Posted On: 2020-07-27
Closing On: 2020-09-21
Location: Kingston, ON
Employment Type: Full-Time
Level: Senior
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Job Description

The Opportunity

Reporting to and in partnership with the Vice-Principal (Advancement), the Associate Vice-Principal (Development) will oversee, support, encourage, and advise a team of fundraising professionals who collectively engage and leverage university leadership, Deans and department heads, and volunteer leaders to achieve institutional strategic priorities and needs.

The incumbent oversees the strategic direction of faculty development, principal gifts, gift planning, athletics & recreation, the arts, and the western regional office, to ensure an integrated and effective engagement and stewardship program for Queen’s.

As a senior member of the Advancement Leadership Team, the AVP (Development) will participate in long-term planning for the Office of Advancement, and play a key role in providing strategy, service, and support to faculties and university-wide services. This is accomplished in collaboration, partnership, and mutual-accountability with faculty-based advancement leads, and their respective teams, as well as a small team of centralized fundraisers and support staff. Additionally, the AVP (Development) will work directly to develop relationships with a portfolio of prospective donors for the benefit of Queen’s priority needs.

We envision that this position could be based in Kingston, or outside of Kingston with attendance on campus on a regular and as-needed basis. As well, this position requires travel within and outside of Canada, in order to meet with donors, alumni and volunteers.

About Queen’s

Founded in 1841 and located in Kingston, Ontario, Queen’s is committed to using its talents and resources to rise to the challenges facing our local, national, and global communities.

Queen’s student body consists of approximately 24,000 undergraduate, postgraduate, and professional students, drawn from more than 100 countries and every Canadian province and territory. International students make up 10% of the full-time student population, and 95% of the student population comes from outside of Kingston. Our alumni body of 150,000+ is also stretched across the globe.

Queen’s attracts extraordinary students. The average entering grade of incoming undergraduate students was 89.5% in 2019, ranking first in the annual Maclean’s University Rankings. When compared with 500 other institutions as part of the Collegiate Learning Assessment, first-year Queen’s students rank in the 90th percentile for critical thinking, problem solving, written communication, and lifelong learning skills. By fourth-year, our students are in the 98th percentile, underscoring Queen’s transformative learning experience. Queen’s ranked fifth among medical-doctoral universities according to Maclean’s, and third for student satisfaction.

Queen’s offers a full spectrum of undergraduate and graduate research-based programs, with a concentration of expertise in physics, chemistry, cancer research, geosciences, environment and biodiversity, social determinants of health, surveillance studies, and art history and art conservation.


Additional Background & Resources


The Ideal Candidate

A respected professional who leads by example, the success­ful candidate will model our values consistently in a way that can be emulated by others. The Associate Vice-Principal will be a strong change leader who helps team members enhance their resilience and adaptability. Respectful but forthright, they will communicate clear expectations, and will work with the team to develop metrics, processes, and organizational behaviours that lead to success.

A motivational enabler, the ideal candidate is a team builder who rallies people around common goals and mutual benefits. The candidate will help people see that working together often leads to better results.

The ideal candidate is approachable, flexible, and engaging, and will work across the university at many levels to engage and align people toward common objectives. An effective, authentic relationship builder, the candidate will build bridges of trust and respect, and proactively seek to understand the needs and nuances of each area of the university, working collaboratively and strategically with senior university administrators, top volunteers, and Advancement colleagues to achieve institutional strategic priorities and needs.

The ideal candidate possesses exceptional listening and negotiation skills, and is open to different approaches, ideas, and styles. As a facilitator and partner, they will serve as a sounding board and advisor, demonstrating the value of having a strong philanthropic strategist at the table.

Comfortable working with a wide range of donors in all philanthropic revenue streams, the ideal candidate is a persuasive influencer who clearly and enthusiastically communicates a vision and needs. Success in this role will require an extensive Development track record in a complex environment that raises money for both programs and research. Ideally, the candidate will bring experience working in both centralized and decentralized units.

The ideal candidate will be an ally and advocate who engages, consults, and utilizes colleagues in other service units. Organized, focused, and possessing impeccable follow-through, the successful candidate will deftly lead initiatives from strategy to implementation. They will make and support data-driven decisions that best influence and drive positive outcomes.

