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Vice-President, Advancement

University of Ottawsa
Ottawa (Region), Ontario (CA)

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University of Ottawa

The University of Ottawa is a major research university with a full range of programs of study. Founded in 1848, it is now the largest French-English bilingual university in the world, with 10 faculties, 1,300 regular professors and 1,200 part-time professors, 5,000 employees and 550 academic programs, including the largest French immersion program and the fifth largest co-op program among Canadian universities. The University is home to over 49,000 students, including 8,000 graduate students. It provides one of Canada’s most generous financial aid programs, offering students in 2022-2023 close to $150 million in scholarships and bursaries, including $76 million in direct financial support to international students.

An integral part of Canada’s capital, the University of Ottawa is a vibrant centre of learning where a variety of cultures and perspectives come together to create a truly unique educational experience. The University community directly reflects essential national traits, embracing the country’s diversity, bilingualism, and spirit of openness.

The University of Ottawa offers a dynamic and stimulating environment where research and knowledge are fundamental to every aspect of university life. Breakthroughs in health, sciences, social sciences, and the humanities at the University attract global attention – reflecting the quality of the University’s faculty members and their drive to discover.

The opportunity

The University of Ottawa is seeking a Vice-President, Advancement to lead its institutional fundraising strategy, efforts and team. The Vice-President, Advancement will be responsible for providing a comprehensive, integrated approach to development and alumni engagement, ensuring that they are in concert and in accordance with the strategic vision and academic mission of the University.

Reporting to the President and Vice-Chancellor, Jacques Frémont, the Vice-President, Advancement will work closely with the President, other Vice-Presidents and Deans, the members of the Board of Governors and academic leaders, in support of the University’s advancement objectives, through engagement and partnership with alumni, donors, faculty, students, parents, support staff, friends, partners, government representatives, volunteers and other stakeholders.

The Vice-President, Advancement will play the central role in fundraising for the University of Ottawa, while leading staff and volunteers in transformational and leadership gift cultivation and solicitation, getting directly involved in enhancing the strength of donor and alumni relationships.  With the launch in 2021 of the reIMAGINE comprehensive campaign for the University of Ottawa, this is a truly exciting time to join the senior leadership team as the Vice-President, Advancement.  The Vice-President, Advancement will play a central and critical role in supporting the reIMAGINE Campaign Cabinet and the many volunteers who are collectively committed to the success of this ambitious enterprise. 

For more information on the University of Ottawa, visit    

The University of Ottawa is actively seeking candidates for the position of

Vice-President, Advancement


As the University of Ottawa’s Vice-President, Advancement, the incumbent will:

  • Make recommendations and advise the President, as a member of the University’s senior leadership, on matters of policy and priorities and participate in University strategic planning and implementation.
  • In consultation and partnership with the President, Vice-Presidents, the Chancellor, members of the Board of Governors and various University community stakeholders, create and lead the development and implementation of a strategic advancement plan that aligns with and supports the University’s mission and vision.
  • Provide leadership and direction for all centralized and decentralized fundraising and alumni relations programs, ensuring that best-practice activities are in place to support advancement goals.
  • Working closely and in collaboration with the uOttawa Alumni Association and its Board of Directors, oversee the development of strategies and initiatives that continue to build meaningful alumni engagement with the University and its faculties.
  • Lead overall strategy and implementation of plans for the University’s comprehensive fundraising campaigns.
  • Ensure a professional, strategic, and coordinated approach to donor identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship activities.
  • Strategically engage and involve the President, Vice-Presidents, Deans, Faculty members, Directors, members of the Board of Governors, alumni, and other friends and volunteers in fundraising initiatives and activities.
  • Forge and strengthen ties and implement strategies and tactics to reinforce the engagement with new and existing donors, alumni, partners and stakeholders, to attract new and increased investment in the University.
  • Grow the University’s senior volunteer structure and participate in the identification, recruitment, training, management, and stewardship of volunteers.
  • Take a proactive role in assessment and continuous improvement, meticulously evaluating the outcomes of fundraising campaigns, engagement initiatives, and strategies.
  • Serve as an ambassador and representative of the University, establishing and maintaining effective relationships with faculty, staff, students, alumni, donors, partners, and the wider community.
  • Improve the University’s standing and reputation domestically and internationally.
  • Manage the human and financial resources of the Advancement portfolio.

