spring 2021 she committed $4 million to support its roadmap for CU Denver to become an exemplar equity-serving institution.

Dr. Marks led CU Denver in a highly collaborative, ambitious strategic planning process that completed in June 2021. CU Denver’s 2030 Strategic Plan promotes social mobility and workforce sustainability through an evolved vision of an equity-serving institution. It outlines goals for advancing research and creative work, developing an open innovation district in downtown Denver, and being known as the University for Life, among others.

Prior to her current role, Dr. Marks led academic innovation and new ventures at George Mason University. There, she pioneered the ADVANCE pathways program, a new collaborative paradigm that united high school, community college, university, and corporate partners to create an extended learning community offering students and families affordable access to superior education and employment opportunities. 

Dr. Marks has dedicated her career to the study of leadership and team effectiveness. As a professor of management in GMU’s School of Business, her research focused on organizational leadership development and teamwork. Dr. Marks has been recognized for leadership throughout her career, culminating in such awards as the George Mason University Alumni of the Year Award (2017), Executive MBA Professor of the Year award (2008 and 2011), and Teaching Excellence Award (2006). She holds a Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology from George Mason University.

In addition to her chancellor role, Dr. Marks is a tenured full professor in CU Denver’s Business School. She currently serves on the boards of the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, the Denver Education Compact, and the Coalition of Urban Serving Universities (USU), part of the Association of Public & Land Grant Universities.

The University of Colorado Denver Chief of Staff acts as a member of the Chancellor’s executive team and supports the Chancellor in leading a high-performance management team. The Chief of Staff supports the Chancellor in guiding the Chancellor’s cabinet and ensures that the Chancellor’s priorities are carried out in a timely and effective manner. The position is responsible for leading, directing, delegating, and assisting with projects as assigned by the Chancellor, including general management responsibilities of the Chancellor’s Office,  tracking to completion of all initiatives by the Chancellor’s Office, and inspiring a spirit of collaboration, mutual respect and a results-orientation. 

The Chief of Staff will enter this role at a time of great momentum and change. Chancellor Michelle Marks joined the CU Denver community in July 2020 and immediately engaged university stakeholders in a 100 Days of Listening tour and established an Equity Task Force charged with addressing priority action items centered on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Building on the momentum from these conversations, CU Denver undertook a university-wide strategic planning process, completed in June 2021. The 2030 CU Denver strategic plan provides a vision and strategy that differentiates CU Denver and sets the goal for CU Denver to work for all. Chancellor Marks has also developed a strong, diverse leadership team in her first 18 months. This is a timely opportunity for an institutionally ambitious leader to join a mission-driven and dedicated leadership team and university community that is elevating CU Denver’s impact and reach.

The Chief of Staff facilitates communication and interaction among the Chancellor, cabinet members, staff in the Chancellor’s office, and various internal and external constituencies, including members of the University of Colorado Board of Regents, University of Colorado System executive leadership, key external constituents, campus governance leaders and groups, deans and other members of the university community in an increasingly diverse academic environment.

The Chief of Staff is responsible for numerous administrative activities and projects for the Chancellor and serves as a central information source for internal and external inquiries. Keeping the Chancellor informed of all significant actions taken is an important element of the Chief of Staff’s responsibility. This position requires an individual to handle highly confidential matters, evincing strong organizational skills, political acumen, and quality-control approaches.

The Chief of Staff oversees major projects and initiatives as assigned, serves on committees, responds to internal and external concerns, and, in collaboration with University Communications, develops, coordinates, and assesses the Chancellor’s high-impact and sensitive communications. The position plays an active role in crisis communication and response.

As an advisor and collaborator, the Chief of Staff ensures that the diverse and divergent voices of various stakeholders are brought together to build unity within the University. The position keeps the Chancellor’s office focused on the University’s mission and strategic plan and helps to prioritize the Chancellor’s engagement and activities in that regard.

The Chief of Staff collaborates with senior leaders in strategic planning and problem resolution that affects major segments of the University. The position ensures matters requiring the attention of executive leaders are thoroughly developed, researched, evaluated, and executed.

The successful candidate will be highly organized, an expert at creating systems and detail-oriented, possess high levels of cultural competency necessary to excel at a Minority/Equity Serving Institution, thrive within a fast-paced, complex environment while keeping the Chancellor’s Office focused on the university mission and strategic initiatives. Ideal candidates must have a proven track record of building collaborative, excel at cross-cultural relationships, and work across organizational lines and with key constituencies in an expanse community context. Above all, the successful candidate must have a demonstrable record of exercising the highest ethics, discretion and confidentiality inherent in such a position, without exception.


