Community – \ \ kə-ˈmyü-nə-tē \ – a body of individuals sharing common characteristics or interests.
Colloquy – \ ˈkä-lə-kwē \ – a high-level, serious discussion. A conversation.
The Gonser Gerber Institute is dedicated to providing advancement leaders with the most effective, timely, and relevant professional development programming. The new and innovative Vice President’s Community Colloquy is a 3-day per-year community building and professional development program designed specifically for higher education vice presidents.
The Vice President’s Community Colloquy is a topics-driven, small-group discussion that occurs over the course of an academic semester. Over these dates, we will hold 3 virtual meetings which will focus on topics relevant and important to serving as an advancement vice president in higher education. Part professional development, part support group, part brainstorm, part group discussion, and all rewarding and worthwhile.
During each of our 3 virtual meetings, you will be introduced to philanthropic and/or higher education leaders who will serve as your keynote presenters. These presentations will be concise and focused specifically on a leadership topic we will explore throughout the day during facilitated group discussions. In addition, each meeting will have open topic sessions as well as brainstorming moments.
In between each Colloquy meeting, participants will be provided reading prompts and encouraged to participate in our Community Colloquy online forum with other participants. Our online forum will allow for the strengthening and deepening of relationships among the cohort participants, adding more value to the Community Colloquy experience.
Vice President’s Community Colloquy topics may include:
- Exploration of leadership competencies for success in diverse, fast-changing, and results-oriented environments
- Partnering with your president – opportunities and the challenges
- Providing philanthropic leadership to your Board
- Balancing ambitious goals with expected outcomes
- Diversity, equity, and inclusion in the philanthropic sector
- Leading staff to be their best. . . even when they aren’t giving their best
- Work and family balancing – strategies and themes for 2021 and beyond
In short, we envision an opportunity where you can immerse yourself with like-minded colleagues in authentic and meaningful conversations about the challenges and opportunities associated with your leadership role. Each annual cohort will be limited to 12 vice presidents in order to encourage relationship-building and facilitate group discussions.
Topics we will discuss include:
- From Strategic Plan to Case Statement
- Assessing Internal Readiness
- Identifying and Utilizing Campaign Volunteers
- Campaign Budget and Resources
- Quiet Phase
- Monitoring and Measuring Your Success
The Vice Presidents Community Colloquy is a multi-date program. We will meet virtually 3 times during an academic year, in between meetings will have online, asynchronous forums and discussion topics. Our virtual meetings will take place on January 13, March 11, May 21, 2021, from 10 am – 3 pm central. All participants are expected to attend all three sessions in order to enhance cohort community building and increase the learning and sharing experience for all. The cost is $995 per participant to join the colloquy.
We are delighted to welcome Jackson Lee Davis, Director, Inclusion and Engagement, Facebook, as our first keynote speaker for our Colloquy. Jackson will join us on January 13.
Jackson has over 20 years of experience in thought leadership, strategy development and program implementation in inclusion and diversity. Most recently Jackson served as the Director, Global Inclusion, Diversity & Belonging at Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (RCL) where he created the company’s first Inclusion & Diversity Strategic Plan, launched the first dedicated Inclusion survey, realigned the RCL employee resource groups to support the I&D Strategy, drafted the diversity recruitment strategy and served as a trusted advisor to the Executive Committee and Board.
Prior to RCL, Jackson was the Director of Diversity & Inclusion for Common Securitization Solutions (a Fannie Mae / Freddie Mac joint venture in FINTECH) where he created the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) and was responsible for developing and implementing the company’s first diversity & inclusion strategy, creating the 2019 operational plan for people and supplier diversity, enhancing diversity recruiting, improving the Executive Diversity & Inclusion Council and launching Employee Resource Groups.
Jackson was in a diversity and inclusion leadership role with ESPN where he created and implemented customized diversity & inclusion action plans for all the business units, implemented ESPN’s first Diversity, Inclusion and Wellness Employee Survey, re-energized the company’s 8 ERGs, and supported the Walt Disney Company supplier diversity program. During his seven years at ESPN, he also led the diversity & inclusion training efforts that included Unconscious Bias and enhanced diversity recruiting efforts.
Jackson also has relevant experience from his time at Fannie Mae, Food Marketing Institute (FMI), and Sears, Roebuck and Co. Jackson earned his BA degree in Political Science from the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC.
10 am – 10:15 am Welcome and Introductions
10:15 am – 10:45 am Context Setting for our Day: Introduction of our Core Leadership Theme – Jason McNeal
10:45 am – 12:00 pm Core Leadership Theme
- Jackson Lee Davis, Director, Inclusion and Engagement (January)
- University President
- Board Members
12:00 pm – 12:30 pm Lunch Break
12:30 pm – 1:30 pm Facilitated Group Discussion on the Keynote Topic – Jason McNeal
- How are we working with our President
- How are we working with our donors
- How are we working with our board members
- How are we communicating with our constituents
1:30 pm – 2:15 pm Accountability Session and Report Out: Your Growth Path: Developing Next Steps for your Leadership Growth (Based on the Keynote Topic and Discussion)
- Participants will establish specific steps they will take to strengthen their leadership and will report to the group on those steps
2:15 pm – 3:00 pm The Colloquy
Group dialogue and brainstorming on any number of leadership topics. Topics will be identified prior to each meeting based on cohort member suggestions/feedback.
3:00 pm How to continue the conversation virtually and Adjourn
This series is hosted by Jason McNeal, Ph.D., Gonser Gerber partner, who is viewed as a trusted advisor by educational, healthcare, and nonprofit leaders throughout North America. Having served as the vice president for advancement at one of the 50 most historic colleges in the U.S., Jason has provided leadership and advancement consulting services for the last 13 years. Dr. McNeal is a frequent presenter and has written extensively on key issues for nonprofit fundraisers and leaders including his blog that you can find at http://www.jasonmcneal.com.
Other discussion facilitators will be joining Jason for sessions throughout the Vice President’s Community Colloquy, including speakers from business and industry, higher education, seasoned fundraising experts, major donors, and former or current academic leaders.