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University of Massachusetts Amherst Executive Director Donahue Institute in Amherst, Massachusetts

Executive Director Donahue Institute

Apply now ( Job no: 507542

Work type: Staff Full Time

Location: UMass Amherst

Department:UMDI - Central Admin

Union:Non-Unit Exempt

Categories: Executive

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.

Job Summary

The University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute (UMDI ( ) is a public service entity of the university, operating out of the university’s flagship Amherst campus. Funded through grants and contracts, UMDI brings the expertise of public higher education to bear on the diverse needs of its clients in the government, business, and non-profit sectors. The core areas of focus in which UMDI serves its clients include training and technical assistance for providers in early childhood education and care; applied research in education, public health, the economy, public policy, and populations; consultation and professional development services for state agencies, non-profits, private entities and the general public; career services for employers and job seekers; and civic education for international and domestic audiences.

UMDI operates in Massachusetts, New England, nationally and internationally. UMDI’s public facing business groups provide services in areas including applied research, workforce development, organizational development, training, and technical assistance. With current annual revenues of $23 million, UMDI employs approximately 130 full-time professional employees, and 50 part-time, seasonal, and graduate students, based in four office locations across Massachusetts and locations throughout the United States.

The Executive Director is responsible for guiding UMDI with vision and leadership and overseeing its overall performance and vitality. The position leads the institute’s ongoing strategic planning, direction, management, and coordination with clients, partners, and university departments as appropriate to ensure that quality, client-responsive services are consistently developed and delivered across the institute to the benefit of its clients. The position also oversees the substantial administrative, personnel, and fiscal operations of the organization. The Executive Director interacts with key leaders and other stakeholders within the university, and with those in Massachusetts state government, federal agencies, non-profit organizations, and the business community.

Essential Functions

  • Develop and implement a strategy that aligns the focus of the institute with the strategy and strengths of the university in serving diverse groups of clients and constituencies.

  • Provide entrepreneurial leadership resulting in favorable growth, and design and direct strategies that support and enhance institute operations.

  • Develop networks, partnerships, and other collaborative relationships to expand UMDI’s reach and promote its strategic growth, both internally and externally.

  • Promote networks, partnerships, and other collaborations that foster diversity, equity and inclusion internally and externally.

  • Establish and maintain effective relationships with key stakeholders in government, the non-profit and business sectors, the university, and other higher education institutions.

  • Supervise and support the directors of UMDI’s business groups to ensure fiscal viability and strong market presence for their services.

  • Work with the directors to secure contracts, grants and private funding to support the diverse portfolios of their business groups.

  • Identify, explore and develop potential new funding streams and service areas that leverage the institute’s strengths and assets.

  • Cultivate an internal culture throughout the institute that inspires commitment by supporting respect, professionalism, comprehensive diversity and inclusion, work/life balance, and professional development.

  • Supervise and collaborate with the Associate Director who has primary responsibility for overseeing the organization’s central administrative support functions, and compliance with university, state and federal regulations and policies governing sponsored projects.

  • Ensure the financial health and sustainability of the institute.

Other Functions

Perform other duties as assigned.

Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master’s degree in public administration, education, sociology, business, public policy, economics, or related field and 7 years’ experience with senior level management of staff from diverse backgrounds and fiscal portfolios in comparable organizations or other non-profit organizations stressing public services. A Ph.D. in the above-mentioned disciplines may be substituted for 2 years’ leadership experience.

  • Proven experience in marketing and providing client-oriented services.

  • A track record of successful fundraising in federal and state grant and contract environments, including grant administration.

  • Familiarity with state and local government entities, and key public and non-profit organizations.

  • Exceptional skills in communications, collaboration, and interpersonal relationships.

  • Commitment to and demonstrated experiences in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion across all roles and responsibilities.

  • Demonstrated ability to forge successful relationships and partnerships.

  • Ability and willingness to delegate effectively and hold direct reports accountable.

  • Clear understanding of and commitment to the mission of the university.

  • Commitment to public service and to excellence and integrity in service delivery.

  • Working knowledge and familiarity with current professional environment information technology tools.

  • Ability to work simultaneously on multiple tasks in a fast-paced environment where priorities change frequently in response to external needs and opportunities.

  • Demonstrated abilities in initiative and motivation.

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment.

Additional Details

The successful candidate must live in Massachusetts and have the have the ability to travel frequently within the state, especially to the Hadley/Amherst area, and nationally on occasion. No relocation allowance provided.

Salary Information

Salary commensurate with skills and experience.

Special Instructions to Applicants

Along with your application, please provide a resume, cover letter, and contact information for three professional references. The position will remain open until filled.

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University. To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

Advertised: Mar 12 2021 Eastern Standard Time

Applications close: