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Associate Athletics Director for Development

Northern Kentucky University
Kentucky, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Mar 24, 2023
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Position Information

Working Title
Associate Athletics Director for Development

Athletic Development

Compensation Title
Sr. Director of Development

Position Number

Position Status

Work Schedule

Varies, nights and weekends will be required

Hours per Week

Months per Year

Commitment to Inclusive Excellence

Northern Kentucky University is an Equal Opportunity/Equal Access/Affirmative Action institution. We embrace inclusiveness, equity, and global awareness in all dimensions of our work and seek excellence through diversity among our students, administrators, faculty, and staff. Application by members of diverse groups is encouraged.

Purpose of Position

The Associate Athletics Director for Development leads, plans, and executes fundraising initiatives for the Northern Kentucky University Athletics Department, reporting jointly to the Vice President and Director of Athletics and the Assistant Vice President of Development. The Associate AD will position the department to achieve significant growth in private contributions over the next 3-5 years in preparation for the next comprehensive campaign. Key elements of the plan will address program structure, pipeline development, portfolio optimization, and alignment with university and departmental priorities.

The Associate AD will collaborate closely with the Athletics Director and with key partners inside the Athletics Department and across University Advancement including Economic Engagement, Alumni Engagement and Annual Giving, Marketing and Communications, Advancement Operations, and Special Events, and will manage a team with responsibilities for the Go Norse Fund ( NKU Athletics’ annual giving club), athletics-specific special events, and alumni and donor relations.

The Associate AD will personally build and manage a portfolio of 75-100 major gift prospects to generate $1-2M in annual philanthropic revenue and leverage existing processes and tools for tracking and reporting gift officer metrics and results.

Primary Responsibilities

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
  • Serves as a member of the Executive Leadership/Senior Staff on the Athletics management team.
  • Develop and implement comprehensive cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies for individual prospects assigned. Work both independently and in concert with fellow gift officers and volunteers to implement strategies, including direct solicitation of gifts.
  • Make at least 10-15 substantive contacts per month with an emphasis on quality personal visits. (e.g. significant moves that advance a relationship).
  • Promote maximum involvement with and giving to the Athletics Department, including annual, capital, and planned gifts, from a portfolio of 100+ identified prospects.
  • Develop solicitation and closure strategies for major gifts aligned with the Athletics Department and University fundraising priorities and campaigns, measured against the attainment of personal metrics associated with the position.
  • Devise individualized involvement/engagement strategies for all prospects using a “top-down” approach to ensure that the highest-rated prospects receive the most attention.
  • Work closely with the Athletics Director and AVP of Development to clearly identify and communicate philanthropic priorities for the Athletics Department and support the Athletics Director in their philanthropic contacts.
  • Review and analyze the currently identified prospect pool to assess the accuracy of research and amend and expand as appropriate.
  • Advise the Athletics Director and AVP of Development on prospect management issues, challenges, and opportunities that affect the division’s effectiveness.
  • Schedule appointments and oversee the preparation of necessary materials, including funding proposals and briefings for senior leaders and board members when necessary, for all assigned prospects. Identify prospects to participate in specific events, committees, or other programs that promote the cultivation process.
  • Partner with the Donor Relations office to ensure stewardship is provided to donors on the existing endowment and current-use funds.
  • Respond quickly and effectively to strategic opportunities for increased prospect engagement.
  • Train, manage, and develop appropriate goals for departmental staff to ensure attainment of annual fundraising program objectives.
  • Provide support and guidance for volunteer group(s) associated with the Athletics Department to ensure department-based fundraising initiatives are aligned with NKU fundraising expectations.
  • Participate in signature events at the University that provide opportunities for strategic engagement with prospects and donors, including but not limited to Homecoming Weekend, Alumni Awards, donor recognition events, and athletic events.
  • Assists in monitoring development efforts in all sports for gender equity.
  • Attends Student-Athlete Advisory Committee ( SAAC ) meeting at least once per semester and be visible at various student-athlete educational programming events.
  • Develops and maintains working relationships with university officials, athletics league/conference, NCAA officers, officials from other universities, community leaders, and donors. Represents the Athletics Department in various committees as appointed.

The ability to demonstrate leadership, take initiative, problem-solve, act independently and as a team member, successfully collaborate, handle multiple tasks simultaneously, and prioritize. Also, should demonstrate strategic thinking, good judgment, maturity, personal integrity, strong interpersonal skills, accuracy, and attention to detail.

Excellent communication skills are required, with the ability to present information concisely and effectively, both verbally and in writing. Some travel, as well as evening/weekend work, is required—thorough knowledge of Microsoft Office including Excel, email products, and web browsers is required.

A bachelor’s degree is required, as is 5-7 years of progressive responsibility in fundraising or business development including 2 years of management experience, and a proven track record of closing gifts or contracts of $25K or more.

A minimum of five years of development experience, preferably in higher education, is desired. The successful candidate will demonstrate measurable success in closing major gifts ($25k or more) from alumni, friends, or organizations. A Master’s degree or at least five years of equivalent professional experience, previous experience working in collegiate athletics, and experience with gift planning concepts are preferred.

If you do not fit all these qualifications, education, or experience, but believe you are still a great fit, feel free to apply and tell us why in your cover letter.

The review of applicants will begin immediately. For full consideration apply by April 3, 2023

Minimum Education
Bachelor's Degree

Preferred Education
Bachelor's Degree

Minimum Experience
5 years


Pay Grade

Posting Detail Information

Requisition Number

Job Open Date

Job Close Date

Open Until Filled

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Supplemental Questions

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Documents Needed to Apply
Required Documents
  1. Resume
  2. Cover Letter/Letter of Application
  3. References
Optional Documents

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