Director, Principal Gifts, University Development Office Harvard University Alumni Affairs and Development, United States

Director, Principal Gifts, University Development Office

Harvard University Alumni Affairs and Development, United States

We are seeking a Director of Principal Gifts on the University Development Office team within Harvard Alumni Affairs and Development.
Alumni Affairs and Development (AA&D) comprises the University Development Office (UDO), Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Development, AA&D Resources, and the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA). There is a unique relationship between the University and the FAS fundraising operations, resulting from a long history in which University fundraising ultimately grew out of College fundraising.
University Development Office (UDO)
UDO works closely with the President and Provost, and their teams, to determine their development efforts, leads fundraising for University principal gifts, initiatives and international fundraising, and coordinates cultivation and stewardship strategies for a select group of top prospects.

As a Principal Gifts front-line fundraiser in the University Development Office (UDO), the Director plays a leadership role in shaping Harvard’s engagement of individual principal gifts prospects for eight- and nine-figure gifts.
The position reports to the Senior Executive Director, Principal Gifts, and serves as a senior fundraiser in the University. The Director will be Cambridge-based with a portfolio focused on University principal gifts prospects in multiple regions.
Fundraising activity will advance University priorities, which include School-based priorities as well as University-wide priorities as defined by the President and Provost. The Director will work in close collaboration with senior academic and development administrators, and fundraisers at all Harvard Schools. As a member of the UDO Principal Gifts team, the Director will, in some instances, also play an advising and strategic thought partnership role, working with School fundraisers as part of a team developing and advancing strategies.
The Director will manage a principal gifts portfolio of at least 35 active prospects, donors, and volunteer leaders.

  • Manages a prospect portfolio of prospects with the capacity to give $25 million or more, with a focus on matching the prospects’ philanthropic interests with institutional needs and opportunities. Works closely with fundraisers and University service teams across Harvard to develop and manage engagement, solicitation and stewardship strategies for high capacity prospective donors. Meets expectations for metrics as defined by the Senior Executive Director, Principal Gifts.
  • The Director, as a member of the UDO team, will personally engage potential donors in their portfolio, and also advise and serve as a thought partner to colleagues on strategies, including by serving as a former or informal member of a team in which another fundraiser is driving the strategy.
  • Stays abreast of content that relates to academic and programmatic priorities across the University, particularly those of interest to the prospects in the principal gifts portfolio, and overall University news.
  • Plans, staffs, and briefs senior academic administrators and faculty for substantive, strategic prospect/donor visits and events.
  • Collaborates with colleagues on the resources teams to develop events, communications, and stewardship – for the cultivation, solicitations and stewardship needed to advance principal gifts.
  • Travels as needed to cultivate, solicit, and steward donors.
  • Works with volunteer leaders to advance prospect and donor activity.
  • As a member of UDO, strives to meet departmental and University goals for fundraising, as part of a fundraising team that includes UDO international, initiatives, and planned giving.
  • Represents UDO and Harvard with professionalism, collegiality, expertise, service, and grace. Exhibit Alumni Affairs and Development (AA&D) values including transparency, honesty, integrity, and inclusion, in all dealings.
  • The above covers the most significant responsibilities of this position. It does not, however, exclude other duties, the inclusion of which would be in conformity with the level of the position.

This role will have a 6-month probationary period.
Please include a cover letter with your application.
About Harvard University

Harvard University, based in Cambridge and Boston, Massachusetts, was established in 1636 and is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States. The University is home to over 20,000 students and employs 18,000 people, making us the fifth-largest employer in Massachusetts. Harvard is a special place, filled with diverse, energetic, and talented people who are driven to grow and succeed. By working here, you join a vibrant community that advances Harvard’s world-changing mission in meaningful ways, inspires innovation and collaboration, and builds skills and expertise.
Why AA&D?

We are a dedicated team of 400 staff who foster engagement with alumni, parents, and friends of Harvard through roles that include front-line fundraising, alumni and volunteer engagement, technology, events, communications, as well as many other areas. Our department recruits for over 100 positions annually that range from entry-level to senior leadership roles.
The mission of AA&D is to maintain and enhance a highly engaged, vibrant community of alumni and friends worldwide and to lead the University’s fundraising efforts in support of Harvard’s mission.
AA&D is committed to diversity. We welcome applicants who bring varied experience, thought, and practice to the department. To learn more about how Harvard supports diversity and inclusion throughout the University please visit the Office for Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging at
h ttps:// .
Discover AA&D and Harvard University Benefits

  • Opportunities for internal advancement
  • A creative, high- energy, collaborative environment
  • Generous Vacation, Sick, Personal, and Holiday pay
  • Medical, Dental and Vision benefits starting on your first day
  • University-funded retirement plans
  • Tuition Assistance Program
  • Transportation benefits to help with your daily commute
  • Health and wellness discounts, memberships and program

Additional benefits can be found at h ttps:// .
Salary Grade: 060
Union: 00 – Non Union, Exempt or Temporary 

The ideal candidate has a minimum of 10 years of experience as a seasoned fundraising professional.
The ideal candidate has a sophisticated and comprehensive understanding of fundraising principles and practices, an orientation toward action, and a high level of intellectual curiosity.
Additionally the Director will exhibit strong soft skills that include an ability to form strong relationships within the University and externally, an ability to work effectively as a member of a team, an ability to leverage volunteer leadership in advancing donor relationships and gift discussions, an ability to translate a broad range of academic areas into inspiring visions for donors, and a high level of adaptability and flexibility as needs and priorities change.
Due to frequent interaction with senior administrators and faculty and donors, the Director must possess excellent communication skills, the ability to process and maintain confidential information, and ably lead others in moving prospect strategy forward.
Candidates with experience in higher education, particularly, at a major research university, are preferred.
The Director will demonstrate professionalism, collegiality, self-motivation, and organization.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER: We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. 

Internal Number: 52688BR

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