Job Details

Sonoma State University
  • Position Number: 1406737
  • Location: Rohnert Park, CA
  • Position Type: Administrative Assistant

Associate Vice President of Human Resources
Sonoma State University

Associate Vice President of Human Resources


Another Source's client, Sonoma State University, is recruiting an Associate Vice President of Human Resources to join their team.

As one of the 23 campuses in the California State University System, Sonoma is a mid-size comprehensive university, focusing on the liberal arts with a strong emphasis in the arts and sciences. Located approximately an hour north of San Francisco, SSU has 9,200 students, 400 faculty and 900 staff and administrators. Sonoma State University is committed to achieving excellence through teaching, scholarship, learning and inclusion. In line with the Seawolf Commitment, our values include respect, responsibility, excellence and integrity.

We strive to cultivate a community in which a diverse population can learn and work in an atmosphere of civility and respect. We encourage innovation, experimentation and creativity, as well as contributions to diversity, equity and inclusion, in the pursuit of excellence for all members of our university community.

The CSU system offers a premium benefit package that includes, but is not limited to, outstanding vacation, health, dental, and vision plans; a fee waiver education program; membership in the California Public Employees Retirement System (PERS); and 14 paid holidays a year.

Position Purpose: Reporting to the Vice President for Administration and Finance and CFO, the Associate Vice President (AVP) for Administration and Finance, Human Resources serves as the Chief Human Resources Officer for Sonoma State University and its three auxiliary organizations. The AVP is charged with the responsibility for leading and managing a comprehensive human resource program including employment and classification/compensation services, human resources information management, employee relations, training and development, payroll and benefits administration, workers compensation administration, employee/leadership development, employee recognition, employee wellness and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act)/EEO(Equal Employment Opportunity) compliance. The AVP for Human Resources oversees and ensures compliance with the collective bargaining agreements for non-faculty employees as well as the administration of the Management Personnel Plan for professional employees, supervisors, and administrators. Additionally, the AVP oversees student employment and the University's non-faculty volunteer program. The AVP serves as a member of the Vice President's senior management team.

The AVP must possess a broad and deep knowledge and experience in employee relations, compensation, organizational planning and development, employment law, payroll, human resource information systems, regulatory compliance, and professional development. In addition, the AVP must be able to manage, inspire, and lead a team of dedicated professionals in a customer service oriented human resources infrastructure and have demonstrated experience in creating and maintaining a workplace that supports and respects diversity.

With unquestioned integrity coupled with strong management skills, the AVP is expected to function in a constantly evolving setting with an appreciation for and comfort with ambiguity. The AVP must have strong interpersonal skills; have the ability to influence at all levels within the University and to function as an effective change agent. The AVP must make sound and independent decisions, have strong negotiation and motivation skills, meet timelines, and manage competing priorities successfully.

Major Duties:
  • Serves as the University's Chief Human Resources Officer, developing and implementing appropriate human resource policies, programs, and procedures as well as ensuring alignment and/or compliance with CSU system-wide policies and employment practices
  • Provides vision and leadership aligned with campus priorities and an evolving workplace
  • Serves as a trusted advisor to the CFO and senior leadership team in matters pertaining to organizational development, employee relations, workforce analysis and talent management
  • Serves as consultant to the campus on human resource matters, including leading or directing investigations of complaints and allegations of inappropriate employee behavior and/or facilitating conflict resolution sessions
  • Oversees and serves as campus point of contact for any employment-related litigation
  • Serves as a backup investigator and Deputy Title IX Coordinator providing assistance to the Title IX Coordinator as well as other deputies
  • Serves as a backup DHR (Discrimination/Harassment/Retaliation) investigator
  • Serves as the campus Whistleblower Administrator and responds to whistleblower complaints and/or subsequent employment-related litigation and law suits against the University
  • Supervises the Director of Employee/Labor Relations and Compliance, the Managing Director of Payroll, Benefits and Workers Compensation, the Director of Employment Services and the HR Administrative Specialist, who provides administrative support to the entire HR department
  • Serves as signatory on behalf of the President for staff appointment, transaction, leave and termination letters
  • Collaborates with the AVP for Faculty Affairs to ensure consistency across the organization with regard to administering employment as well as to gain efficiencies wherever possible
  • Oversees and coordinates the preparation of reports and activities related to the University's Affirmative Action Plan, including recruitment efforts that further the University's diversity efforts
  • Proactively engages with the external community, governance committees, etc. to ensure Sonoma State is recognized as an employer of choice and to further university initiatives
  • Oversees the administration of compensation programs for non-faculty employees
  • Oversees the employee background screening program
  • Oversees the campus unemployment insurance program
  • Manages new employee orientation programs and activities
  • Supports employee/leader professional development programs
  • Manages employee recognition programs and activities
  • Maintains the official personnel files for the campus
  • Oversees the volunteer employee program
  • Serves as the campus Conflict of Interest Officer
  • Oversees the application for all staff and administrator visas and serves as the custodian of employee I-9s ensuring legal documentation for employment
  • Manages the department budget
  • Oversees and champions employee wellness efforts, including medical monitoring for identified positions and injury prevention/loss prevention efforts with workers compensation carrier
  • Attends webinars, conferences, and end-user group meetings organized by CSU or other entities.

