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University of Victoria

Director, Advancement Services

Posted On: February 23, 2022
Closing On: March 15, 2022

Location: Victoria
Employment Type: fulltime
Level: management
Salary Range: $100,807 - 126,010


UVic is one of Canada’s best universities, a gem located in the thriving city of Victoria, BC. The University is in an exciting period of change and growth bolstered by a strengthened Alumni and Development program, and is making plans for a comprehensive campaign. With world-leading programs in essential areas like climate change, Indigenous knowledge, fine arts and culture, and health and wellness, UVic is poised for excellence.

The Alumni and Development Office advances the vision of the university by securing and increasing philanthropic and private support for university priorities, as well as fostering lifelong relationships between the university and its alumni, friends, and community members.

The University’s ambitions can only be achieved with excellence in its service functions.  The Advancement Services team therefore acts as crucial partners across all portfolio areas.  Now, to support its ongoing growth and renewal, the University seeks a new Director, Advancement Services to lead its programs that support the engagement of alumni and donors: information systems, gift processing, donor relations, and prospect research and strategy.  As the second largest unit of the Alumni and Development department, the Director leads a team of 21, including four direct reports.

The Director reports to the Associate Vice-President, Alumni and Development (AVP, A&D), and is a crucial member of their leadership team which develops, implements, and advances the mission and strategic initiatives of Alumni and Development and the Division of External Relations.

This is a compelling opportunity for an experienced professional to:

  • Develop a future-focused strategic plan for the department, incorporating a review of the department’s client and constituent needs, and current offerings
  • Bring a customer-service focus and best practices in end-user experiences to the portfolio
  • Launch immediately into important initiatives to help fortify Advancement Services programs
  • Help scale up the alumni and fundraising infrastructure for effective campaign fundraising
  • Develop mutually beneficial relationships across External Relations and around campus that position Advancement Services as a best-in-class service unit
  • Join a dynamic and ambitious Director group working to take UVic and its fundraising and alumni programs from one of Canada’s best kept secrets to a destination of choice for donors and staff alike.

While the longer-term needs of the role will evolve, in the short-term the Director will be tasked with the following priority needs:

  • Oversee the Make Giving Easy initiative to upgrade the entire online experience, including giving, event registration, and other online interactions
  • Ensure a solid CRM is in place, and help develop metrics and reporting for the campaign
  • Establish a prospect management process
  • Review and update fundraising policies and procedures
  • Begin the process of a full Advancement Services review, working to identify strengths, gaps or challenges, future resourcing needs, team abilities, succession plans, and any potential blockages or structural challenges to the portfolio’s growth and success.


The University of Victoria (UVic) is one of Canada’s leading research-intensive universities. The university is committed to providing a campus which is accepting of diversity and inclusive of Indigenous ways of knowing and being. We acknowledge and respect the lək̓ʷəŋən peoples on whose traditional territory the university stands, and the Songhees, Esquimalt, and WSÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day. Although the university received degree-granting status in 1963 our origins trace back to 1903 and the establishment of Victoria College, our predecessor institution.

Located on a stunning campus known for its open green spaces and state of the art buildings, UVic is home to more than 23,000 students from 129 countries, including 3,000 graduate students, enrolled in academic programs offered by the University’s ten Faculties and two Divisions, including: Science, Business, Law, Engineering and Computer Science, Medical Sciences, Education, Fine Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Continuing Studies, and Human and Social Development. UVic has over 4,500 employees including 900 faculty members. We award approximately 5,000 degrees a year and have over 140,000 alumni worldwide.

The University is one of Canada’s leading research universities with over $124M in research income. UVic excels in diverse forms of research and creative activity, innovation and knowledge mobilization that advance human knowledge, improve, and enrich lives, tackle global challenges, and promote the sustainability of the planet. UVic aims to be a preferred partner and a leader in local and global engagement. Working together for mutual benefit with community, private sector, government, and other educational and research organizations.

UVic has developed a reputation for progressive thought and cutting-edge research. We are particularly proud of areas that distinguish us, like our Indigenous Focus (see here for more information) including the recent establishment of Canada’s first Indigenous law degree. Meanwhile our combined strengths in sustainability and climate action have been recognized globally – the 2020 Times Higher Education impact rankings placed UVic fourth among the world’s universities for climate action.

