Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Bucknell University--Executive Director of Alumni Relations

The Opportunity
Bucknell is a unique national university where liberal arts and professional programs
complement each other. Since its founding in 1846, Bucknell University has become
one of the most well‐respected universities in the country, educating men and women
for a lifetime of critical thinking and strong leadership characterized by continued
intellectual exploration, creativity, and imagination.

In July 2010, Bucknell welcomed its 17th president, John C. Bravman, formerly Vice
Provost for Undergraduate Education at Stanford University. Under President
Bravman’s inspirational leadership, Bucknell is poised to significantly advance its
vision “to provide students with the premier undergraduate experience in American
higher education.” Bucknell’s potential as an institution of higher learning extends
beyond that of a traditional liberal arts college by virtue of its larger size and
expansive programs. The University’s broader spectrum of disciplines and courses of
study within a diverse and active residential campus community enhance the quality
of all aspects of the undergraduate experience, both in and out of the classroom.
Bucknell has nearly 50,000 living alumni who form a close network of loyal and
passionate Bucknellians around the world. The University’s alumni are engaged in
university life, and are passionate about their alma mater. Through alumni programs
and networks, Bucknell has further strengthened alumni engagement in and support
for the University. Bucknell seeks a talented and highly experienced Executive
Director of Alumni Relations to build on this success, developing and executing an
innovative vision for a premier Alumni Relations program that fully integrates with
and supports the University’s bold strategic goals and fundraising campaigns.

The following pages provide information about the position, the mission and
strengths of the University and its Development and Alumni Relations division, and
the importance of alumni relations to the institution’s overall goals. Higher Talent,
Inc. is pleased to present this unique opportunity to talented and experienced
development and alumni relations professionals who seek to blend their expertise in
constituent relations with non‐profit advancement on behalf of one of the nation’s
premier universities.

Executive Director of Alumni Relations

The Executive Director of Alumni Relations (EDAR) will provide strategy, leadership,
innovation and effective management for the Alumni Relations program. The EDAR
will lead a 15‐person team and oversee all aspects of traditional stand‐alone alumni
programs such as reunion, homecoming, a regional club system, alumni travel, and
alumni benefits (business partner programs). In addition, the EDAR will work in
conjunction with the Executive Director of Career Services to oversee cross‐functional
teams that engage alumni and students across academic, career and extracurricular

The specific responsibilities of the EDAR are to:
 Strategically align the Alumni Relations programs to support Bucknell
fundraising and career networking objectives;
 Increase the quantity and quality of alumni engagement programs nationally
and internationally, with an emphasis on Tier One and Tier Two markets;
 Work closely with the Executive Director of Career Services to maximize
student and alumni career opportunities via alumni programs and networks;
 Coordinate alumni relations programming with the President and other
University leaders and volunteers;
 Increase faculty participation in alumni programming, on and off campus;
 Provide leadership and vision for how the Alumni Relations team can
positively impact the University in multiple ways, and effectively manage the
team in realizing that vision;
 Review and refine the budget and operational plan for Alumni Relations to
ensure the effective utilization of resources
 Develop a quantifiable metrics system which provides realistic and inspiring
goals to staff members, and measures performance and trends;
 Develop a communication strategy to inform constituents, including external
and internal, about the success of the alumni relations program and alumni
support needed to continue the success.
 Ensure a strategic Web presence to facilitate alumni contact and interactions.
 Recruit, train, mentor, and manage staff to meet performance objectives, and
create a spirit of collaboration and success; and
 Develop a strategy to bring multiple alumni volunteer boards together to
collaborate to strengthen the alumni relations mission and goals.
 Strategically expand affinity group model.
 Other duties as assigned.

