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Job ID: 100577

Director of the Annual Fund
Simmons College

  • Nov. 25, 2017
  • Director of the Annual Fund
  • Simmons College
    Boston, MA
    United States
  • Open until filled
  • Available immediately
  • Director/Manager
  • Public Relations/Marketing
    Development/Institutional Advancement
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Simmons is in the midst of an exciting period of innovation and change that has generated increased strength financially, academically, and operationally. In turn, new investments in philanthropy are aligned with the school's vision of the future and strategic priorities. Partnership with the Board and the President in the advancement effort is extraordinary, and complemented by a committed and engaged faculty. Faculty initiatives and special projects are continuing priorities. Because the majority of individual donors to the college are women, engagement strategies specific to this affinity group are a key priority. Additionally, student financial aid remains the priority funding option. Bold changes in the structure of academic units, curriculum development and physical space on campus are presenting a myriad of fundraising opportunities to be developed, categorized, valued and solicited.

Simmons recently completed a comprehensive $100M capital campaign, the largest in the College's history. The Annual Fund generates $3.5-$4M annually, and there are ambitious goals to increase unrestricted funding and to broaden the base of support from alumni and friends. The 30-person Advancement office is a close-knit team, committed to collaboration, accountability, innovation and performance consistent with best practice, standards and expectations of higher education industry leaders. The new Director of the Annual Fund will play a significant role in increasing philanthropic support for the College.

About the Position

Simmons College seeks a strategic leader to serve as Director of the Annual Fund. Reporting to the Assistant Vice President of Advancement Operations, the Director provides strategic direction and long-range/short-range planning for all aspects of annual giving for the College. This position will lead the annual fund team to plan, develop and execute repeatable gift income and increased participation from alumni, parents, and faculty/staff, while supporting the greater development and fundraising goals of the College.The Director of Annual Giving will oversee the designing, planning, execution and assessment of an integrated, comprehensive, and strategic fundraising plan to increase current-use annual support for Simmons College. The Simmons College annual giving program includes: integrated direct marketing via mail, phone, social/digital and email with an emphasis on growing the 1899 Leadership Giving Society through personal solicitation.

Key Responsibilities


  • Develop strategy and plan for student and parent philanthropy.
  • Cultivate, solicit, and steward a portfolio of top tier annual fund prospects for gifts of $1,899 to $100K.
  • Lead a 2-person team of annual giving professionals focusing on oversight of direct marketing, phone and young alumni solicitation, and reunion giving to raise funds from all College constituencies.
  • Present the College's financial needs and funding goals articulately, persuasively and with confidence by examining the budget for annual giving in relation to return on investment.

Leadership & Management

  • Supervise and lead all operations of the annual fund team, including hiring and managing assigned support.
  • Recruit, manage, and coach annual giving staff to work effectively and energetically with alumnae volunteers, annual giving volunteers, Trustees, and College leadership.
  • Collaborate with Director of Advancement Marketing and Communications and Assistant Vice President of Alumni and Engagement regularly to ensure the success of the direct mail, electronic communications, phone programs, and reunion giving.
  • Collaborate with leadership annual giving and major gift officers to coordinate the recruitment and solicitation of annual giving prospects.
  • Collaborate with Advancement Leadership, specifically Director of Major Gifts, Director of Alumnae/I Engagement, Director of Donor Relations on student/alumnae/i engagement, pipeline development, gift progress, analysis and stewardship, and contribute to ongoing fundraising analysis, program development, strategic planning and forecasting.

Key Qualifications

  • 5-7+ years of increasing fundraising success with at least four years of special emphasis on direct marketing, communications, and volunteer management; or commensurate skills and experience;
  • Experience cultivating new donors, growing annual fund programs and managing a top tier annual fund prospect pool;
  • Proven management, leadership and mentoring skills and the ability to work collaboratively;
  • Strong analytical skills, including the ability to look at data and draw conclusions to inform strategies;
  • Superior written and oral communication skills;
  • Familiarity with tracking systems and a high degree of comfort with using technology to communicate and share information. Raiser's Edge a plus;
  • Experience and interest in managing, developing, motivating, and mentoring staff in complex environment;
  • Must be able to advocate for a strong partnership between engagement activities and philanthropy in a fast-paced environment;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to work effectively in a deadline-driven, team environment;
  • Ability to work cooperatively to achieve common goals; support cooperation, collaboration and the sharing of information while providing the highest level of service to a variety of constituents; and
  • A deep appreciation for and an ability to successfully articulate the educational mission and aspirations of Simmons College to build support for the College's vision of the future.

As a College committed to diversity, Simmons encourages applications broadly. Simmons is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to continuing to develop a more diverse faculty, staff, student body and curriculum.

Please email your cover letter and resume in confidence to:

Tracy Marshall

Senior Vice President of Executive Search Services

Development Guild DDI

For more information about Simmons College, please visit

For more information about Development Guild DDI, please visit

About Development Guild DDI

Development Guild DDI is a national management consulting firm partnering with leading nonprofits to deliver the strategy, talent, and philanthropic resources that impact organizations and mission delivery. We focus our work across the nonprofit sector, particularly in the fields of education, health & science, the arts, and social justice.

More than 500 clients have shaped the regional, national, and global reach of our extensive relationships, knowledge, and results. Leveraging our work with nonprofit governance and leadership development, we deliver service in two areas: fundraising and executive search.


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