We’re Hiring an Assistant to the Director

The University of Illinois Press seeks a bright, well organized, detail-oriented self-starter to coordinate and administer the development efforts of the Press and support the acquisitions and administrative work of the director.

A successful candidate will be invested in the humanities and interested in building the profile and resources of the Press. They will have superb written and oral communication skills. They will be adept at tracking, prioritizing, and processing multiple time-sensitive projects, working independently, and communicating clearly and diplomatically with outside stakeholders and UI Press colleagues. They will be proficient in appropriate word processing and database programs and open to learning new technologies. They will be a creative problem solver and open to challenges. They will handle sensitive and confidential materials with discretion. Experience with grant writing is a plus.

The Assistant to the Director takes appropriate actions to support a diverse workforce and participates in the Press’s efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer that recruits and hires qualified candidates without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or veteran status. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO.

Duties and Responsibilities:


1. Work with UI Press director and UI Foundation major gifts officer for the Press to develop fundraising strategies and goals. Obtain training in UI Foundation’s Blackbaud interface and use that interface to prepare reports and track progress of fundraising and stewardship efforts. Prepare and maintain funding records in Press database. 

2. Research potential sources of outside funding, including institutional subventions and grants. Prepare and maintain plan and schedule for applications and grant reporting. Prepare budgets and targeted proposals for funding to support individual book titles, series, internships, and programming. Track results and prepare grant reports on schedule. Prepare invoices for payment of subventions. Communicate with funding agencies. 

3. Coordinate crafting and circulation of fundraising campaign materials and appeals. Set up mailmerge and manage mailings. Create content for and coordinate stewardship communications. Create and refresh development content for Press blog and “Giving” section of Press website. 

Acquisitions Support 

4. Prepare and maintain project records. Prepare title descriptions. Prepare and circulate packets of material for review by internal and external committees. Obtain cost estimates and prepare title budgets.

5. Execute and track the peer review process: research and identify prospective project reviewers, handle correspondence and transmission of materials to reviewers, and coordinate payment with the business office. Serve as primary point of contact between acquisitions department and business, editorial, design, production, and marketing departments.

6. Advise and serve as the main point of contact for authors as they finalize their submissions and prepare manuscripts and necessary permissions for transmittal to editorial, design, and production. Deploy expertise in citation styles, copyright law, and fair use to assess permissions and manuscript materials. Obtain art evaluations and cost estimates.

Administrative Support 

7. Schedule and facilitate Zoom and in-person meetings, prepare agendas, attend meetings, and record and distribute minutes. Prepare PowerPoint and other materials for director’s presentations. 

Staff Development 

8. Contribute to a culture of teamwork, continuous learning, and collegiality within the department and with other groups at the Press. Foster innovation and cross-departmental collaboration and contribute to Press-wide initiatives. 

9. Participate in training and professional development initiatives, as appropriate. 


10. Other tasks appropriate to the role of Assistant to the Director. 

Education and Experience: 


1. Bachelor’s degree

2. One year in education, training and/or work experience with administrative, programming and/or grant research and writing. (Note: Master’s Degree in an area consistent with the duties of the position may be substituted for one (1) year of work experience.)  


1. Bachelors degree in humanities or social science discipline  

2. Experience with administrative or program work.

3. Experience with grant research and writing.  

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

1. Strong interpersonal communication, organizational, networking, and follow-through skills.

2. Sharp proofreading skills and the ability to write clearly for a variety of audiences.

3. Ability to track multiple projects, meet deadlines, prioritize, and work under pressure.

4. Proficient word processing, database, internet, and Microsoft computer application experience.

5. Ability to work collegially and professionally with authors, scholars, and members of the U of I Press staff.

6. Discretion with confidential and sensitive materials.

7. Ability to travel to represent the Press at conferences and public events.

8. Understanding of the importance of the humanities.

9. Interest in scholarly publishing.  

Deadline to apply is: April 04, 2022

Apply and see full posting here: https://jobs.illinois.edu/academic-job-board/job-details?jobID=159806&job=assistant-to-the-director-program-coordinator-u-press-159806

About Heather Gernenz

University of Illinois Press Publicity Manager