Associate Vice President for Development
Bennington, Vermont, United States
Bennington College invites applications and nominations for the
position of Associate Vice President for
. Working in partnership with senior
leadership, the Associate Vice President will lead a high caliber
and developing advancement program that reflects Bennington's
culture, mission, and evolving strategic plan.
Bennington College is a distinguished residential liberal arts
college that has, since its founding in 1932, been a laboratory for
new ideas and an intellectual home to countless artists, activists,
and thinkers who have shaped contemporary culture. Bennington is in
the midst of an immensely exciting and transformative period in its
history and experiencing extraordinary growth. In 2020, Laura R.
Walker took office as the 11th President of Bennington College,
previously serving as a pioneering media executive as former
President & CEO of New York Public Radio for 23 years. Under
President Laura Walker's leadership, the college has launched a
community-driven strategic planning process to articulate a unified
and shared vision of Bennington's future. Simultaneously,
college-bound students are choosing Bennington at record rates.
This past year alone, the college enrolled the largest class ever
with a 23% increase in applications, and has received even more
applicants this year, this time by 64%, effectively doubling its
pool in just two admissions cycles. The community now approaches
nearly 800 students—undergraduate and 102 graduate.
Bennington is currently developing a strategic plan which will
define an exciting, radical vision for the future, including
creating innovative partnerships for social impact, on campus and
in the larger community and beyond. Funders have embraced this
vision: the college has recently received generous support from
alumni, including one of the largest donations in its history, as
well as support from The Ford Foundation, Endeavor Foundation, and
several others to support programs in sustainability, mental
health, social justice, and storytelling, and is also poised to
double its endowment in the next five years.
Situated on 440 breathtaking acres in Bennington, Vermont, the
campus is a convergence of creative minds, distinctive buildings,
and expansive spaces. Bennington has been named one of ten college
campuses with the best architecture by Architectural Digest. From
campus, it is a short drive to MASS MoCA, Clark Art Institute, and
other cultural offerings of the northern Berkshires in
Massachusetts; Albany, New York; and many of Vermont's top
recreational centers. New York City, Boston, and Burlington,
Vermont are all within three and a half hours by car.
Reporting to the Vice President for Institutional Advancement, the
Associate Vice President for Development serves as a senior
development leader in Institutional Advancement and is responsible
for the development of fundraising goals, strategy, and the
execution of those goals to meet the College's institutional
advancement priorities. The Associate Vice President carries a
portfolio of high-priority leadership gifts prospects and is
responsible for cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding these
prospects. As part of this work, the Associate Vice President
- Work closely with the Vice President for Institutional
Advancement to support the President of the College and trustees to
cultivate, solicit, and steward major gifts prospects, as
- Lead, mentor and develop a team of 7 direct reports including:
Associate Director of Annual Giving; Major Gift Officers; Director
of Major and Planned Giving; Director of Foundation and Government
Relations; Associate Director of Alumni Relations; and Giving
Associate. Support the highly engaged internal staff and lead the
effort to recruit additional talent to build out the team.
- Mentor the front-line fundraising team and oversee a robust
program to build a pipeline of prospects and donors through
integration of the Annual Giving, Major Giving, Planned Giving and
- Supervise the Foundation and Government Relations team. Work
collaboratively with the Associate Vice President for Advancement
Operations to develop successful strategies for coordinating all
timelines, events and stewardship functions.
- Work closely with the Vice President of Institutional
Advancement to establish division-wide fundraising goals and
performance metrics for development officers.
- Track and measure progress of the College's development
The successful candidate must be a strategic and highly engaged
leader who has a passion for liberal arts education and
demonstrated success with major gift fundraising. Candidates must
have a proven track record in managing, and motivating/mentoring a
highly effective, diverse team. Candidates must possess outstanding
communication skills, the ability to effectively engage volunteer
leadership, and a deep commitment to instilling practices and a
culture within advancement that reflects Bennington.
Bennington serves a diverse student population inclusive of members
of ethnically/racially minoritized, international, LGBTQIA+, and
disability communities as well as diverse gender identities,
socioeconomic backgrounds, religions, and political beliefs. Our
staff and faculty also reflect diverse and intersecting backgrounds
and identities. All employees are expected to be respectful and
responsive to these differences in the service of building
community that promotes student and employee success. Each
individual (faculty, staff and students) will be accountable for
upholding these values. The College's approach to pluralism and
inclusivity—both as fields of inquiry and practice—is to prioritize
flexible thought, and to invite the examination of access, value,
power, and privilege through its institutional policies and areas
of study. We encourage applicants from diverse realms of interest,
backgrounds, experience, and accomplishment to apply.
To apply, please visit http://bennington.hire.trakstar.com/jobs/fk02kuz/
- Bachelor's degree required.
- Demonstrated success in 10 years of increasingly responsible
fundraising experience in a non-profit organization, preferably in
an education setting, required.
- Demonstrated success in the cultivation, solicitation, and
stewardship of leadership gifts prospects is required.
- Ability to work independently as well as within a team
environment to achieve institutional goals.
- Strong analytical and independent decision-making capability
- Demonstrated and highly successful/engaged supervisory
experience; ability to mentor, coach and develop internal talent in
a way that positively respects and embraces staff and motivates
them to do their best work; ability to recruit/retain a diverse and
highly qualified team.
- Budgetary experience.
- Excellent written and oral communications skills required.
- Strong project management, leadership, organizational planning
skills with the ability to set priorities and balance concurrent
- The ability to recruit, motivate, and direct alumni
- Proven team player.
- Proficiency in data-based systems and business software is
essential; preferably Blackbaud Raiser's Edge/NXT.
- Flexible and available for evening, weekend, or early morning
events and meetings.
- Ability to travel as needed to manage a prospect
- Requires the successful completion and acceptable results of a
background check and compliance with College COVID policies.