Senior Director of Institutional Advancement, Annenberg School for Communication (Hybrid Eligible)

Senior Director of Institutional Advancement, Annenberg School for Communication (Hybrid Eligible)

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Posted Job Title
Senior Director of Institutional Advancement, Annenberg School for Communication (Hybrid Eligible)

Job Profile Title
Development Officer, School/Center

Job Description Summary
The University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School for Communication is a global leader in research and teaching aimed at analyzing the form, substance, and influence of existing and emergent media. The School was established with the belief that the most cutting-edge work in communication studies will have real world impact in social discourse, public policy, and global culture. Annenberg's founding mission and mandate (to inform national and international conversations about how mass media shape lives) has proven to be increasingly more relevant and necessary over time. As a research institution, the school brings the world's top scholars together to help make sense of an ever-changing media landscape, and the many ways in which that landscape influences us as individuals and groups. The school's development and alumni relations plans will help articulate the work of the faculty and students to various audiences in the region, across the country, and around the world, and will establish a structure to support engaged relationships with individuals, institutions, corporations, and alumni with a potential interest in the Annenberg School's work and priorities.

Reporting jointly to the Dean of the Annenberg School for Communication (ASC) and the Associate Vice-President for School and Center Programs, the Senior Director of Institutional Advancement will oversee Development, Alumni Relations, and Marketing and Communications for the School. Working closely with the Dean, the Senior Director is responsible for conceptualizing, planning, and executing a coordinated program of institutional advancement, including major gifts work with a primary focus on fostering new and existing corporate and foundation partnerships, building and sustaining a strong alumni relations program, and supporting and framing strong communications strategies for external stakeholders, within the framework of the School's top priorities.

The Senior Director will also serve as an important member of the Dean's senior leadership team. As a part of the school's strategic planning and administrative infrastructure, the Senior Director will help provide leadership for incubating and fostering major strategic initiatives that promise to further the school's mission and momentum. S/he will develop appropriate communications, engagement, and fundraising strategies to support the prerogatives that emerge from this process. The Senior Director will also work closely with the Dean and the school's financial team to help maximize resources, partnering to best structure and position programs to attract external interest while meeting strategic priorities, guiding the appropriate implementation of donor-driven programs, and ensuring that the School is able to effectively steward donors.

The Senior Director will work with the Dean in mobilizing volunteer leadership to advance the School's mission and quest for external visibility and support. As part of this effort, the Senior Director will work with the Dean and others to plan and guide formative thinking around the volunteer body or bodies that might continue to propel the school strategically. Over time, the Senior Director will manage recruiting, retaining, and rotating potential volunteer leaders and fully engaging them in the culture, work, and community of the School with an eye to maximizing their involvement and support.

The Senior Director will also work closely with the University's central Office of Development and Alumni Relations, drawing on its support services, and integrating the Annenberg School's initiatives within the University's overall strategic and fundraising design. The Senior Director serves as an important bridge between School and University Development activities.

With future potential growth and expansion in mind, the department and position are newly forming at the Annenberg School, and the Senior Director of Institutional Advancement will be instrumental in framing the work and structure of the institutional advancement mission and function.

Job Description

Targeted Pay Range: $125,000-$150,000

This Targeted Pay Range is only applicable to this job posting. All salary offers are made based on the candidate's qualifications, experience, skills, and education as they directly relate to the requirements of the position, as well as internal and market factors and job profile.

Key Responsibilities:

1. Lead a coordinated and comprehensive program of alumni engagement and private source funding including:
  • developing and executing multi-year strategic plans involving alumni relations, development and communications-related initiatives;
  • incubating key strategic initiatives with development potential in partnership with the Dean and other key faculty and staff
  • managing staff and budgets;
  • maintaining and analyzing data in support of strategic planning;
  • developing effective cases for support for school priorities;
  • building meaningful volunteer and alumni engagement opportunities;
  • organizing events and visibility opportunities in support of strategic initiatives;
  • planning and executing campaigns as needed.

2. Cultivate, solicit and steward the School's top prospects and manage a pipeline of these top prospects. Engage the Dean, faculty, staff, and volunteers in executing the required cultivation, solicitation and stewardship activities to advance the School's quest for gift and grant support as well as media and public awareness.

3. Expand and strengthen the school's fundraising pool and pipeline of potential new donors through sophisticated methods of entrepreneurial prospecting including data analysis, internal prospect research, collaboration with the Central DAR frontline, sourcing leads through other volunteers, etc. Organize practical strategies to secure funding from such sources.

4. With the Dean and in collaboration with both Central DAR and the Office of the University Secretary, establish a plan to manage, engage and expand school-specific volunteer and board structures, with particular attention to how they interface with and impact ongoing year-round work with the Annenberg Foundation board.

5. Provide strategic leadership and proactive oversight of the school's Office of Communications, including the implementation of a strategic communications plan that includes the marketing, publications, development, and constituent relations activities of the School. This includes direct supervision of a Director of Communications and oversight of the larger communications team in order to provide leadership in shaping and integrating the advancement and communications functions into a cohesive externally-pointed strategy to advance the school's mission.
  • Lead and direct a staff to achieve optimum results by:
    • Communicating financial and key performance indicators and results to staff members
    • Establishing priorities and goals for all staff.
    • Managing staffing needs and identifying areas for organizational development updates or changes
    • Guiding the talent identification and professional development needs, processes and outcomes within the entire unit in line with the University's diversity and inclusion priorities
    • Setting clear performance expectations and holding staff accountable for outcomes through frequent feedback and coaching
    • Ensuring open communications among team members, engaging in team building efforts and holding regular staff meetings that embrace and support the group's diversity
    • Inspiring and motivating staff to achieve optimum results

6. Collaborate with Central DAR colleagues as well as colleagues from other institutional advancement and development and alumni relations teams across the university to build working partnerships and to coordinate development and engagement activities in areas where work or constituencies overlaps, with specific attention to the School of Arts and Sciences which oversees the University's undergraduate communications degree program.

