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Director Gift Planning - Boulder

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Department Description

The Advancement operation provides the management and coordination of the back office functions to support the campus-based fundraising field staff. These include research, marketing and communications, gift processing, data base management, estate gift planning, and other services. These central services produce economies of scale by eliminating the need for these back office functions to be duplicated on each of the four campuses. They also place the institution in an optimal position to attract substantial support from the philanthropic sector.

Position Description

The Director of Gift Planning is a centralized University of Colorado (CU) system position embedded within CU Boulder’s Office of Advancement. The Director of Gift Planning is responsible for the leadership and strategic oversight of the gift planning efforts at CU Boulder, including management oversight of the Associate Director of Gift Planning.

The gift planning team at CU Boulder supports an average of 50 major gift officers and their respective portfolios, and a strong fundraising pipeline of planned and active planned/blended gift proposals. As the senior member of the gift planning team at CU Boulder, the role serves as a trusted advisor to the vice chancellor of advancement, the principal gifts team, and the schools, colleges and units at CU Boulder.

The Director is responsible for refining and implementing strategies to increase the overall pipeline of asset/blended/planned gifts. Additionally, through individual effort and collaboration, the Director is responsible for increasing outright major/principal gift and deferred giving initiatives with prospects, donors, outside allied professionals, and members of the University community. The Director understands and applies national best practices, process and service excellence principles for gift planning and continually seeks out new industry knowledge.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. The CU Boulder Office of Advancement is a professional and hard-working advancement team that generates philanthropic support and overall external engagement for the University. Through these philanthropic and engagement efforts, the University is able to attract the brightest students, support and grow our hardworking faculty and strengthen our overall academic and co-curricular programs as we build a foundation of excellence for the future.

This position reports to the Department Head and Senior Director of Gift Planning and is exempt from the State of Colorado Classified Staff System.


The University of Colorado has a requirement for COVID-19 vaccinations and full completion of the attestation form within the first 30 days after hire date.  Information regarding this requirement, and exemptions can be found at

Duties & Responsibilities 

  • Serves as the department’s primary liaison for the University of Colorado Boulder campus and provides strategic direction, coordination and evaluation of the gift planning efforts at University of Colorado Boulder
  • Serves as the department’s primary liaison for the University of Colorado Boulder’s principal gifts program to ensure that each principal gift conversation incorporates a blended, asset based, or deferred giving strategy.  
  • Provides direct management for the Associate Director of Gift Planning.
  • Cultivates planned gifts to benefit the University of Colorado Boulder by providing technical gift planning expertise for University of Colorado colleagues and supporters.
  • In collaboration with CU Advancement staff, the Director cultivates, solicits, negotiates, and closes gifts by focusing primarily on multi-faceted outright gifts; gifts of complex or unique assets; revocable designations; and irrevocable gifts such as charitable remainder trusts, charitable gift annuities, retained life estates, or charitable lead trusts.
  • Contributes to University system, campus and department goals by creating and implementing an annual workplan, identifying specific areas of focus which may include: proactive lead generation to create a strong future “pipeline” of planned gift prospects or donors; prospect strategy sessions; trainings; stewardship of existing legacy society members; marketing efforts; strengthening relationships with the advisor community; prospect strategy sessions; proposal creation; donor visits/travel; etc.
  • Manages and supervises at least one programmatic activity that is a priority for the Office of Gift Planning including, but are not limited to: CU President’s Gift Planning Advisory Council, Internal Training Programs, or best practice initiatives outlined in 3-yr strategic plan.
  • Responsible for assisting the Department Head and Senior Director of Gift Planning in analyzing and projecting internally the legal and tax consequences of gifts of cash or property.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.
Software Utilized

  • Microsoft Office Products, including Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.
  • Gift planning software, such as PGM Anywhere, TIAA Kaspick GiftAdvisor
  • Donor tracking and reporting software, such as Ellucian Advance, Salesforce
  • Smart phones
Who we are and What we offer

Who we are: System Administration, which also houses the Office of the President, is located in the uptown neighborhood of Denver with a few smaller offices located on the campuses. This position is based in Colorado with the ability to work a Hybrid work schedule. The anticipated schedule would be 2 days in the office, 3 days working from home. Many of our departments support the educational and research missions of the four University of Colorado campuses, but System Administration is not considered a campus. We provide diverse opportunities for professional development, innovation, and collaboration with talented staff and faculty.  Learn more about CU System Administration.

