This job has expired

Director of Advancement & Donor Relations

University School of Milwaukee
Wisconsin, United States
$90,000.00 - $92,000.00
Closing date
Aug 26, 2022

About University School of Milwaukee:

University School of Milwaukee (USM) is an educational leader in Wisconsin, and is ranked among the top college-preparatory schools in the United States. Students in grades PK-12 are engaged, encouraged, supported, and motivated to achieve excellence in academics and beyond. Our faculty and staff are talented and passionate. Our academic courses and extracurricular activities are outstanding. The student body is motivated, and our alumni and parent communities are actively invested in USM’s success.

 Our primary goal is to ensure that our students receive the best possible balanced education, in every sense of the word. To achieve this, we have continually invested in faculty, curriculum, programs, facilities, and financial planning for the future. As part of the recent comprehensive Our Common Bond campaign, which spanned five academic years from 2015 to 2020, the USM community provided significant philanthropic support for several major strategic initiatives. This included considerable endowment growth (currently valued at $100,000,000) for financial aid, faculty compensation, a Fund for Student Success, the Kramlich Family Distinction in Innovation, and so much more. Capital improvements included the creation of the Lubar Center for Innovation and Exploration, the Jack Olson ’67 Commons Upper School dining hall, the Palermo Family Servery, a Fine Arts addition highlighting the new Sardas-Trevorrow Band Room and the Stratton Family Orchestra Room, the Lower School’s Lee Community Room where we welcome all of our families, and other facility upgrades. In total, more than $30 million (14% over goal) was invested to support student learning, professional development, and life-enriching experiences for our families. Including, our largest collective-gift to the annual USM Fund of $6.8 million over the span of the Our Common Bond campaign.

 Most recently, two passionate groups of donors helped to advance two important capital projects for our athletic department: Wildcat Park, an all-synthetic turf baseball field and stadium, and two golf simulator training platforms. Both of these projects, along with the strength of our endowment funds and the recent success of the Our Common Bond campaign, speak to the willingness of our donors to invest in their school with their “best gift” and support significant improvements with their thoughtful philanthropy.

Under the leadership of Steve Hancock, who joined USM as head of school in 2020, University School of Milwaukee embarked on a thoughtful and inclusive process to develop a comprehensive strategic plan that will help provide a clear direction for our future advancement efforts. Grounded in over a century of academic excellence, the new strategic plan was developed from a position of strength. The school’s robust enrollment, secure endowment, and zero debt will enable us to build on an exceptional foundation for our next comprehensive campaign for our school.

General Summary: Supports the advancement team’s work to strengthen USM’s donor-centered relationships in annual giving, capital campaign initiatives, planned giving, and stewardship. Help facilitate a donor-centered stewardship program that will be steadfast on our sincere acknowledgement of USM’s investors, and help position or case for support in significant constituent markets throughout the country.  

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Helps to launch our next comprehensive campaign in support of the goals developed in our 2022 strategic plan.
  • Directs and implements strategies for identifying, cultivating, and successfully soliciting individuals for gifts of $25 - 100K to support annual giving efforts, and will solicit gifts of $100K - $1M in support of strategic capital campaign initiatives. 
  • Manages a portfolio of prospects through an active schedule of solicitation, cultivation, and stewardship calls to current donors and new prospects. 
  • Builds relationships among prospective donors, alumni, parents, and volunteers to support programs and priorities. 
  • Partners with faculty and members of the leadership team to align priorities of the school with donor goals/interests. 
  • Works with the Advancement office database manager to ensure that potential major and principal gift prospects are properly qualified, assigned, cultivated, and stewarded. 
  • Coordinates, writes, and produces appropriate fundraising materials including, but not limited to, case statements, brochures, solicitation letters, gift proposals, appreciation letters, donor reports, and campaign status reports. 
  • Maintains information on select donors and prospects including contact reports in the Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge (CRM) system. Communicates in ways that are donor-centric, while furthering the mission of USM and our strategic design initiatives.  
  • Seeks opportunities to travel and meet with donors as needed. 
  • Supports, collaborates with, and supervises staff as needed. 
  • Manages several cost-center budget lines for greater efficiency. 
  • Meet Advancement office metrics for donor visit preparation, qualification, contact reports, in-person visits, referrals, and accurate coding using the CRM system. 
  • Represents the Advancement office at various board and school functions.
  • Provides support to other colleagues in the Advancement Department.
  • Assumes other duties as required.

  Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:


  • Entrepreneurial, energetic, and goal-oriented
  • Experience as lead solicitor, closing a significant number of gifts between $25K - $1M from major prospects. 
  • Prior experience working with comprehensive campaigns, alumni engagement, or in a university or independent school setting. 
  • Experience working with various technologies including advanced knowledge and experience with Blackbaud CRM systems, Google Suite, Microsoft Office, Zoom, mass email applications, and project management software.
  • Strong leadership, interpersonal, organizational, and problem-solving skills with attention to detail.
  • The ability to work with ambiguity, navigate a complex work environment, and manage multiple projects simultaneously. 
  • The ability to work independently as well as collaboratively to achieve goals with a commitment to delivering exceptional donor-centric services. 
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills as well as effective presentation skills. 
  • Flexibility to accommodate changing priorities and deadlines. 
  • High level of professionalism and commitment to confidentiality with sound judgment and discretion. 
  • A high level of integrity, warmth, confidence, and positive attitude
  • Strong interpersonal skills; capable of using tact and diplomacy in dealing with others
  • High level of maturity, confidentiality, and assertiveness
  • Ability to work collaboratively with others and maintain positive professional relationships, and the ability to work with other Advancement Office team members and all levels of volunteers and staff at the school.
  • Excellent organizational skills with a strong degree of self- direction and motivation; ability to constantly search for new ideas.
  • Ability to provide excellent customer service
  • Flexibility

 Education and Experience:

  • Bachelor's degree minimum
  • Ten years of equivalent experience in higher education, independent school (day or boarding schools), or advancement offices (development offices) in healthcare or civic nonprofit institutions. 


Get job alerts

Create a job alert and receive personalized job recommendations straight to your inbox.

Create alert