Major Duties: Western Michigan University (WMU) invites applications and nominations for the position of Vice President for Government Relations. (VPGR) The position will provide strategic leadership and oversight of the University's efforts to engage and develop collaboration with key partners at the local, state, and national level. This position is a tremendous opportunity for a proven executive leader to bring expertise and vision to a role that requires strong leadership, skillful diplomacy, and substantial legislative acumen.The VPGR reports directly to the President of the University. Serving as a member of Cabinet, the VPGR is responsible for leading the Government Relations effort by cultivating and enhancing WMU's relationships at all levels of government, with a particular focus on developing proposals and strategies advocating for university priorities. Key Duties and Responsibilities:- Lead the Office of Government Relations with responsibility for executing short and long-range strategy for the government relations function, focusing on institutional priorities as well as emerging public policy issues- Coordinates legislative requests and contracts lobbying efforts- Develops and manages annual budgets for the Office of Government Relations- In collaboration with senior leadership, develops annual Michigan legislative advocacy priorities and strategies- Develops legislative advocacy materials in support of WMU's legislative agenda- Monitors state legislative and policy issues impacting WMU, develops position statements as needed, and develops execution strategies in consultation with relevant campus entities and leadership- Represents WMU on state association boards as appropriate and advocates for statewide appointments of WMU leaders and stakeholders to boards and committees- Actively studies and monitors draft legislation having the potential to impact university operations or policy and provides frequent updates to the Cabinet and other university leaders before, during, and after legislative sessions- Monitors federal issues and legislation affecting higher education including student financial aid, tax policies, immigration, and other regulatory issues- Works with senior leadership to develop WMU position statements and strategies on key issues and works with other university partners to mobilize constituent advocacy- Monitors activities of federal commissions and agencies and promotes appointments of WMU faculty and staff as appropriate- Monitors local government activities, including city and county commission meetings, resolutions and agendas, and assesses impact on the WMU community of any local government proposals- Develops community relations strategy in conjunction with Cabinet to strengthen and maintain positive town/gown relations in the communities where WMU has partnerships
Minimum Qualifications: - Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution - A minimum of ten years of progressively successful governmental affairs and community relations experience - Possess strong leadership skills and expertise in overall areas of local, state, and federal government- Ability to develop a clear vision and strategy consistent with WMU's mission and best practices- Demonstrated leadership skills that result in the production of high-quality services and exceptional standards- Strategic thinking with the capability of contributing at the senior administrative level and leading other leaders- Superior communication skills and the ability to connect with a variety of audiences; clear and effective written and oral presentation; and the experience, ability, and inclination to be a champion for the university- Ability to build relationships and collaborate across the institution, serving as a resource to others and obtaining their input- Persuasive, persistent, and determined to achieve goals- Ability to be nonpartisan and collaborative- Ability to distill complex issues and make sound judgments and recommendations on sensitive and sometimes confidential matters- Knowledge of state and federal government organizations and legislative processes, including budget and appropriations processes- Ability to research legislative history and the status of pending legislation and to analyze pending and enacted legislation- Ability to use independent judgment as well as manage and impart information to a range of internal and external organizations and constituencies- A record of building, leading, mentoring, and motivating staff; and the ability to encourage change and growth in both people and programs
Internal Number: 352_57029
About Western Michigan University
One of the top-100 public universities in the United States, Western Michigan University is committed to being learner centered, discovery driven and globally engaged. Founded in 1903, what was once Western Michigan College became Michigan's fourth public university in 1957. Since then, WMU has undergone dramatic growth in size and stature. Today, the University offers more than 240 academic programs to students pursuing degrees through the doctoral level. More than 20 percent of its 25,000 students are enrolled in graduate course work, studying in disciplines ranging from atomic physics and graph theory to medieval literature and blind rehabilitation. Of 101 graduate offerings available, 30 lead to a doctoral degree.