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Director, Development and Gift Planning

Carnegie Mellon University University Advancement (UA)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Commensurate with experience
Posted Date
Aug 17, 2023

Job Summary

Carnegie Mellon is enjoying its most productive fundraising years in its history, raising more than $950M over the last three years. University Advancement (UA) supports the entire CMU community in building relationships with key constituencies and securing the financial resources the university needs to continue its ascent. As the division grows, we are seeking a director, Development and Gift Planning. This is an exciting opportunity if you thrive in an interesting and challenging work environment. Reporting to the senior director, Development and Gift Planning your primary responsibility will be to qualify, engage, solicit, and steward prospective planned giving donors and other high net worth prospects, serve as a philanthropic advisor and collaboratively craft creative giving options, including both planned and outright major gifts, tailored to the individual circumstances of each donor. You will also be expected to work independently while also being a solid team contributor to both the Development and Gift Planning office and the division of University Advancement.


Your core responsibilities will include:

  • Philanthropic Advising:
    • Identifying and cultivating gift planning and other high net worth prospects independently and in coordination with individual giving officers across the university. Heavy emphasis on personal visits with both prospects and/or their advisors.
    • Preparing and delivering gift planning strategies and proposals including detailed analysis of the various aspects of each gift plan.
    • Working with prospects, their advisors, and individual giving officers to complete and implement the proposed gift plan. Coordinating gift acceptance with the University Treasurer and the Office of the Chief Investment Officer.
    • Delivering appropriate follow-up correspondence and required IRS documentation.
    • Maintaining on-going personal contact with donors who have completed a gift plan
  • Participating in various gift planning marketing efforts as time and necessity warrant. Building and maintaining positive working relationships with TIAA Kaspick.
  • Personal Development:
    • Reading, networking, attending conferences and seminars, preparing and delivering presentations, and the like, maintaining an up-to-date knowledge of all financial, tax and legal ramifications pertaining to charitable giving, as well as, innovations and creative ideas in the gift planning field.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Passion, excellence and flexibility are vital qualities within University Advancement. A commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion; collaboration; and cultural sensitivity are valued competencies at CMU. Therefore, we are in search of a team member who is able to effectively interact with a varied population of internal and external partners at a high level of integrity. We are looking for someone who shares our values and who will support the mission of the university through their work.


You should demonstrate:

  • The ability to:
    • understand and articulate the objectives of the University Advancement division and to integrate and execute individually assigned goals within those objectives
    • lead, participate in, and advise all aspects of a donor’s gift process and to maintain consistent stewardship contacts with assigned donors
    • work with sensitive information, maintain confidentiality and use discretion prioritize
    • work and manage multiple tasks simultaneously
    • work independently and in small teams
    • manage difficult situations while maintaining composure
  • Excellent verbal, written and interpersonal skills Strong planning, organizational, and supervisory skills


You should be able to travel domestically and be willing to work outside of normal business hours as needed.



  • Bachelor’s degree is required; Master’s degree preferred.
  • Seven years of demonstrated development and successful gift planning experience, preferably in higher education.
  • Familiarity and experience in law, finance, marketing and sales is preferred.
  • Strong knowledge of the principles of fundraising and gift planning vehicles.
  • Broad knowledge of the tax, financial, and legal aspects of charitable giving.



  • Must possess and maintain a valid driver’s license and successfully complete a driver's license verification on an annual basis. Must complete the National Safety Council Defensive Driver Training once every three years
  • Successful background check

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