Director of Major Gifts


The Director of Major Gifts is a senior member of the development team. The Director is responsible for the overall management of the major gifts program, with primary responsibility for developing and executing strategies, programs and initiatives for the effective identification, cultivation and solicitation of over 1,000 individual major gifts prospects and soliciting in excess of $15 million per year in major gifts.

Essential Duties:

1. Create, direct and manage a proactive prospect program aimed at significantly increasing both annual and capital support for the College through the successful solicitation and closure of six and seven-figure gifts. Develop and chart the progress of all major gifts activities.

2. Manage a team of major gifts officers and support staff. Sets clear priorities for staff, adapting to the evolving needs and fundraising priorities of the College.

3. Provide essential leadership and guidance for gift officers to maximize fundraising productivity, setting performance standards, individual goals and evaluating performance. Oversees portfolio reviews and prospect strategy programs.

4. Develops and proposes strategies for major gifts solicitations working closely with major gifts officers to ensure effective coordination and movement of their prospects and relationships, as well as management within the prospect management system.

5. Manage a portfolio of 50-100 major gifts prospects with the capacity to give $100,000 or more, soliciting and securing major gifts for capital purposes and academic priorities.

6. Promote active involvement of the President, Vice Presidents, Deans, faculty, trustees, and volunteer leadership in the fundraising process. Provide leadership and guidance to regional campaign committees.

7. Oversee planning of cultivation activities and events.

8. Work closely with annual fund and planned giving staffs to ensure effective coordination, collaboration and inclusion of these components within major gifts solicitations.

9. Collaborates with stewardship and marketing and communications to coordinate on effective recognition and messaging.

Marginal Duties:

1. Participate in the identification, recruitment, and training of volunteer leaders to assist in major gifts efforts.

2. Perform all other duties as may be required.

Education and Experience Required

• Minimum of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a master’s preferred.

• Minimum of seven years of fundraising or related experience in higher education or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

• Proven success in cultivation and solicitation of gifts greater than $100,000.

• Demonstrated ability to form and leverage relationships with high level prospects and donors.

• Proven leadership skills, including the ability to collaborate effectively with colleagues and to motivate, engage and work with staff, donors and volunteers as well as academic leaders and faculty.

• Must have experience leading and inspiring a team of ambitious and goal-oriented professionals.

• Must possess an outgoing and positive personality, collaborative working style and an enthusiasm for building bridges between and among key stakeholders.

• Excellent verbal and written communication skills and interpersonal skills required.

• Excellent working knowledge of gift solicitation and application of same within appropriate financial planning and recording applications.

• Ability and willingness to travel extensively.

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