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  Sample job descriptions and job description tips. Employment

 Director of Major Gifts

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Reporting to the Director of Individual Giving, the Director of Major Gifts is responsible for the overall management of the major gifts program, which is charged with managing relationships and securing support from donors who are capable of making gifts of $100,000 to $1M.

This individual will manage a personal portfolio of 80-100 prospects, as well as manage 5-6 major gift officers, 2-3 administrative staff, and administrative projects. This individual will develop and implement a plan for major gift fundraising across the country. The Director of Major Gifts will work closely with faculty and staff, both within the division and around the university, to promote the acquisition of major giftsn.

This individual will also work closely with the Directors of ACS Gift Officers, Special Gifts and Individual Giving to ensure coordination amongst individual giving programs.

This officer must be able to work independently while also working as a member of the university advancement team.

The DMG candidate will be an individual with a rich development background, who has had progressive and successful development experience in major gifts and who has a strong track record of successful management. The ideal candidate cares deeply about mentoring gift officers and the development profession and has worked in higher education.

Principal Duties:

  • Qualify and cultivate prospective donors.

  • Develop and propose strategies for solicitation of major gifts, including: determining ongoing relationships with prospect/donor; recommending specific purpose and level of gift; identifying those to be involved in cultivation and subsequent solicitation; assuring that solicitations are carried out.
  • Manage 7-9 staff members.
  • Develop and implement programs for major and special gifts staff professional development, process documentation and improvement, and progress tracking. Work closely with other Individual Giving managers to insure effective coordination of effort with their programs and to reinforce the prospect relationship continuum.
  • Participate, as required, in Advancement Division team efforts including solicitation strategy teams for key prospects and internal planning efforts.
  • Keep current on programs and faculty/research/student initiatives at the university; network with school/college Directors of Development
  • Co-ordinate an effective program for recognition, involvement and stewardship of major and special gifts donors in coordination with the Director of Donor Relations.

Knowledge and Experience:

  • Five or more years of individual major gift fundraising, preferably in higher education and two or more years of management experience.
  • Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent combination of training and experience.
  • Master’s degree in business or public administration and management, preferred.

Skills and Abilities:

  • Ability to understand the needs and interests of major donors in order to develop relationships between them and the University.
  • Interest in all aspects of education and a dedication to promoting the University’s fundraising priorities through developing excellent working relationships with faculty, senior academic leaders, trustees and other volunteers, and the advancement office team.
  • Demonstrated leadership and the ability to successfully manage multi-functional or diverse areas.
  • Ability to see and understand the objectives of the major gifts group, the individual giving group and the advancement division, and to integrate the major gifts program with those objectives.
  • Ability to initiate, analyze, monitor, evaluate and alter strategic advancement plans.
  • Ability to articulate the case for support so that individuals “buy into” the vision/mission/goals of the university and understand with sufficient effectiveness to secure gifts and pledges of $100,000 or more.
  • Excellent oral, written, interpersonal, analytical and organization skills required.
  • Knowledge of tax laws that impact charitable giving, personal assets and estates.
  • In addition to these general skills, the position requires the ability to participate in all aspects of the gift cycle:(1)to initiate contacts with potential major donors; (2) to develop appropriate cultivation strategies for them, including working with volunteers; (3) to move potential donors in an appropriate and timely fashion toward solicitation and closure; (4) to make solicitations when appropriate; (5) to maintain stewardship contacts with donors.
  • Must be able to travel around the region and to other areas of the country.
  • Must have a driver’s license.
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