Executive Director, AIP Foundation

American Institute of Physics
Maryland, United States
Competitive Salary
Closing date
Oct 6, 2022

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Position Type
Executive, Fundraising, Corporate and Foundation Relations, Other Fundraising
Education, Research
Employment Type
Full Time
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The American Institute of Physics (AIP) was founded in 1931. At the urging of a report from the American Physical Society and with initial funding from the Chemical Foundation, leaders of American physics formed a corporation for the “advancement and diffusion of knowledge of the science of physics and its application to human welfare,” especially by achieving economies in the publishing of journals and the maintenance of membership lists. This new federation of societies was also formed to provide a common organizational home for the emerging new physics associated scientific societies that were being formed at the time. At the time of its formal incorporation in 1932, AIP comprised five such societies with a total membership of 4,000 individuals.

From the outset, AIP published journals on behalf of its Member Societies, as well as publishing journals owned by the Institute. Starting around 1950, the revenue generated from publications enabled the Institute to hire staff dedicated to programs that served more broadly the Member Societies, individual physicists, and the public at large. Several programs were added in the areas of education and careers, statistics, industry outreach and history. Other programs were developed in the coming decades in the areas of science news, media, and government relations.

Today, AIP is a federation of 10 Member Societies which in turn have more than 115,000 members across the globe. Since 2013, AIP Publishing — LLC — a wholly owned but independently operated subsidiary continues to publish AIP journals and journals of five of AIP Member Societies. In addition, in 2019 AIP Foundation was added to the AIP family of organizations. Since AIP is the parent organization and noting that each of AIP Publishing and AIP Foundation have their own Boards, the financials of all three organizations are consolidated into AIP’s financial reports annually.

Through their partnership in AIP, all 10 Member Societies broaden their impact and achieve results beyond their individual missions and mandates. AIP also acts as an independent institute where research in social science, policy, and history advances the discipline of the physical sciences. Together, AIP and its 10 Member Societies convey a unifying message for stakeholders in government, academia, the nonprofit and private sectors, the student and teacher communities, and the general public.



AIP Foundation was established in 2019 to amplify the Institute's development actions, cultivate a culture of philanthropy, and strengthen connections to donors. It is a 501(c)3 supporting organization with a single member, AIP. It is governed by a Board of Trustees who are appointed by AIP’s Board of Directors. The AIP Board of Directors established a board designated fund to cover five years of AIP Foundation operations (20192024 ). AIP Foundation is staffed under an agreement with AIP.

AIP Foundation’s current scope includes raising support for AIP’s Center for History of Physics, the Niels Bohr Library & Archives, the Society of Physics Students (SPS) and the associated Sigma Pi society, and Diversity Initiatives such as TeamSigma honor Up Together. As the leader of AIP Foundation, the Executive Director is charged with positioning AIP Foundation for success in this initiative. To date, AIP Foundation has had one Executive Director.


Reporting to the AIP Foundation Board of Trustees, and under the leadership of the AIP Chief Executive Officer, the Foundation Executive Director provides overall strategic and operational leadership to AIP Foundation and leads the AIP Foundation team in a ll aspects of fundraising, prospect development, donor stewardship and donor relations. The Executive Director will be the chief fundraising strategist for AIP Foundation and AIP, as well as managing the daily operations of the Foundation in close collaboration with AIP leadership. They will be responsible for all fundraising and related development programs, including planning, directing, and implementing annual, capital, endowment, special program and deferred giving fundraising efforts.

The Executive Director will develop and pursue ideas, contacts, and strategies to cultivate support from individuals, corporations, government, and foundations. Within the fundraising scope established by the AIP Board of Directors and under the strategic guidance of the AIP Foundation Board of Trustees, the Executive Director leads the financial management, investment, budgeting, human resources, and legal functions of the Foundation in coordination with the values, policies, procedures, and leadership of the American Institute of Physics.

The current development team is well bonded and likes to work/meet/collaborate in the office together, in addition to working from home. The Executive Director should be in or be willing to relocate to the District of Columbia/Maryland/Virginia area and prepared to come to the office weekly, although not necessarily five days a week. This schedule, to be agreed with the AIP CEO, would typically include once or twice a week work in person with the Foundation staff, the TeamUP and diversity team, AIP leadership, and with the student and history/library staff. The development team of five includes the ED; Directors of Development, Annual Giving and Research & Strategy; and a Development Coordinator. Relocation assistance is available for candidates not currently residing in the area.

AIP is in the process of developing guidelines for “How we work at AIP” for implementation in 2023, following a year of experimentation with remote working on a team-by-team basis.


