Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts - Full-Time
The Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts will lead the school’s newly restructured Advancement and Development Office. This strategic and dynamic executive will report to the Chief Operating Officer. The Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts will work with the Chief Operating Officer, Head of School, and Board of Trustees to develop, lead, and execute the school’s Capital Campaign and set the strategic direction of the school’s comprehensive fundraising efforts. This team leader will work with the Director of Development and Communications and school consultants to develop a strategic plan to grow a post-campaign philanthropic program to secure major and planned gifts from current parents, alumni, and other friends of Gillen Brewer. This key executive will directly oversee the Advancement and Development Office as well as work collaboratively with the Board of Trustees, School Leadership, Faculty, and Staff.
Gillen Brewer offers competitive salaries commensurate with experience and a comprehensive professional development program.
Job Title: Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts Supervisor: Chief Operating Officer (COO) Hours: Monday-Friday; 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Calendar to Follow: 12-month Administrative FLSA Status: Exempt Start Date: Immediately
Summary The goal of this position is to maximize the total philanthropic relationship of major gift donors and prospects to the school. This will involve developing strategies to generate higher levels of support and implementation of individual multi-year fundraising plans that focus on renewals and increased gifts. This means establishing long-term relationships with major donors while working collaboratively with colleagues and school leaders to meet the School’s advancement objectives and mission.
This position will focus on the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major giving prospects utilizing written solicitations, phone follow-up, outreach events, face-to-face meetings, special events, and other methods that will allow for maintaining regular contact with these donors and prospects. The Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts will be an ambassador for Gillen Brewer, keeping the school’s mission and positioning at the center of all fundraising with the ability to understand and communicate the complexity of Gillen Brewer’s financial operations and strategic goals.
The Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts position is a highly visible, integral, and important leadership position that will play a key role in ensuring the continued success of the Gillen Brewer School.
Duties and Responsibilities
Work with School Leadership, Board of Trustees, and consultants to develop a campaign strategy and set campaign goals
Identify and cultivate a Steering Committee and Board Members
Plan and run Steering Committee meetings
Manage visits and solicitations alone with other Steering Committee or Board Members
Identify prospects on the individual, corporation, and foundation levels
Create and edit campaign communications, such as acknowledgments, follow-up letters, and newsletters with the Director of Development and Communications
Oversee the management of public relations efforts, both internal and external, regarding the building expansion project, including community and neighborhood relations
Qualifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding major and planned gift prospects to support the objectives of Gillen Brewer, as well as collaborating with Trustees, School Leadership, and Staff
Develop a major giving portfolio of prospects capable of giving significant gifts to the school
Develop metrics systems that would indicate the number of non-donors converted to donors, the “Close rate” of solicitations, and the percentage of those renewing or increasing their giving
Collaborate and partner with the Board of Trustees and School Leadership in developing and executing strategic plans, both short- and long-term, for major giving efforts and Advancement plans
Maintain regular contact with donors; scheduling joint visits with the Head of School, Trustees, or other appropriate school personnel as needed
Ensure that all major donors receive appropriate, consistent recognition and an accounting of the impact their gift has on the Gillen Brewer School
Develop cultivation and proposal strategies
Coordinate with the Director of Development and Communication in identifying potential major donors
Work with the Director of Development and Communication to ensure consistency with narrative messaging and brand strategy
Plan cultivation and stewardship events or efforts with colleagues in admissions and other offices
Develop and manage a planned giving program
Lead discussions in reviewing fundraising activities, costs, operations, and other data to determine the efficacy of the advancement efforts
Participate in the review and generation of the school annual report and other communications
Direct and manage all special appeals, including personalized solicitations driven by the Board of Trustees and Head of School
Collaborate with the Director of Development in developing and executing strategic plans, both short- and long-term, for branding and advancement, including new collateral, website redesign, and social media
Attend and participate in all Board meetings and take minutes to distribute to the Board Secretary
Support the work of the Board’s Development and Trustees Committee, preparing meeting material, agendas, taking minutes, and driving next actions
Develop and supervise prospect research of potential major donors for cultivation and solicitation of future Board members
