The Director of Local Government and Community Relations serves as a liaison with community and neighborhood associations surrounding University system campuses, represents the University before the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul and Falcon Heights, as well as neighboring counties, and liaises with federal district offices and staff. The Director reports to the Chief Government Relations Officer of the University.
The Office of Government Relations within University Relations advances the interests of the University’s five campuses at the capitol in Saint Paul, in Washington, D.C., and among city officials, community partners, and neighbors. Under the direction of the Chief Government Relations Officer, it also coordinates and supports the efforts of all University colleges and other units in their relationships with state, federal, and community officials. In addition, the office helps officials from Minnesota and around the nation use the considerable expertise available at the University of Minnesota and learn more about the resources at the institution. It ensures the University has a voice in policy development related to higher education and research and promotes more targeted opportunities to share knowledge and research expertise with policy makers and governmental units.
The Office of Government Relations is dedicated to creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. Diverse ideas, perspectives and backgrounds are necessary to create a strong and creative team that communicates effectively to our many communities, on campus and beyond.
The University of Minnesota is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Black, Indigenous, people of color, LGBTQIA+, women and members of historically underrepresented communities are highly encouraged to apply.
Major Responsibilities: • Engender long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with the five municipalities, two urban counties, four institutional neighbors, nine neighborhood and business associations, and several dozen other community-based stakeholder associations in the communities adjacent to the University's campus in the Twin Cities. • Represent the University before local government policy makers and their staff, communicate directly with local elected officials, attend city and county committee hearings as needed, provide feedback, and secure the attendance of appropriate administrators and faculty when necessary and appropriate; • Develop and maintain working relationships with selected city, county, and community governments, commissions, organizations and others particularly as they relate to policy and University issues; • Manage community outreach and engagement related to UMN Twin Cities campus capital projects, operations, and campus planning with sensitivity for University community relations • Engage with local District Office staff personnel from the Minnesota Congressional delegation; • Advise the Chief Government Relations Officer and Senior University leaders, University officials, and stakeholders on local policy issues that may affect the University; • Lead and/or support the University's participation in local and metropolitan partnerships related to the "public realm" around the University • Serve as liaison to others within the University on budgetary and policy implications of local city and neighborhood issues, particularly as they relate to key University priorities; • Organize political support and advocacy for the programs of the University, with primary emphasis on issues related to represented key constituencies; • Represent the Office of Government Relations and assigned key constituencies on various University committees and at external meetings and events as requested; • Organize tours and events on system campuses to connect legislators, staff, and key policy makers to the University; • Assume other duties and responsibilities as assigned.
The Director will demonstrate the following competencies and characteristics: • Strong interpersonal skills with a demonstrated record of establishing effective working relationships with diverse populations and functions, both internal and external to the organization • Skilled at effectively and quickly forming a position on an issue, while taking into account multiple perspectives and competing interests • Demonstrated commitment to critical communications skills, including: flexibility/adaptability, active listening, an ability to understand and incorporate other perspectives, navigating sensitive or challenging conversations, etc. • Problem solving, analytical, and organizational skills, with the ability to effectively manage multiple priorities in a fast-paced and oftentimes rapidly changing environment • Strong values and integrity, with a commitment to collaboration and teamwork • Commitment to the mission, vision and values of the University of Minnesota
Appointment The Director is appointed by and reports directly to the Chief Government Relations Officer. The position is a 100%-time, 12-month, annually renewable (“K”) appointment in the academic administrative personnel series (formally in the “assistant director” classification). Salary is competitive and commensurate with education and experience.
* * * ABOUT THE TWIN CITIES CAMPUS
The University’s Twin Cities campus is in the heart of a dynamic metro area that is a global economic leader, a hub for education and culture, and renowned for its abundant cultural and natural resources. The Minneapolis-St. Paul metro is home to the fourth-largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the country, as well as thriving entrepreneurial and small business sectors. Ranked as one of the country’s leading “creative economy” communities, the Twin Cities is renowned for its arts and nonprofit sectors, as well as its many lakes and parks and wealth of recreational and entertainment opportunities. Spanning locations in both Minneapolis and St. Paul, the UMN Twin Cities straddles the Mississippi River and adjoins a national park.
The University is an anchor institution for a globally competitive region and state with notable strengths in areas critical to today’s knowledge economy—including biosciences, medical devices, and agriculture and food production. The campus is also located in an increasingly diverse region at the heart of an increasingly global Midwest, with 11 federally-recognized tribal nations, the largest urban Native American population in the country and growing African American, Latino and Chicano and Asian American populations.
The Twin Cities campus is located on traditional, ancestral and contemporary lands of Indigenous people. The University resides on Dakota land ceded in the Treaties of 1837 and 1851. The University acknowledges this place has a complex and layered history and is committed to ongoing efforts to recognize, support and advocate for American Indian Nations and peoples.
• Bachelor’s degree • Six years of government, community or similar experience • Excellent communication skills – interpersonal, written, and oral • Demonstrated track record of building effective working relationships
• Familiarity with the higher education environment, including an understanding of higher education policy and governance structures • Progressively responsible administrative experience, including effective leadership skills and management and organizational abilities • Personal or professional connection to the University of Minnesota
Internal Number: 339569
About University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
The University of Minnesota, founded in the belief that all people are enriched by understanding, is dedicated to the advancement of learning and the search for truth; to the sharing of this knowledge through education for a diverse community; and to the application of this knowledge to benefit the people of the state, the nation, and the world.