Director of Donor Relations

Amherst, MA
Sep 28, 2017
Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Amherst College invites applications for the position of Director of Donor Relations. Amherst College has profoundly transformed its student body in terms of socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and nationality, among other areas. Today, nearly one-quarter of Amherst's students are Pell Grant recipients; 45 percent of our studentsidentify as domestic students of color. Our expectation is that the successful candidate will excel at working in a community that is broadly diverse with regard to race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, and religion.

The Director of Donor Relations is a full time, year round position (job group and level SM-4), and is responsible for creating and managing a comprehensive donor relations program for the College. In consultation with Development leadership, this position is responsible for a wide array of stewardship activities and donor communications, including but not limited to, endowed fund reporting, the Founder's Society recognition society, gift acknowledgements, donor recognition events, donor gifts, tracking of named giving opportunities and drafting of Gift Agreements for new restricted funds.

The Director collaborates with other administrators, particularly the Dean of the Faculty's office and the CFO's office, to gather information and identify desirable giving opportunities in support of the institutional fund-raising objectives of the College.

Key Responsibilities

Strategic Oversight

  • Design and manage a comprehensive stewardship program for principal and leadership donors, working closely with Advancement leadership, providing proactive guidance and support in stewarding the College's relationships with Amherst's most generous donors
  • Work with the Advancement and Development leadership to track progress in fundraising for campaign priorities, and recommend to senior management appropriate recognition and stewardship for donors
  • Plan and execute, with the Donor Relations team, special events/newsletters/reports/tailored publications/gifts for top donors
  • Manage the Departmental Alert Process, ensuring that each department fulfills Amherst's responsibility for routine contact and reporting to donors on the use of gifts
  • Draft gift agreements in collaboration with development officers, the Controller's Office, and Advancement Operations


  • Establish and maintain the annual goals, priorities, and budget
  • Establish and execute a strategic plan for the office
  • Train, mentor, and supervise Donor Relations staff including professional development opportunities

Stewardship Reporting Process

  • Oversee annual reporting process to donors of endowed funds including financial information and fund usage
  • Oversee annual scholarship, fellowship, internship, prize, student research reporting including notifying donors of their scholarship recipients, facilitating thank you letters from recipients and arranging gatherings with donors and recipients
  • Manage endowed professorship stewardship, including reporting, announcements of appointments, new professorship dedications and professorship receptions
  • Manage stewardship for capital and building projects

Stewardship and Donor Relations Program

  • Implement and manage a comprehensive and integrated stewardship program
  • Recommend to frontline fundraisers opportunities to engage and communicate with appropriate segments of donors and prospects to effectively and efficiently match donor interest with campaign fundraising objectives and institutional priorities
  • Develop, articulate and implement donor-focused strategies for recognition, engagement and stewardship

  • Bachelor's Degree
  • 5 years directly related experience
  • In-depth knowledge of the principles of donor-centered fundraising; a demonstrated track record in donor relations
  • Excellent organizational, time and project management, interpersonal, written and verbal communication, and interpersonal skills
  • Capacity to thrive in a complex, fast-paced environment
  • Creativity, sound judgment, and attention to detail
  • Demonstrated ability to design and implement new processes
  • Analytical acumen to interpret financial information and manage data
  • Ability to manage list segmentation, reporting and tracking mechanisms to assist with recognition, engagement, and stewardship projects as well as special fund-raising initiatives
  • Experience as a manager and supervisor of staff
  • Occasional evening and weekend work with travel (occasionally overnight, as needed)

  • Advanced Degree
  • Direct fundraising or volunteer management experience
  • Experience in a higher education environment

Interestedcandidates should submit a cover letter, resume, and the names and contact information (email and/or telephone numbers) for three professional references. Applications will be reviewed until position is filled.
Amherst College is an equal opportunity employer and encourages women, persons of color, and persons with disabilities to apply. The College is committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration, and staff.
Amherst College, one of the premier liberal arts colleges in the nation, is located in Amherst, Massachusetts, a town of approximately 35,000 residents in the western part of the state. The college's community is composed of about1,800 students from 48 states, plus Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and 54 countries around the world, and about 1,000 staff and faculty. The college's scenic 1,000-acre campus includes a 500-acre wildlife sanctuary and the Book & Plow Farm ; three museums: Emily Dickinson Museum , Beneski Museum of Natural History and Mead Art Museum ; and multiple educational and cultural venues and resources through the Five College Consortium. The town of Amherst offers an amazing variety of coffee shops, restaurants and entertainment, and a very active outdoor life. Our vibrant campus, diverse community and beautiful surrounding, makes Amherst College and the Town of Amherst the perfect place to work, learn and live!


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