Brandeis University — Associate Director, Leadership Annual Giving (R0001397)

The Opportunity

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 Associate Director of Leadership 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 newly established Opioid Policy Research Collaborative, to the biological discoveries that last year 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

The Associate Director (AD) is responsible for the strategic management of a portfolio of approximately 250 – 300 individuals comprised of alumni, parents and friends of the University. The officer will make direct solicitations of their prospects for philanthropic gifts ranging between $1,000 and $25,000 for current-use priorities, special initiatives and unrestricted support, which are among the University’s greatest areas of need. Officers will maintain a portfolio of prospects located in the Northeast United States, and will also be expected to cover at least one additional and distinct geographic region in North America.

Other responsibilities include effective collaboration and partnership with colleagues, peers and unit managers within a diverse advancement organization and complex top tier research institution; serving as an institutional ambassador; staffing and/or attending University and Institutional Advancement events and programs within assigned regional territories and engaging administrators and faculty on donor visits, as appropriate.

The work of the officer is integral to achieving the fundraising goals of IA and generates significant annual revenues for the University. To serve as a liaison between and representative of Institutional Advancement and Brandeis’ alumni, parents and friends, the officer will exhibit in-depth knowledge of the University, its initiatives, and its internal and external constituents. Creating strong and positive relationships is fundamental to this highly visible position where energy, diplomacy, sophistication and an understanding of philanthropy and higher education are key factors to success.

Decisiveness, trustworthiness, discretion, and creativity are indispensable qualities of the officer. The incumbent must have the ability to interact easily with individuals of diverse and considerable social, economic, cultural and educational backgrounds, and at all times, must professionally represent Brandeis.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Manage prospects in multiple geographic areas with a portfolio of approximately 250 – 300 prospects who have the capacity to make gifts of $1,000 to $25,000 annually, traveling to assigned regions to conduct a significant number of face-to-face personal visits each year (150+ unique prospect/donor visits, 50 of which must be discovery meetings with new prospects).
  • Plan and execute a minimum of fifty $10K+ solicitations during the course of each fiscal year towards achieving an annual revenue goal of $1 million or more, a figure that should increase over time. Ensure that all managed prospects are solicited annually for the Brandeis Fund, Parents Fund, and/or Graduate School Annual Fund(s), as appropriate.
  • Develop meaningful, mutually-beneficial relationships with current and prospective donors on behalf of the University. Successfully advance relationships through the development cycle – from identification and discovery to solicitation and stewardship. Nominate prospects for volunteer opportunities, awards, and honors. Identify and promote prospects and leads to the attention of major, principal gifts and/or planned giving programs, as warranted.

Essential Functions & Time Allocations

  • 70% – Portfolio Management. Manage and solicit assigned prospects annually by conducting in-person visits, engaging in substantive telephone conversations and writing personal correspondence. Serve as the donor’s point-person for the University, ensuring effective follow-up and responsiveness to donors’ inquiries, questions, and interests.
  • 25% – Travel, Discovery and Campus Visits. Plan and manage an effective schedule of contacts and meetings; arrange campus visits; and engage University leaders, faculty, staff and other advancement colleagues in donor engagement activities, as appropriate. Maintain a regular and consistent travel schedule to assigned geographic territories to identify new prospects for pipeline development into one’s personal portfolio and/or for partnership with other staff members and departments within the Advancement Division. Organize 6 – 10 distinct trips per year to conduct meetings with assigned and unassigned prospects, attend events and serve as a University ambassador in active regions.
  • 5% – Communications & Data Management. Routinely interact and collaborate with staff across the Advancement Division, both within and outside of Annual Giving as well as with University faculty, staff and administrators. Record activities, contacts, correspondence, proposals and strategy plans in the donor database, working with support staff to ensure proper records administration and that constituent biographic and contact data maintained in the database is accurate and up-to-date.


  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • 4 – 7 years of relevant or related experience, preferably in a higher education or non-profit setting. Direct experience with fundraising and volunteer management highly desired.
  • Ability to solicit and close philanthropic gifts at the $1,000+ level, or equivalent experience in a related field such as sales or customer acquisition.
  • Superior interpersonal skills with proven ability to successfully interact and collaborate with varied constituencies in a professional manner, exhibiting excellent written and oral communications 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 priorities to meet challenging timelines and achieve annual goals.
  • Must be able and willing to work occasional evenings and weekends. Must be able and willing to travel frequently throughout the United States to attend events and to meet with prospects and donors to further discovery, cultivation and solicitation strategies.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

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 go to—Waltham-Campus/Associate-Director–Leadership-Annual-Giving_R0001397 and click on ‘Apply’