United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia

President, New York, NY


The United Board seeks applications and nominations for a successor to its current President, who will retire on February 1, 2023, after 12 years in the position.

The United Board is a nongovernmental organization with a staff of 24 and an annual budget of approximately $10 million. Incorporated in New York, it has offices in New York City and Hong Kong with a consulting presence in Chennai, India. It is registered as a tax-exempt nonprofit organization in the United States and as a public charity in Hong Kong.

The United Board is committed to education that develops the whole person – intellectually, spiritually, and ethically. It draws strength from its Christian identity and values and its collaboration with Asian colleges and universities. It is seeking an energetic, forward-thinking individual to lead the organization into its next century. The rapidly changing field of higher education in Asia overall and the distinct differences from county to country provide exciting challenges and opportunities for the President and staff.

Founded in 1922, the United Board's work in its first three decades focused on 13 Christian colleges and universities in China and took its name from the union of the governing boards of these institutions, which recognized the benefits of combining their efforts to create and sustain higher education institutions. Its support came in the form of raising funds and coordinating their use to support capital construction, library collections, student scholarships, and other critical educational functions including sponsoring visiting American faculty and staff.

The United Board suspended its work in China in 1951 and shifted its efforts to other places, becoming the largest single source of funding support of Tunghai University in Taiwan and providing major support to Chung Chi College in Hong Kong in its early years. Elsewhere in Asia, the United Board provided assistance to International Christian University in Japan, Yonsei University in Korea, and Silliman University in the Philippines. Later decades brought expansion of the United Board's work to additional institutions in Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Myanmar, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam. The United Board was formally invited to return to mainland China in 1980 and has provided support there for faculty development, new academic disciplines, and programs to improve teaching and learning.

Today, the United Board's network continues to thrive and grow. In recent years, it has worked with more than 80 institutions of higher education from 15 countries and regions, providing scholarships, fellowships, training, professional development, project grants, and general support to promote whole person education in Asia.

The United Board endeavors to respond to the diverse challenges and opportunities faced by its partners in higher education in Asia, especially where the needs are great. It shares their interests in developing institutions that offer multidisciplinary education and that nurture mutual respect among religious and cultural traditions. The United Board's approach is ecumenical and inclusive: its primary involvement is with Christian institutions, but it also reaches out to other colleges and universities that share its commitment to whole person education. Solidarity with educators at these institutions forms the foundation of its work. It identifies needs and finds ways to address them collaboratively.

The United Board's programs and grants support institutions to improve the quality of education and foster linkages and networks among Asian institutions of higher education. Its current focus is on seven program areas: leadership development; faculty development; culture and religion in Asia; campus-community partnerships; digital content and programming; resource development; and special initiatives. Funding is from contributions from individuals including alumnae/i of Asian institutions, foundations, and income from the United Board's endowment.


The President is the chief executive officer of the organization and works in close cooperation with the Board of Trustees, staff, and leaders of partner institutions to provide the leadership and direction for the organization. In conjunction with the Executive Vice President, Vice President for Programs, and program directors, the President engages leaders of partner organizations across Asia and the United States in identifying key issues in higher education, including sharing best practices globally. The position is currently based in New York, NY. The United Board is open to consideration of the new President being based there, in Hong Kong, or in another Asian city.

The salary range for the New York City-based position is $320,000 to $440,000.


The President is the public face of the United Board and is responsible for:

  • Serving as chief representative and spokesperson of the organization, exemplifying its Christian values, and articulating the rationale for whole person education.
  • Maintaining a strong relationship with a committed and engaged Board of Trustees.
  • Leading an ongoing process of strategic planning, working with the Board of Trustees, staff, and partners.
  • Managing decisions with respect to personnel, programs, grants, and budget in a way that effectively supports the United Board's mission.
  • Providing leadership to maintain the financial integrity and overall health of the organization; managing and maintaining an open and transparent relationship with staff and consultants, leveraging their knowledge and experience, and promoting their professional development; identifying, cultivating, and pursuing funding sources in collaboration with the development staff; and being knowledgeable of U.S. laws and best practices governing international grantmaking.
  • Regular and extensive travel in Asia and the United States.
  • Maintaining and growing a large network of grantees and institutional leaders.
  • Fostering a collaborative culture.
  • Programmatic success.


  • A demonstrated commitment to the Christian mission of the United Board with the capacity to sustain and reinforce the United Board's distinctive mission, vision, and values.
  • Strong understanding of and experience with higher education in Asia and the United States, including current trends and changes; commitment to excellence in education writ large, with sensitivity to and respect for the range of institutions throughout the region.
  • An earned doctorate is preferred.
  • Experience living, working, and traveling for professional reasons in both the United States and Asia.
  • A distinguished record of accomplishment with increasing levels of responsibility in higher education, grantmaking, diplomacy, NGOs, and/or other fields where international and multicultural competency, particularly involving Asia, is essential.
  • Strong leadership, management, and advocacy skills; a "connector" who will strengthen the United Board's current relationships and build new ones; a skilled manager of budgetary resources with strategic planning experience.
  • Proven track record in grantmaking and fundraising.
  • Ability to think strategically, lead and work with a team, and foster a unified team mentality in a multicultural and widely dispersed staff.
  • Fluent communication skills in English. A working knowledge of at least one Asian language preferred.
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion.


  • The ability to convey a strong and compelling presence; able to inspire people to perform at a high level; a confident leader who can build, motivate, retain, and lead a strong team of people who collaborate to achieve results; able to create an environment that attracts and supports strong performers.
  • A visionary who is innovative and forward-thinking.
  • An outstanding communicator with the ability to anticipate problems, resolve ambiguity, and take decisive action with diplomacy and tact.
  • Genuine, authentic, and highly relational servant-leader with deep emotional intelligence who demonstrates integrity, gravitas, and trust.

The United Board is an equal opportunity employer and is strongly committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in every sense of the word – from background and birthplace to experience and ideas. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, veteran, or disability status.

Please send nominations or applications including cover letters and CVs to G. Angela Henry and Susan Meade at UnitedBoard@PhillipsOppenheim.com.