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Executive Director of the Wagner Centers for Wellesley in the World

Wellesley College
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
May 28, 2024

Job Details

More than a college, Wellesley is a force for change in the world. Every day, we prove Wellesley’s founding radical idea—that educating women leads to progress for everyone.


A Wellesley education prepares students to realize their own highest ambitions and aspirations—and they do. Widely acknowledged to be one of the nation’s premier colleges and the top women’s college, we are unparalleled in educating path-breaking women in every arena.


The Executive Director of the Wagner Centers for Wellesley in the World will play a key role in shaping the College’s external relations and global engagement strategy including managing major convenings focused on urgent social challenges, developing and maintaining strategic academic and philanthropic partnerships and working with campus and external partners on strategic initiatives that advance Wellesley’s reputation and engagement in the world.

The aspiration for the newly-created Wagner Centers for Wellesley in the World is to serve as a hub for Wellesley’s global engagement and partnerships, as well as for faculty research and collaborations. The Centers include three of Wellesley’s externally facing centers and institutes: the Wellesley Centers for Women, the largest women- and gender-focused academic research-and-action organization in the U.S.; the Albright Institute, where students learn to navigate real-world challenges by working alongside foreign policy leaders; and a nascent center focused on citizenship, leadership and democracy which will launch in spring 2024.


The Executive Director has a unique opportunity to help shape and define the work of the Wagner Centers. The Executive Director will report to the Vice President of Communications, Public Affairs and Global Engagement and will consult with the Provost and collaborate closely with the Associate Provost for Wellesley in the World, who advises and collaborates closely with the College’s various stakeholders.


This position supports Wellesley’s goal, as outlined in our strategic plan, ”to redouble our commitment to women’s empowerment and gender equality, understanding that it is inextricably linked to other dimensions of equality and justice, and to advance those fundamental values through systematic, unapologetic, institution-wide engagement with the world.” It presents a remarkable opportunity for a strategic and seasoned professional to strategically harness the strengths and commitment of the world’s premier women’s college in order to have an impact on some of the most pressing issues of our time.


The Executive Director will report to the Vice-President for Communications and Public Affairs and consult with the Provost. The Executive Director’s primary responsibilities will include:

  • In consultation with the VP for Communications & Public Affairs and the Provost, develop and help implement external relations strategies that elevate Wellesley’s reputation and impact as a global leader on critical issues of the day related to women, democracy, and a just and sustainable world.

  • Expand the Wagner Centers’ contribution to the wider Wellesley community through collaborative event programming and other opportunities to intellectually engage with students, alumnae, faculty, and staff on global issues.

  • Bring together centers, institutes, and academic and administrative departments to plan and execute high-impact convenings or other external-facing programs in line with institutional priorities of the College.

  • Build relationships with external stakeholders including foundations, think tanks, NGOs, and policymakers in ways that help establish Wellesley as a resource and a strategic partner.

  • Ensure that external-facing programs are aligned with budgetary resources and make efficient use of available staffing and funding across centers, institutes, and departments.

  • Increase the external visibility of research and professional work conducted by Wellesley faculty.

  • Monitor and assess the impact of the College’s external-facing programs and partnerships. Maintain a comprehensive inventory of the College’s institutional partnerships

  • In collaboration with the Associate Provost for Wellesley in the World advise the President, Provost, and VP/Communications and Public Affairs on the development of new partnerships or termination of existing partnerships.

  • Collaborate with the VP/C&PA, the Associate Provost and Lulu Wang ’66 Executive Director of Career Education, the Executive Director of the Alumnae Association, and others to leverage Wellesley networks in service of larger efforts to advance women’s education and advancement, gender equality, as well as other key institutional priorities.

  • Manage the programs and budget for the Wagner Centers (Oversee planning of several major Wellesley-sponsored events that bring together scholars, policymakers, journalists and advocates around pressing global issues.



  • Significant experience (8-10 years) in an external relations role in academia, government, philanthropy, the corporate or non-profit sector.

  • Track record of success working in complex organizations and establishing collaborations and partnerships across internal and external stakeholders and organizations.

  • Creative and strategic thinker with a track record of leading and managing teams

  • Demonstrated ability to create and drive external engagement strategies that have measurable outcomes.

  • Passionate professional and personal commitment to women’s education and gender equity.

  • Deep understanding of the non profit and/or higher education landscape.

  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity in all its forms.

  • Effective leader with strong personal integrity and work ethic, able to lead teams and act as a strategic partner to the Vice President of Communications & Public Affairs and other senior leaders.

  • Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree preferred.


Company Description

Wellesley’s mission is to provide an excellent liberal arts education to women who will make a difference in the world. We advance our mission by working together as a community—faculty, students, staff, and alumnae. 

Embark on a fulfilling career journey at Wellesley College, where we prioritize your well-being and professional growth. As a valued member of our team, you'll enjoy a comprehensive array of benefits and resources designed to enhance both your work-life balance and long-term success.

  • Competitive Compensation: Experience competitive wages ensuring your dedication is recognized and rewarded.

  • Exceptional Benefits Package: Access a comprehensive benefits package, including health, dental, vision and pre-tax saving  benefits, life insurance, disability coverage, and more to safeguard your health and that of your loved ones.

  • Commuting and Transportation: Enjoy the convenience of free parking on our picturesque campus, easily accessible from major roadways. We are also accessible via the MBTA commuter rail. 

  • Paid Time Off: Take advantage of paid vacations, personal days, sick time, and holidays to recharge and maintain a healthy work-life harmony.

  • Retirement Savings: Plan for the future with our retirement savings plan. Wellesley College contributes up to 10.5% towards your 403(b) plan for eligible employees

  • Work/Life and Wellness: A hybrid work environment for select positions (additional details will be provided during the interview process), caregiving support through Wellthy, legal plan insurance, pet insurance discount and a variety of other resources including retirement planning, free onsite and virtual fitness classes and access to cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

  •  Professional Development: Enhance your skills and explore growth opportunities through continuing training and pathways for growth within our supportive environment.

  • Tuition and Education Benefits: Invest in your education with tuition benefits, and access resources to navigate student loan forgiveness, reinforcing our commitment to your ongoing learning.

  • Campus Privileges: Enjoy free use of our state-of-the-art athletic and fitness facilities with onsite fitness classes, Library resources,  and seize opportunities to attend diverse campus events that contribute to a vibrant community. 

Apply today and take your first step toward a rewarding career with Wellesley College – where your unique strengths and success are celebrated as part of our shared commitment to inclusivity!


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