Vice President for Advancement

Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not specified
Sep 25, 2020
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

New England Historic Genealogical Society

Vice President for Advancement

Boston, Massachusetts

American Ancestors/New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), the nation’s founding resource for family history research, seeks an accomplished and strategic vice president for advancement to expertly lead all fundraising and engagement efforts on behalf of the organization. Reporting to the president and CEO, D. Brenton Simons, and serving as a key member of his senior management team, the vice president is responsible for elevating and enhancing the fundraising capabilities of the organization during an exciting and transformative moment in NEHGS’s history.  

The desire to understand and connect to one’s own family origins is universal and, in today’s ever-changing and dynamic world, is arguably more important than ever before. The practice of recording, preserving, and sharing family history provides a stronger understanding of not only our ancestors’ journeys, but the ways in which their journeys have profoundly impacted who we are today as individuals and as a society. As the nation’s leading comprehensive resource for genealogical research, American Ancestors/NEHGS endeavors to enable everyone and anyone to access their family’s story.  With more than 90 professional employees, 340,000 members, and 1.4 billion digital records, NEHGS provides expert services to help families explore their past and understand their unique and important place in history. The largest society of its kind in the world, NEHGS is dedicated to advancing the study of family history in America and beyond by educating, inspiring, and connecting people through its scholarship, collections, and expertise.

As NEHGS marks its 175th anniversary, the vice president will join the organization at a pivotal moment of celebration and invigoration. In 2016, NEHGS concluded an unprecedented $62.2 million comprehensive campaign, surpassing its original goal of $55 million. As part of this fundraising endeavor, NEHGS made a critical investment in its future by acquiring an adjacent building to enlarge its national headquarters. Charged with developing and overseeing philanthropic strategies for the Cornerstone Project, a current $26 million capital project, the vice president will harness this exciting momentum to further engage and enhance existing donors while simultaneously seeking out new giving opportunities.  This role is an exceptional opportunity for a high-performing individual to lead an advancement program in support of NEHGS’s mission through the implementation of best practices, team and capacity building, and the application of data-driven strategies which will create a philanthropic enterprise of unsurpassed effectiveness.

A seasoned advancement professional, the vice president will guide and support the president and CEO in his role as chief fundraiser, taking leadership in cultivating and soliciting transformative gifts and in operationalizing bold new ideas as well as time-tested techniques that will lead NEHGS to even greater levels of funding. This individual will also forge collaborative relationships with colleagues across the organization to coordinate and execute philanthropic initiatives. With management responsibility for a team of six advancement professionals, the vice president will further enhance the organizational structure to maximize efficiencies and stimulate collaboration among the various functions of the division. The vice president will inspire and motivate staff members to meet ambitious goals across annual, major, and planned giving; foundation and corporate giving; and capital campaigns. Additionally, this individual will personally engage a select portfolio of major and principal gift prospects and donors. With a sharp eye for operational efficiency and the best use of resources, the vice president will possess a demonstrated understanding of budgets and the ability to set and manage them.

NEHGS seeks a vice president who is entrepreneurial, proactive, and capable of articulating an overarching strategy while recognizing the importance of the details that are often the difference between success and failure. The successful candidate will be a highly organized and versatile team leader with extraordinary oral and written communication skills. With at least ten years of leadership experience in advancement, the ideal candidate must possess strong managerial, strategic planning, and motivational skills; a keen understanding of fundraising best practices; a comprehensive knowledge of all major advancement functions, including substantial experience with all phases of a successful comprehensive campaign; and a track record of significant personal success in donor cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship at the major and principal gift levels. The vice president will be a lifelong learner with a passion for and commitment to the mission of NEHGS, as well as an appreciation for and understanding of its contributions to historical and genealogical knowledge in America and beyond. 

New England Historic Genealogical Society has retained Jack Gorman of Isaacson, Miller, an international executive search firm, to assist in conducting this important search. For more information, to submit a nomination, or to apply for this role, please visit:

American Ancestor/New England Historic Genealogical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


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