Assistant Director Corporate Relations, Development and Community Engagement Program - Illinois Fire
University of Illinois

Urbana, Illinois

Assistant Director Corporate Relations, Development and Community Engagement Program - Fire Service Institute

Illinois Fire Service Institute
The University of Illinois is a world leader in research, teaching, and public engagement. We serve the state, the nation, and the world by creating knowledge, preparing students for lives of impact, and addressing critical societal needs through the transfer and application of knowledge. As the statutory fire academy for Illinois, the Illinois Fire Service Institute (IFSI) serves firefighters throughout Illinois and the world. World-class instructors deliver more than 14,000 class hours to students online, on campus and at regional training centers throughout the state. IFSI is operated as a continuing education and public service activity by the University of Illinois.


Help secure corporate support for IFSI activities in the form of corporate donations, gifts in kind, corporate-sponsored activities, and other corporate partnerships. Manage a portfolio of existing relationships with corporate and fire service constituents, help identify new corporate and industry affiliates, and develop and implement successful cultivation and solicitation strategies for corporate and personal philanthropy.


Corporate Relations and Development:

  • Develop and implement cultivation and solicitation strategies for corporate prospects and provide effective coordination of activities such as campus visits, site visits, travel to relevant sites, and presentations or proposal submissions.
  • Develop and implement a long-term, informed Corporate Relations vision, strategy, and execution that implements cultivation and solicitation strategies to increase revenues in support of IFSI and its mission. Including:
    ◦ Identify target audiences, develop key messages, and distribute on relevant channels.
    ◦ Measurement of the results.
  • Identify corporate prospects and conduct research to determine interest and giving potential.
  • Manage a portfolio of corporate donors and prospects.
  • Develop relationships and collaborations to build a strong awareness and presence of IFSI and engage with the corporate community around fundraising priorities and academic initiatives.
  • Make personal visits with corporate officers and external advocates.
  • Mentor and lead staff to ensure quality of work; solve personnel, staffing, and administrative problems when they arise.
  • Manage corporate affiliate relations and activities at national fire service trade shows.
  • Foster a positive working climate within the assigned workgroup and staff.
  • Communicate with the workgroup(s) and staff in a positive and supportive manner.
  • Manage confidential information and personnel matters with great discretion.
  • Work with the IFSI Business Office to execute agreements with companies.
  • Collaborate with various IFSI teams, members, and partner organizations to translate development strategy into integrated communications plans and deployment and facilitate organizational alignment.
  • In conjunction with the Director of IFSI, support key IFSI leadership to build the visibility, stature, and the brand of IFSI within the corporate and public communities.
  • Collaborate internally to develop budgets, monitor and forecast revenue and expenses, and drive financial results.
  • Lead quantitative and qualitative evaluation of fundraising outcomes, resulting in informed, data-driven, and investor-centric strategies, and consistently report progress to the Director and the Leadership Team.
  • Work with and support Corporate Partners' testing and evaluation of Fire Service-related equipment in various environments, including live fire environments.
  • Provides support and counsel to IFSI staff on Development and Community Engagement efforts.
  • Work closely and collaboratively with the Director and the Leadership Team to build and empower IFSI's capacity, capability, and consistency in fundraising.
  • Work closely and collaboratively with the Associate Director of Strategic Communication and Marketing to ensure capability and consistency in fundraising.
  • Sustain and expand IFSI's in-kind revenue opportunities.
  • Develop and maintain a prospect profile, strategy, and tracking/priority system.
  • Support the Director in any development and fundraising activities, and donor follow-up.
  • Develop and manage timelines for various fundraising activities to ensure plans and critical fundraising processes are carried out in a timely manner.
  • Identify corporate prospects and conduct research to determine interest and giving potential.
  • Maintain accuracy of donor tracking systems and databases for corporate constituents while maintaining the confidentiality of donor information.
  • Work closely with IFSI staff to ensure clear lines of communication and effective coordination.
  • Travel regularly to locations throughout the state and country to perform duties.
Community Engagement:
  • Support community engagement activities, including professional organizations, local and regional events, and other functions.
  • Work closely in support of the Associate Director of Strategic Communication and Marketing.
Other Duties:
  • Perform other duties as required and participate in special projects as assigned.

