Assistant Director, Annual Giving and Prospect Research

Posted on 02/09/2021

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Woods Hole, MA

Job Summary 

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is currently searching for an Assistant Director, Annual Giving and Prospect Research to join the Development Department. This is a regular, full-time, exempt position, and is eligible for full benefits.

Reporting to the Chief Development Officer (CDO) and working closely with the Assistant Director for Donor Database Management and Direct Mail, this position shares the management of key aspects of the Annual Giving program for individuals and conducts and oversees Development’s prospect research. Responsible for identifying and involving new annual giving donors through various activities. Oversees Annual Giving website design and maintenance, events, mailings, and publications. With the Assistant Director for Donor Database Management and Direct Mail, writes and coordinates scheduled appeals and involves Communications colleagues as appropriate.

Essential Functions

Annual Fund:

  • Working with the Chief Development Officer and in conjunction with the Assistant Director for Donor Database Management and Direct Mail, and working with Communications colleagues as appropriate, develop a comprehensive annual giving operating plan to include: personal solicitations, direct mail, social media, and donor stewardship/recognition.
  • Devote significant time to local travel to visit assigned Annual Giving (AG) prospects, with a goal of at least 60+ solicitation visits per year. Complete necessary follow-up and call reports after each visit.
  • Make follow-up calls to annual fund level LYBUNTS and SYBUNTS.
  • Manage the coordination of all high-end annual fund solicitations with the assigned Prospect Managers.
  • Coordinate the cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of the alumni annual giving prospect pool (approximately 1,000 alumni) with the Dean of Academic Programs. Work with MIT on various projects related to Joint Program alumni/ae activities.
  • Perform as a member of the MIT/WHOI Joint Program Alumni/ae Committee; act as the liaison between alumni/ae and the Institution.
  • Based on the annual giving plan; craft all written appeals (25-40 per year), for donor renewals and new acquisitions from $1 – $9,999.
  • Manage appeals for Trustees and Members of the Corporation ($10,000 – $25,000 for Trustees and Corporation Members).
  • In conjunction with the Assistant Director for Donor Database Management and Direct Mail: work closely with Digital Marketing Consultant through the creation of appeals, respond to strategic Institutional priorities set by the CDO and analyze and report on all aspects of the Annual Fund program.
  • Lead cultivation and stewardship campus tours and annual fund events.
  • Work with Director of Volunteer Leadership (who serves as Development’s liaison with Communications) and Communications staff (Oceanus, Exhibit Center, Web staff) to promote the donor program.
  • Act as primary internal oversight of the Institution’s crowdfunding efforts.
  • Attend meetings of local clubs and organizations to promote the Institution and the donor program.
  • Work with the CDO, Assistant Director of Events and Major Gifts staff to plan targeted outreach activities in various locations aimed at increasing the gift prospect pool and stewarding donors.
  • Steward and solicit alumni/ae annually and for special projects.
  • Support Board and Corporation Members as needed.

Prospect Research:

  • Manage data from in-house, electronic databases, foundation, corporation and other external sources for all WHOI prospects. Organize, word process, and edit verified and extrapolated data into comprehensive, standardized research profiles.
  • Analyze individual prospect’s capacity and inclination to support WHOI and forwards analysis to Development fundraisers for the creation of targeted fundraising and cultivation strategies.
  • Identify prospects capable of giving $2,500+ on an annual basis, with a goal of securing 20 new commitments per year.
  • Write donor prospect’s biographies and briefings to assists with development of prospect’s cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies.
  • Responsible for identifying and passing qualified prospects (either well researched or through personal interaction) to Major Gift Officers.
  • Produce and maintain prospect reports as needed for the fundraising staff.
  • Enter prospect research information into Raiser’s Edge (RE) database appropriately and accurately.
  • Responsible for reviewing and updating constituent computer records in RE and paper files with information culled from research, periodical reviews (i.e., Chronical of Education, Chronical of Philanthropy, etc.) and office correspondence (letters, emails, memos, trip reports, etc.).
  • Serve as primary liaison with vendor when prospect research is outsourced.

Non-Essential Functions: 

  • Perform other duties as deemed necessary.

Education & Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • 2-3 years’ experience in a fundraising environment is required
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the Annual giving program is required
  • Previous experience with prospect research is a plus
  • Ability to coordinate and manage many projects simultaneously
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Willingness to travel and work evenings/weekends as needed
  • Understanding and appreciation for the Institution’s mission
  • Willingness to be a team player

Physical Requirements

Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to, ability to lift less than 25 lbs independently and carry 10-25 lbs. Visual abilities to include near and far. Hearing requirements include the ability to hear and respond to instructions. Other physical tasks include occasional prolonged standing/walking; use of hands for basic /fine grasping and manipulation, repetitive motion, reaching above and below the shoulders, kneeling, bending, and stooping. Other occupational requirements include talking, traveling, working around others, with others, and independently. Physical duties are subject to change.

WHOI is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer/Disabled/Veterans/M/F. We encourage Veterans and those with Disabilities to apply. Applications are reviewed confidentially. Applicants that require accommodation in the job application process are encouraged to contact us at (508) 289-2253 or email [email protected] for assistance.

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