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Executive Director, MSU Alumni Office

Post Date: 03-18-2019
Job No.: 566161
Department: University Advancement
Type: Administrative Professional
Salary Range: Negotiable

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Michigan State University seeks a dynamic leader to build on and expand relationships with more than 500,000 living alumni around the world through the MSU Alumni Office and the programs of the colleges, schools and other programs of one of the world’s most respected public research universities.

The Executive Director of the MSU Alumni Office reports to the Vice President of University Advancement, or their designate, and will be a key senior member of the team charged with leading an exemplary, integrated advancement program including alumni outreach and engagement, and development programs that advance the quality and reputation of the university.  This leadership team also played a significant role in not only bringing the university’s Empower Extraordinary campaign to a successful close, but also in the development of a plan for the university’s next comprehensive campaign.

The successful candidate will provide the leadership and direction for MSU Alumni Engagement and will take the lead in strengthening alumni engagement activities throughout the university community.  The MSU Alumni Office is governed by an 8 member International Board of Directors.  The MSU alumni community includes more than 120 regional alumni clubs and affinity groups worldwide that bring Spartans together for local events, activities, service opportunities and scholarship initiatives.  Three years ago, MSU transitioned away from a dues paying association membership model, to a model that simply encourages alumni philanthropy to any place at MSU, leaving the MSU Alumni Office to focus on programming which drives engagement, communication and building meaningful and significant programs for Alumni across the University.

The alumni engagement team consists of 29 staff members.  In addition, nearly every academic unit has a dedicated alumni professional, approximately half of them report through a unit Advancement team leader.   The annual budget for central alumni operations is approximately $4.5 Million.   This number includes $1.75 million in funds allocated each year from University Advancement, coupled with $2.75 million in revenue from additional sources including underwriting and sponsorships. In addition, the MSU Alumni Office is supported by a strong advancement marketing and communications team and advancement information team. 

The successful candidate will be a seasoned Alumni leader with demonstrated management skills and a significant understanding of development and higher education and proven results with increasing responsibilities.  He or she must demonstrate a strong track record of leading both staff and volunteers in service to the University and developing a vibrant and dynamic organization that is both financially and organizationally healthy and sustainable.  The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to develop an organization that will appeal to a diverse alumni body. Outstanding leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills combined with an action orientation and a commitment to teamwork and collaboration will be distinguishing characteristics of the best candidates.  Excellent knowledge of and experience working with best practices in alumni engagement, institutional/organizational development, and organizational management is a must.  The successful candidate will be a leader with the utmost integrity and proven abilities.


A bachelor degree and at least 7-10 years of progressive experience in alumni relations/development within higher education, or equivalent experience in trade association management, public relations or a similar field is required.  Advance degree preferred.   A commitment to and an appreciation for, the values of a complex, research intensive, land-grant university is essential.


How to apply

If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact Marti Heil Vice President, University Advancement.

All candidates must submit an application and resume through the Michigan State University Human Resources web-based system the URL for that website is  Please indicate the position number 566161 when submitting your application.

MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.

MSU is committed to achieving excellence through a diverse workforce and inclusive culture that encourages all people to reach their full potential. The University actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and persons with disabilities.