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Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff (17)

Date: Jan 11, 2022

Location: DC, DC, US, 20016

Company: American University


The Executive Assistant provides administrative support to the Office of the President. This includes, but is not limited to, maintaining calendars, making travel arrangements, coordinating meetings, supporting day-to-day operations, and preparing meeting agendas and materials. The Executive Assistant also serves as a liaison and coordinates executive outreach and oversees special projects. The Executive Assistant must be responsive, forward thinking, and enjoy working within a highly collaborative, fast-paced environment. Managing sensitive matters with a high level of confidentiality and discretion is critical. The ideal individual will exercise good judgment in a diversity of situations, as well as exhibit strong written and verbal communication skills, attention to detail, organizational skills, and the ability to manage multiple priorities.

Essential Functions

  1. Administration: The Executive Assistant provides administrative support to the Chief of Staff, including managing the calendar, managing schedule requests, managing multiple phone lines, and frequently collaborating with other colleagues in the President’s office. This position coordinates logistics for meetings including managing the attendee invites and responses, preparing materials and agendas and, if necessary, takes minutes. Arranges travel and accommodations for the Chief of Staff. Prepares expense reports. Screens incoming telephone calls; takes and delivers accurate messages; responds to requests by gathering and providing information and referring non-routine calls to the appropriate staff.  The Executive Assistant serves as a “gatekeeper” and “gateway” role, creating win-win situations for access to the Chief of Staff’s time when scheduling appointments and fielding calls. Conserves the Executive's time by reading, researching, collecting, and analyzing information as needed, in advance. Facilitates the resolution of administrative issues identified by self and management; acts as liaison between departments using foresight to resolve administrative issues. Uses discretion, confidentiality, and good judgment to handle executive level and sensitive matters.
  2. Projects and Operations: The Executive Assistant provides project management support. Responsible for the direct management and oversight of day-to-day operations, ensuring the office runs smoothly. This includes developing, managing, and synchronizing archive and filing systems across all platforms (email, computer files, hard copy), coordinating any necessary maintenance or IT requests, and ordering office supplies as needed. Directs special projects and programs as initiated by the Chief of Staff and works in coordination with other colleagues to support the office as needed. The Executive Assistant coordinates presentations or project meetings (including schedules, attendee invitations and responses, and room reservations), formatting presentations (ex. PowerPoints), and creating or updating meeting handouts and materials. Handles queries, questions, concerns, and requests on behalf of the President’s office, working to solve problems, mediate disputes and work proactively with issues and people. Tracks progress of assignments and progress toward goals for the office. Serves as a liaison/point of contact between the university community, cabinet member offices, and the President’s office. This includes but is not limited to fielding calls and emails from the community, addressing questions or concerns, collaborating with other university offices, assisting with events, and other duties as assigned in support of the President’s office.
  3. Budget and Finances: Directs and coordinates resource allocation for the office’s operating budget and business operations including vendor management, payroll, accounts payable, receivables management, contract administration, and shared administrative resource management. This includes preparing requisitions, purchase orders and processing invoices. Serves as administrator for various university vendor accounts.

Essential Function Con't

  1. Human Resources/Personnel Management: Directs all personnel procedures including the position management, recruitment, employment, evaluation, and salary administration of staff consistent with AU policies and procedures. With the Chief of Staff, implements strategic personnel objectives. Assists in all phases of hiring to include creating and updating position descriptions, facilitating the position posting process, assisting in search processes as requested, and onboarding new employees.  
  2. Serves as back-up to the President’s administrative support when they are unavailable or need assistance. This includes but is not limited to answering phone lines and greeting guests. Serves as back-up in the creation of the daily binder for the President.
  3. Other: Ability to function well in a high-paced environment; performs additional duties as assigned by the Chief of Staff

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work

  • Full time 
  • Team Leader/Consultant B
  • Exempt

Salary Range

  • Commensurate with experience.

Required Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent
  • 5-8 years of relevant experience
    • Must be extremely organized and have excellent written and oral communication skills.
    • Able to work well under pressure, in project teams, multi-task and prioritize workload, handle difficult situations and interact with senior leadership as well as general constituency.
    • A very high level of discretion is required from this position due to exposure and access to highly confidential and sensitive information.
    • Flexible hours as dictated by the needs of business for projects and meetings.
    • Business sense - has a strong business sense and can decipher priorities and make sound judgment calls when needed.
    • Commitment to excellence - perform duties at the highest level possible on a consistent basis.
    • Excellent communicator - able to interact with people of all levels in a confident, professional manner.
    • Team player - have team-oriented experience and approach.
    • Service focus - dedicated to meeting the expectations of the Chief of Staff and other senior executives by maintaining effective relationships with interested parties.
    • Previous experience supporting an executive and/or managing an office.
    • Ability to think outside of the box with a sense of urgency.
    • Experience with Microsoft Office suite.

Additional Eligibility Qualifications


  • Click here to learn about American University's unique benefit options


  • Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice.


Current American University Employees:

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Contact Us:

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American University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution that operates in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The university does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), age, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, personal appearance, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, source of income, veteran status, an individual’s genetic information or any other bases under federal or local laws (collectively "Protected Bases") in its programs and activities.

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