Senior Director of Development

Pennsylvania, United States
Salary Not specified
Mar 17, 2021
Apr 15, 2021
Arts, Education
Employment Type
Full Time

The Senior Director of Development (SDD) is responsible for developing and implementing the Curtis Institute of Music’s annual fundraising initiatives involving individuals and institutions. The SDD will have the opportunity to engage individually with donors around stories of Curtis’s impactful role in music education, demonstrate the value of supporting Curtis philanthropically, and inspire a small team of fundraisers to collaboratively deepen donor relationships with the school. This position reports to the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and will have several direct reports.


Key areas of work comprising this position are:


Prospect and Donor Pipeline Management

  • Develops, grows, and manages Curtis’s prospect and donor pipeline on a national scale, making the most of a conservatory’s unique status as both an educator and presenter
  • Leads the effort in institutionalizing best practices around the identification, qualification, solicitation, and stewardship of prospects
  • Liaises regularly with key staff and the Director of Constituent Engagement to move individuals from a direct response prospect status to a “managed” prospect status
  • Oversees the comprehensive assignment and stewardship process for all managed prospects


Annual Fundraising Campaigns

  • Leads Curtis’s annual fundraising effort with the focus to meet and exceed defined revenue and fundraising goals
  • Segments prospect pool of active donors and oversees the assignment of fundraising targets
  • Assigns donors into fundraising portfolios for the Vice President and the SDD’s direct reports;
  • Leads monthly portfolio meetings to measure progress, discuss asking strategies; and the overall development of a unified departmental approach to achieve defined goals and outcomes.
  • Works to ensure annual fundraising efforts are well organized and are rooted in best practices and data.

Direct Solicitation

  • Manages and expands a portfolio of major gift donors and prospects.
  • Cultivates, solicits, and renews annual gifts from a pool of donors with a capacity of $20,000 or more annually.
  • Works to increase the number of donors giving at the major gift level
  • Collaborates with cross-institutional stakeholders to define and meet long-term and capital giving priorities.


Fundraising Leadership

  • Working alongside the Vice Chairman of Curtis, oversees the Development Committee of the board, which meets four times per year
  • Demonstrates fundraising leadership inside the department and across Curtis as a whole
  • Participates as a member of the 15-person President’s Cabinet
  • Participates in cross-departmental working groups, such as the Storytelling and Market Segmentation working group, led by the Vice President for Institutional Advancement
  • Develops collegiality and camaraderie around the fundraising process
  • Remains abreast of and advocates for best practices
  • Provides fellow staff members with periodic training and strategic fundraising suggestions
  • Deploying advancement colleagues, supports all fundraising aspects of the Curtis gala and additional top donor events

Campaign Development and Strategy

  • With the President and CEO and Vice President for Institutional Advancement, collaborates on the overall strategy and case statement for a comprehensive capital campaign that will coordinate with Curtis’s 100th anniversary in 2024-25
  • Participates in the strategy and execution of campaign solicitations in the quiet and public phases of the campaign


Candidates should be able to demonstrate

  • 5-8 years of progressive experience in a fundraising environment.
  • multi-year experience soliciting, closing, and renewing gifts in a portfolio of annual donors.
  • experience leading and motivating a team with energy, empathy, and resolve.
  • an ability to speak passionately and effectively to donors about the value of music education.
  • an ability to write effectively, speak persuasively, and present information logically and neatly in various contexts.


Candidates should have a strong orientation toward

  • improving upon and keeping front of mind personal and institutional practices to make Curtis ever more diverse, equitable, and inclusive.
  • maintaining a collaborative mindset in a small but high achieving organization.
  • administrative excellence that matches the excellence of the Curtis student body.


Candidates might also

  • be proficient in Microsoft 365 programs and have a willingness to learn other software programs as needed.
  • have familiarity with Raiser’s Edge, or other Blackbaud software.
  • be able to work on a flexible schedule and occasionally work nights and weekends.


Required Core Values:


The ideal candidate must exhibit:

  • a positive, “can-do” attitude
  • devotion and dedication to Curtis, its students, alumni, and parents
  • passion for work and contribution to the field and greater good
  • commitment and accountability for his/her/their work, and his/her/their ability to effect change
  • desire and willingness to collaborate, think creatively, and make data-driven decisions
  • respect, courtesy, and patience for colleagues, other staff, faculty, patrons, core constituents, and volunteers
  • an eagerness to make Curtis a more diverse and inclusive institution


To Apply:

For best consideration, interested and qualified applicants should electronically submit a cover letter, resume, three professional references, and salary requirements. Hire is contingent upon the successful passing of PA Act 153 and criminal (ADP) background screenings.

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