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Manager, Special Events and Donor Relations

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
District of Columbia, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
May 20, 2022

View more

Position Type
Fundraising, Donor Relations, Special Events
Environment, Health, Technology
Employment Type
Full Time
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The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine’s Office of Development seeks a dynamic Manager of Special Events and Donor Relations with a strong track record of planning, leading, and executing successful in-person and virtual events and VIP donor experiences. They will report directly to and support the Associate Director, Donor Relations and Communications with communication materials and stewardship needs. In addition to executing high-level events for donor stewardship, campaigns, planned and annual giving, this position will collaborate on stewardship activities such as donor stories and endowment reporting.

Annual events include (but are not limited to): Elkan Blout Society Luncheon, Golden Bridge Society dinner, NAM Society Luncheon, and other stewardship events.

The Manager of Special Events and Donor Relations must be a self-starter to work independently and be an effective manager and proactive leader who excels at relationship building. In this role, they will work closely with department colleagues and Academy partners to understand donor passions and create bespoke engagement opportunities. The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine are strongly committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace and particularly seeks applications from members of underrepresented groups, as well as candidates who share this commitment.  

Job Description:


  • Organize, design and deliver high quality new and existing signature events to steward and cultivate donors and stakeholders. Create engaging and inspiring experiences and communications surrounding donor events.

  • Manage full-cycle event planning process including but not limited to run-of-show development, event speaker selection, event budget management, site/vendor selection and contracting, logistics and on-site organization, communications, production and delivery of event marketing collateral and overall management and execution of donor and stewardship events.

  • Prepare executive briefings, talking points, and event materials for the President’s offices and Office of Development staff, highlighting key performance indicators.

  • Collaborate with Directors of Development to identify donor story opportunities and coordinate with donors to secure their quotes/stories in real-time.

  • Compile financial data to draft endowment reports and collaborate with the Associate Director, Donor Relations and Communications and respective Directors of Development to disperse reports. 

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of stewardship programs, events, and/or recognition activities, through analytics, and recommend strategies for continuous improvement.

  • Work with the Associate Director, Donor Relations and Communications to create an annual work plan with achievable goals and objectives. Assist with stewardship management of major donors (individuals, foundations and corporations) which can include donor listings, donor recognition, stewardship activities and special projects.

  • Manage systems and software, including our donor database (Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge) and our primary communication tools (MailChimp and ThankView). Identify new tools for communications and uses of social and new media to better serve the needs of current, past and future donors.


Related duties and special projects as assigned.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, MailChimp, and Raiser’s Edge or similar CRM fundraising database.

  • Excellent writing skills and attention to detail.

  • Three years of experience in fundraising, donor relations, or special events within a science/educational/cultural institution or related non-profit.

  • Ability to set priorities, deal efficiently with multiple tasks, and meet frequent deadlines.

  • Exceptional organizational, verbal, and written communication skills with strong attention to detail and the ability to effectively engage and collaborate with colleagues at all levels throughout the National Academies.

  • A self-starter; ability to solve problems and think creatively and operate with latitude for independent judgement and action.

  • Experience working in complex environments with a high degree of organizational effectiveness.

  • Exceptional maturity, tact, diplomacy, and an outgoing personality in order to engage with donors.

  • Some travel, evenings, and weekend hours required.

Minimum Education/Training Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in a related field or equivalent knowledge.

Minimum Experience: Three years of related professional experience.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience organizing events of 100+ attendees.

  • Experience organizing virtual events.

Physical Capabilities: Ability to work at a computer for extended period of time.

Required Licenses, Certification or Registration: None.

Supervisory Responsibilities/Controls: Reports to Associate Director of Donor Relations and Communications and closely collaborates with Manager, Annual Giving and Marketing

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