Executive Director, Foundation Relations at The Ohio State University

Executive Director, Foundation Relations at The Ohio State University

Job Type
Posting Date
September 19, 2017
Location of Position

Columbus, OH

Company Summary

Position Overview

The Ohio State University is seeking an Executive Director to lead its Foundation Relations function. In 2015, we reorganized the department and grew to a front-line team of five development officers and one office administrator. Team size will continue to grow over the next few years as we proactively work to maximize the university’s potential in securing philanthropic support from local and national foundations. This position will serve as an integral member of the Vice President of Development’s team and have the crucial access to university leadership necessary to fully engage and secure resources.


The Executive Director will be supported by a resource-rich environment and be inspired to action by innovative and strategic priorities articulated in the university’s strategic plan and comprehensive campaign plan. Current construction of new arts and athletics districts, emphasis on major medical research facilities, addition of a materials corridor for engineering and multi-disciplinary work in obesity, diabetes, poverty and heart disease are just a few examples of that innovation and strategy in action.

Duties and Responsibilities


Faculty and Staff

Raising academic leadership’s sights in the foundation relations fundraising space and helping prioritize work are key functions of this position. With 31 fundraising units, the opportunities to build smart, collaborative internal partnerships are abundant.

Funding Source Expansion

The diversity of funding opportunities at Ohio State needs to be met with creative solutions paired with an intimate knowledge of the foundation relations world. It’s the perfect chance to take strong external networks to the next level.

Leadership of Team

The Foundation Relations team we have built is exceptional. We need a leader who will serve as a mentor and guide who can continue to motivate and challenge the talent we have assembled and be confident in partnering across functional areas in a complex environment.

Campaign Planning

The university’s next campaign is scheduled to publicly kick off in 2020. Plans are being formed now and the Executive Director of Foundation Relations will play a big part in building out strategy and setting goals for the future.

Organizational Overview

Ohio State is a land grant university and thrives as a large, complex research institution, including 15 colleges and an academic medical center with seven health science colleges on main campus.

The university recently concluded its But for Ohio State Campaign which raised a record $3 billion. Our academic strengths and initiatives are best illustrated by our Discovery Themes, including:

  • Sustainable and Resilient Economy
  • Initiative for Food and Agricultural Transformation
  • Materials and Manufacturing for Sustainability
  • Personalized Food/Nutritional Metabolomics for Health
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Translational Data Analytics
  • Humanities and the Arts
  • Prevention and Treatment of Chronic Brain Injury

Looking towards the future, the university’s 2020 Vision establishes three key pillars for the future: 1) access, affordability and excellence; 2) community engagement; and 3) diversity and inclusion.

“As we approach the university’s 150th birthday, we must re-envision our land-grant role in the modern light of the 21st century.” – President Michael V. Drake, MD

Position Requirements

A proven, assertive leader who understands foundation fundraising in higher education and is collaborative, innovative and driven to continuous improvement will rise to the top as an applicant. The successful candidate will have deep knowledge of foundation relations and a proven track record of success in identifying, cultivating and soliciting foundation gifts, preferably in a large, complex higher education or medical center environment.

Please visit www.advancement.osu.edu to find out more about University Advancement and apply online.

Questions may be directed to Steph Mizer, Recruitment Manager, at mizer.43@osu.edu

Required Experience

Apply Here

The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, national origin, disability status, or protected veteran status.