The Director of Gift Planning is responsible for strategic leadership, direction, and management of the Office of Gift Planning. This program generates support from alumni and friends of the University through outright gifts, estate and testamentary gift commitments. The Director will provide leadership to develop creative marketing efforts designed to effectively and systematically communicate the benefits of gift planning opportunities. Working with the Associate Director of Gift Planning and the Development Associate, the Director will lead efforts to identify, cultivate, solicit, record and steward gifts from prospects whose support can be maximized through gift planning strategies. The Director, in cooperation with gift planning colleagues, is responsible for managing and stewarding W&L's existing planned giving commitments and working with the Treasurer's and Business offices, and the custodian of charitable trusts, gift annuities and the W&L Pooled Income Fund. The Director serves as an internal adviser on federal and state legislation and laws governing or having implications for educational philanthropy.
Essential and Related Functions:
Leads efforts to increase aggressively and appropriately planned gift commitments to the University in all forms and at all levels including developing proposals, personally meeting with prospects to solicit and close gift commitments, and ensuring they are properly recorded and stewarded.
Manages a dynamic portfolio of gift planning prospects, traveling extensively to cultivate, solicit and steward these individuals.
Conducts comprehensive peer benchmarking to inform the development of short- and long-range strategic plans and goals for the University's gift planning program.
Works with gift planning colleagues and others in University Development and Advancement to develop a strategic and consistent marketing strategy for gift planning and oversees the execution of deliverables and marketing activities.
Serves as the University's primary resource for gift planning information and expertise and supports the work of all development staff in working with prospects on gift planning strategies.
Leads periodic seminars and conversations about gift planning along with organizing and coordinating programs from off campus sources on planned giving topics and methodologies.
Oversees, coordinates, administers, and stewards all revocable and irrevocable planned gift commitments to the University.
Works with the Treasurer, Controller, General Counsel, Planned Giving Legal Counsel and BNY Mellon representatives in responding to unique and challenging gift opportunities.
Other related duties as assigned.
A bachelor's degree is required and an advanced degree is preferred. Experience in higher education development is preferred with experience in gift planning or professionally related work required. A clear knowledge and understanding of planning methodologies and strategies as part of a comprehensive university-based development program is essential. Strong interpersonal skills are necessary as is the ability to clearly, and in lay terms, communicate gift planning strategies to potential donors. The ability to work with and relate to professional advisors is important to success in this position. A commitment to excellent job performance and teamwork is essential as is a record of success in fundraising and a willingness to travel and work with potential donors. The occupant of this position must merit great personal trust and be able to keep highly confidential information to herself/himself, and have an appreciation of and respect for Washington and Lee's traditions and values.
Strategic Thinking – Keeps the University’s strategic objectives in mind when developing and contributing to plans and initiatives for own work group. Is able to explain the link between team goals and the University’s strategic direction to work group. Makes informed decisions based on a clear understanding of the impact and consequences involved. Considers key financial factors (e.g., budget, revenue, resources) when making decisions.
Change Adaptability – Stays focused on own work and responsibilities in a changing work environment. Is able to quickly reprioritize to ensure resources (e.g., work group members, systems, tools, etc.) are in place to achieve change objectives. Responds positively and is supportive of change initiatives.
Communication and Networking – Articulates thoughts clearly and is able to offer logical arguments to gain acceptance of an idea in a positive manner. Consistently communicates to work group and/or supervisor ensuring that everybody is well informed. Proactively builds informal networks at own level and uses them to drive results within own work group.
Drive for Results – Actively supports the continuous improvement of policies to reduce inefficiencies and better achieve goals. Respectfully holds people accountable for the quality of their work and minimal errors. Strives to achieve challenging goals and works through obstacles.
Talent Development – Sets appropriate targets and provides open and constructive feedback to work group. Shares growth opportunities within the University and motivates team to build on the capabilities required to progress. Proactively spends time with work group to build rapport. Actively resolves problems within own work group.
Washington and Lee University is an independent liberal arts university founded in 1749, named for an early benefactor (George Washington) and an innovative president (Robert E. Lee). The campus is a national historical landmark, the city offers small-town charm, and the Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains provide unparalleled surroundings. Students govern themselves in a community based on trust a...nd honor. The faculty of teacher-scholars pursues a student-oriented approach to scholarship and nurtures lifelong relationships with the pupils. The curriculum blends traditional liberal arts and sciences with pre-professional programs in business, journalism and law. W&L prepares graduates for a life of learning, achievement, leadership, service and engaged citizenship in a global society.