The Major Gifts Officer (MGO) is a senior level administrator charged with identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gifts and directing efforts to attract foundation, individual major gifts and corporate gifts; providing exemplary stewardship and solicitation of current major donors, and developing relationships that will lead to major gifts. Reporting to the Adams State University President, this position provides support for the University’s fundraising efforts and works closely with the President and supports the ASU Foundation Board to plan, manage, and assist in carrying out the strategic plan of the University. The MGO will serve on campaign committees and provide key leadership to campaigns. The MGO serves as a university ambassador to develop relationships and connect constituents throughout the state, country and internationally with ASU to match the constituent’s philanthropic intent with the greatest needs of the University. The position will be located in the Denver, Colorado metro area.
This position requires one to identify, establish and manage a large portfolio of major gift prospects (portfolio of 110-150) and donors who have the capacity to make multi-year commitments of $1,000,000+ and above. The position is responsible for making 140-180 face to face visits annually with prospects to qualify, cultivate, solicit, and steward them along the giving cycle; qualify newly identified prospects as future potential major donors and secure unrestricted and restricted annual gifts as prospects are cultivated towards a major gift.
The MGO must also possess the ability to work with the highest level of donors, ASU Foundation Board Directors, and an understanding of financial planning and tax implications for philanthropic activity for individual and corporate donors. While focus will be on growing and securing individual major gifts, engaging corporations for gifts is also expected.
The MGO must be willing to learn and advocate for Adams State University and its strategic needs, and works with the President, ASU Foundation Board, and senior administrators to lead the University’s foundation cultivation and solicitation. Gifts solicited range from major commitments for unrestricted and restricted needs, to specially targeted endowment gifts, to bequests and other deferred giving instruments.
The ideal candidate will be a consummate professional and will thrive in a fast-paced campaign, metrics results-driven fundraising environment. The candidate must be able to set priorities, work independently and/remotely and build cross collaborative teams. The candidate will have a strong work ethic and a successful track record of building and growing a development program and a demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with colleagues, faculty and community partners. Successful candidates will need to be organized, articulate, and have the ability to multitask.
Develop and execute a comprehensive strategy to expand the number of major donors to the ASU Foundation through active cultivation, appropriate solicitation and stewardship resulting in increased operating income for the Foundation and support for University priorities.
Manage a portfolio of major gift prospects; develop ongoing relationships with these prospects and donors throughout the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship process.
Record all interactions and plans in the donor data-base, ensuring a high level of accuracy and integrity.
Plan, execute and lead events that are associated with major gift fundraising activities and initiatives. In addition, this position will support the development team through participation in and/or review of printed materials, professional publications, or web-based content that involves major gift coverage or support. The major gift officer will participate in relevant internal meetings. This position may serve on cross-functional teams and committees as appropriate and may with approval, take a leadership role in local civic organizations, such as the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary, Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and other strategic community and statewide organizations, with the intent to further strengthen relationships on behalf of the University.
Focus on the President’s fundraising initiatives that include academic programs, facilities, scholarships, fellowships, and campus improvements. The MGO will be responsible for raising a combined total of at least $750,000 - $1,000,000 in year one, $1,000,000 - $1,500,000 in year two and then $2,000,000+ annually in ongoing philanthropic support from individuals, corporations, foundations, and organizations.
Represent the University to individual donors, corporations, foundations and organizations. Will serve as an expert resource on development activities while working with executive-level stakeholders, committees, corporations, and boards.
Provide understanding about and facilitate the implementation of endowments, charitable remainder trusts, bequests and naming opportunities.
Take a leading role in capital campaigns.
Additionally the Major Gifts Officer (MGO) will;
Set and execute strategies to achieve substantial gift donations from assigned prospects within designated annual revenue goals.
Develop and maintain in-depth knowledge of tax laws deferred (estates/bequest) giving, and legal aspects of optimal giving strategies for donors and the college/university.
