Clark University - Associate Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer

MA, Worcester

Based in Worcester, Massachusetts, Clark University seeks an innovative and collaborative executive to serve as the inaugural Associate Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO). This is a transformational opportunity for a people-centered human resources executive to lead Clark University in its desire to build institutional capacity and to elevate and enhance the workplace experience for all employees.

Founded in 1887, in Worcester, Massachusetts, Clark University has thrived at the nexus of world-class teaching, boundary-pushing discovery and creative invention, truly embodying the University’s motto, “Challenge Convention. Change Our World.” A student-centered institution, each year Clark educates approximately 2,400 undergraduate and 1,100 graduate students to be imaginative and contributing citizens of the world and to advance the frontiers of knowledge and understanding through rigorous scholarship and creative effort. Included in the Colleges that Change Lives guide since it was first published in 1996, Clark has also been recognized for its diversity and inclusion efforts; innovation, community engagement and impact; as a top green campus; and for its distinguished geography, psychology, and media arts/game design schools.

Through the leadership of President David Fithian ’87, the counsel of the Board of Trustees, and the commitment and innovation of the provost, deans and vice presidents, Clark has established itself as an institution unafraid to press against the boundaries of traditional thinking. Clark’s leaders know the decisions they make on behalf of the University will have a ripple effect in all areas where Clark makes an impact — from Worcester to points across the world. The University’s strategic framework – Clark Inspired – directs and prioritizes the investments the institution will undertake in its people, programs, and campus over the coming years. The five overarching goals, are grounded in Clark’s mission and values, encapsulated by its motto, “Challenge Convention. Change our World.”

It is within this strategic context that the CHRO will be charged with establishing a reimagined Office of Human Resources and Organizational Excellence (HROE), formerly known as Human Resources. This leader has the opportunity to advance forward thinking strategies in which to maximize this new organizational structure, shape the culture and employee experience and promote an engaged and inclusive campus culture. The CHRO plays a key role in positioning the University as a collaborative and welcoming place to work that supports, engages, values and develops University employees, creating a positive work environment at Clark.

This is an exciting opportunity for an innovative leader to embrace the strengths of a great organization and shape strategic and employee-focused human resources programs toward ongoing excellence. Candidates who find the invitation to establish a forward-thinking and people-centered human resources function to address the institution’s needs will find this the ideal opportunity in which to thrive. The leader will lead, develop and mentor a team of seven dedicated HR staff and will be expected to lead across all functional areas of the department in a manner that advances the strategic needs of the University.

Compelling candidates for this position will have demonstrated success leading organizational change and strategic human resources initiatives, preferably in higher education. The successful candidate will bring experience as an influencer within the senior-most level of their organization with proven success in advancing professional development and employee engagement. This role requires a thoughtful, practical, experienced executive who is by nature a relationship builder and who will lead with Clark University’s core values and display the highest level of integrity. A bachelor’s degree is required, as well as a minimum of ten (10) years of progressive human resources leadership experience resulting in comprehensive and contemporary knowledge of all areas of human resources. A Master’s degree and PHR/SPHR certification is preferred, as is prior experience in a higher education environment.

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in the leadership profile.

WittKieffer is assisting Clark University in this search. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by June 19, 2023.

Application materials should be submitted to WittKieffer’s candidate portal using the buttons below.

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to:

Sarah Palmer and Jenna Brumleve

Clark University embraces equal opportunity as a core value: the University believes that cultivating an environment that embraces and promotes diversity is fundamental to the success of our students, its employees, and its community. This commitment applies to every aspect of education, services, and employment policies and practices at Clark. Clark’s commitment to diversity informs its efforts in recruitment, hiring, and retention. All positions at Clark share in the responsibility for building a community that values diversity and the uniqueness of others by exhibiting integrity and respect in interacting with all members of the Clark community to create an atmosphere of fairness and belonging. Clark strongly encourages members from historically underrepresented communities, inclusive of all women, to apply.