Regional Associate Development Director, Major Gifts

Posted on 11/30/2022

Duke Alumni Engagement & Development

Durham, NC

The Regional Development Associate Director in the Major & Leadership Gifts Program is responsible for the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individual prospects at the $100,000 – $5,000,000 level. Regional Development Associate Directors manage portfolios of prospects with multiple University affiliations and philanthropic interests in a regionally organized program.  Specifically, their region will be comprised of Tier two and three geographies within the United States and Canada.  Because these areas have not been the primary focus of fundraisers within Major & Leadership Gifts and across the University, the Regional Development Associate Director is essential to build the major gift pipeline for schools and units as well as university development in these tier two and three geographies.  In addition, Regional Development Associate Directors are responsible for making leadership annual fund solicitations and having preliminary planned giving conversations.

Essential Job Functions


  • Soliciting, cultivating and securing gifts for all schools and units at Duke University, with emphasis on gifts of $100,000 – $5M.
  • Developing and maintaining portfolio of prospects and maintaining active efforts to evaluate prospects identified through fieldwork, screening, and research.
  • Developing, executing and leading strategies for engagement, cultivation and solicitation of single and multi-interest donors,
  • Collaborating actively with fundraising colleagues in schools and units based on the prospects expressed interests.
  • Traveling frequently to his/her assigned region but also integrating the use of virtual technology to conduct meetings.
  • As opportunities become available, traveling with the president, provost, deans and interdisciplinary initiative directors to cultivate and solicit prospects or attend fundraising events, involving top Duke University academicians, leaders and volunteers in fund raising efforts.  In addition to joint travel, making full use of virtual technology to connect prospects in the region with academic leadership, senior administrators, faculty, and development colleagues.
  • Maintaining active communication with development officers throughout the University to inform of travel and visit potential prospects, coordinate prospect activity, collaborate on strategy and make and “take” referrals.
  • Demonstrating decisiveness and sound judgment to predict how a decision will affect individuals and groups in the department or university and developing strategies to build support for the decision.
  • Developing thoughtful stewardship plans for key donors.

Identifying new major gift prospects to add to his/her portfolio and who will support the greatest philanthropic priorities across all University schools and units.

  • Identifying volunteers, encouraging their placement on school or unit boards or other activities and involving University representatives as appropriate.
  • Meeting with Duke prospects identified by PRMA, fieldwork, individual prospecting, and screenings to personally qualify their financial capacity and inclination to make gifts to Duke.
  • Soliciting leadership annual fund gifts for all schools and units at Duke University.


  • Maintaining a robust knowledge of University-wide funding priorities, and a general knowledge of school and unit funding priorities; keeping abreast of institutional and departmental priorities, university programs, personalities and events.
  • Maintaining a working knowledge of Duke’s regional volunteer and prospect base and regional activities.
  • Writing detailed clear and concise contact reports and conduct follow-up communication for individual meetings.
  • Acquiring and maintaining a working knowledge of Duke’s regional volunteer and prospect base and regional activities.
  • Acquiring and maintaining a working knowledge of University-wide funding priorities, and a general knowledge of school and unit funding priorities.
  • Reporting on activity on a regular basis in accordance with the Major & Leadership Gift team standards.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.

Preferred Experience

Five years experience required in alumni affairs, public relations, fundraising, or a related field in order to acquire skills necessary to administer, coordinate, and/or participate in solicitation, including three years of direct fundraising experience.

Desired Skills

  • Ability to think strategically about identifying prospects and connecting donors to Duke.
  • Demonstrated ability to handle multiple fundraising activities simultaneously.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • High level of creativity, initiative, and motivation.
  • Demonstrated ability to handle multiple, complex fundraising activities simultaneously.
  • Must be willing to travel.
  • Ability to plan and implement a fundraising plan for a metropolitan area of strategic importance to Duke University

Required Behavioral Competencies

  • Collaborating with others: Ability to work collaboratively, formally and informally within one’s team and across the organization.
  • Listening: Be an “active listener.” Receptive to speaker. Is easy to talk to and gets people to open up. Picks up on underlying messages. “Hears between the lines.”
  • Goal & Task Management: Prioritize and coordinate tasks with attention to deadlines, concurrent management of projects and ability to create and follow a set strategy to goals and objectives.
  • Curiosity & Information Seeking: Expresses an underlying curiosity in people and an ability to go beyond questions that are routine to gain an understanding of the prospects capacity, affinity and inclination.
  • Decisiveness & Judgment: Avoids making assumptions about the facts. Requires the consideration of multiple factors and influences in making decisions.
  • Expressing ideas orally and in writing: Ability to effectively, and persuasively communicate ideas, thoughts, and facts orally and in writing.
  • Self-Management: Manages time efficiently and effectively. Gives and seeks feedback on own performance. Perseveres in the face of performance obstacles for the achievement of work objectives. Consistently chooses an ethical course of action for workplace behavior. Forms relations with seniors, staff and peers that produce trust and approachability
  • Flexibility: The ability to adapt to and work effectively with a variety of situations, and with various individuals or groups.
  • Models Integrity and Ethics:  Demonstrates accountability for actions. Keeps promises and commitments made to others. Serves as a role model of ethical behavior by consistently conforming to the highest ethical standards and practices. Champions organizational values.
  • Organizational Awareness: Ability to learn and understand organizational relationships and dynamics and use them to achieve objectives and goals.
  • Ability to Influence: Ability to move or persuade others to act in a desired way.
  • Dealing with Ambiguity: Makes decisions and takes action with as much relevant information as possible.

Minimum Qualifications


Work requires communications, analytical and organizational skills generally acquired through completion of a bachelor’s degree program.


Work requires seven years experience in alumni affairs, public relations, fundraising, sales and promotions, marketing or a related field in order to acquire skills necessary to administer, coordinate and/or participate in general fund raising activities and proposal development OR AN EQUIVALENT COMBINATION OF RELEVANT EDUCATION AND/OR EXPERIENCE

Duke is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual’s age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

Duke aspires to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas—an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values.

Essential Physical Job Functions: Certain jobs at Duke University and Duke University Health System may include essentialjob functions that require specific physical and/or mental abilities. Additional information and provision for requests for reasonable accommodation will be provided by each hiring department.

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