Director, Stewardship and Donor Relations

Apply now Job no: 496863
Position type: full-time
Location: Lewisburg, PA
Categories: University Advancement / Alumni Relations

University Advancement (UA) is here to advance the mission of Bucknell University by engaging the Bucknell community. It is only through the support of alumni, parents and friends – by opening doors to career opportunities, engaging others to join the conversation and community, and entrusting us with their philanthropic commitments -- that we can further elevate Bucknell as a leader in undergraduate education.

Our team is dedicated to this mission and unified by five values:
Lead with Integrity
Embrace a Collaborative and Inclusive Spirit
Be Open and Receptive
Nurture Creativity and Innovation
Foster a Culture of Empowerment and Knowledge

These values also illustrate how we bring, as a division, the University's strategic plan to life and exercise our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion on a daily basis.

As part of UA, the Director reports to the Associate Vice President for University Advancement, Strategic Advancement Services & Campaign Administration serves as a thought leader for the division around stewardship and donor relations, and is responsible for designing, implementing and directing a comprehensive stewardship program that cultivates and recognizes the University’s most generous donors/prospects.

The Director is also responsible for the creation/management of gift agreements, endowment agreements and pledge documentation, as well as management of the named scholarship program.

This position is a part of Strategic Advancement Services and Campaign Administration, which is comprised of five areas: Advancement Information Services (AIS), Gift Processing and Data Management (GPDM), Stewardship and Donor Relations (SDR), UA Operations, and Estate, Trust and Gift Planning (ETGP).

Job Duties:
1. Serves on the Strategic Advancement Services and Campaign Administration Leadership Team, understanding the overall goals of the University and University Advancement, and the roles that Stewardship and Donor Relations plays in reaching those goals. This requires a close working relationship with the AVP of Strategic Philanthropy and the Executive Director of Advancement Marketing Research & Strategy, as well as other partners across campus.
2. Program Strategy
a. Using data to assess all aspects of the program, develops, executes and refines a comprehensive stewardship and recognition strategy that advances the philanthropic goals of the University and UA for both the long and the short term, strategically stewarding the University’s most generous donors across multiple designations.
i. Works with the Executive Director, Advancement Marketing Research & Strategy to determine the best channels institutionally to honor and recognize donor giving at all levels and to ensure that the messaging is consistent with the University’s branding and goals.
ii. In consultation and collaboration with the advancement writer and Executive Director, Advancement Marketing Research & Strategy develops strategies around and executes impact reporting, including editing/writing copy, and stays abreast of industry trends on reporting to a wide range of donor types. Conceptualizes and executes creative, original and impactful stewardship pieces, which may include digital reporting.
iii. Implements strategic stewardship and recognition events on and off campus.
iv. Participates in the execution of both periodic and customized events and programs for UA, and as requested by the President, for the University as a whole.
v. Facilitates donor profiles / stories in collaboration with UA partners and campus partners.
vi. Collaborates with the Executive Director, Advancement Marketing Research & Strategy, in addition to other UA partners, on print / digital fundraising materials for use by gift officers.
vii. Coordinates the involvement of additional constituencies in the stewardship process, such as the President, Provost, Deans, Athletic Director, Board of Trustees and other high-level volunteers.
viii. Participates in strategy discussions regarding our highest-level donors/prospects in order to proactively think through required documentation, recognition and stewardship plans.
3. Philanthropic Naming
a. Manages donor recognition related to philanthropic naming of physical spaces and non-physical spaces in conjunction with the University’s Naming Policy and in collaboration with the Associate Vice President, Strategic Advancement Services and Campaign Administration.
b. Ensures philanthropic naming meets all required approvals, including approvals by University administrators of the terms set forth in gift agreements.
c. Maintains up-to-date knowledge of available naming opportunities related to physical and non-physical spaces.
4. Scholarship Awarding
a. Oversees scholarship awarding / scholarship matching process and directs staff responsible for day-to-day awarding management.
b. Use data to analyze the awarding process to ensure maximum efficiency and suggest improvements as necessary.
c. Reviews and updates policies to ensure that they are consistent with university policies and strategies. Ensures that any changes in policy and strategy are communicated to gift officers.
5. Fund Management
a. Oversees named funds and an additional subset of restricted funds in collaboration with Assistant Director, SDR, Finance Office and Budget Administrators across campus to ensure income is spent according to gift agreements.
6. Pledge and Gift Agreement Creation and Management
a. Oversees the creation and management of gift agreements, pledge documents, statements of intent, and endowment agreements, etc. in collaboration with high-level University leadership including the general counsel, VP for Finance and other University stakeholders.
b. Maintains an advanced understanding of legal and budgetary impact of these agreements and keeps abreast of any changes in the law related to pledges, statements of intent and gift agreements.
c. Participates in policy decisions as they relate to gift designations and agreements.
7. Team Management
a. Effectively manages staff including hiring, retaining, developing and coaching while aligning efforts with Bucknell and University Advancement strategic initiatives, policies, and procedures.
i. Manages staff who oversee the day-to-day operations of Stewardship and Donor Relations.
ii. Conducts performance reviews and regular meetings.
iii. Provides direction, mentorship, and goals for direct reports.
iv. Empowers individuals to be prudently bold, data driven, highly intentional, constituent centered, and forward thinking.
8. Budget Management
a. Responsible for the department budget.
b. Reconciles the budget monthly, working with Assistant Director, SDR.
c. Plans for the yearly budget.
d. Identifies opportunities to leverage existing events, programs, and mailings of other departments to advance the goals of stewardship and recognition.
9. Performs other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:
*Bachelor's degree and seven (7) years of experience in a donor relations, non-profit fundraising, an advancement services environment, or high-level client/customer relations OR an equivalent combination of education, training or experience
* Demonstrated successful management and supervisory experience
* Excellent written and oral communications skills, as well as excellent editing skills
* Demonstrated organizational and interpersonal skills, including diplomacy, tact, discretion and the ability to maintain confidentiality inside and outside of UA
* Demonstrated ability to collaborate in a professional manner with alumni and donors, university staff, administrators and faculty, and with outside vendors and service providers
* Ability to function independently yet relate comfortably to a multifaceted fundraising environment, participating in and contributing to a total team effort
* Ability and willingness to travel (including air travel and auto travel to major metropolitan areas)
* Demonstrated understanding of the policies, tax laws and regulations that impact recognition programs
* Expert knowledge of the Microsoft Office suite
* Valid U. S. driver’s license

