Major Gift Officer

Posted on 07/16/2021

William Jessup University

Rocklin, CA

Major Purpose: 

The Major Gifts Officer (MGO) is a member of the Advancement Team and is responsible for securing financial resources for William Jessup University. The primary focus is meeting and working with donors and prospects with significant giving capacity to accomplish their giving objectives in the form of leadership, major and planned gifts. The Major Gift Officer will engage in and be responsible for all aspects of the donor development cycle including donor identification, cultivation, solicitation, acknowledgment, church partnership and stewardship. This income-generating position reports directly to the Senior Director of Advancement, Strategic Giving under the strategic vision of the VP Resources, in collaboration with the internal stakeholders, Senior Director of University Advancement, Operations, Director of Church Relations and University President. Position requires ability to travel and occasionally includes evening and weekend responsibilities to be successful.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities: 

  • Identify major gift prospects. Analyze and predict donors’ propensity, capacity and enthusiasm to give. Gather pertinent data alongside the Advancement Services team and prospect researchers to determine the best candidates for the major gifts program.
  • Cultivate major gift prospects, investing the necessary time and energy to build relationships designed to understand the donors’/prospects’ goals with the expressed purpose of alignment with University mission and objectives. Solicit major gift prospects. Move prospective major donors along the donor pipeline preparing them to receive an appropriate ask based upon donor intent and interest.
  • Stewardship of major gift donors. Develop stewardship strategies that continue the major gift relationship for future gifts and planned giving opportunities.
  • Manage a portfolio of prospects and major gift donors in our primary (Northern California) and secondary (Bay Area & Central Valley) territories who fit the strategic university advancement priorities, thereby adding significant capacity in the areas of: The Jessup Fund, Jessup Athletics, Church Partners, Planned Giving, Endowment and other capital and programmatic priorities.
  • Continually update and correct database records for individuals, organizations and churches.
  • Execute and report on quarterly/annual fundraising plans, donor solicitations identification, cultivation, campaigns (capital and annual) and stewardship efforts.
  • Work collaboratively, under the direction of the Senior Director of Advancement and collaborate with the Director of Church Relations, Athletic Director, University President and staff at the Rocklin campus to accomplish individual, team and university funding goals.
  • Work collaboratively with other Advancement officers. Offer strategic prospect counsel to the President, VP Resources, and other Advancement staff who are managing other prospects. Be a resource for the Advancement team in the areas of strategy, fundraising information and tools, and networking.
  • Track prospects and donor contacts in a portfolio using SalesForce. Ensure that all donor information entry, storage and special requests are recorded and accomplished.
  • Work toward annual fundraising (annual and capital) goals and operating campaigns.
  • Works collaboratively with the University Advancement Team to compose letters, compile appropriate invitation lists, secure sponsors, participate in events and engage featured program participants.
  • Adhere to the highest ethical standards; demonstrate empathetic disposition, and perseverance; reflect optimistic and positive attitude, and convey sensitivity to needs of the donors.
  • Demonstrate William Jessup University values in performance of all duties.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.



  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • Master’s degree preferred

Required Knowledge/Experience: 

  • A proven fundraising track record, as well as possible history in finance, sales, and/or marketing
  • Demonstrated history of securing major gifts over three or more years while contributing to organizational growth
  • Detailed and in-depth knowledge of fundraising, its impact and tax-laws associated
  • Knowledge of planned giving techniques and vehicles
  • Comfort in researching and analyzing large groups of data to uncover prospects
  • Excellent verbal and written communication aptitude


  • Active and growing Christian faith
  • Ability to determine how best to develop and maintain effective relationships with donors and determine when and how a prospective donor can be successfully solicited for a gift
  • Capable of mobilizing and motivating volunteers and/or student workers
  • Demonstrated ability to understand the needs and interests of donors in order to develop or strengthen relationships with the University
  • Ability to participate in all aspects of the giving cycle
  • Must be able and willing travel and work irregular hours as needed
  • Requires proficient computer, database, technology and social media skills
  • Possess excellent verbal and written communication skills and professional demeanor
  • Work well in a team environment and be able to accept input as well as supervisory guidance
  • Must be a self-starter who regularly sets and achieves activity and results-driven goals
  • Capable of handling numerous tasks at once while meeting deadlines
  • Priority must be given to direct contact with donors

Working Environment

The employee agrees to promote the values and mission of WJU as a private Christ-centered University and live a life consistent with biblical principles. The employee shall conduct himself/herself in a manner Revised 3/18/2021 consistent with the Community Covenant and Statement of Faith. Additionally, the employee may play a formative role in the spiritual lives of students in a manner consistent with the Community Covenant and Statement of Faith. This may include leading devotions and/or spiritual formation groups and seeking other opportunities consistent with a biblical spiritual formation role.

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