Director Indigenous Initiatives

Date: Sep 22, 2022

Location: All locations, CA

Company: Wilfrid Laurier University

Department: Office of Indigenous Initiatives 

Job Type: Continuing

Full-time/Part-time: Full Time (>=1249 hrs/year) 

Campus: All locations 

Reports to: Associate Vice President, Indigenous Initiatives,

Employee Group: Management 

Application Deadline: October 12th 2022

Requisition ID: 3007 

Wilfrid Laurier University is a leading multi-campus university that excels at educating with purpose. Through its exceptional employees, students, researchers, leaders, and educators, Laurier has built a reputation as a world-class institution known for its rich student experience, academic excellence, and global impact. With a commitment to Indigenization and commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, Laurier’s thriving community has a place for everyone.

Laurier has more than 19,000 students and 2,100 faculty and staff across campuses in Waterloo and Brantford, as well locations in Kitchener and Milton. The university is committed to providing an inclusive workplace, a flexible work policy and employing a workforce that is reflective of local and national demographics. Our locations are situated on the traditional territories of the Neutral, Anishnawbe, and Haudenosaunee peoples. We recognize the unique heritages of Indigenous peoples and support their intentions to preserve and express their distinctive Indigenous cultures, histories, and knowledge through academic programming and co-curricular activities. Laurier’s Centre for Indigegogy is one example of how Laurier honours Indigenous knowledge.



Position Summary

Reporting to the Associate Vice President, Indigenous Initiatives, the Director of Indigenous Initiatives works in partnership with members of the University community to support Indigenization, reconciliation and decolonization, strategic and operational planning, and enhancing the Indigenous student experience. The Director, Indigenous Initiatives works closely with the AVP Indigenous Initiatives, and manages the daily operations of the Office of Indigenous Initiatives, providing supervision of the staff as well as long-term operational resource planning for the unit. The Director, Indigenous Initiatives will work closely with the AVP: Indigenous Initiatives with regards to implementation of Laurier’s Indigenous Strategic Plan. The Director, Indigenous Initiatives engages Indigenous people in and outside of the University in the mission of the University, broadly intersecting with areas such as Teaching and Learning, Student Experience, faculty and staff recruitment/ engagement, and community-based research.


The Director is responsible for supporting the attraction and retention of Indigenous students by ensuring a safe and welcoming space with holistic student supports for Indigenous students at Laurier. Through the Indigenous Student Centres in Waterloo and Brantford, the Director will work with the Manager of Indigenous Student Services to support the overall planning and development of programming and supports that facilitate Indigenous student success, both academic and social, for undergraduate and graduate student communities.


This position has a university-wide mandate and is based at the Brantford Campus with regular presence at the Waterloo campus. The incumbent provides leadership in a multi-campus environment, requiring regular interaction, communication and collaboration with staff and stakeholders at the Waterloo Campus, Brantford Campus, and external partners. The incumbent provides Indigenous expertise to all campuses and locations, requiring regular interpersonal interactions and collaboration with departments at the Waterloo Campus, the Brantford Campus, Kitchener location, and external partners. Special attention is given to ensure equitable service delivery across all locations.




  1. Leadership:
  • Supports the AVP: Indigenous Initiatives in contributing to the institutional visions and priorities in support of Indigenization
  • Advises on policies related to Indigenous initiatives
  • Provides leadership and mentorship to the staff within the unit
  • Assesses staff learning and development needs, and identifies opportunities for staff to enhance their skills and knowledge
  • Oversees and continually reviews the administrative structures within the Office of Indigenous Initiatives and Indigenous Student Services operations, and staff, to ensure human resources are efficiently and effectively managed
  • Ensures that staffing structures support strategic priorities including prioritization of tasks, strategic workforce planning, and transition planning
  • Responsible for hiring, performance management, human resource planning, and resolution of human resources related issues for staff within the department
  • Manages the annual staff performance appraisal process ensuring timely and consistent completion of performance appraisals for all staff, and provides ongoing leadership and coaching to the staff in the department


