Exec. Director, Univ. Communications & Marketing | Iowa Chapter of the American Marketing Association

Exec. Director, Univ. Communications & Marketing

Company: Drake University

Full time
Des Moines, IA


We are searching for an experienced and innovative leader to lead marketing and communications for Drake University. Reporting to the Vice President of University Advancement, you will manage a highly respected institutional brand with nearly 140 years of proud history. Strong areas of focus will be helping drive student recruitment for seven colleges and schools, and strengthening engagement with alumni and donors. You must be skilled at creative problem-solving, collaboration and coalition-building across campus. In addition to the brand and marketing, you will also be responsible for public relations, including campus communications, media relations, reputation management and crisis response. You will lead a talented, hard-working staff (which includes our live English bulldog mascot, Griff II), manage external agency and vendor relationships, and enjoy working with a team of passionate colleagues from across campus.


  • Lead University Communications and Marketing staff, along with strategic partners and campus colleagues, to develop and execute integrated marketing communications and brand management strategies to enhance the image and reputation of Drake University.
  • Collaborate with University leadership (e.g. President's Council, deans, academic and administrative units, centers and institutes, Drake Athletics) to ensure adherence to communications best practices to support the University's strategic priorities.
  • Provide communications counsel to the University's leadership for incident and crisis communications efforts in coordination with the Department of Public Safety.
  • Oversee the professional development and performance of the University Communications and Marketing team to meet the dynamic strategic and tactical communications needs of the University.
  • Develop and supervise operational procedures, policies and practices for the Office of University Communications and Marketing to maximize budget related efficiencies and effectiveness.  
  • Directly affect institutional excellence by providing leadership for an institutional and collective commitment to and engagement in building a diverse, equitable and inclusive community. Lead and promote university equity and inclusion initiatives and programs within areas of responsibility.
  • Other duties as assigned.


You should have strong experience and expertise in leading marketing, brand execution, and/or communications for a complex organization with multiple stakeholders. Higher education experience, preferably in admission or advancement, is strongly preferred but not required. It is imperative that you have a solid understanding of how to build reputation and relationships with key audiences and then grow engagement with these important constituents over time. Issues management and/or crisis communications experience will be helpful. You should have at least 5-7 years of experience in a supervisory role.

How to Apply


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