Bucknell University

Founded in 1846 in “the wilds of Pennsylvania,” Bucknell University today is one of
the nation’s top liberal arts institutions. Its 450‐acre campus is located in historic
Lewisburg, one of the best‐preserved Victorian‐era towns in the country, about three
hours from New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, DC. Bucknell’s location in
the rolling hill country of the Susquehanna Valley provides for ample recreational
opportunities. The campus comprises more than 100 facilities, including a
performing arts center, art gallery and state‐of‐the‐art fitness center.
Bucknell’s 3,500 undergraduate and 150 graduate students represent 46 states and
58 countries. The University combines the deep and personal learning experience of
a liberal arts college with the best opportunities of a world‐class university. Bucknell
has 354 full‐time faculty; 97 percent of regular faculty hold a Ph.D. or equivalent
degree. All classes are taught by faculty members, and undergraduates enjoy a
student‐to‐faculty ratio of ten‐to‐one. Students choose from more than 50 majors and
60 minors built around a liberal arts core, including distinguished professional
programs in education, engineering, management, and music. Bucknell students also
take advantage of faculty‐mentored undergraduate research, career externships, preprofessional
advising in law and medicine, and overseas study. Forty‐five percent of
students spend a semester or more studying off campus; Bucknell ranks 19th among
bachelor’s institutions for the number of students studying abroad.
Bucknell provides students with extensive opportunities for leadership, campus
involvement and community service, with more than 150 student organizations, 13
fraternities and seven sororities, and a student‐run radio station, newspaper and
literary publications. Eighty‐five percent of seniors participate in community service
or volunteer work. Bucknell has a strong intercollegiate athletic tradition, as well as
extensive intramural and club sports programs. A member of the Division I Patriot
League, Bucknell has won the League’s President’s Cup, honoring the school with the
highest cumulative standings in all men’s and women’s sports combined, for 16 of the
last 20 years. Bucknell ranks fifth among Division I schools for the number of
student‐athletes named to Academic All‐America teams, and its student‐athlete
graduation rate is the fourth highest in the nation. Among Bucknell students overall,
ninety‐five percent of first‐year students return as sophomores, and 89 percent of
students graduate within five years – among the highest such graduation rates in the

For more information about Bucknell, please visit

President John C. Bravman
John C. Bravman became Bucknell University’s 17th president in July 2010. President
Bravman came to Bucknell from Stanford University, where he oversaw the
undergraduate program as Freeman‐Thornton Vice Provost for Undergraduate
Education. He was the Bing Centennial Professor of Materials Science and
Engineering; a Professor of Electrical Engineering, by courtesy; and the founding Dean
of Stanford's Freshman‐Sophomore Residential College. As one of Stanford's
preeminent leaders, he was a strong and visible presence on behalf of the university
around the nation and the globe.

Born in 1957, Dr. Bravman grew up in New York City and on Long Island. He entered
Stanford as a freshman in 1975, and completed his B.S. in Materials Science and
Engineering in 1979. He remained at Stanford for his graduate education in materials
science, completing his M.S. in 1981 and his Ph.D. in 1984. Dr. Bravman held several
administrative positions and appointments at Stanford, including Department Chair
from 1996 to 1999, and Senior Associate Dean in the School of Engineering from 1993
to 2001. In the spring of 1999 he was elected Chair of the Faculty Senate, but by
policy vacated that position when he was appointed, later that year, Vice Provost for
Undergraduate Education. In 1999 he also established a two‐year residential college,
Stanford's first, and served as its Dean until leaving Stanford for Bucknell.

As Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Dr. Bravman led a far‐ranging
transformation of Stanford's undergraduate experience. He nurtured, built, and/or
managed programs that brought faculty and students together, in small groups,
through seminars, overseas studies, and undergraduate research; that provided
instruction for all undergraduates, through required core‐courses in the humanities
and in newly‐developed pedagogy in writing and oral presentation; that established,
for the first time, a comprehensive advising infrastructure for all undergraduates; that
reinvigorated Stanford's system of residential education; and that worked with all
seven of Stanford's School Deans to maintain and extend Stanford's excellence in
undergraduate education. He represented the university administration on the
Parent's Advisory Board, and spoke on hundreds occasions for the Office of
Development, the Stanford Alumni Association, and the Office of Undergraduate

Dr. Bravman played a pivotal role in the Campaign for Undergraduate Education at
Stanford, which raised over 1.1 billion dollars and reignited the donor community's
support for the University's undergraduate mission. He was a member of President
Hennessy's Needs Assessment Task Force, and remained engaged in the Stanford
Challenge, the university's 4.3 billion dollar capital campaign that grew out of that
task force. He regularly met with some of the university's most dedicated supporters,
spoke to groups of all sizes around the nation and the globe, and was successful in
motivating and soliciting both those with established records of support and those
new to significant philanthropy. Dr. Bravman is an accomplished and engaged
fundraising leader on behalf of Bucknell, and assumes his role as the University
prepares to announce the public phase of its comprehensive campaign.