Other Requirements:
This position requires occasional evening and weekend work to support UA’s events including blocks of time for major events such as Family Weekend, Reunion, and Homecoming, and other event support as required. Staff should mark their calendars for major events and events in their department. Exceptions require supervisory approval.

Exempt employees are required to work as much time as is necessary to fulfill the requirements of the position without additional compensation, even if the work is performed beyond standard work hours.

Preferred Qualifications:
* Experience working with Blackbaud CRM
* Higher education experience
* Experience with electronic publishing systems, including Ovrture
* Bachelor's degree

Work Type: 
full-time


About Bucknell

Founded in 1846 and located along the banks of the Susquehanna River in historic Lewisburg, Pa., Bucknell University is an undergraduate-focused institution that stands uniquely at the intersection of top-ranked liberal arts, engineering and management programs. Our students choose from more than 60 majors and 70 minors in the arts, engineering, humanities, management, and natural and social sciences, as well as extensive global study, service-learning and research opportunities. Bucknell’s 3,700 undergraduate and 30 graduate students enjoy a low 9:1 student-faculty ratio and exceptional opportunities to collaborate with faculty mentors on scholarly and artistic projects.

Bucknell’s beautiful 450-acre campus includes first-rate facilities and is home to more than 90 percent of its undergraduate students. Student life is vibrant with about 200 student-run organizations, 27 NCAA Division I athletics teams, a robust arts culture, and a commitment among many of the students to community and global service work.

Bucknell is committed to fostering an environment that embraces diversity, equity and inclusion, and we seek candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports the growth and development of a diverse campus community. The University provides equal opportunity without regard to race, color, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, religion, national or ethnic origin, marital status, veteran status or disability in admissions, employment and in all of its educational programs and activities. We encourage individuals from historically underrepresented groups to apply.

The Community

Lewisburg (pop. 5,700) is located in central Pennsylvania and features beautiful Victorian homes, the restored art deco Campus Theatre (owned by the University), a variety of restaurants, shops and boutiques, and the Barnes & Noble at Bucknell University Bookstore. It is the seat of Union County, which has about 44,000 residents.

The city of Williamsport is about a 30-minute drive from campus, and Penn State University’s main campus is about an hour away, as is Harrisburg, Pennsylvania’s state capital. Bucknell is within a three-hour drive of New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

The cost of living is low compared to that of major U.S. cities and suburbs. Bucknell’s surroundings yield fresh produce, cultural activities and events, and outstanding opportunities for outdoor activity on the Susquehanna River and in the nearby state parks and forests. The Lewisburg Area School District receives excellent reviews for its schools at all grade levels. Lewisburg Area High School consistently ranks among the top 50 high schools in Pennsylvania for SAT scores and statewide exams.

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COVID-19 Information

Bucknell University is committed to the health and well-being of our community. As such, we have implemented many strategies to keep our community healthy. Students are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19, and faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to vaccinate and provide documentation of vaccination to Human Resources. Employees who do not provide evidence of vaccination are required to participate in the University’s COVID-19 sequential testing program. All members of the Bucknell community and campus visitors are required to wear masks inside public and academic buildings, regardless of social distancing or vaccination status. Click here for more information.

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