Director of Development, Annual Giving, Sturm College of Law

Posted on 01/24/2023

University of Denver

Denver, CO

n preparation for the most ambitious philanthropic campaign in the University’s history, the University of Denver is building an advancement enterprise that mirrors the excellence of our great institution. Advancement efforts at DU have a tremendous impact through our relationships with DU’s remarkable students, dedicated donors, inspiring alumni, engaged families, and wonderful friends. DU is committed to building and fostering a culture of deep engagement and philanthropy in support of our institution as we implement the DU IMPACT 2025 vision and prepare for a fundraising campaign with a bold and courageous goal.

The University of Denver and DU Advancement deeply value inclusive excellence, recognizing that its success is dependent on how well it values, engages, and includes the rich diversity of constituents. You can learn more about inclusive excellence at the University of Denver by visiting the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. As a part of that effort, we are continuing to grow a team of inclusive, collaborative, inquisitive, innovative, ethical, and transparent advancement professionals who possess deep mutual respect for one another and for our shared profession.

About Sturm College of Law: 

Founded in 1892, the Sturm College of Law is a nationally recognized leader in experiential legal education, with top 15 programs in advocacy, clinical training, and legal writing. The law school features internationally acclaimed faculty, talented and dedicated staff, outstanding and public-spirited students, and alumni who have achieved careers of distinction in law, business, government, and the non-profit sector. As Denver’s only law school, the Sturm College of Law benefits from unique access to one of the nation’s most dynamic legal markets. Under Dean Bruce Smith, the law school seeks to build upon its significant and distinctive contributions to American legal education in the realms of experiential learning, interdisciplinary research, educational opportunity, access to justice, and global impact.

Position Summary: 

The University of Denver is seeking an experienced, driven, and passionate fundraiser to join a dynamic, collaborative, and high functioning team. Reporting directly to the Executive Director for Development within Sturm College of Law and partnering closely with academic leaders, colleagues and peers, the Director of Development, Annual Giving, is a key member of the frontline development team. The Director will be responsible for raising philanthropic gifts in support of the Sturm College of Law and a variety of other annual and strategic initiatives.

The Director of Development will focus on building a robust Annual Fund Program through email, direct mail, and meaningful donor visits and personal solicitations with the goal of growing the program to raise $1,000,000+ annually. The Director will have responsibility for creating the conditions for successful solicitations through activities including leadership of unit-level stewardship activities in partnership with the central donor relations team, strategic partnership in events and reunions with the Senior Director of Alumni Engagement, and active contribution to unit-level alumni communications. The Director will have individual giving metrics for face-to-face visits and solicitations as well as donor acquisition and retention.

The Director of Development will collaborate with Advancement leadership and senior university administrators to determine and implement institutional fundraising priorities, establish short- and long-term strategies, and monitor progress toward goals. The campus-wide Advancement team is highly collaborative in its work and the Director will be expected to build and foster extensive value-added relationships with their campus partners.

Essential Functions: 

Identification & Qualification

  • Develop a working knowledge of the Sturm College of Law in general and funding priorities specifically to articulate a compelling case for support to all stakeholders.
  • Build systems and processes to grow and strengthen the donor pipeline in the Sturm College of Law through focus on donor acquisition, donor retention, and gift upgrades.
  • Personally upgrade high potential prospects through face-to-face meeting and calls as appropriate.
  • Identify potential major gift and estate gift prospects from the annual giving donor pool.
  • Develop and maintain a system to share major gifts prospects with Director of Development and to integrate disqualified major gift prospects into annual giving pool.


  • Develop meaningful and productive relationships with various prospects and donors including alumni, friends, law firms and parents.
  • Focus on reactivation, renewal and upgrading gifts that are given annually, as well as acquisition of new donors, through targeted solicitations.
  • Establish strategy for and manage acquisition initiatives such as the Law Firm Challenge and 1Day4DU.
  • Identify and manage law school specific annual giving stewardship strategies in partnership with the central stewardship team.
  • Leverage key volunteer groups, including the Alumni Board and the Volunteer Leadership Council to grow the base of support through individual participation and peer-to-peer efforts.
  • Raise $1M+ annually at the Annual Giving and Leadership Annual Giving levels.