The Plan for Bucknell

The Plan for Bucknell, which reflects the work of literally thousands within the
Bucknell community, was approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees in April
2006. The Plan comprises five strategies that guide the University as it works to
achieve its highest goals:
Strategy #1: Strengthen the Academic Core

Bucknell will offer an academic program that achieves the highest standard of quality
across its liberal arts and professional programs. Bucknell supports innovation and
distinctiveness in areas of current and emerging importance and relevance.

Strategy #2: Deepen the Residential Learning Experience

Bucknell will provide an integrated, residential learning and living experience that
supports and complements the academic program. Bucknell’s close‐knit residential
community will promote personal growth and development, a sense of justice and
ethical responsibility, and a commitment to civic engagement.

Strategy #3: Enhance Diversity

Bucknell will adopt an unwavering commitment to diversity in all its forms. This
commitment will be carried out within a civil, supportive, and nurturing environment
of open exchange.

Strategy #4: Build Bridges

Bucknell will pursue a more progressive and multi‐faceted interaction with local and
regional constituencies and the outside world. The University will establish bridges
to bring the world to Bucknell — and bring Bucknell to the world.

Strategy #5: Secure Our Financial Future

Bucknell will secure the resources necessary to engage new opportunities, lessen its
dependence on tuition, and ensure its financial future.

To meet the goals of The Plan, Bucknell has undertaken the largest fundraising
campaign in its history, with a goal of $400 million. Having raised $180 million in the
campaign’s silent phase, President Bravman and the Division of Development and
Alumni Relations, in concert with the Board of Trustees and campaign leadership, are
currently in the planning stages for the public phase of the campaign. The Executive
Director of Alumni Relations and the Alumni Relations team will be critical to a
successful campaign, and to Bucknell’s long‐term fundraising aspirations.

Division of Development and Alumni Relations

Bucknell University’s Division of Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) is an
innovative team that brings Development, Alumni Relations and Career Services
under one umbrella. The resulting cross‐pollination serves to increase and deepen
the connections among Bucknell and its alumni, students and parents, and to foster
increased support for the University. Since the assimilation of Bucknell’s Career
Development Center into DAR in 2007, the University has been a leader in expanding
its alumni programming beyond traditional engagement models based on class year
and regional clubs, and to include affinity programs that line up with constituent
interests. The most successful affinity groups have been built around career interests,
expanding networking opportunities for the Career Development Center while
bringing alumni and parents closer to the institution. Other affinity groups focus on
shared academic and extracurricular experiences. While overall alumni participation
in annual fund giving was approximately 36 percent in 2010, the participation rate for
alumni who are members of affinity groups was nearly 49 percent. DAR aspires to
raise annual participation rates further.

Bucknell’s nearly 50,000 living alumni are characterized by their dedication and
loyalty to their alma mater. Alumni are located in every state in the United States and
nearly 100 countries; the majority is concentrated in the mid‐Atlantic area, with the
largest populations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Maryland, and a large
concentration in California as well. Bucknell supports 40 geographic clubs around the
world, and hosts well above 200 events each year, uniting thousands of alumni,
parents, students and friends

DAR is led by Vice President Scott Rosevear. Scott has been with Development and
Alumni Relations since June 1999. Promoted to the role of Vice President for
Development and Alumni Relations in 2011, Scott is responsible for all fundraising
efforts, from strategy to results; relationships with alumni, parents, volunteers,
corporations and foundations; career services for students and alumni; prospect
research and management; advancement information services; gift processing; and
managing the University’s comprehensive fundraising campaign. Prior to coming to
Bucknell, Scott worked at The University of Michigan (while attending graduate
school) and as a senior real estate investment analyst for Massachusetts Mutual Life
Insurance Company. He received his B.A. from Michigan State University and his
Ph.D., M.A. from the University of Michigan.

The Executive Director of Alumni Relations will report to Scott, and will collaborate
with the Associate Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations, and the
Executive Directors of Campaign Administration and Career Services, who also report
to the Vice President.

