Assistant Development Director

Posted on 10/26/2021

Air Force Academy Foundation

Colorado Springs, CO

The Air Force Academy Foundation (“Foundation”) strongly believes that the United States Air Force Academy (“Academy”) is a vital national resource, upholding the invaluable mission of developing leaders of character for our Air Force, Space Force and our nation. The Foundation’s mission is to raise and steward private support for our Academy and the graduate community. The core values of the United States Air Force Academy are Integrity First, Service Before Self, and Excellence in All We Do. These same core values guide the Foundation, our board and our staff.

Position Purpose: 

The Air Force Academy Foundation (“Foundation”), in support of the Academy, seeks a dynamic and creative professional to serve as the Assistant Development Director that will report directly to the Director of Major Gifts and Athletic Development. This individual will serve as a member of the frontline fundraising team and be a vital piece to the success of a comprehensive fundraising campaign “Defining Our Future”. This campaign, with a goal of raising over $270m in support of Academy priorities, will provide opportunities to fundraise for a variety of academy programmatic and capital initiatives. The Foundation, serving as the largest fundraising organization for the Academy, allows fundraisers to present opportunities across all departments of the institution in a wideranging and professionally rewarding way. This individual will join a team that is committed to grow the philanthropic support of one of the nation’s premier institutions.

Position Responsibilities: 

  • Understand, uphold, and promote the ethical standards and core values of the Academy and the Foundation.
  • Learn and understand how the Foundation interacts with the Academy and other Academy-related nonprofit organizations that support various areas of the Academy.
  • Manage a portfolio by establishing long-term partnerships and strengthen existing relationships that will result in funding for the immediate and long-term goals of the Foundation.
  • Work with the Director to identify, cultivate, and close leadership annual and major gifts from donors in the designated territory in collaboration with the development team.
  • Manage and expand current giving strategy by including Planned Gifts into conversations with donors with the collaboration of the Executive Director of Gift Planning.
  • Recommend and implement cultivation and solicitation strategies of individual prospects, working with Foundation staff, USAFA faculty, and volunteers as appropriate.
  • Meet regularly with prospects and volunteers, requiring significant overnight or weekend travel within the designated territory, including some evening and weekend work.
  • Consistently document and carefully coordinate donor engagement activities and movement in donor continuum where multiple USAFA touch points are involved.
  • Develop and maintain a personal stewardship strategy for individual donors in territory.
  • Research and provide information on USAFA alumni, parents, and friends to qualify interest and giving potential.
  • Work strategically with development staff to facilitate relationships between USAFA leadership with campaign prospects and volunteers.
  • Keep abreast of Air Force, the Academy and departmental priorities, programs, personalities, and events.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 

  • Ability to manage multiple tasks concurrently, which will require significant organizational skills.
  • Apply initiative, creativity and sound judgment to appropriate situations.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills are required. Must be able to present complex subjects in a clear and compelling manner.
  • Adept at using persuasive language to promote visionary gift opportunities.
  • An ability to articulate eloquently the value of a federal service academy and the particular mission of the United States Air Force Academy, its curriculum, programs, research, aspirations, commitment to the nation, and the unique experience it provides cadets.
  • A strong work ethic, a commitment to high performance and teamwork and a proven ability and desire to reach increasingly aggressive goals are required.
  • A willingness to work collaboratively with colleagues and with a diverse constituent base is required.
  • A proven ability to meet project deadlines and maintain productive professional relationships.
  • Ability to work independently and in a team environment.
  • Work accurately and thoughtfully under pressure.


  • A bachelor’s degree is required; advanced degree is preferred.
  • A minimum of 2-3 years of experience in annual fund and/or major gift fundraising is preferred.
  • A successful track record of major gift proposal development, solicitation, and fundraising activities is preferred.
  • A background with higher education fundraising experience within the context of a comprehensive campaign is preferred.
  • An ability to travel 10%-20% within the United States which will include night and weekend work.
  • A valid driver’s license and any related insurances is required.
  • An ability to pass a DBIDS Background check for which are required in order to maintain access to the Foundation’s principal offices on the Academy.
  • Individuals with service in the military, especially the U.S. Air Force, will be given strong consideration.

Compensation and Benefits: 

The starting salary for this position is $50,000 and will be commensurate with experience. The Foundation offers a competitive benefits package including but not limited to medical, dental, vision, life insurance, short-term and long-term disability, retirement and paid time off for all full-time employees.

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