Director/Associate Director of Advancement, School of Architecture and Planning

Posted on 03/07/2023

University at Buffalo

Buffalo, NY

The University at Buffalo, a flagship university of the State University of New York (SUNY) system, is a research-intensive public university dedicated to academic excellence and making a positive impact on the world. As a member of the prestigious American Association of Universities (AAU), UB is recognized as one of the leading research universities in the world, while remaining affordable for many first-generation students. Home to more than 31,000 students from diverse backgrounds, UB offers exceptional student experiences inside and outside the classroom. By attracting the world’s best faculty and students, UB elevates the educational experience, brings an influx of national and global talent to Western New York, secures federal investments in academic research that tackles pressing societal problems, and catalyzes growth and innovation across business and industry. Here, students and faculty work side by side, seeking knowledge and practice that leads to better health, stronger buildings, more compassionate and just communities, innovative ways to teach, a more sustainable environment and smarter business practices for our world.

Position Overview:

Under the general leadership of the University at Buffalo’s Senior Associate Vice President for Advancement, the Director/Associate Director of Advancement, School of Architecture and Planning, will play an integral role in a comprehensive advancement program, geared to successfully meet the University’s goals for short and long-term private support. Duties and assignments include, but are not limited to, identifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding constituents capable of making major gifts. The Director/Associate Director will be tasked with developing, strengthening, and growing a full pipeline of prospects across the full spectrum of stage development, ranging from discovery through stewardship.

This position is an exciting opportunity within New York’s largest flagship university and a top-ranked architecture school. We look forward to welcoming to our team a highly motivated and goal-oriented professional with exceptional interpersonal skills and an ability to develop meaningful relationships both with campus partners and external constituents. The ideal candidate will be a problem-solver, see a challenge as an opportunity, and find motivation in a metrics-based higher education fundraising program.

The Director/Associate Director will join a team of individuals who are focused on ensuring sustainable philanthropic growth commensurate with the needs of the School of Architecture and Planning by engaging alumni and friends, soliciting prospects and stewarding donors in a professional and collaborative manner. As part of the division’s career pathways program, the Director/Associate Director additionally will be given the opportunity to learn about other areas of the university and to work with a broad range of prospects in order to position them more strongly for advancement within the division and rank.

Desired candidates are those that seek a challenging and results-oriented opportunity within a complex, diverse and multidisciplinary organization. Candidates with a strong track record of goal-achievement, a passion for higher education and research, and who are intellectually curious about the social and community impact of higher education and its constituents’ philanthropic passions are encouraged to apply. This position is based in Buffalo, NY with the potential for a hybrid work schedule.

Duties and Responsibilities: 

80% of activity

  • Works closely with the Senior Director, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and colleagues in the Division of University Advancement, as well as the dean, faculty, and key volunteers to pursue a coordinated and strategic program of cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of major gift prospects and donors for the School of Architecture and Planning.
  • Develops and manages a donor/prospect portfolio of individuals capable of making gifts of $50,000+, including individuals in early-stage cultivation and/or with whom the university has little to no relationship.
  • Documents contacts and strategies through the prospect tracking module of the EverTrue system, the in-house database for gift recording/reporting and all donor/prospect information. Adheres to the policies and procedures for accepting, recording, and acknowledging gifts.

20% of Activity

  • Participates as a full member of the University Advancement team, attending full staff meetings, gift officer meetings, professional development activities, and other staff meetings as appropriate.
  • Supports and contributes to strategic operating plans for the School of Architecture and Planning as directed by the Senior Director; establishes coordinated goals and implements programs to meet goals, and development policies and priorities.
  • Provides staff support for advisory/volunteer boards on advancement-related issues, as requested.
  • Participates in university and school events to cultivate relationships with donors, prospects, key volunteers, and all internal partners; as part of the career pathways program, the Director/Associate Director will also have opportunities to interact with leadership in other schools/units.
  • Pursues a carefully crafted career professional development program that supports the advancement and growth within the division and rank.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Reporting Relationships: 

The Director/Associate Director reports to the Senior Director of Advancement, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and works closely with the Dean of the School of Architecture and Planning. The Director/Associate Director works collaboratively with other advancement professionals and the faculty and staff in the School of Architecture and Planning to maximize the fund-development potential of the school.


Within the Division of University Advancement, the Director/Associate Director works closely with the Senior Director and in turn, the Senior Executive Director of Advancement for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. The Director/Associate Director collaborates with partners in Corporate and Foundation Relations, Planned Giving, Annual Giving, Donor Relations and Stewardship, Alumni Engagement, Donor and Alumni Communications, and Prospect Research. The Director/Associate Director will develop and maintain strong working relationships with donors, prospects, key volunteers, and all internal partners.

Key Qualities for Successful Fundraising: 

The Director/Associate Director must be results-oriented with professional characteristics that include leadership, commitment to confidentiality, flexibility, team-orientation, organized with an attention to detail, high-energy, optimism, and unquestioned professionalism. The Director/Associate Director will be adept at strategically guiding philanthropic conversations and developing and stewarding philanthropic relationships. The Director/Associate Director must have the ability to use digital technologies in all aspects of the role; information, communication, and basic problem-solving skills; and be data centric in their approach to achieving success. The Director/Associate Director also must be able to articulate the mission and goals of a public institution of higher education.

Minimum Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Associate Director: A minimum of three years in a fund-development role, with demonstrated success in goal-achievement and relationship management. Related experience in professional sales/marketing, financial planning/advising and other fields will be considered.
  • Director: A minimum of four years of fundraising experience, including personal solicitation, major gift solicitation, and proven success in goal achievement.
  • Strong problem-solving and oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to listen and interact effectively with donors or high-level volunteers.
  • Technical/digital competence.
  • Demonstrated commitment to collaboration as well as the ability to work well both independently and collectively with a diverse team and donor/prospect constituency.
  • Ability to travel up to 50% of the time, which includes travel to NYC, DC, and other regions as assigned, and work evenings and occasional weekends.

Salary Range: $70,000-90,000

The University at Buffalo is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and, in keeping with our commitment, welcomes all to apply including veterans and individuals with disabilities. The University is dedicated to the goal of building a culturally diverse and pluralistic University community committed to teaching and working in a multicultural environment. UB offers highly competitive salary and benefit packages for its advancement staff.

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