Responsible for tracking revenue and expenses against budget and overseeing gift/pledge processing and collection
Collaborate closely with the Business Office to develop and implement the best practices for reconciliation and auditing
Analyze and report on all fundraising, advancement, and communication efforts to the Board of Trustees
Develop and manage the grants process
Support the maintenance of data integrity, accurate records of gifts and event participation, and manage filing of related paperwork
Research and prepare reports on potential corporate/foundation grants and individual major donor prospects
Able to work occasional evenings and weekends to meet objectives and assume other responsibilities and special projects as assigned
Attend and work with the Advancement and Development Office to coordinate evening and weekend events, as needed, to support philanthropic goals
Inspirational, self-motivated, outgoing and personable, creative, team player, driven, natural problem solver, emotional intelligence, calm under pressure, ability to receive and give candid feedback, resilient, in alignment with school philosophy, mission and positioning
A big-picture, strategic thinker who is flexible, highly detail-oriented, and has impeccable follow-through
Ability to deal diplomatically and comfortably with Board dynamics and discourse
Ability to communicate with a diverse community of parents, students, alumni, and faculty -- leading and motivating groups and individuals
Intellectual curiosity, coupled with a skill for synthesizing information and exceptional communication skills
Fluency and ability to articulate Gillen Brewer’s mission, unique vision, and case for support
Outstanding analytical skills used in identifying school needs, donors’ interest, and connecting the two
A high-touch relationship builder who thrives on community and connection; excellent interpersonal skills
High level of professionalism, including the ability to appropriately handle confidential and sensitive information
Eagerness to work hard as both leader and team member with proven fundraising, leadership, and consensus-building skills and a positive, passionate, can-do spirit
A disciplined, results-oriented self-starter with high ethical standards
Ability to meet deadlines within the context of a complex office/school calendar
Sense of humor; relentless optimism
Flexibility, energy, and ability to work evenings and weekends when needed: a strong work ethic
Professional Development The school is a community of learners. In addition to staff development and training at Gillen Brewer, employees are encouraged to pursue educational goals through conferences and various workshops. Staff is required to attend all staff development workshops as well as staff, team, and supervision meetings. Staff is also encouraged to attend all school functions listed on the school calendar.
Supervision & Support Staff Development and support will be provided and will include in-house and outside professional opportunities. The Chief Operating Officer will conduct two formal evaluations a year using this job description as a guide. Evidence of effectiveness will be collected through observations, discussions, and products.
To be considered, interested applicants MUST submit a cover letter, resume, and two reference letters. Please submit materials directly via email to HR@gillenbrewer.com OR apply on Indeed. Please include your name and the position of interest in the subject line of your email (i.e., Dionne Iovino - Director of Institutional Advancement and Major Gifts).
No telephone inquiries or recruiters please. Replies will only be sent to qualified applicants.
Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree in related field
At least 10 years of institutional advancement experience
Successful leadership of a Development and Advancement Office
Proven track record of successfully leading a capital campaign and comprehensive fundraising efforts
Extensive experience training Boards and working with Development Committees to set fundraising goals
Experience in training fundraising volunteers
Extensive experience soliciting and securing Major Gifts
Complete comfort in making Big Asks
Experience with graphic design, website/social media, and special events
Knowledge of mass-mailings and direct mail
Performance-based management with a service orientation
Experience with DonorPerfect or similar donor data management software
Strong computer skills including Google G-Suite and Microsoft Office
Physical Requirements The work environment consists of exposure to physical conditions typical of an office and school. Employees must be able to sit at a desk and work on a computer for long periods of time to complete necessary paperwork. Additionally, employees may also be required to perform activities which include but are not limited to: walking, standing, climbing up and down stairs, and lifting. Vision, with or without lenses, must be sufficient to read in both paper and digital formats. Employees must have the ability to hear, read, write, and speak in English.
You must be authorized to work in the United States and be willing to undergo a number of clearances, including NYC DOE fingerprinting, a medical health form, and other background checks.
About Gillen Brewer School
The Gillen Brewer School is a reputable special needs school in the Upper East Side of Manhattan dedicated to transforming the lives of young children with a wide variety of language, emotional, developmental and learning disabilities. The school specializes in educating children with challenging, and often multiple disabilities including language-based and non-verbal learning disabilities.