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Yale University

Assistant Vice President, Office of Development

Deerfield Associates Executive Search, Inc. has been retained by Yale University to conduct a global search for an Assistant Vice President, Office of Development.

Yale University

Yale University was founded in 1701 and is the 3rd oldest university in the country.  A private, coeducational institution located in New Haven, Connecticut, Yale is a large research university comprised of three major academic components: Yale College (the undergraduate program), the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and twelve professional schools.  In addition, Yale encompasses a wide array of research organizations, libraries and museums, and administrative and support offices.  Resources and facilities include: $25 billion endowment, a 900-acre central campus with over 200 buildings, over a dozen libraries totaling 15 million volumes, including the second largest university library in the country, and the second largest gymnasium in the world with 35 varsity sports teams.  There are currently approximately 169,000 living alumni.

Situated on the scenic Connecticut shoreline, New Haven is two hours by train to New York City or Boston.  With 130 restaurants, world class museums, shopping, music, and theater all within walking distance of the university campus, New Haven is a destination for tourists and locals alike. In addition, the region boasts hiking, cycling, skiing, boating, beaches, and numerous other family activities.

The Opportunity

Reporting to the Vice President for Alumni Affairs and Development and serving as a member of the senior leadership team, the Assistant Vice President manages and provides strategic guidance to a number of fundraising units in the Office of Development including Major Gifts; Prospect Research; and the combined unit of Annual Giving, Reunion Giving and Leadership Giving – a staff of some 85 employees. Helps set strategic direction for Yale’s fundraising efforts. Specific responsibilities include: manage, mentor, inspire and guide a team of high-level directors in their fundraising work and activities; set and achieve fundraising goals; develop strategies to increase gift revenue; maintain and strengthen relationships with key volunteers, enhance volunteer engagement, and ensure that volunteer resources and tools are robust and effective; lead efforts to identify and cultivate new donors; devise and implement strategies to provide professional development for staff and to encourage their highest level of performance; promote productive relationships between Yale’s prospects/donors and the President, University Officers, Trustees, development staff, faculty and volunteer leaders; collaborates closely with the Association of Yale Alumni; help develop and disseminate fundraising policies and procedures; and serve as the primary contact for fundraising issues for various groups across campus.

The Responsibilities

  • Directs one or more functional areas within a department of the University and ensures compliance with University policies and procedures. Manages, mentors, and guides a team of directors, managers, and other staff in their work, programs, initiatives, and activities.
  • Establishes and implements long- and short-range goals for the functional area consistent with University goals and objectives. Sets and achieves unit objectives. Develops strategies to achieve unit results and enhance productivity and performance.
  • Establishes, promotes, strengthens, and maintains productive and collaborative relationships with key constituents and partners – both inside and outside the university. Serves as a key liaison for various individuals and groups across campus. As appropriate, leads efforts to identify and cultivate new partners.
  • Works with internal and external contacts to solve problems that range in nature from the routine to the complex.
  • Implements strategies to provide professional development for staff and to encourage their highest level of performance.
  • Establishes and evaluates policies and procedures affecting assigned functional areas of the University.
  • Represents the University in discussions, interactions, and negotiations either with donors or others, as appropriate.
  • May perform other duties as assigned.

Required Education and Experience

  • Required experience: Bachelor’s degree.  Ten years of relevant experience and at least eight years of managing/leading a team of advancement professionals; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Preferred Education and Experience

  • Preferred experience: Ten years of fundraising experience. Experience in an educational setting and familiarity with the mission of a large, complex university.
  • Knowledge of or experience in a fundraising campaign strongly preferred.

Skills and Abilities

  • An excellent track record of managing, inspiring, leading and directing a large and complex staff including frontline fundraisers as well as managers and other staff with an emphasis on building a strong and collaborative team effort.
  • Proven success in cultivating, soliciting and closing gifts. Demonstrated effectiveness in recruiting effective volunteer leaders and in guiding and supporting volunteer efforts.
  • Superb organizational, interpersonal, and written and oral communication skills.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously and successfully in a fast-paced environment with professionalism and a sense of humor.
  • Must be willing to travel.

The University’s Development History

Yale University takes great pride in its three centuries of distinction in teaching, research and preparation of future leaders for this nation and the world. The University has grown and flourished during this time, thanks to the generosity of devoted alumni, parents and friends. To help ensure that excellence, the University engages donors on a personal basis in order to solicit their support of the University’s mission. This effort is carried out in a collaborative manner by staff in the University’s Alumni Affairs and Development unit.

Yale’s record-breaking “…and for Yale” campaign, which was conducted between 1992 and 1997 and raised $1.702 billion, was the largest capital campaign ever completed by a non-profit organization at that time. In September 2006, the university embarked on the public phase of the $3.0 billion “Yale Tomorrow” capital campaign, then raised the goal to $3.5 billion in the fall of 2008, and ultimately surpassed the goal on June, 30, 2011, raising $3.88 billion.

Yale is now in the planning phase for its next capital campaign and is seeking exceptional individuals to be a part of this exciting future.


Yale’s Benefits

Yale University offers a dynamic and supportive work environment, competitive salaries and a generous benefits package including medical and dental plans, retirement plan and paid vacation.  

Yale University is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

All external candidates for employment at Yale University will be subject to pre-employment screening.  All offers are contingent on successful completion of a background check.

Contact Information

To explore this superb career opportunity on a highly confidential basis please send a letter of interest and a resume (both as Microsoft Word documents) to:

Doug Cooney, Executive Search Consultant, Deerfield Associates Executive Search, Inc.
572 Washington Street, Suite 15, Wellesley, MA 02482
Telephone: 781.237.2800

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