Duties and responsibilities of the position include, but are not limited to:

    Provides overall management support to the Chancellor’s Office and functions; works closely with the Chancellor’s Manager of Office Operations Creates processes to bolster organizational effectivenessLeads special projects and initiatives as assigned by the ChancellorDevelops, implements, and administers policies and directives related to areas of managerial oversightHelps identify and organize enhanced engagement with diverse governance groupsEngages frequently with donors and other VIPs Communicates professionally and effectively with all constituentsPartners with the Chancellor in engaging with key stakeholders, internally and externallyEnsures cabinet members are informed of critical initiatives, actions, and activitiesEnsures key initiatives are effectively and efficiently implemented Independently handles high-level and sensitive queries, concerns, and requests on behalf of the Chancellor Utilizes university-wide resources as needed to solve problems and mediate disputesDevelops and maintains a tracking and response system for communications sent to and from the CU system, board members and VIPsEnsures review and goal setting for the Chancellor’s direct reports are completed in a timely fashionWorks with campus constituencies, including faculty, staff and student governance on various policies and issuesFacilitates productive communication among the Chancellor’s cabinet members and key leaders and governance groups, while helping to identify lanes of responsibility and points of collaboration Works with the Chancellor, Chancellor’s Office staff, and cabinet members to set agendas for executive-level meetings involving the ChancellorLeads/co-leads briefings with the Chancellor ahead of critical meetings/eventsAssists with the development, implementation, assessment and reporting of the Chancellor’s priorities, tracks action items, and monitors Cabinet-level Key Performance IndicatorsRepresents the Chancellor, as appropriate, at events and before internal and external constituencies, offering the highest levels of customer service and professionalismPerforms other duties and projects as assigned by the Chancellor
Salary and Benefits:

The salary range (or hiring range) for this position has been established at $150,000 to $215,000.  

The salary of the finalist(s) selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to, internal equity, experience, education, specialty and training.

The above salary range (or hiring range) represents the University’s good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible compensation at the time of posting.

This position is not eligible for overtime compensation.

Your total compensation goes beyond the number on your paycheck. The University of Colorado provides generous leave, health plans and retirement contributions that add to your bottom line.


Total Compensation Calculator:

Diversity and Equity:

The University will provide reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities throughout the employment application process. To request an accommodation pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act, please contact the Human Resources ADA Coordinator at [email protected].

The University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus is committed to recruiting and supporting a diverse student body, faculty and administrative staff. The university strives to promote a culture of inclusiveness, respect, communication and understanding. We encourage applications from women, ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities and all veterans. The University of Colorado is committed to diversity and equality in education and employment.

The University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus is dedicated to ensuring a safe and secure environment for our faculty, staff, students and visitors. To assist in achieving that goal, we conduct background investigations for all prospective employees.

Minimum Qualifications:

    Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher educationSeven years professional experience as Chief of Staff, high-level administrator or other role responsible for achieving institutional strategic goals, dealing with sensitive political and personnel issues, making public presentations regarding institutional issues and initiatives, and negotiating on behalf of a chief executive officer of a higher education institution and/or complex non-profit organization 10 years of leadership experience which could include directing a major administrative/business function, developing and implementing initiatives, and/or managing personnel and financesProven cultural competency and experience in diversity, equity, and inclusion Experience that demonstrates excellent communication skills, oral and written as well as excellent organizational skills and time management skills
Required: Applicants must meet minimum qualifications at the time of hire.

Preferred Qualifications:

    Master’s degree from an accredited institution of higher educationTen years professional experience as Chief of Staff, high-level administrator, or other role responsible for achieving institutional strategic goals, dealing with sensitive political and personnel issues, making public presentations regarding institutional issues and initiatives, and negotiating on behalf of a chief executive officer of a higher education institution and/or complex non-profit organization
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

    Ability to act with the highest of integrity and diplomacy at all timesHigh levels of emotional intelligence and cultural competency Strong leadership and persuasion skills, including the ability to work effectively with varied personalities and tactfully influence others to take particular courses of actionStrong intercultural and Interpersonal skills, including the ability to facilitate interaction, communication, and teamwork between diverse leaders and individualsStrong oral, written and listening communication skills, including the ability to accurately interpret what others are saying and convey messages, information, concepts, and details accurately and clearlyStrong presentation skills, including the ability to adapt and share information with a variety of audiences in a resonate way that is easily understandableStrong organizational skills, including the ability to set and meet goals, create schedules and keep schedules, coordinate and facilitate meetings, make decisions, and deliver resultsStrong operational skills, including the ability to examine and re-engineer operations and procedures, formulate policy, and develop and implement new strategies and proceduresStrong negotiation and conciliation skills, including the ability to actively listen, build rapport, solve problems, make decisions, be necessarily assertive, and de-escalate conflicts and concerns Ability to work diplomatically with a wide range of individuals, with convergent and divergent perspectives Ability to work effectively with individuals and groups from diverse demographics, backgrounds, cultures, and experiencesAbility to work under pressure, manage multiple concurrent and competing tasks and responsibilities, and adapt to changing competing prioritiesAbility to solve complex problems and resolve challenging situations in productive ways, with adeptness and sensitivity Ability to navigate a complex political environment Ability to coach, mentor, develop and provide direction to othersAbility to maintain the strictest of confidence and manage sensitive issuesMust have flexibility with schedule to work outside of the traditional work week schedule as needed and travel as required

Job Category: Executive
Primary Location: Denver
Schedule: Full-time
Posting Date: Dec 20, 2021
Unposting Date: Ongoing
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