Executive Director

Job title: Executive Director
Organization: The Ohio State University
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Job Description

The Ohio State University’s College of Education and Human Ecology (EHE) is seeking an accomplished professional who has a passion for higher education to serve as its leader of development and alumni relations. The Executive Director will have gravitas, an entrepreneurial spirit and will bring a proven track record of driving growth in fundraising, building relationships and implementing change. The ED is responsible for understanding the mission, needs and value proposition of the college in order to strategically create awareness, engagement and support (philanthropic and otherwise) from a variety of constituent groups including alumni, donors and friends.

The ED will be a key member of the new Dean’s leadership team and partner with the Dean to finalize campaign planning for the College’s role in the University’s upcoming comprehensive campaign, slated to launch October 2019. The ED/Dean partnership, combined with the engagement of key stakeholders, will position the College to raise funds in support of the Dean’s 4 strategic priorities:

  • Urban and Rural Education
  • Early Childhood
  • STEAM Education
  • Internationalization and Global Impact

Around the world, 100,000 EHE alumni are renowned educators, scholars, policymakers, and entrepreneurs. They advance well-being and improve the human experience as nutritionists, exercise specialists, counselors for couples and families, hotel managers, financial planners, retail merchandisers, and healthcare providers.

EHE boasts the most (10) nationally ranked programs of any college at Ohio State. It has the country’s preeminent program in workforce development and vocational/technical education. Other top-ranked programs include: counselor education, curriculum and instruction, educational administration, educational psychology, elementary education, secondary teacher education, kinesiology, human development and family science, and sport management.

The ED has dual reporting to both the Assistant Vice President of Development and the Dean of EHE and leads a team comprised of: 1 senior development officer, 1 alumni relations professional, 1 donor relations/stewardship professional and 1 stewardship assistant.

Position highlights include opportunities to accomplish the following:

Development (75%)

  • Finalize plans and implement the next comprehensive campaign for the college.
  • Lead the development and alumni relations team to identify, cultivate, solicit and secure major gifts of $100,000 and above from individuals, corporations, foundations and organizations.
  • Strategically leverage Advancement’s central services: prospect development, gift planning, regional development officers, donor experience, principal gifts, foundation relations and corporate relations to help accomplish the College’s fundraising goals.
  • Enhance the donor relations and stewardship strategy that will: build, grow and sustain an engaged donor network who serve as advocates and ambassadors and recognize donors in accordance with their level of giving.

Alumni Relations (25%)

  • Strategically engage alumni in efficient and effective ways with particular focus on increasing support for the college.
  • Collaborate with the Alumni Association to utilize new tools to segment and strategically reach the college’s alumni population.

Performance Objectives

First 1-3 months

  1. Understand the Dean’s vision/strategic priorities document and college campaign plan.
  2. Assess the overall structure, team, resources, capabilities, bandwidth of EHE’s development and alumni relations team.
  3. Build positive relationships with EHE’s key internal faculty, staff and external stakeholders.
  4. Meet with the College’s VIP prospects/donors/alumni both to introduce self and to continue to introduce the new Dean.
  5. Meet with Advancement’s various central services to understand existing College partnerships and successes and how partnerships can be built moving forward based on fundraising needs of campaign.

First 3-6 months

  1. Help finalize the college’s campaign planning.
  2. Begin to actively fundraise.
  3. Engage with College’s Marketing/Communications team to identify partnership opportunities and needs around development and alumni relations.

First 12 months

  1. Lead the successful launch of the EHE campaign as part of the university campaign.
  2. Positively lead the Development and Alumni Relations team while building a trusting and collaborative culture.
  3. Continue the fundraising growth of the college.

Requirements include the experience and ability to deliver the following results:

  • Lead and grow a sophisticated, collaborative team, focusing on its success as a unit and the professional development of its individuals.
  • Build strong relationships with: college and Advancement leadership, faculty and staff, college and university stakeholders to advance the mission and goals of the college.
  • Maintain fundraising momentum needed to accomplish campaign priorities.

Why Join Ohio State Advancement Now?
The Ohio State University recently concluded the most successful fundraising effort in its history, with contributions from what is believed to be the most donors ever to a higher education campaign. The But for Ohio State Campaign raised over $3 billion from more than 750,000 donors, shattering the goal of $2.5 billion. Ohio State is now six months away from the public kickoff of the next campaign which coincides with the celebration of the university’s 150th birthday. All members of Advancement are part of creating an inclusive culture that inspires an exceptionally diverse and talented team and are measured on their adherence to the following core competencies: leadership, continuous improvement, teamwork and collaboration, and communication/interpersonal effectiveness.


  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education/experience
  • Eight years of professional fundraising experience or professional transferable experience (i.e. managing relationships with required measurable output, making calls, conducting face-to-face appointments, creating and presenting proposals, and other fundamental elements of client relationship or sales-related activities)
  • Five years management experience.


  • At least eight years of professional fundraising experience raising the highest level of philanthropic gifts at an organization (preferably five or six figures and above)
  • Eight years of professional fundraising experience in higher education or a hospital/health care environment
  • Experience working in other advancement departments such as donor relations and stewardship, donor communications and/or alumni relations.

You Need To Know
The Ohio State University is looking to make an investment in an experienced professional who will evolve the Advancement opportunities for the college and institution and therefore the salary for this position is negotiable. Aside from the unparalleled benefits of working for The Ohio State University and working in the diverse, smart, safe, fun and growing city of Columbus, Ohio, this opportunity will provide exceptional rewards that arise from working for a land grant institution where you will truly feel the impact of your work. Learn more here: https://hr.osu.edu/careers/.

Closing Statement
The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, national origin, disability status, or protected veteran status.

How to Apply
Please visit www.advancement.osu.edu to find out more about University Advancement and apply online for job opening at https://osujoblinks.com/7hgq. Questions may be directed to Steph Mizer, Senior Manager of Talent Acquisition and Management, Chief Diversity Officer at mizer.43@osu.edu.