Development Officer

Posted on 08/11/2021

Whitman College

Walla Walla, WA

Located in the historic community of Walla Walla, Whitman’s beautiful tree-lined campus is home to an intellectually dynamic, diverse, and supportive community of some 500 staff and faculty and 1,500 students. With an endowment exceeding $700 million, fiercely loyal alumni, exceptional students, and accomplished faculty and staff, Whitman College continues to build on its national reputation for academic excellence ranking as one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country.

Position Purpose

The Development Officer will manage a portfolio of prospective major gift donors with an emphasis on individuals who can make gifts of $25,000 to $1 million-plus in support of Whitman College program priorities. The Officer will have responsibility for oversight and coordination of fundraising in one or more regions. Working with the Director of Major Gifts, academic leaders, volunteers, and other staff, the Officer will identity, cultivate, solicit, and steward prospective major gift donors, and develop and implement cultivation/solicitation strategies for each assigned prospective donor. Performance metrics will be established annually in consultation with the supervisor, based on assigned prospect portfolio. The Officer will participate regularly in prospect review meetings, maintain tracking records in the Millennium database, and submit call reports in a timely manner using the Fundraiser Performance Management Platform.

The Officer will work in Walla Walla, Washington or remotely from a key donor market.

Principle Accountabilities

  • Coordinate the participation of administrators, academic leaders, volunteers, and other staff in major gift fundraising activities. This may involve facilitating and participating in donor visits with College representatives, including the President when appropriate, and preparing donor briefings and cultivation strategies.
  • Prepare written proposals, informational materials, gift illustrations, and other materials to secure major gifts.
  • Provide stewardship to assigned prospective major gift donors by working with the Director of Development Communications and Donor Relations to prepare endowment agreements, special reports to donors on the use of their funds, and recognition activities.
  • In consultation with the Reunion Giving Officer, identify prospective major gift donors and potential volunteers for milestone reunions.
  • Participate in on-campus and regional events, often in partnership with other campus units including the Whitman Alumni Association, to engage donors and prospective donors to Whitman College.
  • In consultation with the Director of Major Gifts, establish professional goals, objectives, and strategies for major gift fundraising. Participate in assessing progress toward goals.
  • Participate in the development of policies and procedures relating to the major gift program, marketing materials for the major gift effort, and major gift cultivation and stewardship activities and events.
  • Develop and manage a budget for outreach, travel and cultivation activities in assigned region(s).
  • Maintain professional connections in and knowledge of major gift fundraising through conferences, webinars and other methods.
  • Seek training necessary for proficiency in the appropriate use of gift planning techniques including gifts of appreciated property, charitable lead trusts, bequests, beneficiary designations, charitable remainder trusts, pooled income funds, gift annuities, retained life estates, and life insurance gifts.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities 

  • Highly motivated self-starter with adherence to timelines.
  • Ability to be flexible in working in an environment with numerous deadlines and pressures.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills with an attention to detail.
  • Demonstrated history of collaboration with colleagues with an ability to execute independently. Effective interpersonal skills and the ability to work well with volunteers, staff members, administrators, and faculty.
  • Skill in developing and implementing long-term strategic donor solicitation plans. Success in managing an individual portfolio of established donors and potential prospects or client relationships.
  • Appreciation for the value of a residential liberal arts and sciences education.
  • Desire to actively and positively contribute to Whitman’s core values of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and the Development and Alumni Relations Department’s values of integrity, trust, respect, collaboration, accountability and inclusion.
  • Familiarity with and ability to learn relevant technology platforms to prepare reports and other written documents using word processing, spreadsheets, and databases.
  • Discretion in dealing with confidential information and demonstrated willingness to uphold high ethical standards.

Minimum Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • Three years of relevant experience in fundraising or sales.
  • Current valid driver’s license and insurable under Whitman’s liability policy.

Preferred Qualifications: 

  • Some familiarity with gift planning techniques.

Working Conditions

The Development Officer can expect to travel at least once per month for up to 7 days, and to have evening and weekend commitments, such as staffing and participating in Reunion Weekend, Presidential receptions, and similar events.

Application Review Date 

Application review will begin on September 1 and continue until the position is filled.

Start Date: October 18, 2021

To apply for this job please visit