Associate Director of Constituent Experiences Strategy

Posted on 10/14/2022

The Ohio State University

Columbus, OH

The Associate Director of Constituent Experiences Strategy develops and leads university-wide strategy for early engagement of alumni, grateful patients, grateful clients, students, employees, parents, and community members. Using data- and industry trend-informed decision making, this position will lead a team focused on the development and innovation of engagement and philanthropic initiatives to inspire a pipeline of loyal donors. This position’s team members (ten, including four direct reports) lead and direct the development of long-range and immediate plans for holistic audience engagement through experiences, unit and university-wide annual giving, and donor participation and retention. Responsibilities will include the continuous evaluation of the effectiveness of the university’s donor participation and engagement strategies, ensuring that both college/unit and university goals are met via innovative approaches, proper allocation of resources, and analysis of trends and results.

The Associate Director will work closely with the Events and Operations team as well as other advancement colleagues and campus partners to develop and support unit and university goals and ensure strategic alignment across the organization, making sure that activities are coordinated and tracked, emphasizing an audience-centric approach. The position is responsible for working with colleges and units to develop and execute annual giving strategies including The Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center grateful patient annual donor audience. Key responsibilities include managing a $1M annual giving campaign budget and the strategy and partnerships for the university’s annual donors of more than $250K and nearly $50M. The position is directly responsible for securing more than 60K donors and nearly $8M through its teams’ work.

The Associate Director reports to the AVP of Constituent Experiences and is responsible for making recommendations and decisions with a high degree of independence, using strong decision-making capabilities, judgment, strategic thought, consistency, discretion, and financial management in accomplishing objectives. The position will hold fiscal responsibility to include establishing project budgets, meeting revenue goals, and managing expenditures. The position interacts often with key volunteers and advocates of the university. As a leader in the organization, the Associate Director facilitates developmental opportunities for staff members through coaching, education and by exhibiting leadership behaviors. This position must be adaptable to shifting priorities and demands, which may include the occasional work week travel as well as evening and weekend work.

Excellent written and verbal skills, strong operational and organizational skills, exceptional interpersonal and managerial skills, and the ability to interact with diverse internal and external constituents at all levels are a must. 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.

Department Overview

The Ohio State Alumni Association’s mission: Through time and change, we enrich firm friendships across our alumni and Buckeye communities to advance the university. With a vision of being the heart of the alumni community inspiring and cultivating engaged citizens throughout their Buckeye journeys, our organizational purpose is to build a community of lifelong champions. We represent the alumni association of the future and believe in elevating the alumni and Buckeye community experience. As an association, we are a shared service across Advancement as the experts in engagement and the constituent journey. We are one team aligning engagement and philanthropy, responsible for creating advocates on behalf of Ohio State. The organization is supported by 60+ employees, a Board of Directors, and Alumni Advisory Council.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • 75%    Develops and implements strategy for, designs, and produces a variety of acquisition, annual giving, engagement, and cultivation campaigns and tactics; Develops and implements use of omni channel tactics to support large-scale university wide fundraising and engagement initiatives with heavy emphasis on digital; Develops and implements desired outcomes and facilitates the direction of each tactic toward said outcomes; Applies a strong data-driven approach to set metrics, allocate resources, and evaluate results; Translates strategic plans into operational plans and guides their execution; Assesses marketing segmentation to improve results and monitor metrics of giving participation, average gift size, donor retention, acquisition, and upgrades, and return on investments; Oversees and approves quotes, bills, and budgets; Recruits, trains, evaluates, motivates, and coaches employees of various backgrounds and identities; Builds a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging amongst team members; Debriefs on each project via ROI and ROR analysis; Helps others create and apply new concepts and solutions; Collaborates with Alumni Association and Advancement colleagues, as well as other campus partners to include the identification of potential donation and/or engagement opportunities with alumni and constituents and determining and coordinating appropriate engagement-focused events.
  • 15%    Partners with OSUAA Connections and Advocacy teams to ensure continuity in the customer journey and alignment of OSUAA offerings.
  • 10%    Contributes to advancement by fostering and exhibiting teamwork; participates on internal committees/workgroups as appropriate; performs other duties as assigned.

Performance Objectives

First month

  1. Develop an understanding of the structure, mission, and values of Ohio State and the Alumni Association
  2. Build relationships with key partners across advancement and the university
  3. Get to know team members and assess resources, needs and opportunities
  4. Become familiar with advancement’s continuum model including early engagement audiences

First 2-3 months

  1. Understand the needs of engagement partners and begin to identify opportunities to strengthen support
  2. Assess existing strategies and make recommendations for change

First 12 months

  1. Continue to learn the constituent base, build and execute plans that integrate and align team functions

Why Join Ohio State Advancement Now?

The Office of Advancement is made up of professionals in the areas of alumni engagement, fundraising and strategy/administration, all contributing to the relationship-driven focus of The Ohio State University community. The Senior Director of Constituent Experiences will play a vital role through the conclusion of Time and Change: The Ohio State Campaign, the most ambitious, inclusive community-building and fundraising endeavor in the university’s 150 years. Time and Change has a financial goal of $4.5 billion – also the largest in Ohio State’s history – with three core areas of focus: student success; discovery; and healthy, vibrant communities. The campaign recently crossed the $3 billion dollars raised mark.

Commitment to Inclusion

The Office of Advancement is committed to active allyship in addressing and dismantling the inequities created by systemic racism and implicit, long-held bias. We pledge to act with kindness, respect, and integrity at all times; trust ourselves and our colleagues and empower their whole identities; and hear and see our colleagues’ ideas, voices, and perspectives, acknowledging that we are better together.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience.
  • Seven (7) years of relevant experience.

Desired Qualifications (we encourage you to apply even if your experience is not a 100% match with the desired qualifications)

  • Seven (7) years of annual giving fundraising experience.
  • Two (2) years of management experience.
  • Experience building and implementing donor acquisition strategies.

You Need to Know

Aside from the unparalleled benefits of working for The Ohio State University and working in the diverse, smart, fun, and growing city of Columbus, Ohio, this opportunity will provide exceptional rewards that arise from working for an institution doing worldwide life-changing research. Learn more here:

Salary range is $107,000 – $143,000

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 to find out more about Ohio State’s Office of Advancement and apply online for job opening number R62208. Questions may be directed to Steph Mizer, Senior Manager, Talent Acquisition at [email protected].

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