Adept at navigating in complex organizations, the ideal candidate will recognize and clear paths to progress and success. A strong strategist and planner, the ideal candidate will identify and shape opportunities to grow our donor engagement, and grow our people, our collaboration, and our results.


Key Areas of Responsibility for AVP (Development)

Strategic Leadership

  • Work closely with the Vice-Principal (Advancement) and the Advancement Leadership Team in developing short and long-term strategic plans to maximize engagement and raise funds from alumni, donors, students, and friends based on reliable internal and external data analysis.
  • Develop, implement, coordinate and monitor approved objectives, goals, and plans relevant to Development.
  • Act as a lead strategist and advisor to senior university administrators (including the Principal, Chancellor, Provost, vice-principals, deans, and department heads) and top university volunteers, providing high-level expertise and leadership to ensure the most impactful use of their roles on the development of major and transformational giving and alumni engagement strategies.
  • Represent the university’s priorities in the context of an overall vision for Queen’s and its’ place in the world.
  • Formulate annual, integrated plans based on analysis and thorough understanding of the emerging trends of alumni, volunteers, students, and donor behaviour, including demographic cohort trends.
  • Oversee principal (gifts of $5M and greater) and major (gifts of $25K and greater) giving, faculty advancement programs, and gift planning, to ensure effective program delivery and/or services – including the development of case statements and tailored proposals – aligning unit and departmental priorities with the Advancement strategic plan.
  • Work with senior leadership across campus, responsible for planning and executing comprehensive and faculty or program fundraising campaigns - including the develop­ment of campaign strategies, targets, metrics and analysis.
  • Contribute to the identification and refinement of compelling gift opportunities to connect principal donors’ and volun­teers’ interests with university priorities.
  • Collaborate with Donor Relations to establish timely and appropriate stewardship plans, ensuring gifts are handled and recognized according to sound Advancement practices.
  • Develop and maintain an in-depth knowledge of faculty/university activities, priorities and needs in both teaching and research. Apply this knowledge in matching the interests and needs of prospective donors with the strategic needs of the university.


Donor Engagement

  • Manage a discreet prospect list of $1M+ donors.
  • Build effective relationships with a diverse and broad range of influential and deeply engaged donors and volunteers who assist the university’s mission and priorities with a goal of securing support.


Team Leadership & People Management

  • In collaboration with the Development leadership team, comprising of Executive Directors and Development Managers, develop an outstanding high-performance team with a commitment to the principals of equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Coach, encourage and support team members in achieving their goals, and their full potential as employees.
  • Model the values and behaviours expected of team members, demonstrating professional excellence and stewardship, and the values of the Office of Advancement.
  • Regularly review effectiveness to identify the need for staff resources, participate on staffing committees, and make decisions regarding employee selection for the Develop­ment Unit.
  • Manage individual and team performance by establishing performance standards; reviewing, monitoring and evaluat­ing performance; and conducting formal talent and perfor­mance reviews with direct reports on an ongoing basis.
  • Support the planning, prioritization, and management of work performed by direct reports, providing strategic and tactical advice, guidance and coaching.
  • Assess staff training and development needs and ensure that employees receive the training required to improve and sustain successful performance.
  • Investigate, address, and resolve employee/labour relations issues, including making decisions regarding disciplinary and discharge matters.
  • In collaboration with the Advancement Leadership Team ensure adequate levels of central support are in place to implement the strategies of the Development Unit.
  • Act as an ambassador of Queen’s University representing the university and the Office of Advancement to internal and external audiences.


Program Management

  • Work in collaboration with key stakeholders to develop and manage an integrated major and principal giving program with a focus on securing gifts valued at $1M+ to account for 70% of the university’s annual fundraising results.
  • Provide budget and staffing leadership related to the strategic operations of the Development Unit, as well as the development and implementation of broad strategies for the Development Unit including overseeing the Unit’s budget and participating in budget submission activities, developing and preparing annual budget documents; annual and long-term strategic planning; campaign planning; program delivery; and office administration.
  • Analyze data required to formulate, execute, evaluate and benchmark strategic and priority driven implementation plans.


