IA Managing Director

By Imagining America | May 22, 2017

Requisition Number: 03019145



Supervisor Name: Erica Kohl-Arenas

Supervisor Payroll Title: Imagining America Faculty Director


Job Summary: Under direction of the Faculty Director, the Managing Director is the lead organizer, contributing to Imagining America’s overall strategy and leading key areas of work, including the National Advisory Board (NAB), Presidents’ Council, and Conference.

Provide oversight of programmatic and administrative strategic operations, including HR and budgetary processes, coordination of technology, space, and facility needs, and recruitment and development of staff. Provide leadership, communications management, strategic planning and principle management support.

Represent Imagining America to the campus and external constituents, such as administrators, researchers, and policy makers, develop and manage communications, on behalf of the Faculty Director.

The Managing Director will be working on the UC Davis campus. This position may also require travel.

Department Specific Job Scope: Imagining America (IA) was launched at a 1999 White House Conference initiated by the White House Millennium Council, the University of Michigan, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. The name Imagining America reflected the theme of the White House Millennium Council that focused on renewing participation in all walks of U.S. life: “Honor the Past – Imagine the Future.”

IA’s vision is to publicly-engaged artists, designers, scholars, and community activists working toward the democratic transformation of higher education and civic life. IA creates democratic spaces to foster and advance publicly engaged scholarship that draws on arts, humanities, and design. We catalyze change in campus practices, structures, and policies that enables artists and scholars to thrive and contribute to community action and revitalization. IA focuses specifically on the intersections of engagement, diversity, equity, and inclusion through a theory and practice of full participation.

Positions Supervised:

Direct Reports
TBD (Associate Membership Director) – 1 FTE
TBD (Assistant Communications Director) – 1 FTE
TBD (Office Manager) – 1 FTE

Other Reports (via dotted line)
Analyst IV (Finance) – 0.50 FTE

Essential Responsibilities: 65% PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT AND STRATEGY Work in consultation with the Faculty Director to develop the structure, organizing strategy, and resources for Imagining America (IA). Lead development of a business plan, including defining the value proposition, measures of success, and financial plan. Develop short- and long-range plans. Create program policies and processes that are conducive to the building and growth of Imagining America and initiatives in an inter-related, multi-focused and diverse, changing environment. Leverage and develop new partnerships and outreach opportunities, regionally, nationally and globally. Collaborate broadly on resource planning and allocation to align resources with goals to create a sustainable model. Provide leadership to the development of the program portfolio, which includes identifying partners, building leadership, securing sponsored funding, and creating a fundraising plan. Serve as a liaison and representative for the Imagining America with campus, foundation, government, and industry leaders.

35% SUPERVISION AND OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT Provide supervision of IA employees and IA fiscal and space planning in the context of UC Davis. Interview, select, train and evaluate performance; determine, delegate and supervise workload; evaluate processes and outputs. Manage the accountability and stewardship of human, financial, and physical resources. Develop and implement strategies to align human, financial and technology resources to the mission. Establish departmental goals and objectives; develop and implement related policies and decisions ensuring compliance. Build teams to create cross-functional efficiencies and organizational effectiveness. Provide organizational reviews, analysis and advice. Monitor fiscal activity and advise on trends and findings. Provide guidance on sensitive organizational matters. Ensure effective management of programs.

Work Environment: Work occasional evenings and weekends to meet mission and operational needs.

Occasional travel to promote Imagining America.

UC Davis is a smoke and tobacco free campus effective January 1, 2014. Smoking, the use of smokeless tobacco products, and the use of unregulated nicotine products (e-cigarettes) will be strictly prohibited on any UC Davis owned or leased property, indoors and outdoors, including parking lots and residential space. Additional information and specifics regarding the policy are available at

This position is a critical position and subject to a background check. Employment is contingent upon successful completion of background investigation including criminal history and identity checks.


Minimun qualifications:

Master’s in a field of study related to IA’s mission and work, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Five to ten years of experience working in higher education, the arts and/or humanities, or nonprofit organizations.

Leadership experience in administrative resource management including human resources, budget and finance, and policy development and organizational problem solving.

Awareness of current work across higher education on issues related to engagement, equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Experience in strategic and operational planning and program evaluation to provide sound recommendations and examine work processes and organizational structures. Skill to select, develop and implement a variety of direct and indirect strategies to influence desired outcomes.

Supervisory experience to recruit, train, evaluate, coach, mentor, and motivate staff.

Experience setting goals and objectives, developing qualitative assessments and quantifiable measurements, motivating and managing others, and prioritizing workload to meet strict deadlines and budgets in an environment of multiple projects and changing priorities.

Interpersonal, written and verbal communication skills to communicate clearly and professionally and to develop and sustain collegial working relationships with individuals from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

Preferred Qualifications:

Ph.D. or other terminal degree in a field of study related to IA’s mission and work, or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Analytical and conceptual skills for resolution of complex problems including identification of key issues, assessment and initiation of strategies for resolution.

Experience in financial forecasting, development and using tools and financial models to monitor funds, make projections, and design management reports.

Experience forming collaborative partnerships and agreements.

Project management experience to take complex, high impact projects from conception to fruition.

Experience applying sound judgment and political acumen to attentively discern and reflect perspectives, as appropriate, in advice given and in communications prepared.

Team building and leadership and organizing skills to achieve goals through promoting collaboration, team building and working cooperatively with others to foster and promote a service-oriented team environment.

Knowledge and skills to apply principles of performance management, conflict management, multiculturalism and diversity with coaching skills to enhance staff contributions to the organization’s mission.

Job Expectations:

  • Model the UC Davis Principles of Community by leading the effort to foster a positive work environment and further the organizational mission.
  • Contribute to a diverse workplace through ideas or experience; support and advance the campus Principles of Community in all activities.
  • Work in a fast-paced, dynamic work environment with the ability to thrive and achieve goals.
  • Regularly assess and adjust priorities as needed. Perform work within established deadlines.
  • Establish and maintain positive working relationships with management and staff.
  • Communicate professionally and collaboratively in all interactions.
  • Exercise discretion in dealing with controversial or potentially sensitive issues.

For full consideration, apply by June 22, 2017.

To apply for the position please go to:, Requisition # 03019145