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Vice President for Advancement

Our Lady of the Lake University
78207, San Antonio
To commensurate with experience
Date posted
Jan 26, 2024

Job Details

Job Summary:

The Advancement division supports Our Lady of the Lake University’s (OLLU) unwavering commitment to providing exceptional teaching, experiences, service, and pathways to social & economic mobility. Reporting to the University President, the Vice President for Advancement (VPA) is a strategic and visionary leader responsible for securing external funding and partnerships that align, support, and achieve OLLU’s ambitious and boldly aspirational future. The VPA provides leadership for the ongoing conception, development, and implementation of a comprehensive fundraising program that includes: alumni giving, annual giving (athletics, employee, individual, and family giving programs), board giving, major gifts, corporate and foundation giving, planned giving, and capital campaigns. The VPA will also provide leadership to sponsored programs (federal and private grants). In addition to the core function of university advancement, the VPA will supervise university marketing and communication department. In doing so, the VPA advances the university priorities and programs while encouraging and cultivating cross-university collaboration, identifying, and encouraging opportunities for innovation and strategic thought partnership. As a forward thinker, the VPA is expected to build a robust team and structure that supports and adapts to the dynamic realities of the university and industry. The VPA will be required to build and use state-of-the-art data for tracking and strategically advancing the transformation of the university. In addition to fundraising through traditional and best practices, the VPA shall develop innovative and modern means of reaching traditional and new generations of prospective donors, all the while elevating the university’s brand and ensuring consistent communications.


Essential Functions:

  1. Operates and leads a cross-functional team with a high level of integrity.
  2. In collaboration with the President, leads the conception, development and implementation of aspirational fundraising goals and priorities for the university, including close collaborations with senior leadership, faculty, and staff.
  3. Designs and recommends strategies to achieve the university’s fundraising objectives.
  4. In collaboration with key intra-university constituents, is responsible for the full fundraising cycle and annual fundraising metrics and the achievement of corresponding goals.
  5. Supports the president in all aspects of external affairs, including developing public relations and fundraising strategies in fulfillment of the president’s role in fundraising.
  6. Provides overall leadership to the Advancement/Marketing and Communications staff, setting, approving, and evaluating performance metrics.
  7. Represents the university at official public events when the President or other designees are not available.
  8. Provides leadership in campus wide discussions of new initiatives, capital project planning, and other advancement opportunities that may include strategic staffing, and industry trends.
  9. Helps communicate and articulate how individual initiatives, programmatic direction, and overall advancement strategies may shape the university. 
  10. Provides unwavering and consistent leadership in aligning alumni engagement, annual giving, corporate giving, and academic leadership with regard to priorities, donor strategy, and the university’s overall brand.
  11. Leads the development of institutional fundraising strategies, maintaining a robust and comprehensive approach to consistently engage every donor, friend of the university, alumni, trustee, prospect, etc.
  12. May be asked to serve on a sub-committee of the Board of Trustees, and/or as a liaison between OLLU and others.
  13. Supervises Marketing and Communications through the creation of a positive work environment that implements comprehensive marketing and communications strategies with measurable outcomes.
  14. Prioritizes departmental employee strategies on elements necessary to advance the division’s fundraising, engagement, and outreach initiatives, consistent with the overall university priorities.
  15. Working some nights, weekends, and occasional travel.
  16. Accepts and fulfills other duties as assigned by the President.


Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  1. Models and leads with integrity.
  2. Possesses and models a strong entrepreneurial and can-do spirit.
  3. Highly collaborative in all aspects of measurable outcomes.
  4. Commitment to continuous improvement of self, others, and the university.
  5. Exceptional management, leadership, and interpersonal skills.
  6. Strategic and analytical skills.
  7. Strategic thinker with an ability to execute innovative and bold plans.
  8. Ability to effectively and simultaneously manage multiple high-priority projects in a fast-paced, high-growth environment.
  9. Perform, at a high level, in a collaborative, dynamic, fast-paced high growth team-based environment.
  10. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills with a strong ability to inspire people and decisions.
  11. Ability to analyze, interpret, and synthesize data to effectively tell a story.
  12. Understanding of and appreciation for the history, mission, vision, core values, and strategic goals of a Catholic university, with a sincere willingness to deepen understanding.
  13. Strong and proven hands-on knowledge in sales, cultivation, acquisition, corporate relations, lobbying, promotion, systems, advancement, and/or fundraising.
  14. Ability to build comprehensive donor strategies, cultivate families and individuals, maximize gift potential, and solicit major gifts. 
  15. Established ability to navigate six- and seven-figure asks through complex asset management discussions; create new donor relationships and interact with current high-level donors while maintaining a high level of professionalism, discretion, and confidentiality.
  16. Effective leadership skills and executive presence, including the ability to regularly mentor and steward a broader team towards success. 
  17. Strong desire to regularly provide learning opportunities and resources to self, and to the growth of a highperforming team.
  18. Ability to co-create and communicate a university-wide vision. 
  19. Ability to drive and inform budget strategy that aligns with academic and institutional priorities.
  20. Experience in advancing top organizational priorities, particularly in successful student (or customer) recruitment and retention, fundraising, positioning, and advancement of an organization.
  21. Conducting, analyzing, and applying market research strategies towards setting the direction that results in philanthropic, funding, and organizational branding priorities.
  22. Knowledge of operations, budgeting, strategic planning and personnel management.
  23. Meticulous attention to detail, self-starter, goal-oriented and able to work independently and initiate follow-through.
  24. Excellent oral and written communication skills, including the ability to write clearly, persuasively, and concisely.
  25. Ability to work well under deadlines and pressure with a strong ability to prioritize tasks.
  26. Strong organizational and interpersonal skills, including the ability to work collaboratively to lead diverse teams.


Education and Experience:

  1. Bachelor’s degree required. Master’s highly preferred.
  2. At least seven years of successful experience in advancement or fundraising required. Ten years of experience is preferred. Higher education experience is not required.
  3. Working knowledge of Microsoft Office and Blackbaud Raiser's Edge NXT or similar customer relationship management software.


About Our Lady of the Lake University:

On the foundation of faith, wisdom and trust in Providence, Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) prepares graduates to transform their communities, families and professions.

OLLU, founded in 1895 by the Congregation of Divine Providence, is a coeducational comprehensive institution. With its main residential campus in San Antonio and non-traditional programs in San Antonio, Houston, the Rio Grande Valley (La Feria), and online, OLLU has a presence in two of the largest cities in Texas, the border region, and literally around the world.

The University offers more than 30 undergraduate majors and minors, 14 master's programs and three doctoral programs through its College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business and Leadership, and the College of Professional Studies. OLLU offers classes in daytime, evening, weekend and online formats.


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