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Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
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Emporia State University
Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
2 days ago


The Emporia State University Foundation (ESUF) in Emporia, Kansas is in a regional search for a Director of Advancement Communications. The Director leads the communication strategy for university fund-raising, donor stewardship and alumni relations (University Advancement). The Director will report to the ESUF Vice President for Alumni and Stewardship and will work closely with the Foundation President/CEO, the Alumni Director, and the ESU Chief Marketing Officer to enable maximum integration of content, messaging and communication strategy between the University, ESU Foundation and ESU Alumni Association.

The ideal candidate for the Director of Advancement Communications role will be a proven leader, a talented communications strategist, and a skilled project manager who can both set vision and execute strategy effectively. A passion for Emporia State University’s mission is essential.


  1. Develop and lead communication strategy to advance the university through alumni relations, fundraising and donor stewardship.
  2. Formulate and deploy comprehensive communications strategy through email, social, video, print and public relations.
  3. Manage projects from concept through deployment - ensuring timely delivery, high quality and alignment with university strategy and branding. This will include execution of deliverables.
  4. Serve the university marketing, foundation and alumni teams as the internal communications liaison. Ensure all parties are informed about all projects, events and communications plans/strategies.
  5. Actively seek out compelling stories about students, faculty, programs and alumni and develop those stories into written and/or audiovisual content to demonstrate value proposition, mission and impact for our donor, alumni, and community audiences.
  6. Serve as Managing Editor for the semiannual alumni magazine (Spotlight).


This position requires critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, discipline and initiative.  Individual must possess strong project management skills, excellent written and verbal communication skills, and a mature ability to manage relationships. The director will demonstrate the ability to organize and prioritize work, handle pressure while managing multiple deadline-driven projects and tasks and work well with all of the University’s diverse constituencies. Qualifications will include:

  • Storyteller with a demonstrated ability to craft compelling narratives.
  • Data-driven problem solver with a clear perspective on how to measure success and demonstrate the business value of communications.
  • Outstanding communicator and collaborator who is able to navigate high pressure situations with ease.
  • Proven strategic and creative communications and marketing thinker.
  • Motivated self-starter who is not afraid to take initiative.
  • Strong and demonstrated experience strategically engaging different stakeholder groups within and outside the organization.
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) work and utilizing anti-racist communications strategies.
  • Demonstrated planning, project management and organizational skills.
  • Actively engaged in ongoing professional development and best practices within the field of communications.
  • Ability to create and maintain positive and personable relationships with internal and external constituencies.
  • Ability to lead with compassion, integrity and a sense of humor.
  • Demonstrated ability to use good judgment and maintain confidentiality.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in communications, marketing, public relations, business or a related field.
  • A minimum of three years of related experience.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience within the nonprofit or higher education environments.
  • Demonstrated success in creating and implementing a marketing campaign.
  • Experience with magazine production.
  • Experience working in non-profit organizations during a capital campaign strongly preferred.
  • Experience with AP style a bonus.

The majority of these listed qualifications are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. You don’t have to satisfy every requirement or meet every qualification listed in order to be successful in this role. Depending on the applicant pool and applicants' relevant experience, we may consider hiring at the assistant director or associate director level, and allowing you to grow into the director position.  If your skills are transferable and you feel inspired by this opportunity, please apply! 

COMPENSATION:   Salary will vary widely from $40,000 to $70,000 or more, depending upon the level at which the successful candidate is qualified.  Assistant, Associate, and full Director level candidates will be considered.  Excellent benefits including medical, dental, vision, retirement package, generous paid time off policies and administrative/holiday closures.  This position earns 22 paid vacation days annually, and employees are encouraged to take time away to recharge.


Applicants must submit a cover letter addressing their interest and qualifications for the position and a resume to Aileen Miller by uploading to  Background check and official transcripts will be required prior to hire. Review of application materials will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Emporia State University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, national origin, ethnicity, religion, gender, sex, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, parental status, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as an individual with a disability, status as a protected veteran, or any other factors which cannot be considered by law.

About the Foundation: 

Emporia State University Foundation’s mission is to raise and manage philanthropic resources to advance the mission of Emporia State University.  The Foundation was established in 1952 as a 501(c)(3) corporation.  The Foundation works closely with individuals, corporations and foundations who support and advocate for the University‘s goals and initiatives through charitable gifts that improve, enhance and expand the vitality of Emporia State University.

About the Alumni Association:

Formed in 1880, the ESU Alumni Association's purpose is to connect ESU alumni with one another and their alma mater, and to promote alumni service and support of ESU.  Their mission is to build relationships for Emporia State University - today and tomorrow.

About the Together, Forward Campaign:

Emporia State University is on its way to raising $50 million by October of 2021 as part of the leadership phase of a comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together we can accelerate learning, shine brighter and transcend limitations. This campaign lifts up high impact learning opportunities, supports talent award scholarships and promotes flexible funds to help us seize opportunities. To learn more about Together, Forward, visit

About the University:

“Emporia State University prepares students for lifelong learning,

rewarding careers, and adaptive leadership.”

Emporia State University offers more than 200 academic programs in the School of Business, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, School of Library and Information Management and The Teachers College. ESU is the only public university in Kansas to have earned national recognition as a College of Distinction, an honor for universities that demonstrate innovative application of high-impact education. In addition, in the Best Colleges 2018 guidebook by U.S. News and World Report, ESU is ranked No. 2 in lowest student debt of all Midwest regional universities. U.S. News also cited ESU’s School of Business as a best value for both in-state and out-of-state students and ranked the online graduate education and non-MBA online programs in the Top 100 programs in the nation. For more information, visit

About the Community of Emporia, Kansas:

Located at the doorstep of the beautiful Flint Hills between Kansas City and Wichita on Interstate 35, Emporia is a family-oriented and vibrant community of 25,000 residents. With the University as its anchor offering cultural and educational pursuits, the city provides a wide range of recreational, artistic and civic options. National Geographic Magazine highlighted the beautiful Flint Hills – the nation’s last great expanse of tall grass prairie – in its April, 2007, edition. The parks of Emporia are the flagship of recreation due to their variety and size. In all, Emporia’s 18 parks mass a little over 250 acres. The Jones Aquatic Center, the many city parks and the David Traylor Zoo all provide opportunities for fun and entertainment. Emporia’s Recreational Center offers a gymnasium that hosts basketball and volleyball games as well as many other athletic and recreational options. The municipal golf course is host to many regional tournaments. The Emporia Arts Center has been established as a center for the city's fine arts and artistic education. The historic Granada Theatre, constructed in 1929, offers a 1,400-seat capacity. In April, 1985, the theatre was placed on the National Register of Historic Places and in 1994 a group of citizens formed the Emporia Granada Theatre Alliance to ensure the ongoing preservation of the Theatre.

Job Information

  • Job ID: 58304848
  • Location:
    Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
  • Position Title: Director of Advancement Communications
  • Company Name: Emporia State University
  • Job Function: Communications & Public Relations
  • Job Type: Full-Time
  • Min Experience: Mid-Career

Please refer to the company's website or job descriptions to learn more about them.

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