Florida Atlantic University, located in Boca Raton, Florida, opened in 1964 as the fifth of 11 institutions comprising the State University System of Florida.  The University was dedicated on October 25, 1964, by President Lyndon B. Johnson, one of the few American institutions of higher learning to be so honored by a sitting President of the United States.  Florida Atlantic University opened as the first university in the nation serving upper-division and graduate students exclusively. Twenty years later, in 1984, FAU became a four-year university when the first freshman class was admitted.

Florida Atlantic University today is a dynamic, national public research university with campuses and sites strategically located along a corridor of more than 100 miles of coastline between America’s Everglades and the Atlantic Ocean. Already, it is recognized as a university of first choice for:

  • Excellence in undergraduate education and the student experience;
  • Comprehensive graduate education;
  • Visionary and globally relevant research;
  • Transformative engagement with its global communities.

With one of the nation’s most diverse student bodies, Florida Atlantic offers over 170 degree programs to more than 30,000 students.


Florida Atlantic University aspires to be recognized as a university known for excellent and accessible undergraduate and graduate education, distinguished for the quality of its programs across multiple campuses and classified as a very high research institution that is internationally acclaimed for its contributions to creativity and research as well as its collaborations with regional partners.

Florida Atlantic University values:

  • Excellence - in teaching, research and public service
  • Accountability - taking responsibility for actions and being outcome-based
  • Teamwork - seeking collaborative strategies to solve problems
  • Integrity - telling the truth and delivering on our commitments
  • Playing to win - and helping others win
  • Innovation - striving for creative solutions and continuous improvement
  • Student success - wholly committing ourselves to our students’ futures
  • Safety - providing a secure campus environment
  • Shared governance - making decisions through collaborative processes
  • Professionalism - performing our responsibilities with an ethical behavior
  • Customer service - exceeding the expectations of our clientele
  • Respect - treating people the way we want to be treated
  • Engagement - collaborating with community to benefit all stakeholders


The Vice President for Institutional Advancement and CEO/FAU Foundation will be responsible for the overall direction and management of community engagement, all fundraising/development and Alumni Relations activities at Florida Atlantic University.  The Vice President will provide leadership in identifying, cultivating and soliciting donations to the institution.

The Vice President needs to be an entrepreneurial leader and team builder who will be able to develop and articulate a coherent vision for programs while also being able to work well within an established multilevel decision-making organization.  The Vice President must have the ability to work effectively in a comprehensive university structure with competing interests among different constituencies. As such, the successful candidate needs to be a creative thinker who can be innovative but pragmatic and possess a high degree of receptivity to new ideas.  S/he must possess sensitivity for issues of communication, consensus oriented decision-making and collaboration.

To advance the goals of FAU's strategic plan, the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and CEO/FAU Foundation will launch a major comprehensive campaign at a multi-hundred million dollar level. Serving as CEO of the FAU Foundation, the Vice President will provide advice, counsel and leadership to the FAU Foundation, an independent university funding organization, its staff and Board of Directors.

Reporting to the President, the Vice President Institutional Advancement and CEO/FAU Foundation should have the following experience:

  • significant development experience building effective constituency-based development programs, as well as corporate and foundation development programs;
  • oversight of the growth and management of foundation financial assets;
  • experience in working with university advancement, foundation and alumni offices;
  • demonstrated experience and a track record of leading a team, based on and off campus, and cooperating with leadership in a collaborative and results driven environment that enables the team to cultivate donors, and plan, execute and close major and principle gifts, and create vibrant alumni networking;
  • significant experience with alumni engagement, as well as experience engaging and cultivating new donors from individuals within the community, as well as recent graduating classes to promote life-long giving;
  • demonstrated ability and successful track record in securing significant major and principal six and seven figure gifts;
  • successful direct experience in planning or leading major comprehensive campaigns;
  • intellectual depth to translate academic and technical information for a variety of audiences, coupled with an ability to inspire those audiences;
  • experience in working and interacting with governing boards and other volunteer leaders;
  • successful employee hiring and team development; and 
  • a passion for working and engaging in a city and engaging him/herself into the area communities


  • Ethical and trustworthy
  • Strategic and analytical thinker
  • Strong leadership and change management skills
  • Collaborative approach and strong interpersonal skills
  • Demonstrated character to lead by example and support his/her team through good and challenging times
  • Effective program builder 
  • Innovative problem solver
  • Successful working in a multicultural and multiethnic environment
  • Promotes diversity and inclusion
  • Communication skills: verbal, written and presentation
  • Ability to establish credibility with the Board, University leadership, faculty, staff and throughout the organization and within the community


  • Bachelor's degree is required; master’s degree preferred
  • Significant progressive experience in a large, complex advancement unit or organization


The Search Committee invites nominations, applications (a letter of interest, comprehensive curriculum vitae, and the names and contact information of five or more references) to be submitted to the search firm assisting Florida Atlantic University. Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. The Search Committee prefers that all nominations and applications be submitted to the search firm website prior to June 2, 2021.

Porsha L. Williams, Vice President

Grant Higgison, Principal

Parker Executive Search

Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2875

Atlanta, GA 30328

Phone: (770) 804-1996 X 109, X 118

pwilliams@parkersearch.com || ghiggison@parkersearch.com

Florida Atlantic University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action/equal access institution and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veterans status or any other characteristic protected by law.

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