Associate Vice President for Facilities Planning & Management and University Architect







POSITION:  Associate Vice President for Facilities Planning & Management and University Architect
REPORTS TO:  Vice President for Finance & Treasurer

LOCATION:  Washington, DC


Please Submit Applications or Nominations to:

Helbling & Associates, Inc.
8000 Brooktree Road, Suite 100
Wexford, PA  15090
Wendy Zang, Managing Consultant
O: (724) 935-7500 x116
C: (703) 507-4273
Tom Dunn, Senior Managing Consultant – Mid Atlantic Region
O: (724) 935-7500 x104

C: (412) 523-0381



The Catholic University of America, founded in 1887 by the U.S. Catholic bishops with the support of Pope Leo XIII, serves as the (one and only) national university of the Catholic Church in the United States. The Catholic University of America is a community of scholars, both faculty and students, set apart to discover, preserve and impart the truth in all its forms, with particular reference to the needs and opportunities of the nation.

As a Catholic university, it desires to cultivate and impart an understanding of the Christian faith within the context of all forms of human inquiry and values. It seeks to ensure, in an institutional manner, the proper intellectual and academic witness to Christian inspiration in individuals and in the community, and to provide a place for continuing reflection, in the light of Christian faith, upon the growing treasure of human knowledge.

As a member of the American academic community, it accepts the standards and procedures of American institutions and seeks to achieve distinction within the academic world. Faithful to the Christian message as it comes through the Church and faithful to its own national traditions, The Catholic University of America has unique responsibilities to be of service to Christian thought and education in the Catholic community as well as to serve the nation and the world.

The University seeks the advancement of knowledge within a context of liberal studies, a context which reflects both its concern for the whole person and the distinctive wisdom to which it is heir as a Catholic institution. This dimension of learning is reflected particularly in its undergraduate programs where religious studies and philosophy are regarded as integral to curricula that include requirements in the arts and humanities, language and literature, and the natural and social sciences. Through its professional programs, the University seeks to educate men and women who can represent their respective professions with distinction and who are formed by the learning and values inherent in its academic and Catholic traditions.

As a research and teaching institution, the University recognizes that it is part of a larger community to which it has certain obligations consistent with its character. Its presence in the nation’s capital and its unique relationship with the Catholic Church in America provide it with opportunities for influencing the resolution of the crucial issues of our time. In providing information and criteria by which public policy is shaped and measured, the University seeks to be of special service to the nation. Similarly, it seeks to be of service to the Church, not only through the preparation of clergy and other leaders for specific roles in the Church, but also through factual investigations and discussions of principles which influence policy.


Catholic University is located in the heart of Washington, D.C., the seat of government of the world’s most influential nation, and a major US city designed by Pierre Charles L’Enfant. The 179 acre campus is

located in the northeastern quadrant of the District, within the Brookland neighborhood and between the primary vehicular roadways of North Capitol Street to the east, Michigan Avenue to the south and John McCormick Road to the east. The campus is located along the Red Line of the DC Metro System, with a dedicated “CUA/Brookland” stop on the eastern edge of the campus. The University recently completed construction of a major mixed-use development known as Monroe Street Market along the southern edge of the campus, providing market rate housing and vibrant retail and dining options for the entire Brookland Community. Opportunities for continued development of adjacent land to the west of campus are being explored with the goal of increasing the vibrancy of the campus and its surrounding institutional and residential neighborhoods, building community, and strengthening connectivity to the District as a whole.


The Department of Facilities Planning and Management, directed by the Associate Vice President for Facilities Planning & Management and University Architect, is responsible for the ongoing maintenance, operations, planning, design, renovation and construction of all campus buildings, utilities and grounds. The interdisciplinary team of Facilities personnel is dedicated to creating and maintaining a campus environment which supports the mission of the University and enables the work of all faculty, students and staff. The Department is comprised of the following areas of responsibility which are interdependent and work closely together on a daily basis: Planning, Design and Construction (PDC), Environmental Health and Safety (EHS), Facilities Maintenance and Operations (FMO) and Facilities Administration and Services (FAS). All members of the Department interact frequently with campus and community constituents to develop, protect and make best use of the vast resources of this unique campus within the nation’s capital, to ensure effective utilization of the talents and effort each member of the Department offers on behalf of the University Community and to provide excellent results in a customer service-oriented environment.


The Associate Vice President for Facilities Planning & Management and University Architect (AVP/UA) will lead and oversee the development, maintenance and operations of the physical environment of the campus and all University-owned property, ensuring its effective and efficient utilization, preservation of its historic assets and natural beauty, thoughtful development of its buildings, grounds and utilities and guidance of its potential for continued growth and development in support of the University’s mission as a research and teaching institution.