The Executive Director of the AIP Foundation will accomplish the following in the first 12 to 18 months:

  • Position AIP Foundation for success in AIP’s $30 million capital campaign, TEAM-UP Together that focuses on elevating the representation of African Americans in undergraduate physics and astronomy.
  • Position donor-led success in support of AIP’s initiatives on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging and Accessibility; as well as AIP’s efforts in history, student, and archives and library activities.
  • Strengthen and develop the capacity of the Foundation’s talent with an eye to building on the current team and cultivating new donor relationships.
  • Reporting to the CEO, serve as the leader of a constituent part of the Executive Office.
  • Collaborate with the Board of Trustees to implement Foundation initiatives for the capital campaign and other fundraising priorities.
  • Build out the membership of the Board of Trustees, and partner with the Chair of the Board to position the Foundation for further success


The Executive Director will assume the following responsibilities:

  • Lead the effort to conduct a successful, $30 million campaign for the TEAM-UP Together initiative.
  • Create a clear vision for the Foundation and its staff that will support the overall mission, and strategic transformation and positioning of the American Institute of Physics.
  • Lead the development and execution of strategic and annual operating plans for the Foundation including budgeting and staff performance goals.
  • Manage personal relations with high-level donors and prospects, in collaboration with the AIP CEO and members of the Foundation Board of Trustees.
  • Collaborate effectively with AIP leadership to implement strategic initiatives.
  • Advise senior AIP leaders and Boards (Foundation Board of Trustees and AIP Board of Directors) on industry trends, performance measurements and best practices in development and the cultivation of a culture of philanthropy in the non-profit sector.
  • Work with the Foundation Board of Trustees to address strategic priorities, recruit, and train new board members.
  • Participate in meetings of the AIP Foundation Board of Trustees and in meetings of the AIP Board of Directors as they relate to development and the work of the Foundation.
  • Manage the agenda of the AIP Foundation Board of Trustees with the AIP CEO, and Foundation CFO and Corporate Secretary.
  • Engage, in collaboration with the AIP Chief Federation Officer, with Member Society leaders on building a culture of philanthropy in the physical sciences.
  • Manage the Foundation’s development staff in the areas of major gifts, planned gifts, grants, development operations and special events; serve as a mentor and capacity builder.
  • Design and implement performance metrics that will build capacity, inspire growth, and empower staff to advance the objectives of the Foundation.
  • Continue to develop the case for support that conveys the importance of philanthropy and its role in supporting the Institute’s advancement.
  • Work closely with the marketing and communications team to coordinate compelling marketing and communications strategies to attract new partners and donors and magnify the Institute’s philanthropic visibility.
  • Create and oversee special events designed to strengthen long-term ties with major donors.
  • Serve as Foundation representative and spokesperson in external communications and at industry and public events as appropriate.
  • Advise and support the Chair of the AIP Foundation Board of Trustees, the Chair of the AIP Board of Directors, the AIP CEO, and other senior AIP leaders.
  • Ensure compliance with laws and regulations applicable to non-profit supporting organizations, foundations, gift giving, soliciting donors, and other applicable legal items.
  • Respect and adhere to ethical principles regarding donors, donations, data protection and confidentiality regarding any information obtained as part of the professional activity.
  • Be committed to upholding and promoting AIP’s positions and policies on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging and Accessibility; anti-harassment; ethics; conflict of interest; and other related items.


The Executive Director will bring many of the following qualifications:

  • Minimum 10 years of progressively responsible fundraising experience, including prior recent experience as a top development executive.
  • Have a record of developing philanthropic solutions with diverse constituents.
  • Significant experience cultivating and soliciting major gifts, independently and in partnership with senior leadership (executive staff and/or board members).
  • Experience in strategic planning and change management for a development staff. Previous experience in development work in the physical sciences, or related fields, would be an advantage.
  • Extensive experience in board governance and engaging high-profile board leaders in pursuit of strategic development initiatives.
  • Experience leading capital campaigns. Adept at carrying a portfolio of high-level donors.
  • Possess an inspirational, energetic, and entrepreneurial leadership style with keen sense of internal and external relationship building—such as corporate/foundation leaders, philanthropists, and government officials, in the local, regional, and national arenas.
  • Have the ability to create a compelling vision that will motivate both donors and staff in support of AIP’s mission.
  • Intellectually agile and capable of navigating complex inter-personal and inter-organizational situations effectively and quietly.
  • Strong business acumen and current knowledge of best practices in the field of development, particularly in support of scientific non-profit organizational missions.
  • Excellent communication, grant writing, interpersonal relations, and strategic thinking skills; an ability to speak and write persuasively about issues affecting the physical sciences community.
  • Skills to manage and motivate a staff toward professional growth and strong, confident performance.
  • A high level of personal and professional integrity, with an ability to inspire confidence and cooperation.
  • Willingness and ability to travel and attend after-hours events as necessary
  • Bachelor's degree in related discipline required; equivalent experience will also be accepted.


The American Institute of Physics offers competitive compensation for this position. Benefits include medical, dental, and vision insurance; retirement plans, flexible spending and health savings accounts; life and disability benefits; employee assistance program, tuition assistance, and generous Paid Time Off. We offer relocation assistance if the candidate is relocating at least 50 miles from their primary residence.


The American Institute of Physics has retained Campbell & Company to conduct this search. The team for this project includes Marian DeBerry and Abigail Husain. To be considered for this opportunity, please send a letter of interest and resume to:


Associate Consultant, Executive Search


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