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Washington State University
University Communications
Website URL:
Posted: 11/17/2016
Vice President for Marketing and Communication

Vice President for Marketing and Communication

Pullman, Washington

Washington State University (WSU), a vibrant, diverse, and innovative institution, seeks a dynamic, experienced, and creative communication and marketing professional to help propel the University towards its goal of being one of the top public land-grant research institutions in the country. The Vice President for Marketing and Communication (VP) will lead WSU in its efforts to increase the University’s visibility with a compelling and consistent brand; ensure alignment and synergy of marketing and communication efforts internally and externally; and leverage modern, dynamic, and strategic communication tools and methods to drive desired outcomes in enrollment and fundraising. The VP will play a key role in letting the state, nation, and world know that WSU is one of the leading public universities, preeminent in research and discovery, teaching, and engagement with a clear focus on the academic success and transformational experience of every student.

Founded in 1890 in Pullman, Washington, WSU is Washington’s land-grant university. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for all citizens — locally, nationally, and globally. WSU is committed to innovation and excellence in research and scholarship. More than 30,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students and approximately 6,800 faculty and staff are located on WSU’s five campuses (Pullman, Spokane, Tri-Cities, Vancouver, and Everett), online through its Global Campus, in extension offices in each of the 39 counties, and regionally based Research and Extension Centers in the state’s key agricultural areas.

The appointment of Dr. Kirk Schulz as the University’s 11th President in 2016 marks an exciting chapter in WSU’s history that will build upon the success of the past and take the University to new heights. In recent years, the University has achieved significant accomplishments including the creation of the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine on the Spokane campus; successful completion of a $1 billion capital campaign; growth in overall enrollment; and an increase of students who self-identify as students of color. Annual research and development expenditures grew by more than 56 percent from approximately $213.2 million in 2007 to nearly $333.1 million in 2015, moving WSU into the top 11 percent of public research universities for research funding.

WSU believes that growing its reputation is essential to attract students, garner external research funding, meet successful and ambitious fundraising goals, and establish new partnerships locally, nationally, and globally. WSU’s goal, as described in the “Drive to 25” campaign, in the coming years is to be recognized as one of the nation’s top 25 public research universities, preeminent in research and discovery, teaching, and engagement by 2030.

Realizing the importance of dedicated focus on telling the WSU story in compelling and strategic ways to a broad set of constituents, President Schulz reestablished the Vice President for Marketing and Communication role. The new VP will be met with enthusiasm and support from stakeholders across WSU and the state who look forward to communication and marketing being elevated to the vice presidential level and for the next VP to have a seat at the table with the senior leadership of the University. The new VP will have the opportunity to work with a dynamic and forward-thinking President, who believes in building a strong team and giving its members the autonomy and support necessary to succeed. S/he will also collaborate with an engaged and talented set of leaders, and marketing and communication professionals across the University. In order to be successful, the VP will be asked to address a set of key opportunities and challenges as follows:

  • Create a vision for University-wide marketing and communication
  • Build a comprehensive, integrated, and modern communication and marketing strategy and plan
  • Lead the University in creating and delivering a message to elevate WSU into the ranks of the nation’s best-known and highest-achieving institutions
  • Motivate and mentor the University Communications staff and promote a culture of excellence, collaboration, and professional growth
  • Leverage and harness the power of marketing and communication across WSU

Washington State University has retained Isaacson, Miller, a national executive search firm, to assist in this search. Screening of complete applications will begin immediately and continue until the completion of the search process/until the position is filled. For more details, including the full position profile and to submit inquiries, nominations, referrals, and applications, please see the Isaacson, Miller website for the search: Electronic submission of materials is required.


Julie Filizetti and Sheila Bharucha

Isaacson, Miller

1000 Sansome Street, Suite 300

San Francisco, CA  94111

Phone: 415.655.4900

Fax: 415.655.4905

Washington State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action educator and employer. Members of ethnic minorities, women, specially disabled veterans, veterans of the Vietnam-era, recently-separated veterans, and other protected veterans, persons of disability, and/or persons age 40 and over are encouraged to apply.