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Remote Principal Gifts Officer

The Jackson Laboratory
Connecticut, United States
Salary Not specified
Closing date
Sep 18, 2021

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Position Type
Executive, Fundraising, Major Gifts
Employment Type
Full Time
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The Jackson Laboratory

Remote Principal Gifts Officer

Bar Harbor, Maine · Farmington, Connecticut · Sacramento, California

(Remote Position)


The Jackson Laboratory (JAX) is a truly world-leading, nonprofit biomedical research institution with a bold mission—to discover precise genomic solutions to disease, and to empower the global biomedical research community in the shared quest to improve human health. JAX is dedicated to discovering the genetic basis of diseases like cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, addiction, and immunological disorders to: extend our lives, improve our health, and, ultimately, provide personalized therapies to help treat, cure, or prevent disease.


This 90-year enterprise has grown dramatically over the past several years, opening new centers in Farmington, Connecticut and Shanghai, China. 2020 has presented new challenges and opportunities for JAX’s more than 2,400 employees and 400 faculty. The laboratory has applied its extensive genetic expertise, large-scale research capacity, analytical power, and collaborative culture to provide scientists with new insights into predicting and curing an unprecedented global public health crisis. In the face of COVID-19, JAX has quickly pivoted to partner with hospitals and health care facilities in Connecticut and Maine to deliver additional testing capacity for frontline workers and patients and launch rapid, cutting-edge research in support of new scientific discoveries that have saved—and will continue to save—lives.


The laboratory seeks a passionate and seasoned principal gifts officer to grow highest-level philanthropic support for its critical mission. This remote role will join the advancement team at a highly opportune moment as JAX prepares to launch a comprehensive campaign under the leadership of a new, dynamic vice president. The principal gifts officer will develop annual and ongoing strategies to solicit philanthropic support from individuals capable of gifts of $500,000 or more, in support of JAX priorities including scientific research, education, and other special initiatives.


The ideal candidate is a creative, focused, and high-performing individual who thrives in an entrepreneurial and collaborative environment. They are detail-oriented, have experience working with high impact individuals, and can successfully manage multiple priorities and donor relationships simultaneously. The principal gifts officer must have exceptional interpersonal skills and the flexibility and cultural competence to build confidence and trust with key stakeholders from diverse backgrounds including highest level donors, trustees, executive leadership, scientists, and colleagues. JAX is deeply committed to recruiting candidates from historically marginalized or underrepresented backgrounds and identities, as well as individuals who embrace the values and practice of diversity, equity, and inclusion personally and professionally.


The principal gifts officer must have a minimum of five to seven years of proven frontline fundraising experience, preferably at an academic, medical, healthcare, or research institution, with substantial direct experience soliciting, closing, and stewarding major or principal gifts. The ideal candidate must be comfortable working without an inherent constituency, such as grateful patients or alumni, and have a strong foundation in research and donor discovery work. They must demonstrate excellent initiative and organizational skills to prioritize complex tasks, projects, and workflow, as well as strong independent judgment regarding best use of time.  The ideal candidate will also be self-motivated, proactive, and adept at working with considerable independence in the context of a team environment. The principal gifts officer must have excellent written and oral communication, as well as the ability to interpret financial information and manage data effectively. A bachelor’s degree is required.


The principal gifts officer will spend considerable time out of the office cultivating and soliciting donors and prospects, often in collaboration with senior leadership and scientists. As such, this position may be remotely based, with the expectation of regular, national travel.

The Jackson Laboratory has retained Jack Gorman of Isaacson, Miller, a national executive search firm, to assist in the recruitment. All applications, inquiries, and nominations, which will remain confidential, should be directed to the search firm at

The Jackson Laboratory provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment in all job classifications without regard to race, color, religion, age, mental disability, physical disability, medical condition, gender, sexual orientation, genetic information, ancestry, marital status, national origin, veteran status, and other classifications protected by applicable state and local non-discrimination laws.

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