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Director of Foundation Relations

Position Information

Position Information

Working Title: Director of Foundation Relations
Faculty Rank: Lecturer
Role Title: Professional Faculty
Posting Number: AP0170203
About Virginia Tech:

Virginia Tech is a public land-grant university, committed to teaching and learning, research, and outreach to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world. Building on its motto of Ut Prosim (that I may serve), Virginia Tech is dedicated to InclusiveVT—serving in the spirit of community, diversity, and excellence. We seek candidates who adopt and practice the Principles of Community, which are fundamental to our on-going efforts to increase access and inclusion, and to create a community that nurtures learning and growth for all of its members. Virginia Tech actively seeks a broad spectrum of candidates to join our community in preparing leaders for the world.

Position Summary:

Reporting to the associate vice president of development for colleges and supervising the associate director of foundation relations, the Director of Foundation Relations serves as the chief fundraising officer for Virginia Tech’s foundation relations program. As a key member of the central development team responsible for building and strengthening core fundraising services and activities, the Director provides strategic and operational leadership to ensure successful implementation, continued development, and management of a comprehensive foundation relations program in support of the university and future campaign priorities. The Director is responsible for developing and executing a long-range strategy to maximize the university’s profile, with the goal of generating increased support from philanthropic foundations. S/he will work in close collaboration with the Office of the Vice President for Research and Office of Sponsored Programs, colleagues within the Office of University Development, and others. The Director will coordinate with colleges, programs, and faculty members to encourage and manage the identification, cultivation, and solicitation of potential foundation prospects. The Director must be able to work as a team member with high-level institutional officials, policy board members, and donors, and be able to identify, strategize, implement, and deliver activities that will result in positive and financially supportive relationships. S/he will be responsible for initiating and managing foundation relationships, representing Virginia Tech and its needs to foundation leaders, and attracting resources for institutional priorities.

Required Qualifications:

A bachelor’s degree is required.

Significant progressively responsible leadership experience in foundation relations or a related area, as well as participation in a major capital campaign (planning, implementation, management, and successful conclusion) for an institution of higher education, nonprofit organization, or other environment of similar complexity with multiple stakeholders; must possess a thorough understanding of complex, large-scale fundraising operations and the various units that comprise them.

Demonstrated ability to provide management oversight, leadership, and direction, including experience creating and managing a budget. A strong record of fostering a transparent work environment where collegiality is a key to success.

Particular strength in developing the case for support and strategic and complex fundraising plans, and executing against those plans to achieve goals and objectives. Experience working directly with the most senior levels of an organization is very important, as is the ability to effectively strategize and engage various groups and constituents. Demonstrated ability to translate concepts into multi-stakeholder initiatives.

Knowledge of the players, strategies, and trends in giving within the foundations community. The ability to penetrate these networks seamlessly and with aplomb is a must.

Demonstrated ability to think strategically and to shape messaging in order to move foundation targets across the spectrum of prospect development, culminating in solicitations appropriate to organizational priorities and donor interests. Demonstrated, hands-on success with six and seven-figure gifts and greater, including cultivation through solicitation and stewardship.

Demonstrated ability in planning and executing strategic communications to complement development initiatives and achieve goals. Ability to understand and distill complex academic and technical topics and projects, and to weave them into compelling narratives for external audiences. Experience identifying and coaching project spokespeople. A functional understanding of how to effectively leverage various communication mediums and distribution channels for optimal exposure and impact.

Experience identifying, nurturing, and motivating volunteers, and a sophisticated understanding of their role in building an effective fundraising network.

Skill at goal setting and measuring success, and agility in addressing alternate program directions to meet goals when necessary. Experience in developing, implementing, and monitoring strategic plans.

The ability to extract and analyze data to make effective, efficient decisions about donor strategy and process. A working knowledge of modern data management practices and techniques, including database information systems, data modeling, and analysis. Familiarity with technology and other innovations that can streamline the development process and contribute to the integration of advancement functions.

Ability and willingness to travel domestically.

Preferred Qualifications:

An advanced degree and strong academic credentials that will be credible to donors and alumni is preferred.

Previous work experience in higher education and/or in a hybrid centralized-decentralized fundraising model involving multiple units is preferred

Employment Conditions: Must have an acceptable and safe driving record, Must have a driver's license check, Other (Describe Below)
Must have a conviction check: Yes
Describe Other:

Must have a criminal background check to include a driver’s check.

Regional and national travel required for the purposes of conducting field research, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship, which may include overnights and weekends. Must have the ability and willingness to travel utilizing standard, commercial, and/or personal modes of transportation.

Reports to the Associate Vice President of Development for Colleges.

Employment Comments:
How to Apply for this Job:

To apply for this position, candidates must submit a Virginia Tech faculty application online at, search for posting AP0170203 and send resume, cover letter and five references to:

Diversified Search
Gerard F. Cattie, Jr.
The Chrysler Building
405 Lexington Ave, 49th Floor
New York, NY 10174
T: 212-542-2575

Employee Category: Administrative and Professional Faculty
Appointment Type: Regular
If restricted or temporary, enter end date:
FLSA Status: Exempt: Not eligible for overtime
Tenure Status: Non-Tenure Track
Academic Year or Calendar Year: Calendar Year
Percent Employment: Full-time
If part time, enter Percent Time:
Pay Range:
Location: Blacksburg
Department: University Development
Location, if not Blacksburg:
Location Zip Code: 24061
Work Schedule: 8 am - 5 pm M - F + as needed
Job Posting Date: 07/20/2017
Review Begin Date: 08/18/2017
Job Close Date:
Restricted to university employees only?
Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Statement:

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, or veteran status; or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees, or applicants; or any other basis protected by law.

For inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies, contact the executive director for Equity and Access at 540-231-2010 or Virginia Tech, North End Center, Suite 2300 (0318), 300 Turner St. NW, Blacksburg, VA 24061.

Reasonable Accommodation Statement:

If you are an individual with a disability and desire accommodation please contact the hiring department.

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Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

  1. * Will you have a bachelor's degree and experience or a master's degree by the anticipated start date?
    • No response
    • yes
    • no
  2. * How did you first learn about this job opening?
    • Chronicle of Higher Education - online
    • Chronicle of Higher Education - print
    • Higher Ed Jobs (
    • Higher Education Recruitment Consortium - HERC (
    • Diverse Jobs (
    • Insight Into Diversity (
    • Indeed (
    • Roanoke Times Online (
    • Commonwealth of Virginia Jobs (
    • Virginia Tech job site (
    • Facebook
    • LinkedIn
    • Twitter
    • Job Fair (please describe below)
    • Journal (please describe below)
    • Listserv (please describe below)
    • Newspaper - print (please describe below)
    • Professional Conference (please describe below)
    • From a friend/acquaintance not associated with Virginia Tech (please name below)
    • From a Virginia Tech employee/representative/recruiter (please name below)
    • Veteran related event/site (please describe below)
    • Virginia Employment Commission - VEC
    • Other Virginia Tech affiliated website (please describe below)
    • Other job board such as Simply Hired, Career Builder, etc. (please describe below)
    • Other - Not listed (please describe below)
  3. Please describe recruiting source identified in previous question (if applicable):

    (Open Ended Question)

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