Required Qualifications and Competencies

  • Proven leadership and human resources management experience including organizing, motivating and directing a large team of staff and volunteers to achieve objectives, carrying out diverse activities, and promoting inclusion and belonging in the workplace.
  • Established track-record in strategy development and implementation; project planning; budget, forecasting and financial management; program analysis; and meeting objectives.
  • Extensive experience and a proven track record working at a leadership level in developing and managing multi-channel fundraising and engagement programs.
  • Demonstrated success in managing a portfolio of major and principal gifts prospects with a view towards satisfying the priorities identified by the institution.
  • Knowledge of wealth transfer strategies, gift planning vehicles (such as charitable bequests, trusts, annuities, insurance and registered retirement funds), integrated gift strategies, and other non-traditional gift plans is essential.
  • Significant experience working as part of a large and complex campaign leadership team.
  • Clear understanding of and strict adherence to ethical fundraising standards.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively build and manage volunteer relationships that enhance and advance the interests of the university.
  • Comprehensive understanding of the administrative and governance structures of complex organizations with multiple stakeholders.
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher required; consideration may be given to an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Recognized or working towards the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) or equivalent accreditation preferred.
  • A valid G-Class driver’s license and passport with no travel restrictions is required.


Critical Skills and Behaviours

  • Inclusive, collaborative and inspiring leadership style, with an understanding and open mind to different points of view.
  • An adept and adaptable change agent capable of translating strategic priorities into tactical activities and success.
  • A caring mentor who leads by example, the AVP enjoys seeing others thrive, succeed, and grow. Demonstrates a calm and measured approach, and guides others using candour, kindness, and strong emotional intelligence.
  • Deep understanding of and respect for the value and contributions of staff and volunteers. Values the experience, ideas and perspective of others and strives to make connections that are mutually beneficial to the university.
  • Strategic and collaborative integrator who seeks synergies and partnerships, and who understands how to effectively navigate a complex, centralized/decentralized, multi-stakeholder environment.
  • Ability to identify optimal approaches to secure cooperation from campus partners – faculties, schools, departments - in support of stakeholder engagement and fundraising strategies.
  • Highly motivated and results-driven individual able to set high standards and goals.
  • Strong analytical, interpretative and problem-solving skills, with an ability to compile and interpret data from a variety of sources, select appropriate methods of analysis, monitor emerging trends and issues, and disseminate information.
  • An exceptional relationship builder capable of cultivating and fostering long-term and productive relationships with alumni, donors, and volunteers.
  • Ability to interpret the interests of prospective donors and match them to the strategic needs of the university.
  • Poised, professional, and diplomatic, brings exceptional judgement, tact maturity and discretion to bear in this role. Ability to establish credibility with senior professionals and academics.
  • Excellent communication skills (both verbal and written). Strong ability to listen and to communicate with influence. Persuasive and creative communication, presentation, diplomacy and negotiations skills, with the ability to adapt content, tone, medium and style to the audience.


For More Information

KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) has been retained to conduct this search on behalf of Queen’s University. For more information about this new role, please contact Tara George, Partner / Lead, KCI Search + Talent at All inquiries and applications will be held in strict confidence.


Please note the deadline for submission is Monday, September 21, 2020. Candidates must submit a resume and letter of interest via the Queen’s University CareerQ employment portal.


To view the full Executive Brief, please visit:


The University invites applications from all qualified individuals. Queen’s is committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcomes applications from women, visible minorities, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, and persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, in accordance with Canadian immigration requirements, Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.

Queen’s University is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. We provide support and accommodation throughout our recruitment process, taking into account the individual accessibility needs of each applicant. Please contact Tara George with any enquiries or for assistance.

Named in 2020 among the top 30 “Best Canadian Employers” by Forbes, Queen’s offers a progressive compensation and benefits package and strives to provide career enrichment, as well as staff learning and development opportunities. Contingent on demon­strated experience, qualifications, and competencies, the projected salary range for this role is $190,000 to a maximum of $205,000. The ability to work remotely on an ongoing basis is available.