  • In partnership with the Dean and the Executive Director of Development within the Sturm College of Law, establish Annual Giving fundraising priorities for the Sturm College of Law.
  • Serve as a prominent member of the Sturm College of Law team by participating in group strategy discussions, providing project leadership, sharing information with colleagues and contributing to the achievement of the overall goals of the College.
  • Engage in Advancement goal-setting processes for fundraising, engagement and stewardship.
  • Manage student employee(s) in support of Annual Giving efforts at SCOL.
  • Effectively and responsibly steward budgetary and other resources to advance the Sturm College of Law and the University of Denver.

Partnerships & University Citizenship

  • Serve as an active and collaborative partner to all central and unit-based advancement functions, and other campus colleagues, to foster strategic, effective, and collaborative fundraising practices specifically serving as the unit’s liaison to and an active partner with central annual giving and donor relations.
  • Model “One DU” leadership

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 

  • Ability to create, maintain, and refine systems for growing the donor base at Annual Giving and Leadership Annual Giving levels.
  • Demonstrated ability to close Annual Gifts and Leadership Annual Gifts, including multi-year pledges, in a relationship-based culture.
  • Experience managing philanthropically-focused volunteer boards and councils, including goal setting, tracking, and reporting.
  • Demonstrated ability to identify, qualify, solicit, and steward gifts from individual donors.
  • Demonstrated ability to form and fully leverage cross-functional teams of colleagues, volunteers, and academic/administrative leaders to represent SCOL interests of donors.
  • Strong writing, editing and verbal communication skills. Ability to represent the University of Denver, and its major initiatives and units, in a variety of capacities.
  • Proven ability to work with a high level of independence, maintain confidentiality, prioritize assignments, and manage time effectively.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal skills to foster and maintain effective relationships with colleagues, donors, volunteers, and University Officials.
  • Ability to interact effectively with diverse groups having competing interests and priorities within the University and community.
  • Fluency in data management and analysis.

Required Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and work experience. (Veterans with equivalent combination of military certification/education and experience may substitute for the degree qualification.)
  • 5 years of paid fundraising experience which could include organizing or campaign roles.
  • Experience securing philanthropic commitments from individual donors by strategically managing solicitations and stewardship processes in a non-profit environment.

Preferred Qualifications: 

  • Experience planning and executing successful annual giving strategies and campaigns, including mail, phone, and digital strategies.
  • Experience working in a University setting or similarly complex non-profit environment.
  • Prior experience in donor management software (for example, Advance or Blackbaud).
  • Management of professional staff or of philanthropic volunteers, including volunteer boards/committees.

Work Schedule
Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., some nights and weekends as required

Application Deadline
For best consideration, please submit your application materials by 4:00 p.m. (MST) January 30, 2022.

Salary Range:
The salary range for this position is $80,000-$105,000.

The University of Denver has provided a compensation range that represents its good faith estimate of what the University may pay for the position at the time of posting. The University may ultimately pay more or less than the posted compensation range. The salary offered to the selected candidate will be determined based on factors such as the qualifications of the selected candidate, departmental budget availability, internal salary equity considerations, and available market information, but not based on a candidate’s sex or any other protected status.

The University of Denver offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO pass. The University of Denver is a private institution that empowers students who want to make a difference. Learn more about the University of Denver.

Please include the following documents with your application:

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter

The University of Denver is an equal opportunity employer. The University of Denver prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age (40 years and over in the employment context), religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, marital status, veterans status, and any other class of individuals protected from discrimination under federal, state, or local law, regulation, or ordinance in any of the university’s educational programs and activities, and in the employment (including application for employment) and admissions (including application for admission) context, as required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended in 2008; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967; and any other federal, state, and local laws, regulations, or ordinances that prohibit discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation. For the university’s complete Non-Discrimination Statement, please see non‑discrimination‑statement.

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