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Vice President for University Advancement and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Tower Foundation

Job Summary

*Applicants must apply via the search firm*

The Vice President for University Advancement and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Tower Foundation provides executive level leadership and strategic vision for the division of University Advancement which currently includes the offices of Development; Advancement and Campaign Operations; Alumni and Community Engagement; Athletics Advancement; Administrative Services, and the Tower Foundation. In conjunction with the President, the Vice President acts as a representative and ambassador to San José State's constituents to promote positive relationships, build strong partnerships, and garner public and private support for the university. As a member of the President's Cabinet and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Tower Foundation, the Vice President plans and implements initiatives in support of the university’s academic and student-centered mission using the personnel and resources allocated to the division. The Vice President sets goals, monitors work and evaluates results to ensure that division objectives and operating requirements are met and are in line with the needs and mission of the organization. Reporting directly to the Vice President are the Associate Vice Presidents for Development; Advancement and Campaign Operations; Alumni and Community Engagement; Athletics Advancement; Administrative Services and the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Tower Foundation.

Key Responsibilities
  • Serves as Chief Advancement Officer and operates the Division of University Advancement as a team, demonstrating an open, participatory, team-oriented management style utilizing best practices from the industry to move the division forward
  • Serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Tower Foundation Board, the University’s philanthropic auxiliary with an external board of volunteers and endowment assets of over $150M
  • Manages budgets and financial resources of the division
  • Establishes and articulates goals for the division and assesses progress towards goals in an open, transparent, collegial manner, including appraising both strengths and areas for growth
  • Leads the planning and successful execution of the next campaign
  • Remains knowledgeable about and supportive of promoting industry best practices
  • Instills and nurtures a culture of philanthropy within the university community
  • Maintains a portfolio of principle gift prospects
  • Leads the brand/ image strategies and supports efforts to develop and implement a university-wide strategy to position SJSU within the external community
  • Carries out responsibilities in accordance with university policies, CSU policies and applicable laws
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • An understanding and promotion of the core academic mission of the University and enable cooperation between Advancement and all the divisions and groups of people
  • A proven track record and understanding of fundraising programs, including individual, corporate and foundation relations, deferred giving, grant development and annual programs, and a thorough understanding of gift management and stewardship
  • A thorough understanding of governmental relations and political strategies
  • Demonstrated personal success in major donor cultivation and solicitation
  • Experience with planning and executing comprehensive campaigns
  • Demonstrated success in working with boards and foundations comprised of prominent corporate and community volunteers and alumni
  • Knowledge of and commitment to the use of information technology to support advancement programs
  • Strong interpersonal skills, particularly with donors, volunteers, and staff members from diverse backgrounds
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills and the ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from internal and external audiences
  • Commitment to diversity and inclusive excellence
  • Ability to position the President to maximize his potential as a fundraiser for the university
  • Willingness and ability to travel; evening and weekend work is required
  • Ability to work effectively with multiple stakeholders (students, alumni, faculty, staff) from diverse backgrounds
  • Maintain dignity and self-control in difficult situations
  • Ability to communicate with constituents in a professional and respectful manner
Required Qualifications
  • A Bachelor's Degree from an accredited institution
  • A minimum of 8 or more years in a successful management or leadership role in public higher education advancement or equivalent experience
Preferred Qualifications
  • Graduate Degree from an accredited institution
  • Experience working effectively within academic shared governance and collective bargaining environments


Classification: Administrator IV
Anticipated Hiring Range: $21,000/month - $23,333/month
CSU Salary Range: $9,167/month - $29,425/month

The final hiring salary will be commensurate with experience.

San José State University offers employees a comprehensive benefits package typically worth 30-35% of your base salary. For more information on programs available, please see the Employee Benefits Summary .

Application Procedure

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in the leadership profile which can be found at .

WittKieffer is assisting San José State University in this search. For fullest consideration, application materials should be received by: May 15, 2023 .

Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal .

Contact Information

Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D., Alejandra Gillette-Teran and Corin Edwards

CSU Vaccination Policy

The CSU requires faculty, staff, and students who are accessing campus facilities to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus (including all booster doses of an approved vaccine for which an individual is eligible per current CDC recommendations) or declare a medical or religious exemption from doing so. As a condition of employment, any candidates advanced in a currently open search process should be prepared to comply with this requirement as well as with other safety measures established on the campus. The system wide policy can be found at and questions may be sent to .

Additional Information

Satisfactory completion of a background check (including a criminal records check) is required for employment. SJSU will issue a contingent offer of employment to the selected candidate, which may be rescinded if the background check reveals disqualifying information, and/or it is discovered that the candidate knowingly withheld or falsified information. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the continued employment of a current CSU employee who was offered the position on a contingent basis.

The standard background check includes: criminal check, employment and education verification. Depending on the position, a motor vehicle and/or credit check may be required. All background checks are conducted through the university's third party vendor, Accurate Background. Some positions may also require fingerprinting. SJSU will pay all costs associated with this procedure. Evidence of required degree(s) or certification(s) will be required at time of hire.


All San José State University employees are considered mandated reporters under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and are required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment. Incumbent is also required to promptly report any knowledge of a possible Title IX related incident to the Title IX Office or report any discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation to the Office of Equal Opportunity.

Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act and Campus Housing Fire Safety Notification:

Pursuant to the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, the Annual Security Report (ASR) is also now available for viewing at The ASR contains the current security and safety-related policy statements, emergency preparedness and evacuation information, crime prevention and Sexual Assault prevention information, and information about drug and alcohol prevention programming. The ASR also contains statistics of Clery crimes for San José State University locations for the three most recent calendar years. A paper copy of the ASR is available upon request by contacting the Office of the Clery Director by phone at 408-924-1501 or by email at .

Pursuant to the Higher Education Opportunity Act, the Annual Fire Safety Report (AFSR) is also available for viewing at . The purpose of this report is to disclose statistics for fires that occurred within SJSU on-campus housing facilities for the three most recent calendar years, and to distribute fire safety policies and procedures intended to promote safety on Campus. A paper copy of the AFSR is available upon request by contacting the Housing Office by phone at 408-795-5600 or by email at .

Equal Employment Statement

San José State University (SJSU) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of age, ancestry, citizenship status, color, creed, disability, ethnicity, gender, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, race, religion or lack thereof, sex, sexual orientation, transgender, or protected veteran status consistent with applicable federal and state laws. This policy applies to all SJSU students, faculty and staff programs and activities. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and certain other federal and state laws, prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in all education programs and activities operated by the university (both on and off campus).

Advertised: April 06, 2023 (9:00 AM) Pacific Daylight Time
Applications close:

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