First 12 Months Priorities

The Executive Director will have the opportunity to build a premier Alumni Relations
program that is a critical component of Bucknell’s plans for the future. The EDAR will
join a seasoned and strategically‐focused group of senior colleagues, working under
the inspirational and highly‐regarded leadership of President Bravman. The EDAR
will be supported by ample resources and by a dedicated and collegial staff within
Alumni Relations as well as the larger division.

The top priorities of the first 12 months will be to: (1) Become familiar with the
constituency, program and staff of Alumni Relations; and assess the effectiveness of
each aspect of the program; (2) Develop an ambitious vision for an Alumni Relations
program that supports University‐wide priorities, and a strategy for attaining it; (3)
Establish specific goals and develop metrics for measuring progress; (4) Build strong
collaborative relationships with senior colleagues to work for the larger good of
Bucknell; (5) Reinvigorate regional clubs in New York City (including northern New
Jersey, Westchester County and Fairfield County) and other Tier 1 markets, including
a focus on better recruitment of club volunteers; (6) Strengthen the Alumni Relations
team’s appreciation for their critical role in supporting Development as well as Career

Qualifications and Requirements

The Executive Director must be a seasoned, self‐directed manager with a strategic
orientation, and a demonstrated ability to translate vision into action, and into
measurable achievement. He or she will have a minimum of seven to 10 years of
relevant experience, preferably in higher education, and a minimum of five years of
management experience in a college or university alumni relations or fundraising
program. A Bachelor’s degree is required, and a Master’s degree is a plus. The
Executive Director must have an understanding of the complex politics of a university,
and how to navigate and partner with a university’s array of constituencies.
Experience supporting and managing volunteer boards is also critical. Successful
candidates must have excellent communications skills, including strong public
speaking skills, and a talent for cultivating personal relationships both within and
outside of the organization.

The Executive Director must have an appreciation for traditional, core alumni
relations programs, while understanding the role of alumni relations within the
broader framework of the University’s objectives and aspirations. The Executive
Director must embrace a sense of partnership with Development and Career Services,
and shared ownership of fundraising success. The ideal candidate may have frontline
fundraising experience, and can continue to carry a personal portfolio of donor
prospects, if appropriate. He or she must have a demonstrated ability to provide
strong leadership and build effective teams ‐‐ inspiring and empowering staff while
also holding them accountable. He or she must be a collaborative team player who
will be a strong advocate for the Alumni Relations program but have a broad view of
what is best for Bucknell as a whole.

Benefits, Compensation and Community Information

Bucknell University offers competitive salaries and benefits, including a choice of
health plans, a retirement program, a generous tuition remission program, life
insurance and long‐term disability coverage, and a range of voluntary benefits and
other University services. For more information and details about benefits, go to

For spouses of newly hired full‐time staff, Bucknell provides assistance in searching
for employment through its Dual Career Program (DCP). The DCP can help critique
resumes and other documents, provide general information on employment in the
region, and help identify appropriate employers and make connections with key
contacts. For more information about DCP go to:

Bucknell is located in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania (population 5,600), a beautifully
preserved Victorian town in the picturesque Susquehanna River Valley, about three
hours from New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, DC. Lewisburg is listed on
the National Register of Historic Places, and offers a variety of restaurants, unique
shops, galleries and museums, nightlife, and an original Art Deco Movie palace. The
surrounding area offers a combination of historical sites and towns, arts and culture,
and outdoor recreation including hiking, biking and kayaking. The region offers a
diverse economy based on education, healthcare, manufacturing, retail and
agriculture; large employers include Geisinger Medical Center, two community
hospitals, Susquehanna University, Merck and Woodmode. The public schools in the
area are well regarded, and there are several private school options as well. More
information on living and working in the area can be found on multiple sites including,, and

Search Process and to Apply

Bucknell has retained Higher Talent, Inc. to manage the search process. Interested
candidates may apply directly through the Bucknell University website at

For more information on the position or the search process, please contact one of
Higher Talent’s Principals:
Diane Charness, President, at 301‐320‐9007 or
Mindy Suissa, Vice President, at 301‐915‐0906 or
Higher Talent Inc.
4938 Hampden Lane, #470
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: 301‐320‐9007
Fax: 301‐320‐7209
Bucknell University is an Equal Opportunity Employer

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