Assistant Vice President of Communications

Fairfax, VA
Commensurate with education and experience.
Jul 09, 2022
Aug 16, 2022
Full Time
Assistant Vice President of CommunicationsThe George Mason University Office of Advancement and Alumni Relations invites qualified candidates to apply for a full-time Assistant Vice President of Communications position. The Advancement division is a comprehensive development and alumni relations enterprise with a staff complement of approximately 135 full-time employees. Functional units within Advancement include: development/fundraising, alumni relations, donor relations and stewardship, advancement communications, special events, gift processing, research, prospect management, gift planning, corporate and foundation relations, information systems and management, and infrastructure services.Advancement's mission is to build strong, lifelong relationships with George Mason University's alumni and constituents, while matching their philanthropic interests with the university's aspirations and priorities. The division is committed to serving the needs of the university, our alumni, and the greater community by providing access to quality education and lifelong learning. Respect, service, integrity, collaboration, diversity, transparency, and creativity are the values that guide our work and culture.George Mason University has a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of excellence and diversity among its faculty and staff, and strongly encourages candidates to apply who will enrich Mason's academic and culturally inclusive environment.This position also offers:Potential for flexible telework and hybrid telework scheduling;Competitive salary; andOutstanding benefits, including:Health & life insurance, multiple industry-leading retirement plans available including state VRS Hybrid Retirement Plan, accrued paid days off per year, paid holidays, paid winter break, paid sick leave, professional development, tuition reimbursement at GMU, and employee assistance programs.About the Position:Reporting to the Vice President of Advancement and Alumni Relations, the Assistant Vice President of Advancement Communications will develop, execute and manage a strategic, multi-channel Advancement communications plan before, during, and after the university's anticipated comprehensive campaign. The position works closely with Advancement & University leadership, as well as Schools, Colleges and Units, to ensure consistent and effective external communications conveying the breadth of Advancement and Alumni Relation's mission and messages are delivered to donors and alumni through all traditional and digital platforms.The position provides strategic communications counsel to the Vice President of Advancement and Alumni Relations and Advancement's Senior Leadership Team. The AVP also ensures that communications strategies are coordinated across all Advancement and Alumni Relations and that institutional print and digital communications remain up to date and reflective of best practices.The role will oversee all current and future communications roles in Advancement & Alumni Relations as well as serve as a direct liaison to communications roles in Schools, Colleges, Units, and the Office of University Branding. The AVP will collaborate with and serve as a partner in the execution of the comprehensive campaign and university-wide initiatives or announcements.Responsibilities:Create and execute an overall communications strategy for Advancement and Alumni Relations that is innovative, progressive, and proactive to build donor awareness of, engagement with, and investment in funding priorities before, during, and after George Mason University's historic comprehensive campaign;Formulate and drive strategic communications and vision for the comprehensive campaign in partnership with Advancement colleagues, utilizing innovative communications tactics to create messaging, materials, and collateral to maximize awareness of the campaign and boost alumni, donor, and volunteer engagement;Serve as the Office of Advancement and Alumni Relation's expert and main liaison with schools/units, consultants, freelancers, and vendors to guide the university and school/unit campaign fundraising messages, case statements, and other marketing collateral including but not limited to; newsletters, websites, presentations, and videos. Oversee the design and production of all campaign communication materials, including but not limited to; writing, graphic design, digital media, videography/photography, and social media;Create and proactively implement systems, structures, and policies for Advancement and Alumni Relations communications, working in a coordinated fashion with leadership, the GMU Foundation, and the Office of University Branding;Serve as the team leader for all Advancement and Alumni Relations Communications, provide management of the day-to-day operations and provide assignments, expectations, and deadlines for all work produced by staff, consultants, vendors, and student interns;Hire, train, and evaluate staff, starting with 4 full-time direct reports and growing the team, as appropriate, by being versed in all aspects of the program and providing the team with the framework for goal setting and benchmarking for their respective program areas;Supervise communications request intake process. Ensure proactive communication with the requestor and adherence to project timelines and budgets. Assure successful outcomes by adopting best-practice project management methodologies. Report plans and progress to supervisor and senior leadership team as requested;Ensure all fundraising units develop and promote materials with a unified university brand and messages related to campaign and fundraising activities. Assure the integrity, high quality, and consistency of the university's image, tone, style, narrative, visual identity, and brand;Provide strategic communications counsel to the Vice President of Advancement and Alumni Relations and Advancement's Senior Leadership Team;Provide editorial guidance, proactive planning, and direction for all issues of Spirit magazine by serving as associate editor;Develop and execute web strategy for the division. Manage and maintain all content on the university's giving website (;Collaborate and liaison with the Mason's Office of University Branding; developing relationships, collaborating, and ensuring a strong partnership is built and maintained; andWork to build brand awareness, visibility, and loyalty, and serve as the lead strategist and voice for the Advancement and Alumni Relation's online social presence ensuring branding is consistent across social media.Required Qualifications:Master's degree in communications, journalism, public relations, or another relevant field or equivalent combination of education and experience;Extensive (generally ten (10)+ years) experience leading a communications team preferably with three years of experience producing and directing digital communications; and some (generally two (2)+ years) supervisory experience;Prior experience in a large research university, higher education, non-profit or related setting preferred;Highly developed project management skills with a track record of meeting deadlines and delivering high-quality communication pieces;Highly collaborative style; experience developing and implementing communications strategies;Effective and meticulous writing, copy editing, and fact-checking experience;Ability to produce high-quality deliverables with meticulous attention to detail. Must be metrics-driven and results-oriented with demonstrated analytical skills;Proven ability to work in a fast-paced, deadline, and goal-oriented environment, serving internal clients and external constituents, simultaneously balancing diverse responsibilities;Ability to give guidance, share and receive constructive feedback, and integrate varying points of view;Commitment to the highest standards of professional and personal behavior; excellent judgment and the ability to treat confidential information with discretion;A proven record as a manager, mentor, and implementer who thrives on managing a variety of staff and key initiatives concurrently;Demonstrated ability to work successfully and effectively with a wide range of constituents and to manage complex relationships; proven collaboration and teamwork skills;Demonstrated analytical skills and the ability to work, at an advanced level, with desktop applications, databases, desktop publishing applications, reporting applications, networked information systems, and digital marketing products;Evidence of engaging leadership style with a track record for leading both strategic and tactical communications efforts; andAbility to work occasional evenings and weekends for signature events and activities.

For full consideration, applicants must apply at; complete and submit the online application; and upload a cover letter, resume, a list of three professional references, and three samples (listed as other docs) of relevant work along with contact information.

"Great Careers Begin at Mason! George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with national distinction in both academics and research. Mason holds a top U.S. News and World Report "Up and Coming" spot for national universities and is recognized for its global appeal and excellence in higher education.Mason is currently the largest and most diverse university in Virginia with students and faculty from all 50 states and over 135 countries studying in over 200 degree programs at campuses in Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William, as well as at learning locations across the commonwealth. Rooted in Mason's diversity is a campus culture that is both rewarding and exciting, work that is meaningful, and opportunities to both collaborate and create.If you are interested in joining the Mason family take a look at our current opportunities and catch some Mason spirit at!George Mason University, Where Innovation is Tradition."

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