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Senior Director of Development, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Hybrid)

University of Connecticut Foundation
Connecticut, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Jul 27, 2022

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Position Type
Fundraising, Major Gifts
Academic Centers, Education, Research
Employment Type
Full Time
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Position Summary

The Senior Director of Development assigned to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is a frontline fundraising position primarily focused on securing major ($50,000+) and principal ($1,000,000+) gifts. The Director is the focal point of collaboration and communication between the UConn Foundation and the College. The position provides counsel to the deans, unit leads, and faculty, promotes a positive culture of philanthropy within the College, and achieves annual and long-range fundraising goals.

The University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is the academic core of the University of Connecticut. It is the home of research and teaching across disciplines in the social sciences, humanities, life sciences, and physical sciences at UConn. The faculty of the College belongs to 25 departments and a host of interdisciplinary centers, institutes, and working groups at Storrs and regional campuses - Hartford, Stamford, Avery Point and Waterbury. The College’s 750 tenure-track faculty share a commitment to liberal education and to a broad spectrum of applied and, especially, basic research. The College has over 100,000 alumni worldwide and is one of the top four academic fundraising programs at the University historically raising $8 - 10M in philanthropic support annually.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Secure gift commitments in support of the University of Connecticut with special attention on the philanthropic priorities of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences in alignment with the College’s five-year strategic plan.
    • Manage a caseload of major and principal gift donors and prospects through intentional actions that deepen relationships and lead to increased comprehensive giving (regular, special, and deferred)
    • Assemble and lead collaborative teams of Foundation staff, University faculty and staff, and volunteers to facilitate complex gift conversations and assist with implementing donor engagement plans for key donors and prospects
    • Provide thoughtful action plan for retention of regular leadership donors ($1,000+) to the School
    • Support CLAS Alumni Relations team members to qualify donors and secure annual and leadership gifts to the College through joint visits, trainings, and collaborative events.
    • Partner with the Dean of the College to ensure that all gift discussions align with priorities of the University
    • Draft proposals, gift agreements and naming memorandums in collaboration with appropriate Foundation staff to ensure accurate documentation of gifts
    • Partner with AVP to find opportunity for philanthropic interdisciplinary/university collaboration in order to elevate the unit and secure transformational gift opportunities
  • Ensure stewardship of donors to the College
    • Ensure all major and principal gifts to the College are acknowledged and celebrated
    • Assist dean in monitoring spending of existing Foundation funds to advise on donor messaging and stewardship
    • Coordinate with College and Foundation staff on overall gift acknowledgement process and special gift stewardship
  • Build pipeline of major and principal gifts to the College by following referrals and qualifying prospective donors
    • Key partners for collaboration are the alumni team, prospect research, faculty, and volunteers
    • Emphasis on connection through personal visits and other substantive contacts
    • Strategically use events to bring in new people and facilitate connections with alumni relations, faculty and volunteers Collaborate with the Dean to recruit and manage the CLAS Dean’s Advisory Board and facilitate a pipeline to the Foundation Board of Director’s for prospective donor and alumni leaders.
    • Collaborate and lead conversations with the Corporate and Foundation Relations team to secure potential funding for grants and research dollars to support the unit. Partner on gift conversations and solicitation efforts.
  • Provide communications and counsel to deans and faculty as well as Foundation on Fundraising for the College
    • Provide training and direction to deans, department heads, staff and the faculty on engaging donors in adherence to accepted prospect management guidelines
    • Assist in translating university priorities into fundraising priorities, plans and goals
    • Serve as lead developer of the College’s fundraising plans and promote priorities to central Foundation staff
    • Promote the role of fundraising within the College community
    • Assist in resolving major and principal gift donor issues as necessary
    • Work with CLAS Advancement Team (Development, Communication and Alumni Relations) to develop communications in support of alumni stewardship and elevation of philanthropy towards strategic priorities of the College.
  • Supervise Assistant/Associate Directors of Development
    • Provide feedback on performance and motivate staff to hit challenging performance metrics
    • Provide ongoing coaching/mentoring and recommend training as warranted
    • Collaborate with the Associate Vice President for Development and Strategic Initiatives to establish performance metric goals
    • Assist in caseload development and optimization
  • Document activity, proposals and engagement plans in relationship management database to accurately reflect professional Development work
    • Submit accurate and timely activity reports
    • Maintain current donor and gift strategies
    • Document activity and proposals in relationship database
    • Provide accurate updates on qualified and pending proposals
    • Foster strong working relationships with Foundation colleagues, adhering to accepted prospect management guidelines
  • Other duties as assigned

Key Competencies

  • Demonstrate the ability to personally solicit gifts at $500,000+.
  • Champion for inclusion and diversity both internally and externally.
  • Superb interpersonal skills and ability to build productive, beneficial relationships with a broad range of constituencies. Excellent interpersonal skills, tact and diplomacy.
  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including ability to effectively communicate University priorities to donors and prospects, and to positively represent the University and Foundation.
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks, to assess and order priorities, and to track details in a fast-paced environment.
  • Ability to engender trust and confidence of donors and prospective donors and to maintain confidentiality of donor information; ability to represent the UConn Foundation to prospects, donors, faculty, administrators and others.
  • Demonstrated strategic, leadership and management capabilities in a comprehensive development environment, high level of motivation and assertiveness.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage, train, motivates, and coach, people effectively.
  • Adept in use of computers and information management tools, such as CRMs (Blackbaud).
  • Ability to work to the demands of the position, which may exceed a 40-hour work week.
  • Must be willing to travel extensively and reliable personal transportation is required for this position.
  • Must possess a valid driver’s license issued from state in which employee resides. Employee must maintain at their expense, automobile liability insurance coverage in the minimum amount of $500,000 or a combination of umbrella and automobile liability insurance coverage of $500,000. A certificate of automobile insurance evidencing the limit, must be provided to the Foundation at hire and annually thereafter.

Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree.
  • 6+ years of experience as a major gift fundraiser and/or relevant transferrable skills.
  • Competence in Microsoft Office suite and donor management systems.
  • Previous supervisory experience.

The University of Connecticut Foundation is an affirmative action, equal Opportunity employer, committed to fostering diversity in its workforce

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