University of Waterloo

  • Senior Development Officer

    Requisition ID
    Job Category
    1550 - Dean of Arts Office
    Job Status
    Regular Full-Time
    Hiring Range
    $72,724 - $90,905
  • Overview

    The Senior Development Officer (SDO) is responsible for the full scope of development activities related to the discovery, cultivation, solicitation, recognition, and stewardship of a portfolio of prospects and donors to the Faculty of Arts and collaboratively with the greater University of Waterloo community. Under the direction of the Director of Advancement, the SDO works closely with the Dean, Faculty leadership and volunteers to identify and qualify prospects and to strategically engage, cultivate and solicit financial support for Faculty priorities that align with donor interests. The incumbent develops strategies to promote ongoing and/or increased giving; this includes personally soliciting gifts, sponsorship and funding independently, and in concert with University Executives, volunteers, faculty and staff, appropriate to donor interests and university policy. The SDO will actively use planned giving, donor relations and stewardship, annual and leadership giving, and information based systems to advance the Faculty and Arts.


    Portfolio Management

    • Develop and maintain a portfolio of major gift prospects and oversee all aspects of each prospect’s relationship and timely movement through the cultivation and solicitation cycle, with a focus of moving to a major gift solicitation
    • Maintain a portfolio of 80-100 major gift prospects assessed as having the ability or potential to make gifts over $100,000, including pledged gifts over finite campaign periods
    • Conduct, on average 120 calls per year
    • Initiate contacts with potential donors; develop appropriate cultivation strategies including working with senior university administration (President, Provost), Faculty of Arts leadership (Dean, Associate Deans, Chairs and Directors) and volunteers to maximize their opportunities to support the Faculty of Arts through philanthropic giving; make solicitations when appropriate; and maintains stewardship contacts with donors


    Prospect Management

    • Ensure relationships with prospects and donors are managed and recorded in accordance with Office of Advancement systems
    • Ensure detailed notes are recorded for the prospect tracking and clearance systems, and prepare regular progress reports on fundraising targets through standardized reporting tools
    • Complete follow-up correspondence, briefings and updates to prospects, donors and internal stakeholders
    • Post activities and outcomes to central filing systems and shared directories


    Major Gifts Fundraising

    • Identify and develop strategic cultivation, solicitation and stewardship plans for major corporate, foundation and individual donors.
    • Create and direct the development of cultivation and solicitation plans and gift proposals for specific projects, including preparing proposals, gift agreements, oral presentations, volunteer management and ultimately steward gifts received through donor recognition activities
    • Participate in prospect identification, review, research, management and clearance for the Faculty of Arts
    • Direct proactive research on individuals identified as having significant donor potential
    • Initiate, lead, direct and manage fundraising programs designed to obtain maximum financial support from a wide range of potential individual donors (i.e. class appeals)
    • Identify opportunities to leverage and partner with colleagues from other Faculties and institutional programs, leading to larger and more significant university partnerships and support
    • Direct prospects and donors to other Faculties and central functional areas of Leadership, Annual and Planned Giving as appropriate to their inclination and capacity
    • Organize and train volunteers to assist and promote the Faculty of Arts in all aspects of the advancement program including major gifts, alumni relations, co-op activities, government relations and communications
    • Promote the Faculty of Arts and University through public presentations and personal contact
    • Through the Director of Advancement, identify work priorities and objectives for professional staff linked to the Advancement team (Advancement Coordinator)



    • Actively participate in professional development opportunities to maximize performance and career progression potential
    • Mentor departmental colleagues in their career progression


    • University degree
    • Recent major gift fundraising experience
    • Skilled, strategic fundraiser with 3 – 5 years of progressive fundraising experience with extensive experience in securing major gifts, and volunteer recruitment and management
    • Experience with the full scope of development activities including discovery, cultivation, solicitation, recognition and stewardship at the major gift level is required
    • Successful track record of developing and implementing strategy for major gift solicitation with demonstrated success in personally securing and closing major gifts
    • Experience recruiting and working with volunteers to support cultivation and solicitation strategies is a strong asset
    • Experience fundraising in a university environment is considered an asset
    • Knowledge of giving vehicles and non-complex gifts is required
    • Excellent communication skills, written and oral, including expertise in creating donor-focused and impactful proposals
    • Proven competence in project management, multi-tasking, planning, analytical and organizational skills
    • The ability to work in a highly complex and demanding environment, managing and collaborating with multiple partners, from across campus and externally
    • Political acumen and problem solving skills required
    • Goal oriented, self-motivated with demonstrated ability to take initiative and work independently and effectively as part of a team with a broad mandate in a fast paced, highly computerized and challenging environment
    • Hands-on experience with a relational fundraising database, such as Raisers Edge is a strong asset
    • Proficient in Microsoft Office applications
    • Ability and willingness to travel in province and out of province, including internationally, and work extended hours required. Some weekends and evenings are required


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