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Director External Relations and Major Gifts CUPA Code #196410 at Athens State University

The Director of External Relations and Major Gifts reports directly to the Vice President for
University Advancement and is responsible for fundraising activities and strategies designed
to increase giving to the Athens State University Foundation by alumni and friends of the
University. The Director is primarily responsible for event management and stewardship of
alumni and friends of the University.

• Manage all aspects of fundraising initiatives for special events and projects relating to
University Advancement.
• Manage a portfolio of 50 - 75 active major gift prospects capable of making gifts of
$10,000 or more to the University.
• Provide oversight for the office of Alumni Affairs and work closely with the Alumni

Board of Directors to ensure that the University maintains an active and vibrant Alumni
• Contribute toward the development of materials including brochures, case statements
and other media that support the Foundation’s fundraising goals.
• Prepare and complete reports in a timely fashion to document activities related to
fundraising goals and objectives.
• Actively recruit and engage alumni and friends of the University to take part in
University events and activities.
• Assist in preparing and providing material for University publications including The
Column, press releases and other materials as needed.
• Actively participate in updating and enhancing the Advancement database through the
Salesforce CRM platform to ensure information is current and accurate.
• Follow the policies of the University and Foundation with regard to the processing and
acceptance of gifts.
• Actively work toward building cooperative and collaborative relationships with
University Colleges, Departments, faculty, staff and community entities.
• Demonstrate flexibility and adaptability to changing work scope and tasks based on
• Identify opportunities for improvements to work practices and offer viable solutions for
• Proactively engage in problem solving related to tasks in this position with internal and
external constituencies.
• Completes other tasks as assigned.

• Bachelor’s degree required.
• Three to five years of experience in higher education or related field managing events
and working with University alumni and donors.
• Strong verbal and written communication skills.
• Strong interpersonal skills, including the ability to relate to diverse constituencies.
• Strong organizational skills.
• Working knowledge in support strategies and techniques used to engage broad
community constituencies both locally and regionally.

• None

• Master’s degree preferred.
• Must be willing to work a flexible schedule to include limited travel.
• Able to maintain discretion regarding donor activities.

Chief Development and Communications Officer Job Description

The chief development and communications officer (CDCO) is a highly-motivated fundraising executive
with marketing communications experience looking to assume a pivotal role in the evolution of a fastgrowing organization. The successful CDCO is a mission-focused, strategic, collaborative, results-driven, and creative leader and manager with a proven track record of growing a diverse and sustainable
revenue portfolio, building and amplifying a positive brand position, and leading a team of diverse,
talented individuals. Reporting directly to the chief executive officer (CEO), the CDCO’s primary
responsibility is to effectively develop, lead, and manage the fund development and communications
strategies and functions of the Huntsville Network for Urban School Renewal, Inc. The CDCO will play a
key role in supporting the organization’s projected annual budget growth from less than $100K to $3M-
$5M over the next three to five years, generating the resources, partnerships, and platform required to
achieve our goals of mitigating poverty-related factors in low-income communities in north Huntsville
contributing to the low academic achievement of students of color, living in poverty, and getting them
on track to earn high-demand degrees and credentials.

Essential Responsibilities:

Organizational Leadership and Management
▪ Lead team to develop and execute against multi-year strategic goals and annual workplans.
▪ In partnership with the CEO and board leadership, lead and manage HNUSR’s strategic board
engagement and stewardship.
▪ Foster efficient and effective cross-functional teamwork and results-oriented deliverables
▪ Mentor and coach direct reports and support teams, delegating work streams effectively,
fostering professional growth, and motivating and holding team members to a high standard of
▪ Model ingenuity in leading the evaluation and development of cost-effective and efficient
systems, processes, and contract relationships to maximize staff success and impact
▪ Develop and manage budget for all fundraising and marketing activities across the organization.
▪ Serve as a contributing member of the organization’s Executive Team.
▪ Foster HNUSR’s efforts to build an inclusive culture and advance equitable internal policies and
external outcomes.

▪ Develop, lead, and manage effective strategies for obtaining donations and grants that advance
the organization’s goals and priorities and contribute to financial sustainability.
▪ Model a growth- and results-driven mindset by proactively measuring and reporting on progress
against clear goals, assessing efficacy and productivity, and spurring learning and improvement.
▪ Actively cultivate, solicit, and steward a personal portfolio of high-capacity, transformational
donors with major gift track record and/or potential from corporate, foundation, and individual
▪ Work with the CEO and chair of the governance board to ensure fulfillment of fund
development roles amongst the board of directors and facilitate effective engagement between
management and volunteers.
▪ Identify and build relationships with high-impact community leaders, businesses, media,
thought leaders, and prospective donors.
▪ Lead, manage, and model best practices and systems to support stewardship throughout the
donor life cycle and with a growing donor pipeline.
▪ Provide general oversight of the organization’s fund development activities, manage the day-today operations of the development function, and monitor adequacy of activities through
coordination with staff, appropriate committees, and the organization’s board of directors.
▪ Lead their team to accurately forecast and close gifts and grants to ensure adequate revenue for
the organization. Support CEO and finance function to monitor cash flow with timely revenue
▪ Identify and oversee resources to write grant applications, case statements, major gift and
sponsorship proposals, technical reports, communication materials, and other documents as
necessary to support ongoing fundraising activities.
▪ Identify and utilize resources including volunteers, staff, publications, and the Internet to
identify linkage, ability, and interest of major funders and key supporters.
▪ Direct and guide staff to maintain database files and records, including those used to track
contributions, communications with donors, and maintain accurate mailing lists.
▪ Create, implement, and monitor revenue Key Performance Indicators (KPI) to support internal
and external dashboards, learning, improvement and reporting needs.
▪ Provide partnership, training, and support to staff across the organization to help them
successfully participate in fundraising efforts for the organization. Build, strengthen, and
leverage a strong internal culture of philanthropy.

