University of Missouri–St. Louis — Chief of Staff

Job Description:
The University of Missouri–St. Louis (UMSL) invites nominations and applications for the position of Chief of Staff. Reporting to the Chancellor, the Chief of Staff provides leadership and coordination for the activities of the Office of the Chancellor; represents the interests and priorities of the University; and represents the Chancellor in various administrative matters across the university, within the St. Louis and regional community, and at the state and national levels. 

The Chief of Staff oversees major projects and initiatives, serves on committees, responds to internal and external concerns and constituents, and – in collaboration with University Marketing and Communications – develops, coordinates and assesses the Chancellor’s high-impact communications. As an advisor and collaborator, the Chief of Staff will ensure that the voices of our many stakeholders are brought together to build unity within the University, to keep the Chancellor’s Office focused on the university’s mission and initiatives and to prioritize the Chancellor’s daily activities.

This highly visible leadership role requires an individual with outstanding interpersonal skills, including diplomacy, tact and integrity. The successful candidate must be politically astute, a highly capable communicator, a servant-leader dedicated to the mission of public higher education for the state, region and beyond, and eager to help transform the university into the leading national urban public university. 

The successful candidate must be highly organized and detail-oriented, thrive within a complex environment, be capable of carrying fast-paced change forward, all while simultaneously keeping the Chancellor’s Office focused on the University’s mission and strategic initiatives. The successful candidate must have a proven track record of building collaborative relationships across organizational lines and with key constituencies in the broader community. Above all, this person must demonstrate the highest ethics and confidentiality inherent in such a position.

It’s an exciting time to join the University of Missouri–St. Louis. With an ambitious goal to become the top public, urban university in the nation, UMSL has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years. In the 2022 U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” rankings, UMSL was once again regarded as a Tier 1 national university, moving up eight places to rank No. 118 among all public universities. UMSL climbed 19 places in the overall rankings, bringing its two-year rise to 42 places – the sixth-highest improvement in the nation during that span. UMSL also received its highest-ever total score in the 17 measures U.S. News uses to inform the rankings. 

Serving more than 15,000 students, UMSL continues to excel at helping students improve their socioeconomic status by achieving a college degree. The university ranks in the top 100 on U.S. News’ list of “Top Performers on Social Mobility,” which highlights how well universities have graduated students who receive federal Pell Grants. UMSL also boasts the largest alumni network in the St. Louis region – more than 77,000 strong – who live, work, lead and contribute mightily to the state’s most diverse and economically important region. 

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Serve as a member of the Chancellor’s executive leadership team, direct and/or coordinate high-level initiatives and programs.  
  • Serve as a liaison and provide oversight to internal staff and/or external contributors to guide successful outcomes. Monitor and evaluate impact and results, and report on progress to the Chancellor and executive team. 
  • In partnership with appropriate offices and leaders, coordinate the Chancellor in terms of local, regional and national engagement, visibility and philanthropic activities.
  • Represent the Chancellor and the University both locally and nationally. Keep abreast of community, regional, state and national events and issues relative to the University’s interests.
  • Develop written and creative materials including correspondence, strategic proposals, annual reports updates on priorities to the Chancellor.
  • In partnership with the Executive Assistant, serve as a primary resource to prioritize the time and schedule of the Chancellor.
  • Assist the Chancellor in convening groups to gather information, develop briefing materials and coordinate key priorities and projects.
  • Perform research and policy review for projects and initiatives. Oversee transfer of projects to other stakeholders as appropriate.
  • Provide independent analysis and judgment in prioritizing situations needing attention and take steps to ensure projects are moved forward and tracked for progress through completion.
  • Independently handle high level or sensitive queries, concerns and requests on behalf of the Chancellor.  Utilize university-wide resources as needed to solve problems and mediate disputes.
  • Serve as the Chancellor’s liaison with Vice Chancellors, Deans and other Senior Directors and Administrators and in the broader community. Establish and maintain strong collaborative relationships with Vice Chancellors, across the University and with external constituents.
  • Within the scope of position duties, responsible for seeing that operations are effective and efficient, assets are safeguarded, reliable financial data is maintained and compliance is upheld with applicable laws, regulations, policies and procedures.
  • Serve as a liaison and collaborator with colleagues across the University of Missouri System to further advance and elevate the University’s mission and strategic initiatives. 

Key Characteristics:

  • Judgement and ability to work independently
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to convene groups and work across all level of the organization
  • Leadership poise to appropriately represent the Chancellor and the University
  • Ability to handle highly sensitive information and maintain confidentiality
  • Strong project management skills and the ability to manage multiple and competing priorities

Minimum Qualifications:
A Master’s degree and at least 5 years of experience from which comparable knowledge and skills can be acquired is required.

Preferred qualifications/experience include the following:

  • Substantial work experience with an organization’s chief executive and senior management team
  • Experience collaborating, engaging and communicating with high profile external constituents
  • Proven ability to work in a dynamic, fast paced work environment
  • Excellent communication and editing skills in verbal, written and presentation formats
  • Experience with strategic planning, assigning project metrics and the implementation and monitoring of key initiatives
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to interact with diverse internal and external constituents
  • Demonstrated political savvy and discretion

Full Time/Part Time:
Full Time 

Salary:
Salary commensurate based on experience and education

NOMINATIONS, APPLICATIONS, AND SEARCH PROCESS
Nominations, applications, and inquiries can be made through our website: umsl.jobs 

Electronical submission of application materials is highly encouraged and should include a letter of interest, a full resume/CV, contact information of at least five references, and a statement on promoting inclusivity and diversity. Applicants will be notified before references are contacted. 

UMSL will start reviewing applications 11/7 and close the search 11/21.

OUR COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY
The University of Missouri–St. Louis (UMSL) is committed to an inclusive campus community that values and respects all its members and achieves educational excellence through diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

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