University of Waterloo

Associate Director, Community Relations & Events

Requisition ID 2021-6748
Job Category
Event Management
Community Relations & Events
Employment Type
Time Type
Hiring Range
$81,811 - $102,263


Term: 14 months


The Associate Director, Community Relations & Events organizes and manages high calibre institution-level events for both internal and external audiences. Such events promote the public profile and reputation of the University, increase campus and community stakeholder engagement, and encourage positive community relations in Waterloo Region and beyond.


Events include internal recognition events, convocation, community outreach (i.e., public lectures), VIP visits, seasonal celebrations, and other special events.


The position works on behalf of the President and senior administration, interacting with cross-functional teams within numerous departments of the University, vendors and community partners to stage these events.  The position is responsible for implementing proper protocol and procedures associated with such.


Working closely with the Senior Director, Community Relations & Events, the Associate Director identifies and leverages opportunities to enhance branding, provide forums for University interactions with the public, government, donors, industry and others, and facilitates ways for students, faculty and staff to be engaged in their community.


Events and protocol

  • Manages and evaluates key high-level events for the Office of the President and senior administration that support profile and reputation

  • Prepares event briefs and post-event analysis, assesses opportunities and makes recommendations for improving service to internal and external stakeholders

  • Identifies and coordinates university support services as needed for events

  • Drafts program and briefing notes for the President, senior administration and all program participants for formal special events

  • Develops and ensures the use of project management strategies to prepare detailed schedules and budgets, identifying critical dates and deadlines to ensure that events are managed on time and within an approved budget

  • Assesses and recommends new events that promote a culture of innovation and generate maximum exposure for the University

  • Supports government relations initiatives, as appropriate

  • Advises the President and senior administration on matters of protocol



  • Develops and manages annual budget for events portfolio

  • Maintains positive, collaborative relationships with campus and community partners

  • Maintains comprehensive event toolkit to aid university departments in the organization of events

  • Acts as a resource person and consultant for campus stakeholders on matters of event management



  • Responsible for all aspects of planning, coordination and implementation of convocation and events associated with such (i.e., luncheons, honorary doctorate events)

  • Manages relationships with Registrar’s Office, Office of the President, Communications, Plant Operations, Bookstore, Alumni Relations, individual Faculties and others to ensure the smooth delivery of convocation ceremonies

  • Builds and supports a network of student, faculty and staff volunteers; provides appropriate training and follow-up


Internal recognition events

  • Responsible for all aspects of planning, coordination and implementation of annual internal recognition events including but not limited to:  Years of Loyal Service reception, 25 Year Dinner, International Women’s Day, Teaching & Research Awards

  • Manage relationships with campus and community partners to ensure exceptional engagement, customer service and collaboration


Community outreach

  • Responsible for all aspects of planning, coordination and implementation of annual and unplanned  events, most notably public lectures and signature volunteer/ philanthropy initiatives

  • Manage relationships with vendors, and campus and community partners to ensure exceptional engagement, customer service and collaboration

  • At the request of the Senior Director, may represent the University at community meetings


Leading and managing people

  • Responsible for leadership, performance and development of Community Relations & Events specialists, coordinator, contract employees and co-op students

  • Supervise and lead the community relations and events team to deliver high level, impactful events

  • Ensure the team meets deadlines and targets for effective delivery of events

  • Responsible for fostering and maintaining a work environment that encourages, recognizes creativity, innovation, excellence and personal accountability

  • Identifies needs and resources to expand skills and knowledge for CRE staff by suggesting job-related development opportunities and recommendations regarding style, best practice, technologies, training and resources, in line with specific departmental goals and budgets

  • Recruit, manage and develop CRE staff (full-time, contract, co-op); provide leadership, guidance, support and coaching


  • Completion of a Bachelor’s degree in events, public relations or communications-related field or equivalent education and experience
  • Five to seven years of event management experience with a proven track record of achievement and success

  • Managerial experience leading an events team

  • Experience leading high-impact events with budgets over $100,000

  • Proven ability to thrive in a complex, fast-paced environment

  • Experience working in the post-secondary education sector is preferred, including demonstrated experience working with university ceremonies such as convocation

  • Experience working with VIP audiences, including government and business leaders

  • Proven ability to manage complex, high-risk events

  • Demonstrated customer service orientation

  • Competencies include excellent written and verbal communication skills, critical thinking, excellent analytical skills, strong organizational skills and the ability to handle multiple tasks, prioritize and manage a variety of projects, and meet deadlines

  • A service mindset and a team approach to working with colleagues and partners

  • Ability to manage confidential and sensitive materials and situations with the utmost discretion

  • Must be composed, organized and an accomplished problem solver

  • Ability to think and act strategically, creatively and dynamically in a high-pressure work environment

Equity Statement

The University of Waterloo is committed to implementing the Calls to Action framed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We acknowledge that we live and work on the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee peoples. The University of Waterloo is situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land granted to the Six Nations that includes six miles on each side of the Grand River.


The University values the diverse and intersectional identities of its students, faculty, and staff. The University regards equity and diversity as an integral part of academic excellence and is committed to accessibility for all employees. The University of Waterloo seeks applicants who embrace our values of equity, anti-racism and inclusion.  As such, we encourage applications from candidates who have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, including applicants who identify as First Nations, Métis and/or Inuit/Inuk, Black, racialized, a person with a disability, women and/or 2SLGBTQ+.


All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.


The University of Waterloo is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. If you have any application, interview, or workplace accommodation requests, please contact Human Resources at or 519-888-4567, ext. 45935.


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