University City District currently has one open position:

  • Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and Communications



Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and Communications


University City District (UCD) seeks an experienced, creative and entrepreneurial professional to elevate and amplify our mission of changing places and changing lives.  The Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Communications will shape and lead our approach to resource development, strategic communications and marketing.  This new position – formed by combining two prior leadership roles - reports to the UCD President and serves as a key member of the UCD senior management team. 


About University City District

Since 1997, University City District (UCD) has invested in the vitality of a 2.4 square mile area of West Philadelphia. While we were founded to provide the clean, safe, and welcoming streets that are the necessary foundation of every healthy com­munity, our portfolio has grown throughout our history. As a partnership of world-renowned anchor institutions, small busi­nesses, and residents, we create premier public spaces, address crime and public safety, bring life to commercial corridors, run signature events and connect residents and businesses to the opportunity created by University City’s burgeoning economy. Every day, we work to change places and change lives.


As a neighborhood organization with local impact, we have achieved national recognition for:

  • our approach to public space development, including the creation and stewardship of The Porch at 30th Street Station;
  • our West Philadelphia Skills Initiative workforce intermediary, which connects unemployed and underemployed residents seeking job opportunities with major employers seeking talent; and
  • our partnership of anchor institutions, community members and business leaders that, over more than 20 years, has helped to shape and steward economic growth, inclusion and vitality in a neighborhood that is, at once, critical to regional prosperity, and beloved for its diversity, eclectic retail and beautiful Victorian-lined streets.


Key Responsibilities

  • Provide overall leadership to the creation and execution of UCD’s strategic approach to philanthropic and business partnerships, fund development, marketing, advertising, communications and events programming. 
  • Implement a comprehensive fundraising strategy against ambitious goals, developing and sustaining relationships with foundations, individuals, corporate and small business sponsors, and public sector agencies.
  • Shape and execute a strategic communications plan that engages and informs community, business and institutional stakeholder groups on a wide variety of programs and activities.
  • Work with key partners outside of the organization to shape and share the story of University City as a place of growth, opportunity and community.
  • Provide overall leadership and management of the creative assets of the organization, including branding, publications, events, policy papers, websites, social media feeds.
  • Actively participate in external meetings and speaking events, including engagements with community members, institutional and business leaders, public sector partners and current and prospective funding partners.
  • Work as a key member of the UCD leadership team across organizational departments and functions to promote and advance the organization’s mission, and to shape partnership development and communications strategies that elevate organizational reach and impact.
  • Play a leadership role in drawing lessons from UCD’s community work to inform public policy, and to share with peers across the broader fields of placemaking, workforce development, place stewardship, and economic development.
  • Serve as a liaison to the UCD Board of Directors, providing regular updates and reports on communications and fundraising strategies, goals, and successes.
  • Manage team of four experienced, creative and impactful professionals, with the opportunity to add another high-performing colleague within the department.


We believe that compelling and immediate opportunities exist to:

  • Form and lead new partnerships with small and mid-sized foundations, individual donors, emerging University City real estate investors and corporate programming/events sponsors;
  • Elevate UCD’s presence in local and national policy discussions through white paper publications, partnerships with national affiliate/industry organizations, and events and panel discussions;
  • Work with the entire team to rethink and contemporize various creative assets, beginning with our web presence;
  • Re-organize relationship management activities by leading an internal team and external database vendor on the development of customized Contact Management Software;
  • Restructure how UCD communicates about distinct programs with disparate stakeholders into a cohesive strategic approach.



  • Passionate about UCD’s mission of changing places and changing lives, and able to shape effective storytelling narratives to amplify our work in placemaking, economic development, economic opportunity and community engagement.
  • Strategic thinker, self-directed leader and collaborative team member.
  • Minimum 5 years of experience at a senior level, with responsibilities that include revenue development, strategic communications, media relations and marketing.
  • Successful track record securing corporate and foundation support through donor engagement, grant writing and grant management.
  • Strong negotiation and multi-stakeholder consensus-building skills are required, along with exceptional written and oral communications skills.
  • Proven success with staff management and enthusiasm for partnering with and mentoring colleagues.


To apply, please send a resume and thoughtful cover letter, outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position to [email protected].