Brand, Marketing and Communications, and Events
▪ Provide strategic direction and management support to the creation and execution of an
effective organizational marketing and communications plan to advance fund development
priorities and other organizational goals and objectives.
▪ Use metrics and insights to regularly assess efficacy of the marketing and communications plan
against fund development conversion impacts and othe
▪ Lead active creation, maintenance, relevance, and compliance of organization’s brand and
marketing research, assets, collateral, events and messaging.
▪ Directly oversee the writing and editing of all fundraising and marketing communications,
speeches, press releases, letters, and articles.
▪ Lead and manage the prioritization of and delivery against communications needs across the
▪ Support and possibly serve as stand-in for CEO for public appearances and responses to media

Qualifications and Experiences
▪ Progressively responsible fundraising experience, including 5 years of successful track record
attracting and closing major gifts of $100,000+.
▪ Proven track record of raising $1M-$3M a year.
▪ Proven track record of identifying, cultivating, securing, and stewarding major donor
▪ Proven track record of partnering with high-level boards of directors, volunteers, and
organizational partners.
▪ Experience with collaborative fundraising with multi-site partners strongly preferred.
▪ Demonstrated passion for HNUSR’s mission, vision, and values
▪ Ability to think and act strategically; understand the role of individuals, corporations, and
foundations in contemporary philanthropy.
▪ Develop and maintain smooth, productive relationships with all segments of the community.
▪ Experience with proven results in designing, building, and managing to a development plan and
function that is experiencing growth.

Brand, Marketing, and Communications
▪ Demonstrated competency in marketing, communications, and brand management in a related
▪ Exceptional skills in writing and content creation;
▪ Demonstrated ability to present complex information in a clear, compelling and concise manner;
▪ Experience in public relations and relationship management with local and state media and
community thought leaders highly desirable;
▪ Ability to build and foster collaborative relationships with other departments within the
organization to stay informed and abreast of new and current work;
▪ Excellent written and oral communication at all levels in an organization.
▪ Excellent facilitation and presentation skills

Leadership and Management
▪ Proven ability to lead strategic planning, manage team execution against measurable goals and
objectives, and develop and manage budgets.
▪ Ability to organize and prioritize work of a team and cross-functional organizational colleagues
and meet deadlines within a fast-paced environment with competing demands.
▪ Demonstrated ability to engage in excellent written and oral communication at all levels in an
▪ Ability to recruit, motivate, organize and retain a high-performing and diverse team; ability to
foster talent development, growth, learning, and improvement.
▪ Motivation and ability to foster diversity, equity, and inclusion.
▪ Exceptional project management skills

Salary Range
▪ $75,000-$85,000 annually, depending on experience.
▪ Full time position, 40 hours/week.

Development Officer

Please refer to the Garden’s website, (Job Postings) for more information. *** All applications
submitted must indicate the name of the position you are applying for as well as your salary history and
requirements. **

Development Officer Department: Advancement

Employment Type: Full-time
Benefits: Available
Start Date: Immediate
Schedule: Primary schedule of standard business hours with periodic evening and weekend availability required to attend community events and support events and activities hosted by the Garden.

  • General Summary: Supports the ongoing development and execution of the strategic fundraising plans supporting the mission of the Huntsville Botanical Garden. Implements and manages multiple donor development initiatives including corporate and individual sponsorships, development event planning and execution, and ongoing donor relationship communications and activities. Works closely with other members of the Advancement team, the CEO & President, and members of the Garden’s Board of Directors. Works with a high degree of independence, keeping management informed of changes in philanthropic climate, including the goals and interests of corporate and individual donors.

  •  Duties Include: Development and execution of solicitation strategies for Operating Budget fundraising programs to include corporate sponsorships, individual donations, and other revenue generating events and activities to meet and exceed the Advancement departmental budget; Maintains processes to provide ongoing documentation of donor development activity; Identity, cultivate, solicit and steward a portfolio of current and prospective donors; Document all sponsorships and pledges to ensure mutual fulfillment of commitments; Support and coordinate Advancement Event activities by working with volunteer committees; Develop and cultivate relationships with community leaders, associated organizations and members of the various Garden Boards of Directors to provide support for the promotion and expansion of the Garden.

  • Education & Experience: Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent related experience) with 3-5 years of professional fundraising, sales or business development experience. Large scale event planning and execution desirable. Prior direct or in-direct (Board participation or volunteer) in a non-profit environment participating in fundraising programs such as annual giving, capital campaigns, special projects, grants, planned giving, fundraising events or endowments are strongly preferred. Strong computer skills with prior experience utilizing database programs and a high level of confidence using Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Prior experience with CRM’s or other prospect management programs is highly desirable.

  • Skills: Has the ability, desire, and confidence to interact effectively with varied constituencies, including cold-calling prospects. Demonstrated success in establishing and building relationships resulting in closing sales or gifts. Self-motivated team player who demonstrates leadership and initiative. High degree of professionalism required. Dedication, flexibility to work nights and weekends as needed and attention to detail are essential. Ability to lift a minimum of 20 pounds and periodically work in an outdoor environment.

  • Performance Requirements: Demonstrated commitment to adherence to garden standards, policies and procedures; significant emphasis on reliability, teamwork, and effective communication.

To Apply please submit your cover letter and resume as follows:
E-mail: Fax: (256) 830-5314
Mail: Huntsville Botanical Garden, 4747 Bob Wallace Ave. Huntsville, AL 35805
OR Complete Employment Application (available at Visitor’s Center desk).

**** All applications submitted must indicate the name of the position for which you are applying as well as your
salary history and requirements. ***
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