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Executive Director, Annual Giving (R0007709)

Brandeis University
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Mar 4, 2023

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Brandeis University – a distinguished private research university recognized for its academic excellence and leading-edge research – has an exciting opportunity for a talented and motivated Executive Director of Annual Giving.

Located in the suburbs of Boston, a global hub for higher education and innovation, Brandeis is dedicated to first-rate undergraduate education while making groundbreaking discoveries.  Established as a nonsectarian university in 1948 by members of the American Jewish community, our visionary founders shared a commitment to social justice and to making the world a better place.

Our founders’ pioneering spirit and intellectual pursuits continue today at Brandeis – from helping to solve a national public health crisis through work at its Opioid Policy Research Collaborative, to the biological discoveries that, in 2017, earned two faculty members a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. We aspire to further such important endeavors and are looking to grow our team with individuals who share our passion and commitment. In preparation for its next ambitious campaign, Institutional Advancement (IA) seeks to strengthen the bonds with the university’s many constituencies. By working together, we will secure the financial resources necessary to continue the legacy of excellence in teaching, research, and scholarship at Brandeis.

Position Summary

As a member of the Institutional Advancement Development team, the Executive Director of Annual Giving (EDAG) is responsible for setting and executing an overarching strategy to drive flexible support and pipeline development for the University. Central to this is developing a strategy to engage alumni, parents, faculty and staff, and friends to participate philanthropically in advancing the mission of the University.

The incumbent will work collaboratively with senior leaders and colleagues across the institution to develop strategies that translate into tactics to drive participation via channels that include direct mail, email, volunteers, annual gift officers, and other channels.

Other responsibilities include supporting volunteer leadership to guide and advance the work, from partnering with the development committee of the Alumni Board to developing Annual Giving leadership volunteer opportunities to leverage class, reunion, and affinity-based fundraising programs such as the Brandeis National Committee (BNC) and Hillel.

The work of the EDAG is integral to the University's financial success and generates significant annual revenue. Therefore, an emphasis on developing comprehensive strategies that support pipeline development and participation across Brandeis constituents through annual giving programmatic efforts. 

The incumbent will oversee strategies and staff related to direct marketing, reunion fundraising, family philanthropy, annual giving officers, student and young alumni fundraising, Hillel, and BNC. The incumbent will also carry a small portfolio of leadership giving prospects and volunteer leaders.

Primary Responsibilities 


  • Responsible for setting and achieving aspirational goals for donor growth and unrestricted dollars. In partnership with Development leadership and fundraising colleagues, ensure prospects are solicited across the pyramid to drive flexible funds for the University.
  • Responsible for developing an overarching strategy for growth of $1,000+ by donors by creating and leveraging a multi-channel approach to engaging prospects with direct marketing, volunteers, and staff. In partnership with colleagues, develop a strategy for leveraging and marketing the Justice Brandeis Society to grow this critical cohort of donors.
  • Leverage strong data analysis to drive future strategies. Collaborating with colleagues, develop robust reporting and analytical tools to analyze current fundraising strategies and inform future efforts.


  • Oversee the work of the Family Philanthropy team (2), Direct Marketing (3), Annual Giving Officers (3), and reunion and specifically affinity fundraising (1-2). Leverage goal-setting process and performance management system to support team members' success and encourage professional development opportunities as they arise. 


  • Develop and lead volunteer opportunities to amplify the work of the Development team. In partnership with colleagues in IA and across the University, fully leverage the existing development committee of the Alumni Board and develop a distinct and coordinated Annual Giving Board and volunteer opportunities within and across classes and special affinities.

PORTFOLIO MANAGEMENT                                                                                      

  • Engage a portfolio of prospects in support of the University. Secure $1,000+ gifts with keen attention to flexible funds for the University 

Must be able and willing to work occasional evenings and weekends with an attitude of doing what it takes to get the job done.


  • Bachelor's degree required. Advanced degrees and/or fundraising certification are highly desired.
  • Minimum 8-10 years of relevant work experience or equivalent combination of education and experience. Experience in higher education or non-profit setting preferred; direct experience with fundraising and volunteer management required.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and execute high-level and multi-channel annual giving efforts.
  • Experience in developing and leveraging diverse volunteer structures to amplify fundraising activity.
  • Proven track record of working in a dynamic, evolving, and highly energetic fundraising environment.
  • Ability to function at a high level within a complex organization.
  • Superior interpersonal skills with proven ability to successfully interact and collaborate with varied constituencies in a professional manner, exhibiting excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Ability to apply good judgment and discretion when dealing with highly confidential alumni, parent, student, family, donor, and prospect information.
  • Must be a detail-oriented, self-starter with an ability to work independently and manage multiple projects and priorities to meet aggressive timelines and challenging deadlines.
  • Must be able and willing to work occasional evenings and weekends with an attitude of doing what it takes to get the job done. 
  • Demonstrated experience in working with institutional leadership and volunteer leadership to advance participation and flexible funding.
  • Must be able and willing to travel frequently throughout the United States to attend events and meet with prospects and donors to further cultivation and solicitation strategies.      

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

“Brandeis is a community rooted in purpose, guided by enduring values, and determined to lead.  Come add your talents and your voice to this vibrant and distinctive community.”

Ron Liebowitz, President of Brandeis University 

Founded as a model of ethnic and religious pluralism, Brandeis University welcomes students, faculty, and staff of every nationality, religion, and orientation.  Social justice is central to the mission of Brandeis, which endeavors to foster a just and inclusive campus culture that embraces the diversity of our larger society.  Brandeis embodies the American heritage of cultural diversity, equal access to opportunity and freedom of expression.  Learn more at: 

To Apply: Please submit a cover letter and a resume/CV on our website. 

Closing Statement

Brandeis University is committed to providing its students, faculty and staff with an environment conducive to learning and working and where all people are treated with respect and dignity. We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ancestry, national origin, ethnicity, caste, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, including transgender identity, religion, disability, age, genetics, active military or veteran status and any other characteristics protected under applicable federal or Massachusetts law.

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