UVic is #1 among Canadian comprehensive universities for preparing career-ready students (2019 Times Higher Education Global University Employability Ranking) and is consistently the top university in North America for international research collaboration (Leiden, 2011-19). In 2021, UVic tied at number one in the Maclean’s Magazine University rankings in the comprehensive category.

UVic is guided by its Strategic Framework 2018 – 2023, which sets out priorities, goals, and strategies for the University of Victoria over this time frame. In 2022 UVic will launch its new strategic plan and in 2023 the University will celebrate its 60th anniversary, both of which present fantastic fundraising and engagement opportunities.

For more information about the University, see


The Office of Alumni & Development nurtures a culture of pride and philanthropy at UVic and generates resources for the University’s priorities. It is comprised of a committed staff team who work both centrally and in faculties and departments to identify opportunities where donors and alumni can be instrumental to enhancing the University’s programs, research, and student support.

The Office is led by Jane Potentier, AVP, A&D, and five Directors who work collaboratively to plan and lead all fundraising and alumni engagement efforts for the university: Director, University Development; Director, Faculty Development; Director, Principal Gifts and Campaigns; Director, Alumni Relations; and Director, Advancement Services.

A growth model was developed in 2017 with a goal of increasing annual fundraising revenue to the $20-$25 million range in five years. The average raised in the five years before the launch of the plan was $14 million. The University is tracking exceptionally well, having raised over $28 million in 2020/21 from a record number of donors. The University is on track to exceed the 2021/22 goal of $25 million. Looking ahead, UVic is in the early stages of planning a comprehensive campaign.

To learn more about giving at UVic:

Following the arrival of a new Director, Alumni Relations in September 2021, the University has refocused efforts on Alumni Engagement, developing a new vision, mission, and strategy, and setting ambitious goals for the program. Over the past 18 months, the team has completely revamped the Distinguished Alumni Awards program, introduced a new signature event series, reinvigorated alumni volunteer networks, and placed an increasing emphasis on marketing and communications. Future plans include increased young alumni programming, reunions, mentorship, and more. Alumni engagement will also be a key component of the comprehensive campaign.


The Alumni and Development team is led by Jane Potentier, AVP, A&D. Jane joined UVic in mid-2020 after a lengthy and successful career at the University of Alberta. Jane’s bio and welcome video can be found here.

The Alumni and Development Department is one of the portfolios of External Relations, which also includes community relations, government relations, marketing, communications, the University art collections, Farquhar Auditorium, and ceremonies and events. The Vice President External Relations is Chris Horbachewski, and his bio is here:

On November 1, 2020, Kevin Hall became the President of UVic. He is a very keen fundraising President and is excited to meet donors and establish relationships with them, and has a primary goal to increase alumni engagement. See here for more information:


The Director’s responsibilities can be broadly summarized as follows:

  • Oversees all Advancement Services programs: Gift Processing, Donor Relations, Prospect Research and Strategy, and Information Systems
  • Leads the staff team; oversees all personnel issues (i.e., hiring, performance plans, job descriptions)
  • Provides strategic direction, oversees annual and strategic planning, and determines resource and staffing needs
  • Provides oversight and direction on resource allocation, budget optimization, performance metrics, and project execution
  • Evaluates and realigns all aspects of the department’s operations to facilitate and reinforce the effectiveness of strategic plans
  • Benchmarks peer advancement services programs to ensure that units are following best practices and developing quantitative metrics to determine success
  • Responsible for ensuring that all charitable tax receipts granted by UVic, and UVic foundations meet regulations and guidelines of the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) thereby ensuring that the university’s charitable status is protected
  • Responsible for ensuring that donation recording and receipting passes internal and external audits
  • Advises major donors and senior administrators (e.g.: AVP, Deans, Chairs) and fundraising staff on the intricacies of the regulations and guidelines affecting charitable giving as well as the acceptability of gifts to the university
  • Oversees the development of complex gift agreements, ensuring appropriate internal consultation and approvals. Liaises with UVic’s legal counsel as needed
  • Directs the management of the gift processing area to ensure accuracy and integrity of data, and adherence to tax, privacy, and legal regulations concerning data storage and reporting
  • Oversees the development, implementation, and monitoring of the donor stewardship strategy and programs to ensure that donors feel informed about the university, involved in its plans for the future and confident that their gifts are being used and managed appropriately
  • Oversees the development, implementation and monitoring of prospective donor research that will contribute to the successes of the fundraising team via major prospect identification, prospect tracking, and comprehensive profile creation
  • Identifies, evaluates, recommends (i.e. prepares gap analysis, post implementation review, RFP) and oversees the management CRM database with the goal of providing a system that will contribute to the engagement of alumni and donors, as well as other external relations constituents
  • Continually evaluates and refines a portfolio of programs and identifies and develops new programs as necessary to support Alumni and Development.