    Minimum Qualifications:
  • This position requires an understanding of public higher education in California and a bachelor's degree from an accredited university, or equivalent combination of education and experience;
  • Seven to ten years of increasingly responsible management experience in a senior level Human Resources position;
  • A Master's degree in Business Administration, Public Administration, Human Resource Administration or Law, and HRCI/SHRM professional HR Certification preferred;
  • Senior Human Resource management experience in public higher education and working with unions is also preferred;
  • Ability to operate in a confidential, professional, fast-paced environment, and work as both a senior leader and a member of various committees and teams throughout the university and system;
  • Ability to actively communicate, inspire and motivate all levels of staff;
  • Ability to think and act strategically and proactively;
  • Ability to perform multiple duties simultaneously in an environment that is characterized by frequent interruptions, requests, and distractions;
  • Ability to complete complex assignments independently and with only general direction;
  • Ability to translate complex policies into compliant campus business processes and effectively communicate back out to all-levels of the university;
  • Ability to understand and explain complex procedures;
  • Strong writing and presentation skills;
  • Ability to learn, coordinate and oversee many different functions, determine relative importance of each, set deadlines, and delegate projects accordingly in a timely and effective manner, performing follow up as needed;
  • Must be familiar with standard office software and programs, Oracle/PeopleSoft Human Resources software preferred;
  • Ability to prioritize and perform multiple tasks; work independently with little or no direction; make independent decisions and exercise sound judgment, use discretion and initiative in performing complex work; and maintain good working relationships throughout the campus community and with external stakeholders.
  • Ability to operationalize sustainability concepts (economy, society, environment) into all aspects of performing job duties.

    The duties of this position may include participation in decisions that may have a material financial benefit to the incumbent. Therefore, the selected candidate may be required to file Conflict of Interest Form 700: Statement of Economic Interest on an annual basis, complete ethics training within 6 months of appointment, and attend this training every other year thereafter.

    The CSU system is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status.

    Another Source works with their clients, on a retained project basis, to maximize the recruiting process.

    To apply, visit:

    Other Information
    Equal Employment Opportunity: The University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. We consider qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, genetic information, medical condition, disability, marital status, or protected veteran status.

    Mandated Reporting: This position may be considered a "mandated reporter" under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and is required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment.

    About Sonoma State University
    Sonoma State University, located 48 miles north of San Francisco, is one of the 23 campuses of the California State University. Sonoma State University is a liberal arts institution with an enrollment of approximately 10,000 students and 530 full-time and part-time faculty. Our beautiful campus is located in Rohnert Park, at the foot of the Sonoma hills in the Wine Country.

    Sonoma State University is proud to be a smoke-free campus, where smoking and other uses of tobacco products, such as smokeless tobacco, the use of e-cigarettes and similar devices, are prohibited.

    Sonoma State University's Jeanne Clery Act Annual Security Report is available at; Annual Campus Housing Fire Safety Report is available at

    Contact Information
    Sonoma State University
    Human Resources
    Main (707) 664-3100
    Fax (707) 664-3196
    1801 East Cotati Avenue
    Rohnert Park, CA 94928

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