Job Listings

Director, Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities

University of Montana
Job Location:
Missoula, 59812
Disability and Accessibility Services
Tracking Code

Job Description

The University of Montana invites applications for a Director to lead the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities (RIIC). The successful applicant assumes leadership of an esteemed and dynamic team of researchers, educators, and service providers dedicated to promoting equal opportunity for people with disabilities. Paired with the freedom to pursue their own research while living steps away from the stunning mountains and lakes that make Montana a first-rate outdoor recreation destination – this is an exceptional professional and personal opportunity.

The RIIC seeks a leader who will inspire change and is skilled at building mutually respectful partnerships statewide and nationally, with an appreciation for the strengths of rural communities. Our new Director must model inclusive decision making and be community driven. We need a Director who proactively obtains funding for a sustainable future in line with our strategic priorities. Effective engagement of diverse populations is critical; these include policy makers, university administration, those with lived experience, and current and future stakeholders.

The Director reports to the Vice President for Research at the University of Montana and currently oversees a $6.9 million budget, 48 active projects and programs, and nearly 60 staff. The Director provides direct supervision to a team of principal investigators and the RIIC business office (approximately 15 people) and is responsible for general oversight of the entire organization.

Key duties and responsibilities include:

  • Provide visionary leadership that inspires change and advances strategic priorities, cross-disability solidarity, organizational sustainability, and access and inclusion for all
  • Serve as Principal Investigator of the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research, and Service (UCEDD) Core Grant and implement the five-year plan in collaboration with the Consumer Advisory Council
  • Identify, implement, and evaluate necessary structural changes to policies, practices, and procedures in collaboration with RIIC staff to promote a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace
  • Contribute to, facilitate, and advance a diverse body of research, scholarship, and knowledge translation activities that advance the goals of the RIIC
  • Lead and support the RIIC in making academic and direct service contributions to disability issues across the lifespan
  • Participate in strategic college, university, state, and federal policy activities, considering how changing political landscapes may impact disability inclusion
  • Actively engage individuals who are impacted by disabilities in decision-making at all levels and ensure their recommendations and perspectives are reflected in the RIIC’s work
  • Serve as liaison and engage effectively with relevant local, state, and national partners including DD Act state partners, federal and state policy makers and agencies, individuals with disabilities and their families, university administration and faculty across disciplines
  • Explore and develop creative, innovative and diverse funding models, including securing federal and non-federal grants, contracts, and fee-for-service revenue
  • Provide strategic development, management, and oversight to new and existing projects, identifying and addressing gaps in service, research, and training related to people with disabilities

The University of Montana is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and has a strong institutional commitment to the principle of diversity in all areas. In that spirit, we are particularly interested in receiving applications from a broad spectrum of qualified people who would assist the University in demonstrating its five priorities for action: Place student success at the center of all we do; drive excellence and innovation in teaching, learning, and research; embody the principle of “mission first, people always"; partner with place; and proudly tell the UM story.

Position Details:
  • Position is full-time, 1.0 FTE, Letter of Appointment and includes a comprehensive and competitive benefits package including Insurance package, mandatory retirement plan, partial tuition waiver, and wellness program
  • Salary for this position is $145,000-$165,000 per year commensurate with qualifications
  • In-person only and will require residency in/near Missoula
Minimum Requirements:
  • Graduate degree in education, public administration, public health, law, economics, social sciences, psychology, or related field
  • Extensive experience working with individuals with disabilities and their families, as well as with disability-focused agencies or organizations
  • Ability to develop and maintain strategic partnerships
  • Experience serving as a principal investigator or grant director
  • Skill and experience administering research, training, outreach, technical assistance, resource development/leverage, and dissemination activities
  • Excellent communication skills related to administration, strategic vision, and improved understanding of research and issues facing people with disabilities across the lifespan
  • Skilled at developing a collaborative workplace through team building, sponsorship of junior colleagues, and respect for employees at all organizational levels
  • Demonstrated commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusiveness
  • Demonstrated ability to affect systems change to support policy, legislation, service outcomes, equitable access, and quality of life for people with disabilities 
  • Demonstrated ability to foster a workplace culture that values collaboration, intellectual curiosity, mentoring, academic freedom, and diverse perspectives
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Terminal degree in education, public administration, public health, law, economics, social sciences, psychology, or related field
  • Understanding of the UCEDD network and its role, purpose, and mission
  • Demonstrated ability to affect systems change to support policy, legislation, service outcomes, equitable access, and quality of life for people with disabilities
  • Knowledge and skills related to direct lived experience as a person with a disability and/or family/caregiver experience
  • Substantial record of research, publications, presentations, and grants administration
  • Embodiment of the values of independence, productivity, and community inclusion as outlined within the DD Act
About UM:

The University of Montana is a unit of the Montana University System with over 10,000 students. It is located in Missoula, a culturally vibrant community of about 72,000, surrounded by mountain grandeur which was recently ranked in the “top 20 best college towns with a population of less than 250,000” by the American Institute for Economic Research and ranked 9th in Outside Magazine’s “The 16 Greatest Places to Live in America” in 2014. Many national publications recognize Missoula for its high quality of life. Abundant recreational opportunities in surrounding state and national forests and nearby Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park complement a thriving intellectual atmosphere.  The University of Montana offers eligible employees a generous benefits package that positively separates UM from other local employers and offers many programs and policies to support work-life balance for its employees.

To learn more about the University of Montana, Missoula, and the State of Montana, please visit the links below.

Criminal Background Investigation is required prior to the Offer of Employment In accordance with University regulations, finalists for this position will be subject to criminal background investigations. ADA/EOE/AA/Veteran's Preference Reasonable accommodations are provided in the hiring process for persons with disabilities. For example, this material is available in alternative format upon request. As an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer, we encourage applications from minorities, veterans, and women. Qualified candidates may request veterans’ or disabilities preference in accordance with state law. References: References not listed on the application materials may be contacted; notice may be provided to the applicant. Testing: Individual hiring departments at UM may elect to administer pre-employment tests, which are relevant to essential job functions. Employment Eligibility: All New Employees must be eligible and show employment eligibility verification by the first date of employment at UM, as legally required (e.g., Form I-9).

How to Apply:

Application Review is ongoing and will continue until the position is filled

Complete applications received by the ‘Priority Application Date’ will be guaranteed consideration. The position will remain open until filled. Candidates are required to submit the following materials online via "New Resume/CV" button below. Please apply directly through UM jobs to ensure a complete application is received.

A complete application Includes:

  1. Letter of Interest– addressing your qualifications and experience related to the stated required skills for the position. A general letter salutation such as “Dear Search Committee” or “Dear Hiring Manager” is acceptable
  2. Detailed Resume– listing education and describing work experience
  3. Professional References– names and contact information for three (3) professional references
  4. Leadership Statement- Please provide a 1-page statement describing your leadership philosophy and how you put that philosophy into practice
  5. DEI statement– Please provide a 1-page statement describing how your professional activities, services, and/or lived experience has advanced DEI efforts. Please describe how you will advance DEI efforts at the RIIC including, but not limited to, disability
Position Type
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