For a detailed list of responsibilities by area, see below.


The ideal Director will possess the following skills and background:

  • Experience in the advancement services industry at a senior level with several years of successful leadership of a multi-faceted program – ideally including some combination of Gift Processing, Donor Relations, Prospect Research and Strategy, and Information Systems
  • Exceptional team leadership skills
  • Ability to balance multiple interests from diverse stakeholders
  • Skilled in strategic planning and long-term visioning
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, and effective presentation skills that demonstrate tact and diplomacy to a variety of internal and external contacts
  • Knowledge of project management best practices
  • Fluent understanding of the research enterprise with a large academic institution is ideal
  • Ability to effectively administer, organize, plan, and manage time
  • Minimum of undergraduate degree in a business, finance or related field, master’s degree preferred, or equivalent experience and education in a related discipline
  • Specific knowledge and experience are required in the following subject areas:
    • donation taxation issues both in Canada and U.S. related to receipting and recording
    • endowment management and reporting
    • fundraising information systems and database management (from users’ perspective) for alumni, donor, and volunteer constituents
    • CASE and CCAE reporting standards
    • prospect research
    • fundraising methodologies
    • alumni engagement


To succeed in this role, the new Director should:

  • Possess a clear understanding of the business of fundraising and alumni engagement, including its language and best practices. Partner with unit leads to understand their goals, and how advancement systems can and should support them
  • Have of a broad-based advancement services background, ideally from a large and high-functioning advancement enterprise. Campaign experience or exposure would be ideal
  • Have a strong customer service and partnership lens. Be curious and engaged to understand the needs of constituents.  Be accountable to clients and proactive in meeting needs
  • Be a big picture thinker, and strategic and visionary. Bring a critical and analytical perspective to objectively assess and amend program needs, gaps, and successes. Appreciate the impact of the department and sees themselves in others’ goals; driven to help and support.  Have superior insight into best practices in the field of Advancement Services and the ability to interpret and adapt such practices within the context of UVic and its strategic priorities
  • Be an excellent translator and communicator. Able to build bridges to end-users and supports their team in doing the same.  Take audience needs into account and adapts style and content accordingly.  Be a clear, concise, and direct communicator, confident in sharing their knowledge.  Be an eager and active listener
  • Be a leader and mentor with proven ability to build long-term successful collaborative teams. Be capable of having staff appreciate their role in the university’s success and builds appropriate accountability measures for teams. Be able to focus on results and motivate staff to continuously improve the quality of their programs and services.  Be adept at long-term resource utilization and planning, and succession planning
  • Be persistent and focused. Identify new opportunities for creativity and innovations, and bring them to bear with tact, diplomacy, and determination. Be flexible and adaptable to appreciate tradition and established method while always seeking to be best-in-class. Be a proven change manager who has comfort with all manners of change, and a pragmatic view on prioritizing.


The University of Victoria invites qualified applicants, curious candidates, and recommendations to their search partner, The Discovery Group, a leading national recruitment and consultancy firm.

The selection process and interviews will take place through the spring and our goal is to have a new Director start as soon as reasonably possible, and ideally no later than late spring/early summer of 2022.

