Vice President for
University Advancement and External Affairs
Savannah State University, the oldest public
historically black university in Georgia, seeks an experienced
fundraiser and strategic leader to serve as Vice President
for University Advancement and External Affairs. This
senior administrator reports to the University President and is a
member of the President’s Cabinet in the overall management of the
University. The preferred start date is January 3, 2023.
Full information on this
search is available in the
Search Profile at
Savannah State University
Founded in 1890, Savannah State University is the oldest public
historically black university in Georgia. The University’s mission
and educational goals are realized through comprehensive program
offerings in the College of Business Administration, the College of
Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, the College of Sciences and
Technology, and the School of Education. Kimberly
Ballard-Washington, J.D., was appointed president of Savannah State
University in 2021, after serving nearly two years as the
University’s interim president. Over her career, she has led all
three of Georgia’s public Historically Black Colleges and
The 201-acre campus in the popular city
of Savannah is one of the most picturesque in the state of Georgia.
The moss-laden sweeping oak trees, expansive marsh, and historic
architecture are the backdrop for this vibrant residential campus.
Savannah State students experience a challenging, energized
collegiate life; study relevant academic majors in current and
emerging fields; attend engaging lectures; perform cutting-edge
research, and have quality student-faculty engagement in a
student-center learning environment.
Serving 3,000 undergraduate and
graduate students, Savannah State provides a supportive yet
challenging learning environment with opportunities to establish
close student-faculty relationships and relevant social and
professional networks. More than 76 percent of the students attend
full-time, and over 81 percent are Georgia residents. The two
largest majors are Business Management (14.3%) and Biology (13.6%).
The retention rate from Fall 2019 to Fall 2020 of first-time,
full-time students was 69.3 percent.
The University has a strong record in
research and grant funding and aggressively seeks funds from
federal sources, including NIH and NSF research. Grants compose
approximately 10 percent of Savannah State’s annual budget and
directly support the University’s mission to achieve student
success. These grants support curriculum enhancement, faculty and
student research, student scholarships, presentations at
conferences, and other scholarly activity.
In addition to its academic support
programs and extracurricular activities, the University has
exhibits, performances, sports teams, concerts, and community
volunteer service projects geared to improving relationships with
neighborhoods in the greater Savannah area.
Serving as the chief advancement, development, and marketing and
communications officer of the University, the Vice President for
University Advancement and External Affairs is responsible for
providing leadership for the development, administration, and
management of all functions and matters relating to Savannah
State’s comprehensive fundraising, alumni engagement, marketing and
communications, and government relations efforts. This senior
administrator reports to the University President and is a member
of the President’s Cabinet in the overall management of the
The Vice President also serves as
Executive Director of the Savannah State University Foundation,
Inc., a Georgia non-profit corporation with the purpose of
receiving, investing, and administering the private support of
Savannah State University. The Foundation provides financial
support that allows the University to build upon a growing
reputation of quality and value beyond the traditional resources
provided by state appropriations and student tuition and fees. The
31-member Board of Directors is comprised of loyal alumni and
friends and administers and invests charitable gifts to maximize
the gift’s value to the University.
Among those positions reporting to the
Vice President are the Executive Director for University
Advancement and Director of Advancement Services; Director of
Development; Director of Alumni Relations; Database and Gift
Coordinator; Stewardship Coordinator; Development Officer of Annual
Giving; Business Manager, and Executive Assistant to Vice President
for University Advancement.
Essential Job Functions
- Is responsible, in consultation with the University President,
for generating private donations to support the University’s
operations, including scholarship, academic, operational, and
- Is responsible for the management and growth of the University
foundation’s endowment, investment, unrestricted, and restricted
funds as the Executive Director of the University Foundation.
- Assists the President with external community relations.
- Stays knowledgeable of current fundraising, marketing and
public relations programs, practices, and procedures being utilized
by higher education institutions.
- Develops and manages the University’s faculty and staff giving
program and is responsible for the development and execution of
annual fund drives, deferred gift planning, and corporate and
- Develops and manages a donor relations and stewardship program
that achieves meaningful and reciprocal engagement between the
University and its donors.
