Business Development Director/Veden Chair for Rural Economic Development UMN Crookston Campus

Minnesota – University of Minnesota

| Crookston, MN | October 31, 2019

About the Job

Position: Full-time, 12-month, annual renewal position based on funding and performance starting December, 2019 or as soon as possible thereafter. Benefits package includes retirement, medical, dental, disability and life insurance. Complete benefits package can be viewed at


  • Provide the lead role in identifying and implementing rural economic development and strategic initiatives.
  • Lend industry, market, and/or technical domain analysis, insight, and experience to identify possible opportunities and value drivers to inform and support cultivation and engagement strategies.
  • Serve as director of rural economic development center and initiatives, which focuses on training, trade, and technology with an emphasis on bettering the economic and social environment of rural communities.
  • Craft grant applications, proposals, white papers, and status reports.
  • Determine specific growth opportunities and niches.
  • Act with discretion, balancing several goals at once with the idea to minimize costs/risks and maximize benefits/returns.
  • Be a conduit among external organizations with a specific focus on developing new partnerships and collaborations ensuring the outcome of enhancing financial viability from partners to support pathway programs, scholarships, etc.
  • Nurture and expand relationships with prospective community and industry partners across the country.
  • Develop intelligence around and connections to University faculty, capabilities, activities and connections.
  • Identify opportunities that have industry/market relevance; organize working sessions, and effectively connect and shepherd the relationships.
  • Identify, shape, and solicit opportunities in conjunction with the Director of Development through a variety of mechanisms, including organizing working sessions and co-creation activities with members of the faculty and staff.
  • Maintain knowledge of technology, research, and recruiting needs of industry, as well as of specific firms.

How To Apply

Applications must be submitted online. To be considered for this position, please click the Apply ( button and follow the instructions. You will have the opportunity to complete an online application for the position and attach a cover letter and resume.

To request an accommodation during the application process, please e-mail or call (612) 624-UOHR (8647).


The University recognizes and values the importance of diversity and inclusion in enriching the employment experience of its employees and in supporting the academic mission. The University is committed to attracting and retaining employees with varying identities and backgrounds.

The University of Minnesota provides equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. To learn more about diversity at the U:

Background Check Information

Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check. Our presumption is that prospective employees are eligible to work here. Criminal convictions do not automatically disqualify finalists from employment.


Required: Qualifications

  • Requires a Bachelor’s degree with at least 10 years of experience.
  • A successful track record of leadership, and demonstrated ability to work in concert with faculty, senior academic officers and other vested parties on campus and in the various communities. Understands the implication of decisions and actions on the organization.
  • Experience in consultative and economic development, business development, and/or innovation/partnerships function. Track record of professionalism, with strong communication skills and ability to work with and support a wide range of constituents, e.g., clients, customers, teams, donors, and volunteers.
  • Ability to analyze data (e.g., market, technical, customer) and lend technical expertise to establish priorities, and develop and implement strategies with increasing complexity.
  • Evidence as a self-starter who can work independently, as well as be a team contributor in a complex and fast-paced organization.
  • Collaborative leadership style and ability to serve as a unifying force for change.

Preferred Qualification:

  • Masters or Doctoral degree.
  • Experience working with higher education institutional issues related to their engagement in economic and workforce development, innovation and entrepreneurship, and/or community engagement.
  • Fundraising experience with a record of securing and managing multiple large grants.
  • Substantial experience leading or facilitating change at higher education institutions, toward helping them to be more engaged with—and to develop better partnerships with—external stakeholders.
  • Proven champion and advocate for university engagement with the economy and communities.
  • Existing relationships with key stakeholders in higher education engagement contexts.
  • Strong understanding of the economic and societal impacts of institutions of higher education, and how these are linked to the teaching/learning and research/discovery missions of these institutions.

The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.

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