Director of Development for College of Humanities and Social Sciences - #242379

Western Washington University


Date: 05/04/2021 18:01 PM

City: Lummi Island, Washington

Contract type: Full Time

Work schedule: Full Day

Position Title Director of Development for College of Humanities and Social Sciences



About the University Western Washington University, with over 16,000 students in seven colleges and the graduate school, is nationally recognized for its educational programs, students and faculty. The campus is located in Bellingham, Washington, a coastal community of 90,000 overlooking Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands and the North Cascades Mountain range. The city lies 90 miles north of Seattle and 60 miles south of Vancouver, British Columbia. Western is the highest-ranking public, master's-granting university in the Pacific Northwest, according to the 2019 U.S. News & World Report rankings



About the Department

The WWU Foundation and the Division of University Advancement support Western's mission, which states that together with our students, staff, and faculty, we are committed to making a positive impact in the state and the world with a shared focus on academic excellence and inclusive achievement. We encourage applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, veterans, and other candidates from underrepresented backgrounds and with diverse experiences interested in this opportunity.



The Division of University Advancement is comprised of 44 staff members who support the engagement and philanthropy work. The three leadership units are: advancement services including financial and database work; major giving including donor relations and research; and alumni and constituent relations, advancement communications and marketing, and annual giving. Advancement transitioned to the Ellucian CRM in 2020. Main offices are on campus with satellite offices in downtown Bellingham and Seattle.



The WWU Foundation manages assets of over $115 million. Current extended campaigns include a one-year $20 Million capital campaign as part of a state-funded electrical engineering and computer science building and a multi-year Campaign for Student Success, which focuses on recruitment and retention scholarships plus program excellence.



Within the Foundation, the Alumni Association supports fundraising by informing, connecting, and engaging the 125,000 alumni with each other and with Western. More than half of Western alumni live in Washington with significant pockets throughout the West Coast and in major cities across the U.S. Signature programs include Distinguished Alumni Awards, Paint B’ham Blue, an annual welcome back to students event, and WeConnect, an online mentoring program connecting alumni with each other and with students.



Leadership volunteers serve on the boards for the Foundation and Alumni Association to set strategic direction and policy, raise friends and funds, and steward the community of donors and potential donors.








About the Position

The Director of Development for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHSS) is the chief development officer for the college, focusing on major gifts at the $25K+ level. Working closely with the Dean and the faculty Chairs, the Director of Development will manage an annual plan for discovering, cultivating, and soliciting targeted donor prospects from a select portfolio of leads. The Director will partner with the Dean to manage a college advancement board comprised of volunteers interested in supporting the college. The Director will also work with college staff for stewarding donors.



This is a full-time permanent position reporting to the Associate Vice President for Development and Leadership Giving. This position is essential to achieving the education mission of WWU through philanthropic support from individuals (predominantly alumni), corporations and private foundations. Financial gifts to the university are sought to support student scholarships, programming excellence, and capital equipment and projects. In this role, the Director of Development, also known as a major gift officer, is first-and-foremost a fundraiser for the university. Annual success metrics are determined from both the activities associated with fundraising, and the actual donation results. The Director of Development is responsible for the discovery, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of Western donors who contribute at the major gift level of $25,000 and above. Multiple channels are utilized to connect with and cultivate donors, but the primary means for achieving success is through face-to-face visits with a pool of 40-50 major gift prospects. The Director of Development works from a campus office location in Bellingham, however the role requires regular travel from Bellingham to the greater Puget Sound area and some weekend and evening work. Occasionally this work requires travel to donor locations out of state.



Position Duties and Responsibilities


Identification, Discovery and Qualification of Prospective Donors



  • Working in conjunction with prospect research team to establish lead and prospect portfolios
  • Reviewing prospect background, activity with the university, place of employment, past gift history
  • Contacting donor prospect through various channels (email, phone, letters) to establish meeting opportunity
  • Implementing initial discovery visits to qualify donor as a gift prospect based on affinity with university, interest in programming, and capacity to give

Cultivation of Donor Prospect with an Objective of Receiving Philanthropic Gifts



  • Building relationships with alumni and friends as donors to the university
  • Sharing success stories and brag points to inspire interest in Western
  • Communicating vision and impact of specific areas of financial need at WWU
  • Determining area of passion for making a difference through philanthropy
  • Networking prospective donors with faculty, staff and university leadership to enhance appreciation for the university and its work
  • Encouraging prospects to attend events, volunteer at WWU, and participate when possible within academic areas of interest
  • Engage prospective donors in conversations specifically focused on philanthropy that benefits Western

Soliciting Major Gifts from Prospective Donors through Specific Proposals



  • Developing funding proposals that support face-to-face Asks for philanthropic gifts
  • Partnering with deans, chairs, faculty and university leadership to use a team approach to where necessary in solicitation
  • Refining proposals when needed to meet donor desires
  • Drafting gift agreements that serve as memorandums of understanding between donors and the university
  • Bringing final resolution to all major gift Asks, whether yes or no

Stewardship Activities Focused on Gift Acknowledgement and Appreciation for Donors



  • Implementing meaningful and creative ways to acknowledge gifts and show university appreciation
  • Developing and communicating periodic updates to demonstrate positive impacts from donor gifts
  • Period connections with donors at events or through other means to ensure ongoing appreciation for and attachment to Western

Other Duties as Assigned



  • Collaborating across other UA departments for broad success
  • Serving on campus hiring committees as needed
  • Interfacing with Foundation Board as required




Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor's Degree completed by time of application
  • Minimum of four years experience in face-to-face donor/client cultivation activity, whether fundraising or sales with transactions of $10,000 or higher
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Ability to communicate and collaborate effectively with people of diverse social identities and backgrounds
  • Proficiency with MS Office Suite
  • Proven experience with proposals, presentations, and other professional activities focused on a call to action which produces measurable revenue results
  • Demonstrated ability to organize, manage and prioritize multiple projects and activities
  • Positive, welcoming and professional demeanor with a demonstrated ability to build relationships, gain trust, and discuss personal financial matters with the highest level of integrity
  • Ability to travel at least once a week within Washington State, and occasionally outside the state for overnight travel
  • Availability to work on various nights and weekends throughout the year as required




Preferred Qualifications

  • Major gift fundraising experience at the $25K+ level
  • Experience working on a campus in the higher education environment
  • Experience working with individual donors on estate and planned giving
  • Experience working with a fundraising contact management software system
  • Experience working with corporations and foundations for philanthropic giving
  • Experience working on a large scale organized fundraising campaign




Special Requirements/Conditions of Employment Applicants must have a valid driver's license



Salary Commensurate experience with an excellent benefits package

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