Assistant Director of Donor Relations – Harvard Graduate School of Design
Job Summary :
As an integral member of the Development and Alumni Relations Office, the Assistant Director of Donor Relations develops and executes a strategic and comprehensive program to steward donors to the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD). Reporting to the Director of Development Communications, this position helps build relationships between top donors and the GSD through customized reports, broad-based communications, opportunistic stewardship touchpoints, special recognition events, and other activities that acknowledge and demonstrate impact. By working closely with gift officers and involving key stakeholders across the school, this position serves a vital role in improving donor satisfaction and ensuring the GSD’s fundraising success. This position supervises the Donor Relations Coordinator.
Position Description :
Proactively and in close collaboration with major gift officers, develops and manages a comprehensive and individualized stewardship program for all GSD donors, including customized reports, broad-based communications, opportunistic stewardship touchpoints, special recognition events, and other activities that acknowledge and demonstrate impact.
Manages the annual stewardship reporting program for endowed and current-use funds. Creates compelling and meaningful reports for top donors. Conducts research and interviews students, faculty, and staff on the use of funds. Manages the design, production, distribution, and ongoing refinement of the reporting process.
Manages and oversees the work of a Donor Relations Coordinator to ensure acknowledgments and recognition efforts enhance the overall Donor Satisfaction strategy and align with fundraising priorities.
Monitors activities related to donors and the outcomes of their gifts and seeks high-level opportunities for ad hoc, opportunistic stewardship to engage donors.
Partners with team members to produce memorable, non-written stewardship pieces, including customized videos, photobooks, and other meaningful mementos to engage the GSD’s most generous donors.
Utilizes internal database and reporting platforms to run and analyze donor and gift reports. Works closely with Finance and Academic Affairs colleagues to research fund status and monitor for compliance with fund terms and donor intent.
Develops and maintains accurate and comprehensive information on strategic stewardship plans for individual donors and all funds reported on. Partners with the Donor Relations Coordinator to ensure that all stewardship activity is recorded in the internal donor database (Advance). Independently manages all relevant reporting schedules and stewardship files. Maintains a calendar of projects and metrics for measuring success.
Co-leads the department-wide common goal of Donor Satisfaction with the Director of Development Communications
Manages the annual holiday card mailing to key donors and volunteers on behalf of GSD leadership. Works closely with the Dean’s Office and collaborates with faculty, students, and departments across the school to create original card designs.
Utilizes internal database and reporting platforms to run and analyze donor and gift reports.
Works closely with colleagues in the Finance Department to research fund status and monitor for compliance with fund terms and donor intent.
Supports the Events Team in planning and executing donor recognition events, including the annual Fellowship Celebration.
Benchmarks with peer institutions on donor relations best practices to stay informed and build relationships with colleagues across campus.
Participates in and/or supports departmental and school-wide activities and events as needed.
Basic Qualifications :
5+ years of experience in higher education or related field.
Strong writing, editing, and proofreading experience.
In order to be considered for this role, a well written cover letter, explaining how your interests and experience qualify you for the position is required.
Additional Qualifications and Skills :
Bachelor’s degree preferred.
Well-honed writing, editing, research, and analytical skills.
Excellent interpersonal, communication, and customer service skills. Ability to work and communicate effectively with a broad spectrum of colleagues across all levels of the school and within an environment that values diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Exceptional attention to detail and accuracy. Able to treat confidential information with a high level of discretion.
Proven success in planning, organizing, and executing projects with multiple internal and external stakeholders. Excellent organizational skills with the ability to work on multiple tasks, prioritize work appropriately, and adapt quickly to changing priorities.
Proven capability to evaluate problems accurately and display good judgment. Ability to anticipate unexpected issues and needs to carry out assignments.
Desire to manage and mentor a coordinator.
Knowledge of and interest in staying current in donor relations best practices.
Demonstrated expertise in using Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite, Advance CRM/database, and reporting platforms.
[Full-Time (Salaried)] Salary Range: 60000-0
Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.
Level of English Required: Advanced/Fluent
How to Apply: