Senior Director of Development

POSITION TITLE:  Senior Director of Development


This position is a front-line fundraising position responsible for identifying and developing a major gift pipeline to support the departments, programs, and initiatives at Fairmont State University.  The Senior Director of Development (SDD) is a leadership role responsible for planning and implementing comprehensive engagement and solicitation strategies to secure donors and contributors in support of the organization. 


  • Plans and leads all fund-raising efforts in cooperation and in coordination with FSU leadership and based on FSU priorities, to include the annual fund, major gifts, and planned-giving.
  • Plays a personal role in the gift process, especially in directing and personally cultivating, soliciting, and closing gifts at the highest levels in terms of total value and complexity of the transaction.
  • Fosters a culture of philanthropy and ensure that fundraising is executed in keeping with the organization’s values, vision, and mission.
  • Identifies key success metrics for individual, corporate, and foundation fundraising, and sets goals according to these metrics, for the organization and individual contributors.
  • Develops and maintains a comprehensive knowledge of the University, including its mission, history and current and future priorities, representing all aspects of the university and its opportunities and needs for private support.
  • Undertakes an aggressive plan to qualify, cultivate and solicit major gift prospects for the Foundation.
  • Manages a portfolio of major gift donors and prospects from initial qualification, cultivation, proposal development, solicitation and through stewardship.
  • Works with the President to develop and implement an annual work plan to fulfill all quantifiable personal work performance goals for contacts, major gift solicitations, closed major gifts, new major gift prospects identified, and revenue goals as set forth by the Foundation.
  • Collaborates with University deans and administrators on gift proposals for major gift prospects and to plan campus visits for alumni and other FSU constituencies.
  • Identifies engagement opportunities for donors by working with the foundation staff, university and alumni organizations to plan, execute and /or staff prospect cultivation, hospitality, donor stewardship, recognition programs, board meetings, academies, and other special events.
  • Drafts and executes gift agreements, gift acceptance letters, funding proposals, and other presentations associated with development work.
  • Maintains accountability and ensures compliance with all regulations and laws, as well as the code of ethics for fundraising professionals.
  • Trains, mentors, assesses, and manages one development officer toward exceptional fundraising performance.
  • Ensures that donor gift intentions and expectations are met with the parameters of FSF gift policies to ensure a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship.



Minimum eight years’ experience in not-for-profit fundraising.

  • Bachelor’s degree is required, master’s preferred.
  • At least eight years of progressive experience in fundraising, soliciting and securing major gifts.
  • At least four years’ experience in comprehensive university setting preferred.
  • Demonstrated excellent oral and written communication skills to interact with all constituencies, including but not limited to, speaking, writing, editing and proofreading.
  • Demonstrated excellent organizational skills required to coordinate and manage competing demands.
  • Ability to discover and interpret donor and giving trends and issues in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors.
  • Demonstrated ability to travel extensively by car/air, attend evening/weekend events, comply with travel policy/timelines.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of Microsoft Office, Windows, mobile technology, constituent management databases and professional use of social media.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with highly sensitive and confidential information.
  • Entrepreneurial in spirit, while operating in an environment of collaboration.
  • Flexibility and creativity to manage and rapidly changing and evolving circumstances.



May be required to use the computer screen for extensive periods of time.

Occasional lifting of 15 to 20 lbs.

Extended working hours and travel may be necessary.


Interested qualified candidates should forward a cover letter outlining how their skills and experiences match the above requirements, a current resume, and information for four professional references via email to:  Please include "SDD" in the subject line.