Key Experience and Competencies

The ideal candidate for the position of Vice-President, Advancement is an accomplished executive with a proven track record in major, transformational fundraising, providing strategic direction, operations management and team leadership in all aspects of the key advancement role. The ideal candidate will appreciate and promote the academic research and teaching mission of the University of Ottawa and will view Advancement as a pivotal element in building relationships with both internal and external stakeholders and communities, to improve engagement with students, faculty, researchers and alumni, as well as to further the University’s ambitions and development as laid out in its strategic plan, Transformation 2030.

The successful candidate will value input from others and will have superior interpersonal and communication skills, with a demonstrated ability to build and nurture relationships, and will encourage the involvement of others as ambassadors and partners in attracting resources and investments while also encouraging engagement toward the University.

In concert with the President, and the Administration Committee, the Vice-President, Advancement will be skilled at leading the development of strategy, and will introduce and execute clear action plans to achieve the University’s fundraising and alumni relations goals. The ideal candidate will draw on their extensive knowledge and experience in soliciting transformational and leadership gifts and directing comprehensive campaigns in a complex environment. The successful candidate will present a vision and convincing ideas and action plans, along with best practices and innovative approaches to engage and inspire alumni, donors and key partners in various markets and regions, nationally and internationally.  In particular, the position would benefit from a person who understands data management and analytics and how they can help drive better strategic planning and decision-making.

Possessing a successful track record in meeting expectations and goals, the ideal candidate will be an action-oriented catalyst who will take the advancement and alumni engagement team to new heights. The Vice-President, Advancement, will have demonstrated experience and ability to lead and motivate a large team of professionals and volunteers, as well as to prepare new staff through support and selective recruitment, while ensuring an environment that fosters diversity, inclusion, respect, professionalism and appreciation.

A skilled and effective communicator, the ideal candidate will have a deep understanding of the crucial role that marketing, communications, alumni relations and partnerships play in successful revenue generation. The Vice-President, Advancement will implement various communications initiatives that emphasize our brand and further heighten the University of Ottawa’s visibility locally, nationally, and globally.

The Vice-President, Advancement will be capable of tactfully and effectively navigating through the University’s multi-layered structure. The ideal candidate will be a persuasive individual who listens and evaluates, and uses these abilities to engage and influence others. Open, transparent and respectful, the successful candidate will also have a high level of integrity and personal accountability.

A master's degree and accreditation or credentials in the fundraising field will be considered an asset.

The ideal candidate must understand and respect the complexities and many facets of language duality at our university. The incumbent must be able to communicate professionally in French and in English and will be very comfortable operating in a bilingual working environment and demonstrate vast administrative experience, an understanding of financial and administrative issues resulting from decision-making in a university setting, and a capacity to transform bold concepts into concrete results. 

Links to Additional Information on uOttawa

About uOttawa

Transformation 2030

Strategic Areas of Development in Research

University of Ottawa Administration and Governance


reIMAGINE the future of higher education


If you believe you have the profile we are seeking, please forward your résumé with a letter explaining your interest by completing the “Registration Form”. We invite interested candidates to review the Procedure for the Appointment of a Vice-President or the Secretary of the University prior to submitting their candidacy. All information received will be treated in the strictest confidence. We appreciate the interest of every candidate; however, only those selected for the next step in the process will be contacted.

The Selection Committee will begin consideration of candidates in the fall of 2023 and continue its work until the position is filled. 

The University of Ottawa is an equal opportunity employer. We strongly encourage applications from women, Indigenous people, persons with disabilities, and members of visible minorities. In keeping with Citizenship and Immigration Canada requirements, all qualified persons are invited to apply; however, preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

The University of Ottawa is proud of its over 160-year tradition of bilingualism. At the time of their appointment, senior administration team members are expected to have the ability to function in a bilingual (French and English) setting.




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