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Advancement Specialist

Smithsonian Institution
District of Columbia, United States
$74,950.00 - $97,430.00
Closing date
Aug 3, 2022

View more

Position Type
Fundraising, Annual Fund, Donor Relations, Prospect Research
Arts, Museum
Employment Type
Full Time

Come join a team of dedicated staff at an exceptional time in Smithsonian history at the Archives of American Art as the Advancement Specialist. With our Secretary, Lonnie G. Bunch III, who was previously the founding director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, we are positioned to realize our goal of being a truly 21st century museum, libraries, and archives complex. The Smithsonian is dedicated to its founding mission, “the increase and diffusion of knowledge” and as such we use our resources to encourage curiosity, ignite wonder and spark the joy of learning.

The Archives of American Art is the largest resource for the study of American art in the world, with millions of primary sources that tell the stories behind our nation’s great art and artists. By preserving and providing access to these priceless documents, the Archives serves as a rich and enduring source of knowledge about the history of the visual arts and culture in the United States, informing and engaging scholars, art lovers, and inquisitive minds from across the nation and around the world. The Archives makes its collections easily accessible to a national and international audience through research centers in Washington, D.C. and New York, N.Y., and on its website. To learn more, visit

The Archives of American Art seeks a creative and entrepreneurial individual to evaluate and build the Archives of American Art’s individual giving activities.  The incumbent’s main responsibilities are twofold.  The first: they must be able to plan, execute, and manage an ambitious online giving, direct mail, and stewardship programs to increase acquisition, improve renewal rates, and increase overall individual giving revenue. Secondly, the incumbent will assist with building the pipeline of individual major gift donors by conducting visits to discover new and unrealized donors for the Archives. Additional responsibilities beyond these two main objectives will include: preparing donor communications (solicitations, renewals, and acknowledgments); tracking and reporting on individual giving metrics; creating compelling marketing materials; and coordinating donor events.

Successful candidates will have previous experience in a fundraising office, have an ability to cultivate new relationships with people across the country, and be familiar with best practices in philanthropic messaging and digital/printed communications. The ability to take initiative and ownership of projects and to work with minimal direction and supervision is critical. Experience at a cultural organization is preferred. Experience within an advancement team, a passion for learning and exploration, and the desire to join a dynamic and growing operation should be demonstrated in your application.

The Archives and Smithsonian are committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and access, reflected through sustained fundraising for creative public programs, special collecting initiatives, and global access through digitization. Recent fundraising successes include a $5 million endowment from the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation for digitizing the papers of underrepresented artists and a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation for collecting and processing archival collections for the study of African American art.  The Archives is also embarking on a five-year Asian Pacific American collecting initiative, which aims to collect significant primary sources for the study of Asian Pacific American artists with a specific focus on building resources related to Pacific Islanders.

The Smithsonian Institution ensures its employees (federal and trust), applicants, and affiliated persons (interns, research associates, fellows, and volunteers) are protected from discrimination and unfair treatment in the workplace regardless of their race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, gender stereotyping, pregnancy, and sexual orientation), age, disability, genetic information, marital status, parental status, or political affiliation and are free from reprisal against protected activities. In addition, other Smithsonian policy prohibits discrimination based on membership in an employee organization or other non-merit factors, and political affiliation.

The Smithsonian provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. If you need an accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the contact person listed in this announcement. The decision on granting a reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.


The Smithsonian Institution offers a competitive salary and a comprehensive package of benefits. This is not a federal position but has similar requirements and benefits. Interested candidates should submit their resumes and a cover letter to by Friday, July 29, 2022. Please include “Archives of American Art Advancement Specialist” in your e-mail subject line. Resumes should include a description of your paid and non-paid work experience that is related to this job; starting and ending dates of job (Month and year); and average number of hours worked per week.

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