Director, Government Relations

VER Gov. & Comm. Relations

Competition No.  -    A100145637
Closing Date  -    Will remain open until filled.

While this position welcomes applications from the public, please note that preference will be given to current employees at the University of Alberta. Please indicate your internal status using the "Advertisement" drop down menu when applying.

External Relations raises awareness and enhances understanding of the University of Alberta internally and externally. The team brings to light stories that showcase university faculty, staff, students and alumni, connect the university with its many communities and advocate for the university as we  advance the promise of uplifting the whole people. The portfolio leads and determines the strategy for both external and internal initiatives and helps develop the reputation and pride in the university.

The Director, Government Relations, plays a key leadership role in delivering an integrated approach to the university’s government relations, advancing the university’s vision, presence, engagement and impact locally, provincially and nationally. Reporting to the Associate Vice-President (Government and Community Relations), the Executive Director provides strategic advice and support to the President, Vice-Presidents and senior administration related to the university’s engagement activities and relationships with all orders of government. The Director plays a key role in advancing the university’s relationships, partnerships, reputation, public policy interests and in securing resources for the institution. 

The position is accountable for delivering on strategies as articulated in Objective 18 of the university’s institutional strategic plan, For the Public Good: Seek, build, strengthen and sustain partnerships with local, national or international research agencies, governments, government ministries and agencies, universities, Indigenous communities, libraries, not-for-profits, industry, business and community organizations.

Key areas of responsibility and accountability:

  • Develop, oversee and report on institutional government relations strategies

  • Provide strategic advice and support to senior leadership regarding relationship management with all orders of government, in preparation for external interactions, issues management and for institutional positioning

  • Influence and develop institutional positions and provide provincial and national influence to policies that affect the postsecondary education sector

  • Oversee the university’s compliance with accountability legislation and regulations, including, but not limited to, the Post-Secondary Learning Act, the Lobbying Act, the Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct and the Lobbyists’ Act

  • Leverage and contribute to the work and reach of regional and national partner organizations and stakeholders to advance post-secondary education initiatives and to enhance the university’s regional and national presence

  • Oversee the creation and production of briefing notes, key messages, advocacy documents, submissions, white papers, accountability reports and other relevant communications materials for the use of both internal and external audiences

  • Oversee the research and monitoring required to provide timely, accurate and strategic information and advice regarding government priorities, public policy, legislation, regulations, accountability requirements, issues, post-secondary education trends, challenges and opportunities

  • Provide leadership, coaching and supervision to a team of dynamic  professionals.

  • Ensure the coordination and accuracy of the university’s engagement records in compliance with relevant legislation, institutional requirements, information technology security, data collection practices and institutional analysis needs


  • The successful candidate will possess a post-secondary degree (bachelor’s degree required, advanced university degree strongly preferred) and a significant progressively responsible background in government relations

  • Ten or more years of government relations experience at a complex institution

  • Proven leadership skills and experience in motivating and collaborating with others to build and sustain successful relationships, partnerships and teams

  • A demonstrated commitment to continuous improvement and a focus on excellence in work product and service is imperative for success in the role

  • Superior problem solving skills and the ability to analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, identify and communicate consequences of proposed actions, recommend best options and implement approved solutions

  • Excellent oral presentation and written communication skills

  • Demonstrated competencies in professionalism, results orientation, teamwork, flexibility/adaptability and relationship building and management

  • Ability to remain calm under pressure and manage stressful situations in a solution-oriented way with a positive attitude

  • Proven success as a team leader. Must also have the ability to oversee and execute multiple projects simultaneously while working effectively under the pressure of last-minute deadlines and changing priorities

  • Ability to work effectively within the university’s organizational structure and in compliance with institutional policies and procedures

In accordance with the Management and Professional Staff Agreement, this full-time position (2 year temporary) offers a comprehensive benefits package found at and a competitive salary. Salary will be commensurate with experience and qualifications.

A review of applications and initial interviews will begin in the second half of August but the competition will remain open until filled. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those under consideration for the role will be contacted.

Along with a resume, interested candidates should submit a cover letter stating qualifications and outlining how they make meaningful contributions as a government relations professional, and the name of three references.


How to Apply

Apply Online

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. If suitable Canadian citizens or permanent residents cannot be found, other individuals will be considered. The University of Alberta is committed to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workforce. We welcome applications from all qualified persons. We encourage women; First Nations, Métis and Inuit persons; members of visible minority groups; persons with disabilities; persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity and expression; and all those who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas and the University to apply.