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Director of Prospect Development and Research

Vassar College
New York, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted date
Oct 19, 2021

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Business & Management, Management
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
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Vassar College

Director of Prospect Development and Research

Department: Individual Giving
Duration of Position: Full year / Full time
Work Schedule:
Employee Type: Administrator
Posting Date: 08/06/2021
Union Representation: Not Applicable
Posting Number: AS117P
Pay Rate:

About Vassar College
Located in the scenic Mid-Hudson Valley, Vassar College is a highly selective, residential, coeducational liberal arts college. Vassar is deeply committed to fostering a community that reflects the values of a liberal arts education and to promoting an environment of equality, diversity and inclusiveness. Vassar seeks to create a pluralistic community for all staff, faculty and students. Vassar College is an Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity employer, and applications from women, individuals with disabilities and members of historically underrepresented groups are especially encouraged.  Vassar College is a smoke-free, tobacco-free campus. Note: Vassar College has a universal vaccination policy requiring a COVID-19 vaccination for all employees except for those exempt for medical or religious reasons.

Position Summary and Responsibilities
Founded in 1861, Vassar was established with a mission to offer young women a liberal arts education equal to the best men's colleges of the day. Coeducational since 1969, Vassar continues to reflect its bold and distinctive history of progressive leadership in higher education and is consistently ranked among the country's top residential liberal arts institutions.

Today, under the leadership of President Elizabeth Bradley, Vassar is deeply engaged in a comprehensive and participatory approach to the ongoing work of becoming a fully inclusive and equitable community. We affirm the inherent value of a diverse campus through a commitment to need-blind admissions and a curriculum that is reflective of the interconnectedness of our lives as members of multiple local and global communities.

Vassar is poised to launch an historic $500 million comprehensive campaign that will deepen our investment in financial aid and student life, expand research opportunities for our world-class faculty, and provide critical support for curricular innovation, racial justice and community engagement, environmental sustainability, admissions and career education.

The Opportunity

The Office of Advancement seeks a Director of Prospect Development and Research to lead a comprehensive program that encompasses proactive and reactive prospect identification, donor research, wealth and giving capacity assessment, market research, data mining, and related vendor screening products and relationships. Reporting to the Associate Vice President for Individual Giving, the Director will manage the strategic organization of the team, bringing both strong data analytics skills and an appreciation for the complexities of relationship management to the work of building a pipeline of prospective donors to support Vassar's ambitious campaign goals. Working in close collaboration with the Advancement leadership team, the Director will provide consultation on portfolio management, metrics and benchmarking, and moves management tracking for the principal gifts, leadership gifts, parent giving, and gift planning teams. Innovation, collaboration, good humor, and a drive to make a measurable, positive impact on fundraising results will be essential to success in this important role.

We welcome candidates who have experience within and beyond higher education who embrace Vassar's mission and its commitment to diversity and inclusion, and who wish to have a real impact on advancing the College at this pivotal time.

  • Plan and manage a robust program of prospect identification, research, and prospect development by employing sophisticated data analytics and modeling techniques to build and refine Vassar's pipeline of qualified donors and identify areas for growth.
  • Work closely with the VP for Advancement, AVP for Individual Giving, and the Individual Giving leadership team on campaign planning and strategy.
  • Perform advanced prospect research aligned with special campaign and presidential priorities, which may include but would not be limited to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives; The Francis Lehman Loeb Art Museum; Health, Wellness, and Athletics; capital and program support for a new Admissions and Career Education Center; increased giving through trusts and estates, complex assets, and family wealth strategies.
  • Collaborate with Advancement and campus partners to design and implement an annual wealth screening process for newly admitted parents and families.
  • Ensure that timely delivery of a high-quality prospect research is consistently achieved within a fast-paced, campaign-driven environment.
  • Manage two highly skilled and experienced Senior Associate Directors as well as a Research Specialist; oversee individual and departmental goal setting; conduct performance appraisals, and support professional development for the team.
  • Implement and monitor best practices to ensure compliance with business practices, fundraising systems, and information gathering that conforms to privacy and ethics standards as dictated by the Association for Professional Researchers in Advancement.
  • Manage departmental budget, vendor relationships, and service contracts.
  • Work with the Director of Campaign Operations to develop prospect pipeline analytics, modeling, forecasting, and reporting.

  • Bachelor’s degree or commensurate experience necessary.
  • 10+ years of experience; background in higher education fundraising preferred.
  • Demonstrated success in a team-management/supervisory role required.
  • Commitment to working in a diverse and inclusive environment.
  • Expertise and facility with wealth screening, data mining, donor modeling, and data analytics techniques, tools, and platforms.
  • Strong organizational, planning, and project-management skills.
  • Ability to distill and explain complex information in a variety of formats, including written documentation, graphic representation, and verbal presentations.
  • High level of attention to detail, accuracy, and thoroughness.
  • Willingness to work in a demanding, fast-paced environment.
  • Appreciation for the impact of philanthropy and the value of a liberal arts education.
  • Flexibility, curiosity, and enthusiasm for problem-solving.
  • Knowledge of CRM database management systems and reporting applications.
  • Proficient in MSWord, Excel, Powerpoint, Google Suite, and the ability and curiosity to learn new software.

Special Instructions to Applicants
To complete your on-line application, you will be required to attach your resume, cover letter, and contact information for 3 professional references. All attachments must be in PDF format. Review of applications will begin immediately. If you have any questions, please contact Human Resources, 845-437-5820.

For full consideration applicants should apply by:

All applicants must apply online at:

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