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Senior Director of Philanthropy, Engineering

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Daytona Beach, Florida, United States
Salary Not Specified
Date posted
Apr 22, 2024
Job Description

The Opportunity:

Since its inception, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has remained best in class — the unquestioned global leader in aerospace education, and the definitive source of innovation in aviation and aerospace education and research. The largest, most comprehensive institution of its kind, Embry-Riddle was founded in 1926, 22 years after the Wright brothers’ first demonstration of piloted, powered flight: 12 seconds that changed the world and eventually brought Embry-Riddle into being. Today, with a nearly 100-year legacy of innovation and excellence in education, even greater accomplishments lie ahead — and above!

Embry-Riddle holds multiple Top 10 academic rankings. Our aerospace engineering programs, for example, have routinely been judged to be the nation’s best. With a long history of serving those who serve, Embry-Riddle is annually named “Best for Veterans.” In addition, the university’s online bachelor’s degree programs have ranked first or second in the nation for the past eight years. And, Embry-Riddle’s professional pilot degree programs are the unquestioned gold standard for aspiring aviators.

As we prepare for our Centennial Campaign, there has never been a more exciting time to make your mark on our University’s history. We seek a dynamic and seasoned fundraiser to join the Office of Philanthropy & Alumni Engagement in the role of Senior Director of Philanthropy for the College of Engineering.

Under the leadership of Dean Jim Gregory, the College of Engineering is the nation’s largest educator of aerospace engineers and stands as a beacon of excellence in engineering education. Renowned for its cutting-edge facilities and innovative curriculum, the College offers students a unique blend of practical and theoretical knowledge tailored to the demands of the aerospace industry.

Reporting to the Assistant Vice President of Philanthropy, and collaborating closely with the Dean of the College, the Senior Director of Philanthropy and Alumni Engagement for the College of Engineering will chart the course for the College’s fundraising success, cultivating relationships with esteemed alumni, foundations, and our many corporate partners.

This isn't just a job – it's an opportunity to be a catalyst for change, a champion of innovation, and a guardian of our legacy. If you're ready to make waves, break barriers, and leave an indelible mark on the future of aerospace education, we want you on our team.

Responsibilities include the following:

Major Gifts

The Senior Director shall be assigned a portfolio of 75 to 150 major prospects and shall conduct discovery, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship within this portfolio. They will engage current and prospective donors through print or electronic correspondence, calls, encounters at events, and, most importantly, individual, face-to-face visits, traveling extensively. The Senior Director’s primary objective is to secure gifts for the College of Engineering, though additional opportunities may be pursued to optimize overall giving to the University. A major gift is defined as $5,000; however, the pursuit of gifts of $25,000 or more must be emphasized to achieve annual goals.

Develop Major Gift Strategies

Develop long-term strategies and tactics for each prospect, implement them, and collaborate with division colleagues to achieve unit and institutional donor engagement and stewardship goals. The Sr. Director’s primary responsibility is to work with the Dean of the College to develop and execute giving strategies for the prospects assigned to them for the College.

Unit Liaison

Coordinate and participate in development activities within the College of Engineering. Participate in leadership meetings to better understand the College’s needs, challenges, and opportunities. Assist in coordinating central advancement efforts in the areas of annual giving, advancement communications, data acquisition, planned giving programming, donor relations, and donor impact reporting associated with the College of Engineering. Build lasting, effective relationships with administrators, faculty, and staff associated within the College and across campus to engage them in philanthropic efforts. Advise the Dean on the institution’s philanthropic policies, practices, schedules, and strategies, as well as general best practices in philanthropy. Ensure a healthy relationship between the College, other units, central advancement, and the University. Effectively deploy the College Dean and their personnel to support the College’s fundraising goals.

Collaboration and Communication

Regularly prepare fundraising outreach/updates/communications on behalf of the College to ensure robust donor engagement and awareness of the fundraising needs. Stay apprised of upcoming University outreach events to secure new major gift leads. Communicate regularly and professionally with marketing/communications colleagues, development officers, alumni relations officers, and other university personnel. Attendance and participation in regular staff and frontline fundraiser meetings is expected to ensure that activities are coordinated with other development and alumni relations efforts. Serve on various committees as requested by the supervisor.

About Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University:

At Embry-Riddle, we take pride in our position as the world's largest and most comprehensive university dedicated to aviation and aerospace. Located in Daytona Beach, Florida, and Prescott, Arizona, our esteemed residential campuses offer a prestigious educational experience. However, our commitment to education knows no borders as our Worldwide campus expands our reach globally, providing a world-class education online and at approximately 110 locations across the United States, Asia, Europe, and Central and South America. This breadth of reach ensures that students can access our exceptional programs without geographical limitations.

With a history spanning nearly a century, we have continually adapted to the dynamic needs of the industries we support. In the Academic Year 2022-23, we welcomed over 11,100 students to our residential campuses and over 19,000 students at our worldwide campus.

Join our global community and embark on a journey of academic excellence and limitless possibilities. Employees working more than 30 hours a week can enjoy medical, dental and vision benefits, an amazing retirement plan with immediate vesting that includes a 6% gift and up to 4% match, free tuition for employees and their immediate family members, and a generous personal leave program. To find out more about our benefits and why ERAU has been named a “Great College to Work For” for 13 consecutive years, visit our careers page .


Required Qualifications:
  • A bachelor’s degree is required (foreign equivalent or higher).
  • Six (6) years of full-time fundraising experience in higher education, a complex healthcare system, or a large non-profit.
  • Proven record of success in cultivating, soliciting, and closing major level ($100,000+) gifts from individual donors.
  • Experience managing numerous priorities and a broad portfolio of donor/client relationships.
  • Experience with Salesforce or comparable donor relationship applications.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • A master’s degree.
  • Additional years of fundraising experience in higher education, a large non-profit, or a healthcare institution, experience at an academic or medical center, experience managing volunteers or an advisory board.
  • Comfort with cultivating relationships with high-net-worth individuals, including the ability to maintain confidential information, and basic knowledge of planned giving vehicles and techniques.
  • Experience developing a new donor constituency.

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