Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to the President

McMaster is a university with impact.                     

Ranked among the top 80 universities globally and, through its cutting-edge research and world-class teaching and learning, the university is focused on advancing human and societal health and well-being – in our community and around the world.

As the pioneers of problem-based learning, we have a rich history of educational innovation. We work across disciplines to find creative solutions to complex problems, helping to improve people’s lives and build a brighter future for all.

Together, McMaster’s six Faculties (Business, Engineering, Health Sciences, Humanities, Social Sciences, and Science), more than 1,200 faculty members and dedicated professional and support staff have established McMaster as one of Canada’s most innovative universities. The university’s national and international reputation attracted over 34,000 undergraduate and 5,600 graduate students in 2021/22.

Committed to delivering on its promise of Truth and Reconciliation, McMaster University recognizes and acknowledges that it is located on the traditional territories of the Mississauga and Haudenosaunee nations, and within the lands protected by the Dish with One Spoon wampum agreement. In keeping with its Statement on Building an Inclusive Community with a Shared Purpose, McMaster strives to embody the values of respect, integrity, and collaboration, and has a strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence.

The Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to the President is responsible for providing executive-level support and strategic counsel to the President in all areas of their work and for managing the President's Office. The Chief of Staff works closely with the President on key initiatives, priorities, and special projects of critical importance to the University, and ensures that the President is well-prepared and well-briefed on the many complex issues that arise and require attention. In addition to risk management and providing advice and counsel on governance matters, they provide management and direction to the staff in the Office of the President to ensure the office runs effectively.

While reporting directly to the President, the Chief of Staff also works closely with the Vice-Presidents, other members of senior administration, and the staff of the President's Office in order to advance the priorities of the President.  

The ideal candidate will be an experienced strategic thinker and leader and will bring significant high-level professional/administrative experience, ideally within an academic setting. They will have excellent analytical skills, superior judgement, exceptional communications skills, and a track record of success in advancing priority projects and complex risk and issues management. Critically, they will demonstrate a high degree of discretion and the ability to work collegially and constructively with a wide variety of stakeholders both within the University and in the broader community.

Applications are encouraged immediately at Please visit Odgers Berndtson’s website to apply. Consideration of candidates will begin in June, with the new Chief of Staff ideally taking office September 2022. Nominations and inquiries should be directed to Colleen Keenan or Julia Robarts at