Communications Strategist, Principal Gifts

Job description

130 E. Randolph

20103 BSD-Dev Pr/Alum

About the Unit

Job Information

Job Summary:

* Please read carefully. Applicants who do not submit all the required documents will not be considered further for this position.

The Communications Strategist researches and writes a broad spectrum of strategic and complex fundraising materials aimed at specific audiences, including internal and external constituents such as donors, prospective donors, Alumni, Trustees, and faculty, portraying complex medical concepts and programs in a credible and accessible style. A member of the Principal Gifts team, s/he collaborates with his/her team and across MBSD to conceive of strategies for proposals, stewardship reports, briefings, and other correspondence and s/he assists with prospect cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship in support of ambitious team goals that can range from $20M - $50M annually.

The Communications Strategist writes proposals that primarily solicit gifts of $5M+and prepares briefs and other collateral materials to advance the cultivation and solicitation of principal gift donors. S/he takes comprehensive responsibility for the materials such as, but not limited to: building a persuasive case for each written piece; considering the specific audience; identifying influential facts or statistics; fact checking; and establishing, monitoring, and executing a timeline. S/he is responsible for written materials and projects such as: proposals; briefs, correspondence including acknowledgement letters; cultivation visits/meetings; stewardship reports; Power Point presentations; and conceptualization of a stewardship meeting.


  • The Communications Strategist will create persuasive, informative, and inspiring proposals and descriptive documents such as white papers targeted to MBSD's internal and external constituents such as donors, prospective donors, Alumni, Trustees, faculty, and staff.
  • Identify and articulate gift opportunities and be a fundamental resource for fundraisers at MBSD as they identify gift opportunities for donors and prospective donors
  • S/he will provide editorial support and leadership across MBSD and serve as a leader and expert who will provide coaching and mentoring in writing to other writers in the department.
  • S/he leads efforts and collaborates with other teams at MBSD such as Individual Giving, Communications (including graphic design and the Senior Writers); Outreach and Events; Donor Relations; and Strategic Research and Analysis.
  • Works closely with MBSD Leaders to create and execute an annual communication and strategic plans.
  • Collaborates with faculty and administrators throughout the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Medicine in order to articulate programs that will be characterized by leading-edge science and technology and conceived as agenda-setting science.
  • Project manages the team's activity and is responsible for implementing tactical next steps to ensure goals and objectives are met.
  • Monitors team activity and anticipates and tracks deliverables, including letters, briefings, reports, presentations, and proposals
  • Writes analytic, interpretive, or highly individualized features utilizing personal subject matter expertise.
  • May assist with writing and/or editing technical/scientific material for manuals or journals.

  • Intermediate knowledge of specialized subject matter
  • Knowledge of grammar, punctuation, spelling and style
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Editing skills
  • Creativity
  • Analytical skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Decision-making skills
  • Coaching skills
  • Ability to work independently with a high degree of initiative
  • Attention to detail
  • Organizational skills
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality
  • Ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously, set priorities, and meet deadlines
  • Knowledge of word processing software

Additional Requirements

Education, Experience, or Certifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in journalism, English, communications or a relevant field required.
  • Preferred: Advanced degree in specialized field.

  • A minimum of five years of work experience as a writer or editor is required.
  • Proven expertise taking complex information and both synthesizing it to identify and clarify key issues and opportunities and developing a compelling message (required).
  • Excellent interpersonal and written communication skills (required).
  • A demonstrated ability to think creatively (required).
  • Ability to manage multiple details while adhering to a broader concept or purpose (required).
  • Ability to understand finance and quantitative documents (required).
  • Capacity for identifying and evaluating basic issues, for bringing together information from a variety of sources, and for selecting appropriate analytical and creative approaches in dealing with immediate responsibilities (required).
  • Meticulous attention to detail, the ability to respond to constantly shifting priorities, to exercise sound judgment, to anticipate problems and create solutions (required).

Required Documents:
  • Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • Writing Sample

NOTE: When applying, all required documents MUST be uploaded under the Resume/CV section of the application.

Benefit Eligibility

Pay Frequency

Pay Range
Depends on Qualifications

Scheduled Weekly Hours


Job is Exempt?

Drug Test Required?

Does this position require incumbent to operate a vehicle on the job?

Health Screen Required?

Posting Date

Remove from Posting On or Before

Posting Statement:

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

The University of Chicago's Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (Report) provides information about University offices and programs that provide safety support, crime and fire statistics, emergency response and communications plans, and other policies and information. The Report can be accessed online at: Paper copies of the Report are available, upon request, from the University of Chicago Police Department, 850 E. 61st Street, Chicago, IL 60637.

Full time

About Us
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We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

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Job No:
Posted: 10/10/2018
Application Due: 12/9/2018
Work Type: