Executive Director, Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs

APSIA is hiring a new Executive Director to provides vision and leadership to the Association. The Executive Director ensures that the Association meets the needs of members and affiliates now and in the future. They are the primary operating and administrative officer of the Association and primary public representative of the organization.

The Executive Director works under the supervision of the APSIA Executive Committee, particularly the President.

The role of the Executive Director includes a wide range of responsibilities: internal work within the Association and external work with outside individuals and organizations. This position requires a background in non-profit management and administration (including knowledge of budgeting, finance, and resource management), program management, strategic planning, public communication, international affairs, and organizational development.

The Executive Director should be personable, diplomatic, professional, cross-culturally proficient, well organized, detail-oriented, and have the ability to work with a range of individuals, from students to former heads of state.

They must work comfortably with a team and in an independent capacity. They should be an entrepreneurial self-starter who takes initiative on a number of levels, while operating under the direction of the Executive Committee.

They should enjoy working on both high-level and operational tasks (i.e. someone who enjoys and easily moves between the forest and the trees). They should be a relationship-builder who seeks partnerships to expand APSIA’s impact beyond what it can achieve on its own.

The Executive Director typically make domestic and international trips throughout the year. Evening and weekend work sometimes required.


Think Strategically

The Executive Director provides vision and leadership to the Association. They collaborate closely with the Executive Committee to develop, implement, and evaluate APSIA priorities and activities as needed. Responsibilities include:

  • Ensure the execution of, continued relevance of, and necessary updates to APSIA’s Strategic Plan in collaboration with the Executive Committee
  • Identify and develop opportunities to further the shared mission of APSIA and its member schools, with special attention to underrepresented communities and global membership growth
  • Develop and implement a range of range of programming, member engagement activities, and partnerships
  • Evaluate program offerings, pursuing updates as needed relative to the needs and interests as members, as well as the evolving context of international affairs education
  • Lead future organizational strategic planning processes and set annual work plans in collaboration with the Executive Committee


Support Members

The Executive Director ensures that the Association meets the needs of members and affiliates now and in the future, including engagement with key audiences such as prospective students and employers. Responsibilities include:

  • Ensure the delivery of online and in-person events for APSIA and broader audiences, including but not limited to Executive Committee meetings, member meetings, prospective student recruitment events, advisor workshops, webinars for graduate student, and other programs
  • Advance strategy and activities related to international affairs admissions and recruitment, career and professional development, academic advisor networks, international student engagement, employer relations, dean/director engagement, faculty engagement, alumni relations, development, and communications
  • Collect and analyze data related to the work of APSIA members across the broad fields of international affairs and international affairs education
  • Schedule and staff APSIA Executive Committee and Annual meetings, including preparing reports on organization activities as needed
  • Curate weekly lists of jobs, internships, fellowships, opportunities, and resources that can be of use to APSIA faculty, students, staff, PISA members, and partners
  • Develop and provide programming to current and prospective graduate students that is complementary to school-specific offerings
  • Inform APSIA schools about relevant issues and speak on their behalf as appropriate


Promote APSIA

The Executive Director is the primary representative of the organization, responsible for the overall communications strategy and the public presence of the Association. Responsibilities include

  • Develop strategic communications and engagement plans outlining key audiences and messages, as well as effective communication modes, with input from the Executive Committee and members
  • Develop and maintain strong networks within the international affairs community (e.g. student groups, undergraduate advisors, other associations, non-profits, government agencies)
  • Enhance the international profile of APSIA, both in terms of greater visibility in and connections to different world regions
  • Utilize and manage APSIA social media accounts, website, email, online fora, and other tools to strategically communicate with and engage key audiences, including but not limited to members
  • Oversee all marketing and the creation of promotional materials
  • Manage employer engagement to increase the visibility of APSIA schools, students, and alumni among prospective employers
  • Represent APSIA at external events
  • Maintain relationships with staff and faculty at APSIA members/affiliates
  • Build relationships with prospective members/affiliates, including promoting membership to prospective candidates, supporting candidates during the application process, and facilitating application decision making.


Manage Programmatic, Operational, and Administrative Functions

The Executive Director is the primary operating and administrative officer of the Association. Responsibilities include:

  • Hire, train, coach, and supervise staff, and student employees
  • Oversee all financial aspects of the Association, including regular bookkeeping, accounts payable, and accounts receivable
  • Prepare a budget annually for Executive Committee approval, providing periodic reports as needed
  • Review monthly financial statements and annual tax returns prepared by external firms
  • Manage membership program, including but not limited to invoicing and payment processing
  • Work with the Association’s Financial Advisor on management of APSIA’s investment portfolio
  • Respond to general inquiries to the Association
  • Oversee all internal systems, including human resources, files, information technology, facilities, and customer relationship management system


Advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

People from all parts of the world, points of view, religions, races, and backgrounds contribute to the education APSIA schools provide. We owe our students an environment of diversity and inclusion. The Executive Director works to make that rich environment a reality. Responsibilities include

  • Manage all aspects of planning, fundraising, and stewardship of the APSIA Forum. The Forum includes annual workshops for undergraduate and community college advisors at US minority serving institutions, an annual workshop for students and young professionals of historically excluded backgrounds, and efforts to nurture the pipeline of diverse APSIA graduate students
  • Represent APSIA on the Public Policy and International Affairs Fellowship Board of Directors, at the Global Access Pipeline International Affairs Consortium, and with other partner organizations
  • Build relationships with and connections between APSIA and historically excluded communities and institutions/organizations that serve them


Position Requirements and Preferences

Given the breadth of responsibilities, APSIA recognizes that not every candidate will possess all of the qualities needed.  Requirements and preferences for this position are (please note which ones are required and which are preferred):

  • 8-10 years of program and/or organizational management required.
  • Graduate degree with training related to international affairs, public affairs, higher education, nonprofit management, and/or related field strong preferred. May substitute experience for education, if experience is highly aligned with the role. Degree from an APSIA school very helpful.
  • Experience in international affairs-related practice or education strongly preferred
  • Experience collaborating with diverse stakeholders and working in cross-cultural contexts preferred.
  • Excellent communication and networking skills in English required; proficiency in additional languages welcome.
  • Experience in online and in person event planning strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to tactfully handle stressful situations, negotiate and resolve conflicts, maintain confidentiality, and respect required.
  • Experience in creating communication and marketing strategies and content for a wide range of audiences strongly preferred.
  • Experience with QuickBooks, Canva, MailChimp, Word Press, Google Suite, and/or WildApricot strongly preferred.
  • Experience with membership associations preferred.
  • Experience working in higher education preferred.



This is a global search aimed at recruiting the best talent independent of its location. There is a preference for candidates living in the Washington DC/Maryland/Virigina area given the location of APSIA’s main office (located in Farragut Square, Washington DC) but this is not required. The hiring committee will consider candidacies of individuals living in other parts of the United States and Europe. If the selected candidate lives outside of Washington DC, regular travel to the United States and the DC area will be expected.


Salary and Benefits

The salary for this position ranges between 90,000 – 110,000 USD or EUR, depending on employee location. Stipend for personal health care and retirement provided if in the US. Telephone and internet stipend provided. Paid sick and vacation leave.


APSIA actively subscribes to a policy of equal employment opportunity and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant because of race, age, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry or national origin, marital status, genetic information, political affiliation, and gender identity or expression. Minorities and women are encouraged to apply.


To apply

To apply, please submit a resume, cover letter, and brief writing sample (two pages maximum) to jobs@apsia.org as one attachment. Deadline for applications: May 12, 2024.