Job Listings

Associate Vice President for Government and Community Relations

Spelman College
Job Location:
Atlanta, Georgia
Communications, Marketing, and Public Affairs

Job Summary

This position reports to the President and serves as the primary liaison for Spelman College with the College's lobbyist, elected officials and staff, government agencies, and with the local community. Serves as a strategic leader in building support for the institution's priorities with Federal and local governments, as well as with neighboring communities. The incumbent plans, develops, and directs all aspects of the college's government relations operations to build relationships, secure federal funding and to advocate for legislature that drives student success. Through these efforts, the ideal candidate will work closely to further government relations, industry relations, and community relations and to raise the profile and visibility of for Spelman College.

The position monitors and manages political, regulatory, and external funding opportunities and challenges affecting Spelman as a leading liberal arts college, top-ranked HBCU and a key player in the AUC and Westside Neighborhood.

The incumbent collaborates internally to ensure compliance with laws, regulations, and executive orders as appropriate. They establish outreach initiatives to ensure awareness of and support for the College's role as a top-ranked liberal arts college and preeminent HBCU and to seize opportunities that address the needs and interests of key stakeholders.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Supports the work of the College by identifying or creating opportunities to promote Spelman's interests to the White House, executive branch agencies, members of Congress, and other national opinion leaders and stakeholders.
  • Oversees activities related to the College's interactions with the federal government, the City of Atlanta and the College's surrounding community. Responsibilities include service as liaison and ombudsman to these communities, development of strong relationships, knowledge of current and proposed legislation, and crafting proposals and strategies.
  • Cultivates and fosters bipartisan alliances to address issues of importance to the Spelman College community and to serve as a liaison between Spelman College and state officials, agencies and other stakeholders.
  • Identifies Spelman College's government audiences which include elected local officials, Congress, the Executive Branch and other stakeholders in order to develop a specific and targeted plan for engagement.
  • Increases Spelman College's scope of influence at the local and federal government level.
  • Shares the College's research, scholarship, and models of urban investment with federal policymakers and national partners.
  • Identifies strategic opportunities to advance efforts to enhance the quality of urban life in Spelman's surrounding Westside neighborhood.
  • Monitors legislation and regulations at all levels of government that impacts Spelman College specifically, HBCUs, as well as higher education.
  • Develops a robust process to track state and national level initiatives.
  • Provides oversight of the federal appropriations process.
  • Tracks other federal funding opportunities for the college through the executive branch
  • Communicates with urgency and appropriate discretion and transparency to keep the President, leadership team, and stakeholders informed and aligned.
  • Represents the President at internal and external meetings, as appropriate.
  • Serves as a subject matter expert, handling inquiries and developing action plans to address them, and assisting with the preparation and dissemination of government relations communications.

Required Qualifications

Bachelor's degree along with a minimum of seven or more (7+) years of direct experience in government relations is required. Demonstrated experience researching and writing local, state and national grants. Master's Degree or Professional Degree preferred.

This position requires knowledge of practices and procedures associated with building and maintaining effective working relationships with all levels of internal and external communities. A background in higher education, specifically historically black colleges and universities or other minority serving institutions, is preferred.

Advanced written and verbal communication skills and highly developed research, analytical, critical thinking and problem-solving skills are required. Advanced knowledge of policy issues in higher education and the governmental and legislative process is preferred.

As a principle representative of the President, must be collegial, respectful and maintain good relationships with internal and external constituents on behalf of the President. Must have outstanding judgment and a strong sense of humility - understanding that his/her actions represent and reflect on the President. S/he will have outstanding interpersonal, negotiating and conflict resolution skills, along with a demonstrated ability to handle issues with a high degree of sensitivity, discretion, and confidentiality are critical for this position.

Must possess strong leadership, supervisory, organizational, presentation skills, and experience with strategic planning processes. This position requires the ability to think, analyze, and make sound judgments concerning complex policy issues and other matters that have college-wide impact, as well as coordinate constituent responses on behalf of the President.

The successful candidate must have a proven track record of managing diverse constituents, as well as, the ability to work effectively and collaboratively to achieve strategic institutional goals in a timely manner.

To perform this job successfully, an individual must have proficient/advanced computer skills using the Microsoft Office suite including, Word, Excel and PowerPoint; ability to create and manipulate such things as general correspondence, electronic reports, spreadsheets and presentations. Must be able to utilize an email and calendar system, such as Microsoft, and be internet savvy.

Preferred Qualifications

Master's Degree or Professional Degree preferred.

A background in higher education, specifically historically black colleges and universities or other minority serving institutions, is preferred.

Advanced knowledge of policy issues in higher education and the governmental and legislative process is preferred.

Physical Demands

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to: sit, walk, talk, hear, use hands to handle office supplies, operate computer and other office equipment. The employee is frequently required to: reach with hands and arms, and stand. The employee is occasionally required to: stoop, climb, and lift and/or move up to 15 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include the ability to adjust focus.

Full Time/Part Time: Full-time

Posting Number: SC0482P

Open Until Filled: Yes

COVID-19 Testing and Vaccination Protocol

Due to the ongoing pandemic, Spelman College has instituted a COVID-19 testing requirement. You will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result within five (5) days of your start date. Acceptable tests include: PCR, Rapid Antigen, or results of an at home self-test. When providing test results of an at home self-test, your full name and test date must be written down legibly alongside your final results. The cost related to testing is not a reimbursable expense by the College. Please email your negative test results to Yemi Brown, PharmD Manager of COVID-19 Operations at prior to your first day on campus.

In addition, due to the heightened risk of contracting COVID-19 and the spread of variants, Spelman College requires up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination of all faculty, staff, and students (collectively "Campus Community") that have job duties, attend classes, or are otherwise present on campus. You will need to submit proof of up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination (full vaccination and a booster) prior to your first day on campus or you may seek a medical or religious exemption to the vaccination requirement by providing the necessary documentation to: Yemi Brown, PharmD Manager of COVID-19 Operations, at Upon receiving your Spelman Technology log-in credentials, please keep your vaccination or exemptions records up-to-date using Etrieve.

It is our hope to minimize transmission of the coronavirus in the workplace and academic setting by requiring occupational protection such as requiring face masks be worn indoors, encouraging frequent handwashing and promoting adherence to the community testing cadence.
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