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Major Gifts Officer

California, United States
$90,000.00 - $110,000.00
Closing date
Sep 28, 2022

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About Pivotal

Pivotal supports young people in and from foster care to realize their educational and career goals and ensure their equitable access to opportunity. We envision a community in which every young person gets the education, career, and life they want for themselves. In support of this vision and mission, Pivotal provides highly individualized academic and career-oriented services to current and former foster youth at the high school and post-secondary levels. Pivotal also works with community stakeholders to affect systemic change in the opportunities offered to youth from the foster care system.

Pivotal is a dynamic, fast-growing organization that challenges staff to reflect and grow to remain ever more responsive to our youth, providing the highest quality services. Our approach is data-driven and evidence-based.

At Pivotal, we acknowledge and celebrate the power of diversity. Our collaborative culture promotes innovation and benefits our team, the youth we serve, and our community as a whole. Pivotal is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace.


Job Summary

We are seeking a proven pro! If you have a track record of attracting new high-dollar donors, artfully stewarding existing donors toward multi-year and legacy gifts, AND a passion for a mission that focuses on giving foster youth, an under-resourced population, the tools, coaching, and foundation to succeed in higher education and/or the profession of their choice, we’d like to hear from you. 

With a nearly 20-year history of helping foster youth thrive through high school and post-secondary degree programs, we are youth-centered and the youth voice of our scholars and alumni is an essential part of all programs, events, and endeavors.  Our Board of Directors recently approved an exciting new three-year Strategic Plan which continues to build on our proven track record and provides opportunities for us to serve even more youth in the future.

The Major Gifts Officer will report to VP of Development and will be part of an Institutional Advancement team of five with a FY23 revenue goal of $3M+. The Major Gifts Officer will achieve a major gifts fundraising goal through the identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of effective relationships with current and prospective donors, and must thrive on engaging donors and prospects, whether over email, phone, or in-person. We are seeking someone with a natural ability to create connections and inspire action for Pivotal’s programs. The Major Gifts Officer must be highly organized, able to manage quick or shifting deadlines with grace, and have experience with systems and software to track and cultivate donors. Bonus points if you are already proficient on Salesforce.

Our Major Gifts Officer will manage a portfolio of more than 25 individual and family foundations with the capacity and affinity for contributing more than $1.5 million a year.  The expectation is to retain and upsell existing donors, recover lapsed donors, and attract new donors. 


Essential Functions of the Job

  • Effectively manage and grow the Major Gifts Program expanding the roster of the Pivotal Dream Makers Circle (i.e., individuals who contribute at least $3,000/year).
  • Create and maintain strategic moves for management plans to direct and monitor the progress of donor relationships.
  • Work collaboratively to create customized solicitation strategies matching the objectives of the organization and interests of donors/prospects to renew or upgrade gifts and attract new gifts.
  • In partnership with the Institutional Advancement Team and Programs Staff to write compelling fundraising appeals that inspire new and renewed donors to give through multiple channels.
  • Create and implement donor communications and unique and thoughtful acknowledgments achieving outstanding cultivation and stewardship.
  • Support the Institutional Advancement Team in planning event programs by identifying and recruiting honorees, event speakers, and personally inviting donors.
  • Utilize Salesforce daily to manage donor pipelines, strategies, and interactions. Partner with the Development Operations Manager to ensure accuracy of donor information, revenue records, and collection of documentation in Salesforce for all individual donors.


Knowledge, Skills, and Experience

  • Commitment to Pivotal’s mission and vision to improve the lives of foster youth.
  • Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent experience.
  • Minimum of 5 years of successful fundraising, major gifts, sales, and/or client account management securing over $1M annually.
  • Experience planning and executing individual donor cultivation, retention, and solicitation strategies.
  • Experience managing a pipeline via a donor management system.
  • Initiative and time management skills including the ability to meet deadlines and prioritize multiple projects to achieve goals.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Pivotal is committed to continually incorporating JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion) principles and practices into all aspects of our work, and every member of the team is expected to consistently demonstrate these core values.
  • Pivotal is committed to ethical fundraising principles as expressed in the AFP Code of Conduct.


Compensation and Benefits

This position is a full-time, exempt position with a salary range of $90,000 to $110,000 determined by experience and qualifications. Benefits include the following:

  • Full medical, dental, and vision insurance paid for by the organization
  • Employee life insurance and accidental death & dismemberment insurance paid for by the organization
  • 401K plan with annual employee contribution match by the organization
  • Employee Assistance Plan (EAP) paid for by the organization
  • Flexible work schedule
  • 15 days per annum paid time off; increases over time with tenure
  • 12 paid holidays
  • Located in the middle of downtown San Jose within walking distance of many restaurants and coffee houses
  • Close to VTA Light Rail (closest stop ½ block away)
  • Paid parking in a nearby covered lot
  • Free on-site gym, games room, and indoor bike storage in the building


Work conditions

Pivotal’s office is in downtown San Jose. The role is based in San Jose and regular work in the office and local community is required.  This position will spend time sitting and using office equipment and computers. The successful candidate will be required to have a full background check and will need to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19, including a booster if eligible, or obtain an approved medical or religious exemption from Pivotal.


All qualified applicants will be considered regardless of political affiliation, race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, age, disability, or other non-merit factors. If you need any assistance or accommodation in the application process, feel free to reach out to us at (408) 484-6200.

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