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Estate Administrator

Smithsonian Institution
District of Columbia, United States
$78,592.00 - $89,069.00
Closing date
Dec 1, 2023

Come join a team of dedicated staff at an exceptional time in the Smithsonian’s history as we prepare for the Smithsonian Campaign for Our Shared Future. This ambitious fundraising campaign’s public phase will run from 2024 to 2026, culminating with the nation’s 250th anniversary. The campaign will expand the Smithsonian’s reach and impact, empowering the Institution to find solutions to today’s most pressing challenges. The Smithsonian is also planning two exciting new museums. The National Museum of the American Latino and the Smithsonian American Women's History Museum share the experiences and perspectives of Latinos and women across history and deepen our shared understanding of what it means to be an American. The Smithsonian has built a model fundraising organization, driven by talented staff across our many museums, research centers and cultural centers. This position offers exciting opportunities to make a significant impact on the future of the Smithsonian. There is no better time to join this amazing Institution.

 The Office of Advancement oversees and guides the fundraising efforts of the entire Smithsonian and is home to the central advancement organization for the Institution. In addition to raising significant support for a variety of Smithsonian initiatives, the Office of Advancement provides support services to advancement offices across the Institution. The office engages with staff throughout the Smithsonian in accomplishing their goals.

 Key Responsibilities

The Estate Administrator works in the Office of Advancement and provides technical and administrative support to the Director of Gift Planning in concert with the Office of General Counsel to include: 

  • Lead and grow successful Estate Administration program, which currently brings in $25M+ revenue annually, across the Smithsonian Institution.
  • Work closely with estate and trust executors and institutional custodians to facilitate the receipt of estate and retirement assets ranging from $250K - $2.5M+.
  • Manage all aspects of the Estate Administration program, including carefully reviewing all estate documents and accounting, monitoring estate status to ensure timely distribution, and working closely with Office of General Counsel to support detailed estate review, as required.
  • Work with estate and trust executors, administrators and/or their attorneys to facilitate the transfer of gifts of tangible personal property to the Smithsonian’s national collection as well as facilitate gifts of real estate and other complex assets.
  • Facilitate endowments established by bequests, and lead stewardship and reporting to decedents’ family members and/or estate representatives.
  • Collaborate with Smithsonian staff at museums, research centers, and cultural centers to assess and close estate gifts, as needed.
  • Support a $25 million and growing Charitable Gift Annuity and Trust pool.


Skills, Knowledge, and Expertise

Qualified applicants will have a minimum of two years of demonstrated experience in gift planning, probate, and/or estate administration, or equivalent advancement services skills and experience, preferably in a non-profit organization, museum, or cultural institution. Applicants will demonstrate strong communications skills, excellent interpersonal and organizational skills, and the initiative and ability to work independently. Experience working in a fast-paced, deadline driven environment and being able to manage multiple projects at once is a must.

Applicants who wish to qualify based on education completed outside the United States, must be deemed equivalent to higher education programs of U.S. Institutions by an organization that specializes in the interpretation of foreign educational credentials. This documentation is the responsibility of the applicant and should be included as part of your application package.

 Any false statement in your application may result in your application being rejected and may also result in termination after employment begins.

 Application Instructions

The Smithsonian Institution values and seeks a diverse workforce. Join us in "Inspiring Generations through Knowledge and Discovery." Interested candidates should submit their resumes and a cover letter to this link by November 24, 2023. Resumes should include a description of your paid and non-paid work experience that is related to this job; starting and ending dates of job (month and year); and average number of hours worked per week. Relocation expenses are not paid.

What To Expect Next: Once the vacancy announcement closes, a review of your resume will be compared against the qualification and experience requirements related to this job. After review of applicant resumes is complete, qualified candidates will be referred to the hiring manager. 

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Smithsonian Institution provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation should contact  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.  To learn more, please review the Smithsonian’s Accommodation Procedures.

The Smithsonian Institution is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We believe that a workforce comprising a variety of educational, cultural, and experiential backgrounds support and enhance our daily work life and contribute to the richness of our exhibitions and programs. See Smithsonian EEO program information:


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