The Director of Annual Giving Programs is a key member of Wellesley’s high-performing Development division and leads the team that is responsible for raising the funds from alumnae, parents, friends, and students that support the annual operating needs of Wellesley College.
The Director is responsible for the development and implementation of annual giving strategies and activities, with the goal of growing unrestricted giving and increasing the percentage of alumnae who support the Fund. The Director will develop marketing and solicitation strategies, solicit and close gifts where needed and partner with high level volunteer leaders.
Annual Giving serves as the foundational program for giving to Wellesley; the Director oversees a series of programs, which raise approximately $12 million per year:
The Wellesley Fund, which raises in excess of $10 million in unrestricted and current-use financial aid;
The Parents Fund ($1M/year in restricted and unrestricted gifts);
the Office of Religious & Spiritual Life ($100K annually);
the Student Philanthropy Program ($6K annually);
the Durant Society, Wellesley’s premier leadership giving society recognizing gifts across the College of $2,500+; and
the College’s alumnae participation efforts (ranges from 46%-52% annually).
To achieve top results each year, the Director works closely with a variety of partners within Development, across the College, and with the Alumnae Association. In particular, the Director collaborates closely with the Development Marketing team to develop a coordinated plan that maximizes the effectiveness of staff and volunteer outreach in conjunction with appeals through various direct response marketing channels (mail, phone, email, short-term, focused online giving efforts, etc.). In addition, for the next three years the Director will play a pivotal role in a grant-funded pilot initiative involving five selective liberal arts colleges that aims to support liberal arts colleges in their effort to increase the number of donations from young alumni/ae and, therefore, fortify the habit of giving for the longer term.
Primary Position Responsibilities
Key responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
Facilitate the design, oversight and evaluation of annual giving leadership giving strategies that are coordinated and integrated with the Leadership & Planned Giving Programs.
Provide direct support to top tier volunteer leadership, including the Annual Giving Chair, the Durant Chair, and key Chairs of the Friends groups.
Ensure sophisticated staff support for recruitment, training, management, and stewardship of annual giving volunteers.
Collaborate closely with colleagues in Leadership & Planned Giving; Advancement Services; Development Marketing; the Wellesley College Alumnae Association, including Reunion Programs; the Davis Museum, Athletics, Botanic Gardens, the Library & Technology Services; Office of Religious & Spiritual Life; and the broader campus community.
Manage a staff of frontline fundraisers and one administrative assistant.
Oversee development of volunteer training programs and tools to export successful practices from highest performing classes to the entire volunteer network.
Effectively communicate college and annual giving goals and initiatives to volunteers, alumnae, parents, and internal constituencies.
Work closely with volunteers to support class goals, strategies, leadership cultivation, events, stewardship, problem solving and evaluation of results.
Ensure effective oversight of annual giving events for volunteers and donors both on campus and regionally.
Coordinate annual giving solicitations from all leadership alumni volunteer groups, including the Board of Trustees, the WCAA Board of Directors, the Friends National Committees, the Business Leadership Council, and all annual giving volunteers.
Facilitate team collaboration with Development Marketing in the creation, budgeting for, and production of all print and electronic communications for annual giving.
Work closely with Advancement Services to assess technology and tool needs of staff and volunteers, to enable dashboard-based reporting of progress against goals, and to model performance of defined donor segments.
This highly collaborative position requires knowledge of fundraising principles, ethics, volunteer management and trends in higher education-including fundraising for annual gifts, major gifts and designated gifts.
Solid project management skills are necessary, including the ability to collaboratively set goals, effectively plan for their achievement and evaluate outcomes.
Sophisticated people management skills, including the ability to inspire and support volunteers, and motivate and delegate to staff are critical.
The Director must have the capacity to work creatively, sensitively, and professionally with a diverse, highly educated volunteer corps and members of the academic community.
Strong written, quantitative, oral communications, critical thinking, technology and listening skills are essential.
The Director must be able to work independently and as part of a team, juggle multiple competing priorities, deadlines and tasks.
Supervises front-line fundraisers and the Annual Giving Programs administrative assistant.
Candidates should have advanced through a minimum of ten years of progressively complex roles directing nonprofit or higher education fundraising programs and show demonstrated success as a manager and fundraiser.
Skills and Abilities Required
Minimum of ten years previous development experience, preferably in higher education, with proven success in growing both revenue and percentage of participation.
Excellent planning and organizational skills, with an ability to prioritize and manage multiple tasks.
Attention to detail, high level of productivity, and a solution-oriented performer who can be highly responsive to donor, staff and volunteer needs. Strong technical skills in generic software programs (Excel, Microsoft, Power Point) and information systems.
An authentic appreciation for liberal arts education and women’s education, particularly the education and opportunities provided by Wellesley, and an ability to articulate eloquently its particular mission.
An understanding of, and appreciation for, inclusive excellence within a higher education setting.
Excellent interpersonal skills, an ability to work collaboratively, and an orientation toward customer service.
Superior written and oral communication skills.
Strong analytical skills, including the ability to look at data and draw conclusions.
Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, working both independently and as a member of a team.
Enthusiasm, ability to take risks, and the courage to speak and act on convictions.
Absolute confidentiality, professionalism, and discretion required.
A sense of humor appreciated.
A valid license required. This is an exempt, full-time position reporting to the Vice President for Development. Some night and weekend work are required, as is periodic travel outside of the state of Massachusetts.
Wellesley is known for the excellence of its education, the beauty of its setting, its gifted faculty, and the uniqueness of its campus culture. But most of all, Wellesley is known for the thousands of accomplished, thoughtful women it has sent out into the world for over 100 years women who are committed to making a difference. Every year, some 2,400 of the world's top undergraduate women are challenged to exceed their own highest personal and intellectual expectations. The mastery Wellesley graduates demonstrate across the professional and vocational spectrum, and the influence they wield, whether in their own communities or on the world stage is testament to a singularly empowering undergraduate experience. Wellesley's lively academic community places a high value on rigorous, probing inquiry, and creative, cross-discipline thinking. Its collaborative approach to scholarship encourages students to question, debate, and refine their points of view, not only with each other, but with our world-class faculty, often by working directly with them on groundbreaking projects. A Wellesley education fosters the highest standard of readiness for the real world in its graduates, in terms... of ability to think, act, and contribute meaningfully and effectively in their chosen areas of interest.