Assistant Director, Strategic Donor Relations and Stewardship

Columbia University
New York, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
May 26, 2022

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Position Type
Fundraising, Donor Relations
Academic Centers
Employment Type
Full Time

Position Summary

Reporting to the Senior Associate Director of Strategic Donor Relations and Stewardship, the Assistant Director is an integral member of the stewardship team who will research, write, coordinate, and produce a range of communications designed to steward Columbia’s most generous and committed donors. This position will also help manage stewardship for the University-wide 1754 Society (planning giving) to inform and engage donors through strategic communications, data management, reporting and outreach activities. 


Responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Researches and writes a wide range of stewardship communications including stewardship reports, acknowledgment letters, and other ad hoc correspondence.
  • Lead management of Columbia’s 1754 Society, recognizing donors who make planned gifts and bequests to the University. This includes identifying and welcoming new members, executing special communications, and planning strategic engagement events. Incumbent will be a key liaison to the Office of Gift Planning and will take the lead in growing and enhancing this program in support of University-wide planned giving goals.
  • Support data management and integrity, large mailing, events, and research needs for 1754 Society and the unit as needed.
  • Support in management of donor requests submitted through Columbia’s Giving website and to the general Donor Relations inquiry email and phone. 
  • Reviews, edits, and proofreads copy for stewardship and other materials as needed.
  • Utilize strong judgment to cultivate and maintain relationships with prospect managers and other key University contacts to determine individualized content of correspondence in accordance with the donor's relationship to the University.
  • Assists in prioritizing and tracking status of stewardship reports and ensures that reports and related activities are properly tracked in the database.
  • Interviews students, faculty, staff, and other University administrators, conducts research, and gathers content needed to produce compelling materials.
  • Collaborates with the Office of the Executive Vice President of Alumni and Development, the Office of the Vice President for Development, and the Office of the President regarding approval and edits to stewardship communications.
  • Partners with the Senior Associate Director for duties related to developing and fostering strategic direction of University-­wide stewardship.
  • Performs other related duties and special projects as assigned.
  • Minimum Qualifications

    Bachelor's degree and/or its equivalents required. Minimum 2 years related experience. Must have superlative research, writing, editing, and proofreading skills. Must have strong understanding of the development process, particularly in the areas of major gift cultivation and stewardship. Must exhibit administrative creativity and resourcefulness in regards to updating, editing and managing documents. Proficiency in MS Word and Excel software required.

    Preferred Qualifications

    Higher education development experience strongly preferred. Knowledge of Advance or other development databases preferred.

    Other Requirements

    • Must be capable of working independently with little supervision, as well as serve as a productive team member serving a high profile division.
    • Must have the ability to balance competing priorities, assignments, and deadlines.
    • Must have demonstrated experience in collaborating effectively with colleagues, exhibiting diplomacy and excellent interpersonal skills.
    • Must have a strong personal work ethic and demonstrate the highest level of professionalism, discretion, and integrity.

    Subject to business needs, the Office of Alumni and Development supports remote and hybrid work arrangements for this position. Options will be discussed during the interview process.

    Equal Opportunity Employer / Disability / Veteran

    Columbia University is committed to the hiring of qualified local residents.

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