As a steward of the University’s facilities, the AVP/UA is responsible for guidance of architectural design, campus planning, construction and construction management, facility maintenance and operations and the environmental well-being of all campus facilities and operations. The AVP/UA will lead initiatives to meet the long-range, functional and aesthetic goals of the University and will have a high degree of accountability with regard to the relationships between all University constituencies:  University leadership, faculty, staff, students and external agencies within the District of Columbia.  The AVP/UA will represent the University’s interests in facility matters with senior administrators, the Board of Trustees, local officials, faculty and other stakeholders.

The AVP/UA reports to the Vice President for Finance & Treasurer and will also serve as Secretary to the Facilities Committee of the Board of Trustees.  The AVP/UA is to be the architectural conscience of the institution and the steward of sound architectural design standards, ensuring a cohesive campus that promotes the University’s educational mission. The AVP/UA will adjust to changing needs of programs and faculty by translating programmatic needs into physical space with a sensitivity to adaptive reuse of historic buildings, historic preservation, aesthetically pleasing grounds and greenspaces and focusing on the campus as a place for students to study and learn.

The AVP/UA leads a well-tenured team of Directors and Senior Directors responsible for the areas of Capital Projects, Environmental Health and Safety/Risk Management, Maintenance and Operations and Facilities Administration and Services.

Catholic University is a values-based organization where all employees are accountable for supporting the organization’s values of truth, respect, excellence, teamwork and integrity. University employees are required to attend staff development trainings and participate in the performance evaluation process. The successful candidate will understand and appreciate the mission of the University, and endeavor to make a distinctive contribution to achievement of its vision for Catholic education as outlined in our statement of aims and goals:


  • Plans, directs and provides design guidance to building projects, campus master planning efforts and capital planning. Directs planning, design and construction management staff to provide overall guidance regarding new or existing university architectural and project planning design standards as well as the best cost/value approach for the University relative to construction and renovation of all campus facilities.  Prepares and presents capital projects and plans to trustees, senior administrators, faculty, donors and other stakeholders.   Frequently makes project presentations to University and community approval bodies and information presentations to various groups.
  • Meets frequently with University stakeholders to understand and assist in their facility planning and design needs and assists in soliciting and organizing stakeholder input to capital budget planning process, facility management and campus master plan development and implementation.
  • Leads the architect selection process for the University including pre-qualification, establishing selection criteria, interview and evaluation. Chairs selection boards.  Promotes the selection of firms that will bring distinguished architecture to the University.
  • Works closely with the Senior Director of Capital Projects to determine appropriate project delivery method for capital projects, to select appropriate construction and Construction management firms for each capital project and to establish project timelines and budgets that meet the University’s established goals and performance criteria.
  • Directs and oversees the Director of Facilities Maintenance and Operations to ensure that staffing and resources are in place to maintain and operate the physical plant of the campus as effectively and as efficiently as possible. Maintains inventory and knowledge of campus facilities condition to assist in prioritizing funding and staff support needed to resolve deferred maintenance backlog. Ensures that facilities are sufficiently maintained on a current basis to avoid growing deferred maintenance.  Reviews results of periodic conditions assessments to track progress and determine need for change in support over the course of each fiscal year. Oversees budget management of ongoing projects to ensure adherence to capital budget.
  • Directs and oversees the Director of Facilities Administration and Services to ensure that staffing is in place to provide consistently excellent customer service to all campus constituencies as they relate to utilities, buildings and grounds.
  • Serves as Secretary and senior staff to the Facilities Committee of the Board of Trustees.
  • Provides leadership and guidance, coaches, mentors and ensures training of all departmental associates for professional growth and development.
  • Performs other duties and responsibilities as assigned.


  • Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from an accredited program; professional license in architecture in the District of Columbia or reciprocity for licensure within six months of hire date; a minimum of ten years of related professional experience.
  • Demonstrated successful managerial and leadership experience; a well-developed maturity in decision processes and leading/managing diverse teams with conflicting needs or requirements; flexible and collaborative leadership style.
  • Ability to operate effectively in a fast-paced environment.
  • Strong communication skills including ability to make high-level presentations, strong writing skills and strong interpersonal skills to facilitate communication among University constituencies.
  • Visionary leader who can demonstrate ability to develop innovative approaches to project design issues; professional credibility, and the ability to build consensus around controversial issues.


  • A Master’s degree in Architecture from an accredited program.
  • Experience with adaptive reuse of historic buildings.
  • Experience working as a chief architect in a higher education environment or as a Principal in an architectural firm with predominantly higher education clients and staff management oversight are highly desired.