What we offer:

Salary: The anticipated hiring range has been established at $95,000-$125,000.

The salary of the finalist(s) selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to, internal equity, experience, education, specialty and training.

The above salary range (or hiring range) represents the University’s good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible compensation at the time of posting.

Benefits: The University of Colorado offers an excellent benefits package including:

  • Medical: Multiple plan options
  • Dental: Multiple plan options
  • Additional Insurance: Disability, Life, Vision and Wellness
  • Retirement 401(a) Plan: Employer contributes 10% of your gross pay
  • Paid Time Off: Accruals over the year
    • Vacation Days: 22
    • Sick Days: 15
    • Holiday Days: 10
  • Tuition Benefit: System employees have the benefit on all campuses 
  • ECO Pass: RTD Bus and light rail service
  • Additional Perks & Programs: Click here to access a few more Perks and Programs
Click here to access our Total Compensation Calculator to see what your total rewards could be at CU. This position is a University Staff position.


Additional taxable fringe benefits may be available.

More information on benefits programs, including eligibility, is available at

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

To be successful in this position, candidates will need the following:

  • Commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity and equity
  • Ability to operate and utilize a smart phone.
  • Computer skills, including the ability to utilize Microsoft Office programs and virtual meeting technology (i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, MS Teams, Zoom) and learn and experiment with new software and systems
  • Knowledge of the University of Colorado’s mission, demographics, faculty, current programs, departments, and culture 
  • Solid knowledge of gift planning principles, procedures, and best practices
  • A commitment to professional development, learning, and being mentored
  • Donor-centric customer service skills, including the ability to actively listen, address customer needs, defuse tense situations, and maintain an open, flexible, and friendly demeanor
  • Interpersonal skills, including the ability to facilitate interaction, communication, and teamwork between others
  • Ability to persuasively engage donors and articulate how CU distinguishes itself from peer institutions
  • Ability to make persuasive verbal and written cases for supporting key programs and projects, effectively matching the interests of prospective donors to specific university needs
  • Ability to deliver a high level of commitment to customer service
  • Ability to communicate and work effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and ages
  • Ability to navigate complex, multi-layered environments and organizations
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team setting
  • Ability to develop strategies to achieve operating goals
  • Ability to interact with high-level donors, maintain a high level of professionalism, discretion, and confidentiality.
  • Ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with faculty, staff, and others
  • Ability to promote and enhance diversity and equity
  • Ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with faculty, staff, and others
  • A proven ability to self-motivate and work both independently and as part of a team

Minimum Requirements

Please ensure your resume includes any and all relevant experience to be accurately assessed against these qualifications.  You must meet all minimum requirements listed at the time of application to be considered for this role.

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education, or equivalent professional experience (professional experience may be substituted for the educational requirement on a year-for-year basis)
  • Five (5) years’ professional experience working in gift planning, estate/financial planning, or blending major and principal gifts of $500,000 or more. 
  • Experience cultivating, soliciting, negotiating, and closing gifts of complex or unique assets; gifts or real estate; revocable designations; or irrevocable gifts such as charitable remainder trusts, charitable gift annuities, or retained life estates.
  • Ability to travel 
Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s or post-baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education in the field of business, business administration, finance or another closely related field.
  • Advanced degree (MA, JD, CFP, MBA)
  • Seven (7) years’ professional experience working in gift planning and blending major/principal gifts of $1,000,000 or more.
  • Two (2) years’ experience in a team lead or supervisory role, which may include assigning and reviewing the work of others, providing guidance to internal and external team members, and/or assisting management with performance reviews
  • Experience in a nonprofit, higher education, or healthcare environment
  • Experience working within large, complex organizations
  • Demonstrated success in higher education or healthcare major, planned, and/or principal gift fundraising.

Job Category: Development
Primary Location: Denver
Schedule: Full-time
Posting Date: Dec 21, 2021
Unposting Date: Ongoing
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