Portland, Oregon - Posted on: Friday 10/02/15


The director is a key member of the PSU Institute for Sustainable Solutions leadership team, which also includes the vice president for Research and Strategic Partnerships (VPR) and the assistant director of ISS. This position will balance a demand to grow and deepen the ISS presence within the Portland State University and Portland communities with the need to make the Institute’s work relevant within the broader national and international sustainability movements.

The director sets the strategic direction and budgetary framework for the Institute. She/he takes the lead in developing internal and external partnerships aimed at establishing a sustainable business model for the organization to thrive beyond the 2018 end of the ten-year, $25M grant from the Miller Foundation. This will require the director to provide leadership around the direction of the Institute’s programming, identifying how it will need to evolve and also the new elements that will need to be introduced in order to build an internationally significant portfolio of work. To do this, the director will also need to have a keen understanding of internal university dynamics and an ability to forge on- and off-campus collaborations that will enable ISS programming to root itself deeply within the culture of PSU.

The director position has a strong focus on growing the brand and reputation of ISS programs, and programs of the broader PSU sustainability community, within Portland and beyond. The position reports to the vice president for Research and Strategic Partnerships.

The position will be responsible for:

• Setting the strategic direction and budgetary framework for the Institute;

• Developing and implementing a sustainable business plan for the Institute, building a significant and diversified pool of resources that will enable ongoing support of the Institute’s mission;

• Growing sustainability partnerships with businesses, nonprofits, foundations, government agencies, and other universities;

• Enhancing the profile of the ISS’ work regionally, nationally, and internationally;

• Developing pathways for ISS programming to have national and international reach;

• Overseeing the work of the Assistant Director and collaborating with the Vice President for Research and Strategic Partnerships to shape and sharpen the Institute’s focus;

• Playing a leadership role across the sustainability community at PSU—sitting on critical committees, serving as a speaker at conferences, etc.

• Cultivating cross-university partnerships with other units, faculty, and deans to leverage existing resources and embed ISS programming within existing PSU structures.



Minimum Qualifications:

- A Master’s degree with five years of progressively responsible experience with organizational development, cultivation of philanthropic resources and multi-sector partnership development.

- A passion for and understanding of PSU’s mission as an urban engaged University.

- A commitment to work with faculty and University leadership to significantly increase the funding for sustainability programs at PSU.

- An ability to communicate with diverse audiences: to collaborate and communicate effectively across college lines and foster collaborative academic environments, capitalizing on assets throughout the institution.

- A track record of building effective relationships with industry and government coalitions, donors, alumni, and funding agencies, resulting in a successful fundraising program.

- Demonstrated record of excellent interpersonal and leadership skills, including the ability to motivate and influence a diversified faculty and staff in support of a strategic vision.

- Proven experience in recruiting, developing, retaining, and evaluating professional staff.

Preferred Qualifications: 

- Terminal degree in a related field

- Experience in public university administration;

- Established sustainability relationships at the regional, national and international level.

For more information and to apply:

Please visit,