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Director of Advancement

Company: University of Toronto, Dalla Lana School of Public Health
Date Posted: June 1, 2016

The Opportunity

The Director of Advancement for the Dalla Lana School of Public Health (DLSPH), a Faculty of the University of Toronto, will provide the strategic vision and leadership to continue building both the advancement program and a high performing advancement team for the School.  Reporting to the Dean, with a dotted-line reporting relationship to the Assistant Vice-President, Divisional Relations and Campaigns, the Director of Advancement will develop, implement and evaluate a comprehensive advancement program that will include all fundraising (major gifts, gift planning and annual giving), alumni relations, and advancement communications activities for the Dalla Lana School of Public Health.  The Director will lead a team that currently consists of a Senior Development Officer, and an Administrative Coordinator, with the possibility of adding additional staff as the Office of Advancement evolves.

About The Dalla Lana School of Public Health

The Dalla Lana School of Public Health’s origins date to 1927, when it began as the University of Toronto School of Hygiene, the third such School funded by the Rockefeller Foundation (after Johns Hopkins and Harvard). By the mid-1930’s the School led the world in sanitation science, nutrition, the development of vaccinations for diphtheria and other infectious diseases (through its Connaught Laboratories) and many other areas.  The sense of security that was created by the development of antibiotics, universal health insurance coverage through Health Canada and many other aspects of modern medicine and society led the University to disband the School in the 1970’s. 

The 2003 SARS crisis and the dramatic subsequent resurgence of interest in public health in Canada propelled the University of Toronto to re-establish the School in 2008.  Shortly thereafter, Paul and Alessandra Dalla Lana made a transformative donation of $20 million to the University of Toronto — the largest gift ever given to public health in Canada — to endow chairs in Public Health Policy, Disease Control and Global Health and 24 awards for the support of professional masters students.  In July of 2013, after steady growth, development, and consultations, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health became the first new Faculty at the University of Toronto in 15 years.

Today, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health is a regional and global leader in public health education, research and service, with the largest concentrations of academic population and public health researchers in Canada and over $30 million in research funding per year. The DLSPH is making major contributions in areas such as chronic disease, infectious disease, and genetic epidemiology; public health policy; social determinants of health and social epidemiology; global health; addictions; occupational and environmental health; and biostatistics methodological research.

Five core strategic directions provide the framework for the DLSPH strategic Plan:

  • Education – Prepare tomorrow’s leading scientists and scholars, health professionals and practitioners who will contribute to fulfilling the social responsibility of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health;
  • Research – Lead research innovation in population and public health that answers questions of local, provincial, national and international societal relevance;
  • Knowledge Translation and Exchange – Exchange knowledge and discoveries to improve health benefits for local and global populations;
  • Partnerships – Create a collective vision for a shared academic future with the University, community-based affiliates and other public health partners locally and internationally;
  • Faculty, Learners and Infrastructure Support – Invest strategically in academic and infrastructure priorities in support of our learners, faculty and staff to provide for their success.

About The University of Toronto

The University of Toronto is widely recognized as a global leader in research and education, consistently ranked as one of the top universities in the world and the top university in Canada, placing 23rd in the fourth annual Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings and 34th in the QS World University Rankings. The University of Toronto is also first in Canada in the research-focused Academic Ranking of World Universities.

As Canada’s largest university, the University of Toronto has more than 84,000 students in 700 undergraduate programs, 215 graduate programs, and 62 professional programs on three separate campuses.  Recognized as a global leader in research and teaching, U of T has an operating budget of $1.8 billion, research grants and contract support of $1.1 billion, and more than 21 million holdings in a research library that is ranked one of the top three research libraries in North America.  Established in 1827, the University has an estimated economic impact on the GTA economy of $6.58 billion and on the Canadian economy the impact is $15.7 billion.  U of T has also been listed as one of Canada’s top 100 employers for 2016, a distinction held for the past nine years.

U of T’s globally-recognized network of faculty members, alumni and partners creates a unique educational experience for undergraduate and graduate students. With one of the strongest teaching faculties across all disciplines – spanning medicine to business, urban studies to engineering, humanities to education, and more – our students have the opportunity to learn from and work with professors who are some of today’s thought leaders.

The ideas and inventions that are created here make their way into the global economy in many ways, through start-ups, small businesses, commercialization and partnerships. You can see U of T members engaged in community projects, our faculty experts in the news, and over 500,000 graduates spread across 140 countries.

Boundless – The Campaign for the University of Toronto

Boundless: The Campaign for the University of Toronto has a vision for U of T’s future, built on two central pillars: Meeting Global Challenges and Preparing Global Citizens. 

The Campaign seeks to capture the boundless potential of the University’s community by:

  • Supporting groundbreaking research and teaching that generate solutions for healthy, sustainable and successful societies, while also strengthening the essential foundation of basic research. Funds raised will support the University’s world-class minds, attract a new generation of “rising star” faculty and make critical enhancements to programs and infrastructure.
  • Fostering international fluency and leadership skills among the University’s more than 84,000 undergraduate and graduate students – by raising funds to support student awards and build learning environments that nurture creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, disciplinary excellence, interdisciplinary inquiry and global perspectives.

With a $2 billion goal, the largest fundraising campaign in Canadian university history, the campaign is helping expand U of T’s global leadership capacity across critical areas of knowledge and helping develop the talent, ideas and solutions for the defining challenges of our time. The campaign has been tremendously successful, generating considerable momentum for the University’s highest priorities, and continuing to attract the energy and support of our alumni and donors.

