Executive Director of Development & Community Engagement, Colorado Women's College at University of Denver in United States

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The University of Denver is building an advancement enterprise that mirrors the excellence of our great institution. Advancement efforts at DU have a tremendous impact through our relationships with DU's remarkable students, dedicated donors, inspiring alumni, engaged families, and wonderful friends. DU is committed to building and fostering a culture of deep engagement and philanthropy in support of our institution as we implement the DU IMPACT 2025 vision. As a part of that effort, we are continuing to grow a team of collaborative, curious, results-oriented, and mission-driven advancement professionals who value inclusivity and who possess a deep respect for one another and for our shared profession.

Colorado Women's College (CWC) is focused on advancing women and gender equity at DU and beyond. DU is leading the way nationally to align the future of work and the future of higher education, areas that are undergoing tremendous pressure for change. CWC's mandate is to ensure that the disruptive changes in work and education models advance women and gender equity to the fullest. We are listening to learn what women truly need and we are partnering with DU's centers of excellence, as well as businesses and organizations regionally and experts nationally to augment, accelerate and amplify the advancement of women and gender equity. We will be leaders in introducing new, flexible, practical, and affordable development experiences, introducing practices and providing programs that advance gender equity, and we will pursue solution-oriented, multidisciplinary research contributing to women's prosperity and gender equity.

Position Summary

The Executive Director of Development and Community Engagement reports to the Assistant Vice Chancellor for University Development, and partners closely day-to-day with the Dean of the Colorado Women's College, their advisory board and team. This position is responsible for leading the philanthropic engagement of a variety of DU, CWC and community-based constituents. In that capacity, the Executive Director will manage a portfolio of donor and prospect relationships while also partnering with a campus-wide network of academic leaders, fundraising and engagement professionals, and other key partners to advance the priorities of CWC. The Executive Director will work diligently and creatively in pursuit of individual and comprehensive college goals set annually in collaboration with the Assistant Vice Chancellor and the Dean. Additionally, they will collaborate with Advancement leadership and senior university administrators to determine and implement fundraising priorities, establish short- and long-term strategies, and monitor progress toward goals. The campus-wide Advancement team is highly collaborative in its work, and the Executive Director will be expected to build and foster value-added relationships with campus partners.

The ideal candidate for this role will be motivated by building, fostering and deepening relationships across the entire continuum of donor development. They will possess an entrepreneurial spirit and skill set, which will empower them to address challenges and achieve goals with creativity and agility. Both the University of Denver and its Colorado Women's College are committed to moving quickly and resolutely toward achieving our vision; therefore, the candidate must also be energized by an accelerated pace in a fast-moving enterprise. This position requires a strong sense of organizational savvy and ability to manage the expectations of stakeholders with various, and sometimes competing, interests. Most importantly, the Executive Director of Development and Community Engagement for the Colorado Women's College will possess a strong personal passion for leading disruptive changes for the advancement of women and gender equity.

The Executive Director will have the opportunity to influence important social change by earning community support for innovative approaches to advancing gender equity and championing women's life-long learning and leadership development. Through this philanthropic support, the University of Denver and CWC are empowering women to be equal and cooperative participants, decision-makers and social change leaders in all areas of society; catalyzing collaborative research and programmatic endeavors that create knowledge, inform policy, transform practices and question existing paradigms in order to support gender equity and women's advancement; and convening collaborative work, training, and public dialogue that ultimately enables all people to realize their full talent potential.

The Executive Director of Development and Community Engagement serving the Colorado Women's College is a full-time, benefited, at-will position at the University of Denver. The university believes deeply in the work of the Women's College and the new model its bringing to life. This position is funded initially for three years, with a possibility of extension based on the successful performance of the incumbent and availability of resources.

Essential Functions

Fundraising and Community Activation

  • Architect a fundraising and community engagement strategy for CWC that maps various groups, individuals and organizations across a wide range of development and engagement opportunities. Translate those opportunities to a full suite of services that support CWC in capturing and advancing a wide range of existing and new relationships.
  • Earn philanthropic support for the priorities of the Colorado Women’s College at DU, and work primarily with leadership annual, major, principal, and planned gift donors assigned to their portfolio.
  • Collaborate with other development professionals across campus to effectively design and execute gift strategies.
  • Oversee CWC’s annual giving campaign, including partnering with DU Advancement colleagues to develop and execute annual fund strategy and manage project-specific crowdfunding campaigns such as “One Day for DU”.
  • Serve as primary liaison to DU’s alumni engagement and donor relations and advancement events teams. Build internal partnerships to collaboratively advance CWC priorities.


  • In partnership with the Assistant Vice Chancellor for University Development, establish fundraising priorities based on the strategic vision for the Colorado Women’s College. Help educate colleagues and peers across campus on those priorities.
  • Engage in the advancement goal-setting process for CWC fundraising, engagement and stewardship metrics.
  • Effectively and responsibly steward budgetary and other resources to advance CWC and the University of Denver.

Partnerships & University Citizenship

  • Serve as a strategic and effective liaison to the CWC Alumnae Association and coordinate their volunteer activities.
  • Serve as an active and collaborative partner to all central and unit-based advancement functions and other campus colleagues to foster strategic, effective, and collaborative fundraising practices.
  • Model “One DU” leadership through cross-campus collaboration and support of interdisciplinary models.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Demonstrated ability to provide fundraising and community engagement strategy and support to academic/organizational leaders.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and start-up mentality, with a demonstrated ability to thrive in a fast-pace, emerging environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to close gifts at all levels in a relationship-based culture.
  • Demonstrated ability to form and fully leverage cross-functional teams of colleagues, volunteers, and academic/administrative leaders toward alumni, prospect and donor engagement and the closure of gifts.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills. Ability to represent the University of Denver, and its major initiatives and units, both emerging and established, in a variety of capacities.
  • Mature and proven ability to work with a high level of independence, maintain confidentiality, prioritize assignments, and manage time effectively.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal skills to foster and maintain effective relationships with colleagues, donors, volunteers, and University Officials.
  • Ability to interact effectively with diverse groups having competing interests and priorities within the University and community.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent combination of education and work experience.
  • 8 years of paid fundraising experience and/or non-profit leadership or community engagement experience, inclusive of direct fundraising responsibility.
  • Demonstrated ability to secure major gifts ($50,000+) by strategically managing a portfolio and fostering meaningful relationships.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree.
  • Experience working creatively across the full spectrum of the donor continuum.
  • Experience working in college-based or department-specific development role.

Work Schedule
Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Application Deadline
For best consideration, please submit your application materials by 4:00 p.m. (MST) on June 3, 2019.

Special Instructions
Candidates must apply online through jobs.du.edu to be considered. Only applications submitted online will be accepted.

Salary Range:
Salary will be determined by the qualifications of the selected candidate balanced with departmental budget availability, internal salary equity considerations, and available market information.

Please include the following documents with your application:
1. Resume
2. Cover Letter

The University of Denver is committed to enhancing the diversity of its faculty and staff. We are an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment regardless of age, race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, military/ veteran status or any other status protected by law.

All offers of employment are based upon satisfactory completion of a criminal history background check.

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