  1. Internal and External Partnerships
  • Identifies, initiates, and manages complex multi-stakeholder relationships and partnerships with university stakeholders, government agencies, community groups and cultural organizations to ensure an inclusive, accessible, and responsive approach in all our partnership building
  • In collaboration with Alumni and Development, fosters relationships with Indigenous alumni, prospective donors, and foundations to build a strong alumni and donor network, to support and enhance Indigenous initiatives
  • In collaboration with Human Resources, advises on and supports the creation of learning opportunities to promote Indigenous education and awareness, and advises on strategies to attract and retain Indigenous staff and faculty


  1. Indigenous Student Services and Support:
  • In collaboration with the Manager of Indigenous student services, the Director will help to develop and maintain strategies to support Indigenous Student success
  • Develops strong connections with internal Student Affairs partners to provide pathways for Indigenous students to access services in support of their needs
  • Facilitates the work of the department by promoting and developing collaborative relationships between the department, academic departments, service units, other university departments, and the community at large


  1. Events and Programming:
  • Supports the goals of the Office of Indigenous Initiatives by supporting faculty and staff in the development of Indigenous programming at Laurier
  • Oversees the planning and development of various flagship events and special projects of the unit and/or the needs of the university


  1. Financial and Administrative:
  • In collaboration with the AVP, manages the Indigenous Initiatives budget and operations
  • Authorizes purchases and expenses, approves and allocates funds, and facilitates budget transfers
  • Prepares reports, data analyses, projections, and statistics for purposes of assessing the impact of the services provided, to be used for analysis, planning and decision-making
  • Reviews operational procedures and policies as needed to ensure effective operation
  • Ensures adherence to university policies
  • Identifies areas of improvement, growth or change within the department and implementation of effective systems to address the changing needs and working environment including space needs
  • Respond to requests for information, data related to the department as required
  • Ensure completion of all government required reports and requests
  • Regularly participates in a wide range of university committees with a focus on Indigenous related work




  • All candidates must be Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, or Métis) and complete Laurier’s Indigenous identity verification process
  • Master’s degree or equivalent experience
  • Experience developing educational initiatives, programs, and practices in support of the advancement of Indigenous initiatives, education, student success and community engagement
  • Proven ability to facilitate an environment of teamwork to identify and overcome institutional and system barriers to the successful attainment of post-secondary education for First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students across the university
  • Expertise and lived experience of Indigenous worldviews, cultures, and values; along with demonstrated connections to Indigenous communities
  • Experience managing operations, including staffing, budgets, and programming
  • Demonstrated experience leading and implementing complex projects, and designing and delivering educational programming
  • Experience working in an Indigenous community and/or communities on educational and/or institutional strategic initiatives, with experience working with Indigenous community-based educational institutions and/or post-secondary institutions
  • Demonstrated track record in building respectful and constructive relationships with Indigenous communities
  • Demonstrated competency and proficiency of written and spoken Indigenous language(s) communication skills are assets



Hours of Work:

This is a full time continuing position. Regular hours of work are Monday - Friday, 8:30am - 4:30pm, 35 hours a week. 


Occasional travel is required and includes travel outside of Ontario and/or Canada, within Ontario and/or Canada, overnight or attend daily appointments outside the University etc.



Class: MG-3A 

Salary: $97,634  - $ 134,247



All Laurier employees and students are required to comply with the University's Covid-19 mandatory vaccination policyEffective May 1st, Wilfrid Laurier University will pause its proof of vaccination requirements. Should these recommendations change, vaccination requirements can be reinstated on short notice. Community members should remain up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccinations.

Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier's Employee Success Factors.

Equity, diversity and creating a culture of inclusion are part of Laurier’s core values and central to the Laurier Strategy. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any minority sexual and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives. Candidates from other equity deserving groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact Equity & Accessibility. We have strived to make our application process accessible, however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources. Contact information can be found at

Should you be interested in learning more about this opportunity, please visit for additional information and the online application system. All applications must be submitted online. Please note, a resume and cover letter will be required in electronic form.

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