Key Activities & Responsibilities 

The Director of Advancement will provide leadership, direction and priority setting to all elements of the University’s external relations and development activities, including fundraising, alumni relations, corporate and other stakeholder relations, communications and other elements of the DLSPH’s relationships with its external constituencies. The Director will be responsible for:


  • Building on the University’s priorities and strategic direction, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health strategic plan (2016-2021), and the approved priorities of the Campaign for the DLSPH: developing and implementing a strategic, integrated development plan to secure significant external support to effect permanent improvement in the level of long-term and annual support. This includes developing and maintaining the DLSPH’s list of funding priorities.
  • Playing a leadership role in identifying, cultivating and engaging appropriate individuals to serve as lead volunteers for DLSPH’s campaign within the University-wide campaign, and ensuring these individuals are guided and supported in their activities in support of the DLSPH campaign.
  • Personally and in conjunction with the Dean, initiating and building relationships with current and potential donors and developing and cultivating these relationships and commitments to be translated into financial and volunteer support.
  • Working to meet University-wide metrics goals for fundraising professionals and actively identifying, cultivating, soliciting and stewarding these donors.
  • Continuing the development of and support of the DLSPH’s inaugural Campaign Cabinet.
  • Recruiting, training and advising senior volunteer and academic leadership associated with the DLSPH to participate in the advancement process of identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of donors.
  • Monitoring, analyzing and reporting to the Dean on fundraising progress throughout the year. Adapting to changing situations as necessary.
  • Designing, coordinating and directing fundraising campaigns for the purpose of securing funds from the private sector, individuals, alumni, faculty, staff and students.
  • Updating the definition of the goals and desired outcomes for fundraising programs.
  • In conjunction with the Dean and the Department of University Advancement, updating the definition of and implementing strategy to achieve the University’s campaign goals. 
  • Developing and ensuring the maintenance of an effective stewardship, recognition and communications program for all supporters.
  • Overseeing the implementation of annual stewardship events.
  • Preparing the annual Advancement budget and upon approval by the Dean assumes responsibility for managing program activities within the budget.

Alumni Relations

  • Overseeing the development of strategies to build the University’s relationships with its alumni for the purpose of strengthening this group’s potential as active financial supporters and volunteers and further developing the alumni cohort as goodwill ambassadors.
  • Ensuring the development of new initiatives and strengthening of existing initiatives to enhance alumni relations.
  • Overseeing the organization of annual alumni events such as Spring Reunion.


  • Collaborating with the University’s Communications Officer to ensure the development and implementation of an integrated marketing and communications plan for advancement and ensuring communications maintain a consistent, powerful image of the Faculty with key stakeholders.
  • Defining the goals and desired outcomes for marketing and communications efforts for the University’s advancement; identifying and shaping core messages, identifying target audiences, and determining appropriate mechanisms for delivery of messages to disparate target audiences.

Human Resources Management

  • Planning strategically for and defining the organizational structure for the Advancement team including the kinds of equipment used, the methods and techniques of work, the work assignments, duties and responsibilities of positions and the classifications and qualifications of positions as well as other management rights contained in appropriate collective agreements. 
  • Leading a group of professional staff, and assuming overall responsibility for human resources, labour relations and financial management including dispute resolution and compliance with collective agreements. The incumbent directly manages the staff and the quality and efficiency of work, ensuring the structure and duties are meeting operational objectives in the most effective manner.
  • Determining work assignments for staff based on an understanding of needs, individual skill, project requirements and availability of resources.
  • Developing plans and work processes for department projects based on understanding of project requirements and timelines.
  • Guiding advancement staff by providing the necessary direction and training to complete department/project work, based on knowledge of department procedures and specialized expertise.

Qualifications & Competencies

  • Demonstrated success in securing major gifts of $25,000 or more from individuals, corporations and foundations in a highly competitive external fundraising environment.
  • Encouraging leader with demonstrated leadership skills and success in motivating and supporting both staff and senior volunteers.
  • Consultative team player who thoughtfully solicits and considers input and feedback from others.
  • Ability to strategically manage multiple projects with competing deadlines in a results-oriented environment.
  • Exceptional communication skills (written and oral), presentation and interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated experience building effective relationships with individuals diverse in age, culture, gender, sexual identity and disability.
  • Experience in fundraising in relation to public health and/or health care would be considered a “plus”.
  • Working knowledge of standard office software including MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint as well as a clear understanding of database principles.
  • Strong organizational, analytical and creative problem solving skills.
  • Must possess initiative, tact, diplomacy and political savvy.
  • Knowledge of public health issues is a strong asset.
  • University undergraduate degree or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Certified Fundraising professional (CFRE) is an asset, but is not mandatory for this role.

For more Information

To learn more about this opportunity at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, please contact Tara George or Sandra Taylor at KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) via email at

All inquiries and applications will be held in strict confidence.  Please send resume and letter of interest to the email address listed above by June 27, 2016.

The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from visible minority group members, women, aboriginal persons, and persons with disabilities, members of sexual minority groups, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.

Canada’s leading teaching and research University, the University of Toronto is ranked one of the Greater Toronto’s Top 100 Employers 2016, and one of Canada’s Top Family-Friendly Employers for 2016. Committed to enhancing the diversity and experience of both staff and students, U of T offers employees challenging work, flexible family-friendly programs and opportunities for professional and personal development.