Search Firm Opportunities

Iowa State University periodically partners with a variety of Search Firms for some searches. Applicants who wish to be considered for these positions must apply via the Search Firms application instructions below.


Senior Vice President (SVP) for Operations and Finance

Department of Architecture Chair

Senior Vice President (SVP) for Operations and Finance

Iowa State University, one of the nation's leading land-grant institutions, invites nominations and applications for the position of Senior Vice President (SVP) for Operations and Finance. Reporting to President Wendy Wintersteen, the SVP is responsible for developing and leading the financial and operational strategies that support the university's academic, research, and outreach mission.

The SVP serves as a key member of the senior leadership team, with the responsibility to develop financial and operational strategies that will support the University's mission. Leading a division of approximately 750 employees with responsibility for 12,000 acres of land, nearly 6 million assignable square feet of facilities, and an annual all-funds university budget of nearly $1.7 billion, the SVP will be an experienced, collaborative, purpose-driven leader with the professionalism and flexibility to support and inspire innovation at Iowa State University. The SVP partners effectively with leaders across the University and thinks creatively to identify opportunities that maximize financial and operational efficiencies and manages the change required to realize these efficiencies.

The SVP is responsible for overseeing the divisional units with a focus on operational excellence and service. These units and areas of responsibility are finance, financial planning and analysis, auxiliary enterprise, facilities planning and management, real estate and capital planning, and operations and strategy. In addition, this position plays a key role in the continuing implementation of Workday – Finance and Planning and the development and implementation of Workday – Student and Receivables.

The successful candidate must demonstrate a record of strong leadership skills in a complex organization, and the ability to act in the best interest of Iowa State University by identifying opportunities for improvement and generating strategies and solutions to bring about positive change.

Application Process

Academic Search is assisting Iowa State University in this search. All inquiries, nominations,
and applications will be held in strict confidence. Complete details regarding the opportunity and required qualifications can be found in the position profile.

Inquiries: To learn more about this opportunity and discuss your qualifications and interest, potential applicants are encouraged to schedule a confidential conversation with one of the Senior Consultants for this search: Dr. Ginny Horvath (Bookings Link, or or Dr. Carlos N. Medina, (

Nominations: Although nominations are not required to be considered for this position, leaders who know of an outstanding candidate are welcome to submit confidential nominations by sending an email to

Applications: Applicants should send these three separate documents (each in PDF format) to Academic Search at

  • A detailed cover letter, addressed to the Search Committee, which expresses your interest in this position and addresses the specific ways you meet the qualifications and expectations outlined in this search profile.
  • A current full resume or curriculum vitae that includes relevant education, positions/titles, responsibilities, and accomplishments.
  • A list of five professional references, including their names, titles, organizations, phone numbers, and email addresses, noting your relationship with each reference. References will not be contacted until later in the search process with the candidate's permission.

Although the search remains open until the position is filled, for full consideration by the Search Committee, candidates should submit their application materials by May 28, 2024.

Department of Architecture Chair

The Department of Architecture in the College of Design at Iowa State University is seeking an accomplished leader with demonstrated achievements in architecture for the role of Department Chair to support and promote the interdisciplinary and collaborative work of all departmental faculty and staff. As a Carnegie Foundation designated Research-Extensive institution, we seek an individual in the field who will support the department’s long-standing scholarly excellence in education, research, and design. The Chair will be expected to foster collegiality and enhance our unique land-grant university status by upholding and inspiring our work both on- and off-campus. The new Department Chair will enrich our community as we pursue an appropriate balance in knowledge building and sharing, innovation, and entrepreneurship.

The successful candidate will oversee a dynamic department comprised of about 330 undergraduate students, 40 graduate students, and 40 faculty across the areas of architectural design, building technology, design communication, history/theory/culture, design education, and professional practice. The Chair will be an advocate for members of the department in their relationships with allied programs, college and university administration, alumni, the profession, and the public. We seek a candidate who supports all three dimensions of the land-grant mission: education, research/creative inquiry, and outreach. Candidates must demonstrate experience and aptitude in strategic planning and facilitating communication to support success for all students, faculty, and staff. As an academic leader, the candidate must show an in-depth knowledge of their own field, an understanding of the breadth of architectural research and creative practices and exhibit an appreciation and respect for allied disciplines.

The Chair is the designated executive officer of the department and is responsible for personnel matters, including faculty recruitment and advancement, budget, student recruitment, departmental governance, collaborative engagements, and external relations. The chair also oversees central administrative operations of the department, including curriculum and teaching as well as assessment and accreditation. In this capacity, the Chair serves at the pleasure of the Dean of the College of Design. The proposed start date for the position is January 1, 2025 or until the position is filled, and is a full-time appointment at the rank of associate or full professor with tenure.

Duties of the Chair:

  • Provides leadership, strategy, and vision for the department working with faculty, students, and administrators;
  • Articulates departmental mission, values, and interests within the university and beyond;
  • Implements a clear vision for advancing the department in all three dimensions of the land-grant mission: education, research/creative inquiry, and outreach;
  • Supervises curriculum and teaching and oversees program assessment and accreditation;
  • Supervises all faculty within the department;
  • Mentors and supports departmental faculty members through promotion and advancement;
  • Plans and manages departmental financing, budget, and workforce in coordination with finance and human resources support;
  • Maintains and strengthens interdisciplinary connections with other college/university programs, as well as with communities, professionals, and other external stakeholders (alumni, donors, and industry partners);
  • Supports college/department/university efforts in recruitment, marketing, communication, and fundraising;
  • Promotes the visibility and impact of the department and its students and alumni in national and international contexts; and
  • Engages in scholarship and/or teaching activities.

Required Minimum Qualifications:

  • A terminal degree in architecture or a closely related field
  • An exemplary record of achievement in design, scholarship, and/or professional practice sufficient to qualify for appointment as a tenured faculty member 

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Significant recognition in research and/or teaching in one or more of the following areas: architectural design, building technology, design representation, history/theory/culture, design education, professional practice, or a related field;;
  • Experience in academic administration and/or relevant project management and supervisory experience,
  • Demonstrated abilities related to fiscal duties, negotiation, personnel management, and fostering collegiality
  • Evidence of successful public relations, fundraising, and/or donor cultivation


Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. To receive full consideration, applications should be received by September 9, 2024.

Candidates should submit the following documents in PDF format:

  • A letter of interest describing why you seek the position and how you meet the qualifications
  • A curriculum vitae
  • A philosophy statement addressing leadership, teaching, and research/creative practice as appropriate
  • Work samples to include: Creative portfolio (20 page maximum) and/or research portfolio (30-page maximum, e.g., recent article or book chapter) and/or evidence of teaching excellence (20-page maximum)
  • Contact information for three references, including name, mailing address, email address, and phone number

Contact Information for Applicants

Buffkin/Baker, an executive search firm, is assisting the university in this search. Inquiries of interest, nominations, and applications should be submitted electronically, in confidence, to:

Mr. Martin M. Baker, Managing Partner; Dr. Pelema Ellis, Associate Partner, Buffkin/Baker;