  1. Bachelor's degree.
  2. Minimum of three years of progressive experience soliciting corporate and industry support, including product donations, sponsorships, philanthropic contributions, securing grant opportunities, and/or gifts-in-kind.
  3. Preference will be given to candidates with proven relations and knowledge of Fire Service development markets.
  4. Experience with Microsoft Office programs and use of relational databases.
  5. Demonstrated ability working in a Live Fire environment, working in potentially hazardous areas, including toxic gases, extreme heat, and inclement weather utilizing appropriate PPE.

  1. Master's Degree.
  2. Ten years of fire service experience, including understanding equipment needs, usage, and Fire Service Equipment and apparatus manufacturers and retailers.
  3. Experience with firefighting and technical rescue training programs is strongly preferred.

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including articulating complex messages to a diverse audience.
  • Demonstrated skills and knowledge in developing, designing, and executing communications and development activities.
  • Strong creative, strategic, analytical, and organizational skills.
  • Extensive knowledge of the fire service mission and equipment.
  • Priority will be given to candidates with a proven understanding of firefighting and technical rescue training programs and fire service industry affiliates.
  • Knowledge of cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies and techniques, particularly in the area of corporate and foundation fundraising techniques.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of methods, practices, and procedures for obtaining information about the giving programs of corporations and foundations.
  • Self-motivation and discipline to regularly set and achieve work goals.
  • Excellent organizational, interpersonal, and networking skills with large groups and individuals.
  • Ability to be self-supervising and anticipate recurring demands on one's time.
  • Ability to consistently exercise sound independent judgment.
  • Ability to manage conflicting demands on time and multiple tasks involving multiple co-workers; maintain and exhibit flexibility; work under pressure and meet tight deadlines.
  • Ability to understand and accurately follow oral and written instructions.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective work relationships with those contacted to perform required duties.
  • Provide effective customer service to both internal and external customers.
  • Perform effectively both independently and as part of a team.
  • Sustain a positive, "can-do" attitude and commitment to customer service for internal and external customers.
  • Respond immediately to changes, demands, and workloads in a positive and pleasant manner.
  • Perform duties with high professionalism, individually and as a team member in all circumstances.
  • Employs strategies and approaches to ensure and improve inclusion, diversity, and equity-based outcomes within the organization and across IFSI policies, programs, and services.
  • Establish and maintain effective work relationships with those contacted to perform required duties.
  • Interpret and apply IFSI policies, procedures, guidelines, rules, and regulations.
  • Ability to initiate and build relationships with prospective corporate and foundation donors and interact via telephone and in person with institutional representatives.
  • Demonstrated ability to take primary responsibility for a diverse number of projects and to complete them in a timely manner with limited supervision.
  • Demonstrated record of success in generating significant commitments from corporations and foundations.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a team setting.
  • Ability to work nights and weekends as needed.
Appointment Information

This is a 100% full-time Academic Professional position, appointed on a 12-month basis. The expected start date is as soon as possible after April 16, 2023. Salary is commensurate with experience.

Application Procedures & Deadline Information
Applications must be received by 6:00 pm (CST) on March 29, 2023. Apply for this position using the Apply Now button at the top or bottom of this posting. Applications not submitted through will not be considered. For further information about this specific position, please contact Keri Frederick, For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-2137.

The University of Illinois System is an equal opportunity employer, including but not limited to disability and/or veteran status, and complies with all applicable state and federal employment mandates. Please visit Required Employment Notices and Posters to view our non-discrimination statement and find additional information about required background checks, sexual harassment/misconduct disclosures, COVID-19 vaccination requirement, and employment eligibility review through E-Verify .

Applicants with disabilities are encouraged to apply and may request a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) to complete the application and/or interview process. Requests may be submitted through the reasonable accommodations portal , or by contacting the Accessibility & Accommodations Division of the Office for Access and Equity at 217-333-0885, or by emailing .

Requisition ID: 1015412
Job Category: Administrative
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