7. Serve as a member of the Dean's senior administrative leadership team and participate in key School-wide initiatives where Institutional Advancement is a meaningful partner. Work closely with School faculty, Centers, and Programs to promote development activities for these critically important school initiatives.


  • BA/BS degree and 7-10 years of successful development or fundraising experience or equivalent combination of education and experience required. A proven record of success in fostering major strategic initiatives, preferably at a major research university comparable to Penn. Master's Degree preferred.

  • Solid managerial and leadership skills and demonstrated ability to build and administer teams and programs and engage in long-term strategic planning.

  • Understanding of core communications principles and the use of promotional tools and techniques (publications, special events, etc.) to build allegiance and support among key constituencies.

  • Ability to engage, recruit, train and move alumni, volunteers, and donors to a desired action.

  • A thorough appreciation of the need for academic planning and its essential relationship to the effective application of basic fundraising principles. An accompanying ability to think and work strategically across the landscape of an academic institution and effectively serve as a member of an academic leadership team.

  • Creativity and an inquiring mind. These are best represented in the ability to recognize and foster opportunities for visibility and momentum-building; analyze funding sources and relate their potential to the strategic plans of the Annenberg School; more particularly, to organize practical strategies for matching Annenberg strategic goals to successful engagement and giving opportunities.

  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written.

  • Strong facility with development-related databases and a commitment to supporting and sustaining the data-driven elements of fund raising and alumni relations management.

  • High motivation and a capacity for hard work within the context of a goal-oriented environment.

  • A deeply held commitment to collegiality and collaborative work within a unit and across multiple units and constituencies as part of a complex institution.

  • Ability to function independently, yet relate comfortably to a centralized framework for fundraising, participating in and contributing to a team effort.

  • Valid driver's license is required. Position will also require work during evening hours; on weekends and overnight travel.

    Job Location - City, State
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    Hybrid Eligible - This position is eligible for a hybrid work schedule with a work week divided between working onsite and working remotely.

    Department / School
    Annenberg School for Communication

    Pay Range
    $74,476.00 - $117,086.00

    Affirmative Action Statement
    Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

    Special Requirements
    Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.

    University Benefits
    • Health, Life, and Flexible Spending Accounts: Penn offers comprehensive medical, prescription, behavioral health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits to protect you and your family's health and welfare. You can also use flexible spending accounts to pay for eligible health care and dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars.
    • Tuition: Take advantage of Penn's exceptional tuition benefits. You, your spouse, and your dependent children can get tuition assistance here at Penn. Your dependent children are also eligible for tuition assistance at other institutions.
    • Retirement: Penn offers generous retirement plans to help you save for your future. Penn's Basic, Matching, and Supplemental retirement plans allow you to save for retirement on a pre-tax or Roth basis. Choose from a wide variety of investment options through TIAA and Vanguard.
    • Time Away from Work: Penn provides you with a substantial amount of time away from work during the course of the year. This allows you to relax, take vacations, attend to personal affairs, recover from illness or injury, spend time with family-whatever your personal needs may be.
    • Long-Term Care Insurance: In partnership with Genworth Financial, Penn offers faculty and staff (and your eligible family members) long-term care insurance to help you cover some of the costs of long-term care services received at home, in the community or in a nursing facility. If you apply when you're newly hired, you won't have to provide proof of good health or be subject to underwriting requirements. Eligible family members must always provide proof of good health and are subject to underwriting.
    • Wellness and Work-life Resources: Penn is committed to supporting our faculty and staff as they balance the competing demands of work and personal life. That's why we offer a wide variety of programs and resources to help you care for your health, your family, and your work-life balance.
    • Professional and Personal Development: Penn provides an array of resources to help you advance yourself personally and professionally.
    • University Resources: As a member of the Penn community, you have access to a wide range of University resources as well as cultural and recreational activities. Take advantage of the University's libraries and athletic facilities, or visit our arboretum and art galleries. There's always something going on at Penn, whether it's a new exhibit at the Penn Museum, the latest music or theater presentation at the Annenberg Center, or the Penn Relays at Franklin Field to name just a few examples. As a member of the Penn community, you're right in the middle of the excitement-and you and your family can enjoy many of these activities for free.
    • Discounts and Special Services: From arts and entertainment to transportation and mortgages, you'll find great deals for University faculty and staff. Not only do Penn arts and cultural centers and museums offer free and discounted admission and memberships to faculty and staff. You can also enjoy substantial savings on other goods and services such as new cars from Ford and General Motors, cellular phone service plans, movie tickets, and admission to theme parks.
    • Flexible Work Hours: Flexible work options offer creative approaches for completing work while promoting balance between work and personal commitments. These approaches involve use of non-traditional work hours, locations, and/or job structures.
    • Penn Home Ownership Services: Penn offers a forgivable loan for eligible employees interested in buying a home or currently residing in West Philadelphia, which can be used for closing costs or home improvements.
    • Adoption Assistance: Penn will reimburse eligible employees on qualified expenses in connection with the legal adoption of an eligible child, such as travel or court fees, for up to two adoptions in your household.

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