- Oversees the leadership and management for the Division of
University Advancement and External Affairs, including management
and evaluation of staff, development of strategic plans, budget
development, and stewardship of resources.
- Promotes a positive image for the University by communicating
and interacting with city, state, and other officials regarding
matters related to University Advancement and representing the
President and the University in various community, state, and
regional activities designed to promote Savannah State in
particular and higher education in general.
- Provides leadership in the development and implementation of
the University’s internal and external communications, public
relations, and marketing to effectively convey the mission and
academic value of the University and to ensure that high-quality
standards for positive brand recognition are maintained.
- Develops policies and procedures for the Division of University
Advancement and External Affairs and the Savannah State University
- Encourages high morale and the delivery of quality service by
each employee within the Division through a leadership style that
results in employees striving enthusiastically toward the
accomplishment of established goals and objectives.
- Is responsible for special projects and other duties as
directed by the University President.
The Vice President will perform job-related tasks other than
those specifically delineated in this description and as designated
by the University President.
Candidates must have master’s degree from an accredited
institution of higher learning and a minimum of 10 years of
management experience with a working knowledge of business
development, campaign management, annual giving programs, corporate
and foundation relations, prospect management, alumni affairs,
marketing, and communications.
- Demonstrated record of exemplary leadership and accomplishment
in development with a proven track record of successful fundraising
and campaign management
- Demonstrated experience in volunteer management and in
- Demonstrated commitment to the values of higher education and
lifelong learning and professional growth
- Demonstrated experience in goal setting, both long- and
short-term for internal teams
- Self-motivated and goal-oriented work style
- Ability to work evenings and weekends and to travel, as
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
- Demonstrated effectiveness as a culturally competent
professional with broad experience interacting and supporting the
needs of a diverse population
- Knowledge of current trends and generally accepted practices
relevant to the position
- Demonstrated ability to design and implement successful
fundraising and marketing campaigns
- Knowledge and proficiency in search engine optimization (SEO)
and web analytics
- Demonstrated analytical and problem-solving skills
- Excellent communications skills, both written and oral
Established in 1733, Savannah is a historic city with a revered
past, a vibrant present, and an innovative future. With nearly
400,000 area residents, Savannah has maintained steady growth, with
the economy based mainly in shipping ports, manufacturing, tourism,
and the military. It is home to the fourth busiest port in the
With a world-class reputation for hospitality
and grace, Savannah attracts visitors internationally. This
beautiful river city is consistently named to popular lists,
including the “World’s Top Ten Trendy Travel Hot Spots” by The New
York Times, a “Top 10 U.S. City to Visit” by Condé Nast Traveler,
“Top 10 Most Beautiful Places in America” by USA Weekend Magazine,
and “Top 25 Places to Live and Work” by Outlook Magazine.
The city offers a high quality of life and a
family-friendly lifestyle. Museums, live entertainment, active art
scene, outstanding cuisine, trendy boutiques and national chains
for shopping, and concerts and performances are all part of what
makes Savannah a popular place to live, work, and enjoy.
Application & Nominations
Confidential inquiries are welcomed, and nominations are
- Application packet must include the following: a) Cover letter,
b) Résumé, and c) At least five references with full contact
information including e-mails (References will not be contacted
without consent from applicant.)
- Submit application packet (preferably as PDFs) to
SSU-VPAdv@myersmcrae.com by October 17, 2022, for best
consideration. Additional information will be
requested upon receipt of application. Applications will be
accepted until the position is filled.
Submit nominations to:
SSU-VPAdvemail@example.com with complete
contact and e-mail information for the individual being
Emily Parker Myers, Chief Executive Officer of
Myers McRae Executive Search and Consulting, is
assisting Savannah State University with this search. Request a
Savannah State University is an Equal Opportunity,
Affirmative-Action Institution committed to diversity, equity, and
inclusion. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for
employment without regard to race, color, genetics, religion, sex,
national origin, disability, or protected Veteran status. Georgia
is an Open Records State.