To be considered, all submissions should be received by Christoph Clodius, Vice President of The Discovery Group, at by March 15, 2022.   For further inquiries or questions, email or call Christoph at 604-836-1972.

Working Requirements & Location:

While the incumbent must be based within the Victoria area, flexible relocation timing will be considered given current public health guidelines on travel and movement.

Confirmation of full vaccination against COVID-19 is required for any employees whose first offer of employment from the University is after February 21, 2022.

Compensation & Benefits:

At UVic, we combine outstanding scholarship with inspired teaching and community engagement. We’re committed to recruiting, developing, and retaining people who help us build a better future.  We know that our employees play a vital role in our success. In exchange, we offer competitive pay, great benefits, generous vacation time, funding for career development and a diverse range of learning and development opportunities, and a variety of other perquisites.  For more about working at UVic, see

The Director is categorized as an ME 12 with a recruitment range of $100,807 – 126,010 determined through knowledge, experience, and internal equity.  The performance range of $144,911 is available through annual performance increases.

Land Acknowledgement:

Consistent with UVic’s values, we acknowledge with respect the Lekwungen peoples on whose traditional territory the University of Victoria stands, and the Songhees, Esquimalt, and WSÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.

UVic is committed to upholding the values of equity, diversity, inclusion, and human rights in our living, learning, and work environments. We know that diversity underpins excellence, and that we all share responsibility for creating an equitable, diverse, and inclusive community. In pursuit of our values, we seek members who will work respectfully and constructively with differences and across levels of power.

Read our full equity statement here:


Victoria is a vibrant city with an exceptional quality of life. Residents enjoy our social life, arts and culture scene, easy access to nature, and a cutting-edge food scene. With cheaper housing and less congestion than other major cities in Canada, and some of the best weather, people seldom leave.

Located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, Victoria is BC’s capital city. With a regional population of about 380,000 residents, the Greater Victoria Area is the 15th most populous Canadian urban region – a big city with a small-town feel. As one of the most beautiful and photogenic cities in the world, we enjoy beautiful heritage architecture and a modern cityscape framed by stunning ocean views and mountain vistas.

The region is made for an active lifestyle. Outdoor recreational activities are boundless, and many people walk and cycle to work. Victoria may be surrounded by rainforest, but is actually a lot drier than nearby Seattle or Vancouver. Home to the warmest winters in Canada, snow is uncommon in the city, allowing golfers, hikers, sailors, rowing, rugby, soccer, tennis, and gardening enthusiasts to play outside all year long. Along with the outdoors, there is a great selection of things to do in Victoria and environs. In addition to the Royal BC Museum, the Art Gallery of Victoria, and Butchart Gardens, there is a myriad of cultural attractions, festivals, and activities to enjoy.  The food scene thrives here, with exceptional restaurants, outstanding brewpubs, award-winning spirits, and of course, an outstanding west-coast café culture.

Victoria has a diverse economy driven by small and medium sized business. Advanced technology is the leading economic generator, with annual revenues in this area exceeding $3.15 billion. Greater Victoria is also a major tourism destination, spawning an industry that has a regional impact of about $2 billion. Education, marine, construction, health, retail, and agriculture are other sectors steadily on the rise. As the capital city of the province and a Department of National Defence location, the public service is a large part of our economy.

Our education industry fuels much of the development of high tech and other knowledge-based industries, and the schools here provide a rich learning environment. In addition to the University of Victoria, our city has several other higher education institutions (such as Camosun College, Royal Roads University, the Victoria College of Art, and the Canadian College of Performing Arts), as well as excellent public and independent schools. World-class healthcare is provided by the Vancouver Island Health Authority, which operates local and regional hospitals, and oversees more than 18,000 health professionals, technicians, and support staff who provide excellent care and services.

Travel to mainland Canada and USA is simple, either by ferry (a scenic 90 minutes to the mainland), or by air via Victoria International Airport or Victoria Inner Harbour Airport (a 30-minute flight to Vancouver).  Victoria is also exceptionally well-connected to the west coast’s network of smaller islands for day trips or longer getaways.