Arrange opportunities for President and principal officers to interact with prospects.
Keep informed of college/university’s strategic plan, specific strengths and fund-raising goals.
Develop gift solicitation proposals for President’s signature.
Identify additional prospects and volunteers through rating and research systems.
Brief President, and other concerned officials on strategies and progress.
Maintain and expand the University’s donor base through ongoing research, cultivation, and solicitation of donors and is accountable for meeting fund-raising goals.
Represent the University at public functions and events, including social gatherings that may provide direct contact with donors.
Appreciate/facilitate the mission, philosophy, culture, and traditions of the institution.
Maintain familiarity with salient issues relating to higher education and fundraising, showing a desire to stay abreast of new trends and ideas.
Maintain complete and timely records of contacts with prospects and volunteers.
Understand and represent the full range of activities at the University and be able to articulate its fundraising priorities.
Be familiar with prospect screening tools.
Interact effectively with internal contacts such as the President, Senior Staff, Directors, faculty and other development staff to consult on University needs.
Perform related duties as assigned.
Bachelor’s degree and 5+ years of relevant experience (development, sales, customer relations, etc.) or equivalent combination of education and experience.
Experience in a higher education or non-profit setting preferred; direct experience with fundraising, volunteer management and knowledge of Adams State University is highly desired.
Proven ability to solicit and close philanthropic gifts on the $500,000 - $1,000,000+ level, or equivalent experience in a related field such as sales.
Strong organizational and planning skills with the ability to initiate, collaborate, implement, monitor, evaluate and advance strategic plans that support the activities of the program and contribute to the overall goals and objectives of advancement and the fundraising enterprise.
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, team-building skills, and demonstrating tact, poise and diplomacy while working with a wide variety of personalities. An ability and comfort in meeting and interacting with individuals of considerable social status and affluence is required.
Demonstrated ability to be donor-centric, collegial, and effective in working with dynamic, diverse groups to include families, students, faculty, alumni, professionals, university leadership and others. Demonstrated knowledge of and relevant ability with culturally diverse communities among potential target and constituent populations.
Ability to apply good judgment and proven responsibility decision-making skills; tact and discretion are required to deal with highly confidential alumni, parent, student, family, donor and prospect information.
Must be a detail-oriented, self-starter with a demonstrated ability to work independently and manage multiple projects and priorities to meet aggressive timelines and challenging deadlines.
Working knowledge of electronic mail and calendars, the Windows environment, including Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access, and other gift software such as Talisma-Donor 2, etc.
Must be able and willing to work evenings and weekends.
Must be able and willing to travel frequently to attend relevant programs and events and to meet with current and prospective donors and leadership volunteers to further cultivation and solicitation strategies.
Ability to treat others with respect, civility, and courtesy and to work honestly, effectively, and collegiality with employees, students, and the community. This includes the ability to use appropriate conflict management skills to effectively manage any disagreement that might arise or to bring the disagreement to management for assistance in productive resolution when the situation requires.
Demonstrated ability to work collegially and collaboratively with diverse internal and external constituencies.
Additionally these attributes will be considered:
Experience in managing complex, multi-disciplinary fundraising projects.
Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or government regulations.
Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, alumni, donors, students, parents, and the general public.
FLSA Designation: FLSA Overtime Exempt
Additional Salary Information: Adams State University offers a competitive benefits
Internal Number: A1A002
About Adams State University
Located in the beautiful San Luis Valley between the Sangre de Cristo and San Juan mountain ranges, Adams State University is a state-supported Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) in Alamosa, CO. The vast San Luis Valley is designated the Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area. We are, at 7,500 feet, in the largest alpine valley in the United States. Alamosa is located approximately 3.5 hours from Denver, 1.5 hours from Taos, New Mexico, and 2.5 hours from Santa Fe, New Mexico. Alamosa has a population of 9,500, with recently built elementary schools, a moderate cost of living, and affordable housing.