Food System Professional Employment Opportunities

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Job Detail: Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

About Sterling College:

Sterling College is a private, environmental college focused on the human relationship with the natural world and a place where what you do every day really matters.

Today, Sterling College is an accredited four-year institution and America’s leading voice in Environmental Stewardship, educating students from all over the world in the science, philosophy, and skills of environmental sustainability. We offer five environmentally focused undergraduate majors and a self-designed major in the context of an ecology-inspired education. Our mission is to prepare coming generations in the “whys” and “hows” of personal and professional environmental stewardship.

Sterling is also proud to serve as a beacon for environmental education and campus sustainability. Sterling College was one of the first colleges in the country to have a farm. We were the third college in the nation, and the first in Vermont, to divest our endowment from fossil fuel investments, and we have received a STARS Gold Rating in recognition of our sustainability achievements from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE).


Position Summary:

The Vice President is the Chief Operating Officer, reporting to the President, with responsibility for the effective leadership and administration of the major operational areas of the College, as well as for institutional planning and assessment and recommending and implementing new initiatives and policy. The Vice President and Chief Operating Officer is also the officer in charge when the President is away from campus fulfilling external responsibilities. Given the scope of duties at a very small institution, the Vice President must be able to move seamlessly between broad leadership and hands-on engagement in the work of the College.



Position Responsibilities:

  • Overseeing all aspects of the College in the President’s absence;
  • Membership in the President’s Cabinet, chairing it in his absence;
  • Evaluation of and strategic advice on the impact of the introduction of new programs and oversight of establishing operations of new programs and initiatives;
  • Supporting the President in strategic analysis and planning, including advising the President on the operational and fiscal impact of planning alternatives;
  • Providing oversight and stewardship of fiscal, human, and facilities resources;
  • Short and long term strategic organizational planning required to meet Sterling’s objectives;
  • Representing the President at community and college affairs and with external organizations as appropriate;
  • Performing other related duties as requested by the President.


Position Qualifications:

Desired qualifications include demonstrated experience in each of the areas of responsibility, including budget and institutional planning and strategy, whether achieved in higher education or through work in non-profit or for-profit organizations; creativity and flexibility and the ability to stimulate innovative thinking among a diverse community of staff and students; a desire to engage deeply in the community life of students, faculty, and staff; and an appreciation for and interest in life and the outdoors in spectacular rural northeastern Vermont.

Competitive candidates will have an advanced degree as well as an undergraduate or professional experience in a liberal arts context, and five or more years of professional experience. The successful candidate will have:

  • A commitment to the ecological thinking and action mission and the liberal arts values of the College;
  • The ability to adopt an institution-wide perspective on challenges and opportunities;
  • Curiosity, and a willingness to stay current, on the issues confronting higher education and the ability to brainstorm innovative alternatives;
  • Strong leadership and human relations abilities including the capacity for effective communication with all the College’s stakeholders;
  • Exceptional financial, operational and administrative management skills;
  • Ability to organize, coordinate and direct multiple projects and a desire to roll up one’s sleeves;
  • Advanced analytical and systems thinking skills;
  • Thorough knowledge of financial, operational and administrative practices and procedures;
  • Understanding of federal and state laws that govern higher education and reporting requirements; and
  • Integrity and a commitment to service leadership by example.

To Apply:

Position remains open until an appointment has been made, but application review will begin on January 15, 2021. Candidates should send the following materials electronically: cover letter, curriculum vitae/resume, and contact information for three references. References will not be contacted without candidate permission.

Application letters should be addressed to Matthew Derr, President, and submitted to Caitlin Miller, Executive Assistant to the President, at Phone: (802) 586-7711 x 111

About the job

Location Craftsbury Common, Vermont
Field Administrative
Time Full-time
Date 26 November 2020

About the company

Company name Sterling College
Logo logo


Form Company
Employees 0-10


Phone (802) 586-7711 x 111


Street PO Box 72
City Craftsbury Common
District Vermont
Zip 05827
Country United States