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Human Resource Services

Senior Director of Advancement - College of Business (Position #4826)

Posted On: Monday, September 19, 2016
Position Type: Supportive Prof
College/Division: University Advancement
Department: University Advancement
Contact: Lisa Smith | lsmith1@niu.edu


Northern Illinois University is a comprehensive, public institution of higher education enrolling more than 18,000 students in undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs. In addition to the main campus in DeKalb, Illinois, programs are offered at four additional campus sites.

The NIU Foundation is the primary fundraising arm of NIU and is part of the Division of University Advancement which also encompasses Alumni Relations. The College Advancement Office is part of the NIU College of Business and functions as a unit which supports both the College of Business and University Advancement goals and objectives.

NIU’s College of Business is divided into five academic departments (1) Accountancy (2) Finance (3) Management (4) Marketing (5) Operations Management & Information Systems. In addition, the COB offers a variety MBA and graduate programs suited to meet the needs of a diverse student body.

With over 54,000 alumni, this robust constituency is highly concentrated in the northern Illinois region.

General Responsibilities
This position works within the Gift Planning team in the Division of University Advancement and the College Advancement team in the NIU College of Business. Working closely with the Dean and college leadership, the primary goal is to generate charitable gift revenue for the NIU College of Business.

This position oversees and coordinates with the University Advancement division all College of Business Advancement activities which includes major gifts, high-end annual fund, donor relations/stewardship, communications, alumni relations and events.

Each year, this position works with the Dean, college leadership and the Senior Director of College-based Advancement to establish strategic priorities and goals for fund-raising, communications, events, and new prospect engagements.

It is imperative that the Senior Director coordinate all fund-raising activities with the University Advancement division.

A crucial responsibility is to drive major and principal gift activity through the management of a major gift portfolio not to exceed 125 in number. The primary accountability is to obtain private major and planned gifts, while supporting the priorities identified by the COB and the Division of University Advancement. This position will focus on gifts in the $100,000 and above range.

A high degree of confidentiality and discretion is mandatory, as well as superior self- initiative, communication, and inter-personal skills.

Specific Responsibilities
1. Lead and manage the Advancement team and achieve fund-raising, cultivation and stewardship goals on an annual basis.

2. The Senior Director, College of Business Advancement reports to the Senior Director of College-based Advancement in the University Advancement division, with a dotted line relationship to the Dean, NIU College of Business. On an annual basis, this position will establish fund-raising and programmatic goals in the College of Business. These goals and strategies will be integrated with the college’s highest academic priorities.

3. The Senior Director will oversee and manage a professional staff and collaborate with College of Business and University Advancement personnel.

4. This position will be focused on major and principal gifts and will have a demonstrated track-record securing gifts at the highest level. The Senior Director will have superior knowledge to execute and teach staff in the areas of developing solicitation letters/proposals, documenting pledge intentions, writing timely expendable fund and endowed agreements and regularly completing contact reports. In addition, this position will oversee special projects, distinguished donor society fund-raising, capital campaigns, and partner with the advancement colleagues in the College of Business and University Advancement division.

5. The Senior Director of Advancement will identify, cultivate, solicit and steward a portfolio of individual and corporate major gift donors and potential donors. Personal contact and engagement with prospects and donors is required on a consistent basis and is a significant metric which is monitored and evaluated monthly and annually.

6. The Senior Director of Advancement must follow the University’s Donor Prospect Management system. Collaboration with key internal stakeholders in the college and across campus is essential. These relationships require a high degree of skilled communication and careful planning.

7. As a leader in the College of Business, this position will have weekly one-on-one interactions with the Dean and will participate in College Senate meetings on a regular basis.

8. The Senior Director will organize and run a monthly “Dean’s Development” meeting which will include the Dean and key staff members from the College of Business and the University Advancement division. The purpose of these meetings is to share fund-raising metrics, status on top prospects, updates on annual giving programs, and “hot topic” issues which need to be discussed and resolved.


Essential Skills and Competencies
1. Knowledge and experience in the development and alumni relations field. Demonstrated experience leading a unit or department with staff management responsibility. Must have a track-record of success securing major and principal gifts.

2. Capital campaign experience in higher education is highly desirable. Knowledge and understanding of the allocation of budget resources to provide and promote the highest levels of productivity in development initiatives is required.

3. Bachelor degree required; advanced degree and/or professional designation preferred.

4. The ability to take abstract concepts and shape them into tangible, compelling funding opportunities.

5. The ability to work with different personalities and constructively problem-solve issues related to goal achievement.

6. High level of proficiency in written and oral communication, with strong group presentation skills. Experience working within a matrix organizational structure where performance responsibilities are evaluated in different divisions.

7. The ability to think critically and strategically; capable of taking responsibility for specific goals within designated time frames. Capable of coordinating multi-task initiatives to successful conclusion.

8. Ability and willingness to travel to meet donors and prospects in their homes and offices.

9. Have a “can do” attitude and a strong work ethic. It is essential to demonstrate a high-level of integrity, focus and commitment to achieve ambitious goals.

10. Ability and desire to schedule one-on-one appointments with donor prospects who have never been engaged with NIU.

11. Knowledge of Microsoft Office software, and familiarity with appropriate foundation fund raising tools. Knowledge of computerized systems of donor record keeping, data tracking of prospects and donors.

12. Demonstrated commitment to the ideals and culture of higher education; a demonstrated interest in the disciplines of business.

13. The ability to effectively work in a group/team environment to assist in intra-divisional initiatives.


Send letter of interest, resume, and name, address, email address and phone number(s) of three references to: Northern Illinois University Attn: Lisa Smith, Search Coordinator, Division of University Advancement, Altgeld Hall 135, DeKalb, IL 60115, or lsmith1@niu.edu. Electronic submissions must be in Microsoft Word or PDF. Complete application materials must be received by Wednesday, October 19, 2016 or until filled.

In compliance with the Illinois Campus Security Act, before an offer of employment is made, the university will conduct a pre-employment background investigation, which includes a criminal background check.

In accordance with applicable statutes and regulations, NIU is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, religion, age, physical and mental disability, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, political affiliation, or any other factor unrelated to professional qualifications, and will comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations and orders pertaining to nondiscrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action. NIU recognizes Dual Career issues.

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification document form upon hire.