For a visual overview of Victoria, see


Oversee all statistical analysis, benchmarking, projections and reporting of fundraising dollars:

  • Directs the statistical analysis, benchmarking, projections, and reporting of development and alumni engagement metrics for the AVP A&D, Directors, Executive Council, and Board of Governors in order to facilitate strategic planning and accurate reporting of fundraising and alumni relations activities.
  • Evaluates trends and advises AVP A&D on areas of growth and weakness.
  • Maintains current knowledge of CASE, CCAE and AFP reporting standards.
  • Provides financial projection reports to the Finance Office for use in projection of university cash flows as well as for government reports on endowment principal projections.
  • Assists Accounting Office on donation issues during preparation of the annual tax returns for the University and Foundation.
  • Assists the AVP in all foundation support such as provision of donation and funds raised reports, endowment training documents, and review of all foundation financial statements.

Develop, oversee, and manage Alumni & Development related policies and procedures:

  • Monitors and interprets all relevant statutes, acts, rulings (i.e., donation receipting, FOIPPA, endowment management, foundation authority, etc.) and recommends any corresponding policy changes.
  • Works with Privacy Office and Policies Office to ensure policies meet regulations, are consistent, ensure accountability, and are relevant to fundraising realities.

Serve as a member of the AVP A&D’s management team and assist in developing, implementing, and advancing the mission and strategic initiatives of Alumni and Development and the Division of External Relations.

  • Plays a key role in the Alumni and Development integrated strategic planning sessions.
  • Develops implements, manages the advancement services section of the annual service plan for External Relations, and the annual work plan for Alumni and Development Department, and ensures that the priorities meet the strategic goals of the university.
  • Keeps abreast of emerging trends in advancement services, university endowments, fundraising information systems, and US and Canadian donation taxation issues, and disseminates key information to the Division of External Relations team and appropriate staff across the university.
  • Contributes to the External Relations team at a senior level, offering solutions and strategies that enhance the university’s alumni and fundraising goals.
  • Leads educational/training programs for Development staff in complex gifts and in endowment issues. Provides advice, guidance, and documentation of how to communicate these issues to donors.
  • Provides vision and direction to ensure that an effective program of communications is in place in the Donor Relations unit to advance the institutional priorities, reputation, and branding.
  • Contribute to the promotion of the reputation and profile of the university with external partners and communities.
  • Serves as an external ambassador for the University of Victoria at various venues:
  • From time to time, represents the university at one-on-one donor meetings, group donor meetings, and donor events.
  • Represents the Alumni & Development office by attending UVic Foundation, Foundation for UVic, and US Foundation meetings on behalf of the AVP as needed and provides advocacy for donors via recommendations on issues affecting donors.

Human Relations:

  • The ability to manage complex, high-level relationships, be adept at donor relations, have a strong understanding of fundraising methodology and alumni engagement, are all key in managing the following relationships:


  • Faculty and staff involved in fundraising (i.e. Deans, Associate Deans, Development Directors, Development Officers, AVP A&D): Provide guidance and support in any form required: advise staff on how to deal with specific issues with donors (in some cases, take over relationship with donor on complex issues that require more specialized knowledge such as tax or endowment issues); provide fund projection reports for donor meetings and training for the development officers; provide trainings annually for the entire development staff on topics such as endowment reports, tax issues, so that Development staff are informed and providing accurate and clear explanations/recommendations to donors.
  • Finance Office: participates as a member of the endowment team which meets monthly to review endowment performance and create recommendations for the Foundation Board with respect to endowment policies and management.
  • Accounting Office: provides direction to endowment accounting on donor intent as it applies to the creation and modification of endowment transactions.
  • Internal Audit: provides information to internal audit as to industry best practices.
  • Privacy and Policy Offices: works regularly with privacy officer on issues pertaining to alumni and donor privacy. Works closely with policy officer in creation and modification of policies.


  • Donors: engages donors and prospective donors by demonstrating strong stewardship of funds.
  • Foundation Board Members: provides advice and recommendations that will contribute to a positive relationship with donor community and ensure donor intent is followed.
  • Peer institutions: gathers metrics from other institutions to incorporate in benchmarking, evaluation of programs, policies, and procedures.