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Major Gift Officer, University Development

Office of Alumni & Development

Major Gift Officer, University Development

  • 533336
  • Morningside
  • Office of Alumni & Development
  • Full Time
  • Opening on: Jan 20 2023
  • Grade 14
  • Job Type: Officer of Administration
  • Bargaining Unit:
  • Regular/Temporary: Regular
  • End Date if Temporary:
  • Hours Per Week: 35
  • Salary Range: $120,000 - $140,000
The salary of the finalist selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to departmental budgets, qualifications, experience, education, licenses, specialty, and training. The above hiring range represents the University's good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible compensation at the time of posting.

Position Summary

Reporting to the Assistant Vice President for University Development, the Major Gift Officer, University Development, identifies, cultivates, and solicits alumni, parents and friends on behalf of Columbia University and its 16 schools and programs. 

Columbia University continually seeks funds for facilities, endowed scholarships, fellowships and professorships, as well as unrestricted and restricted current use purposes. The University recently launched a $1.4B Student Support Initiatives to increase its financial aid offer across the institutions. The Major Gifts Officer plays a central role collaborating with University officials, School leadership, faculty, development senior leadership, campaign volunteers, and colleagues throughout the Alumni and Development community.


Regional Major Gifts Officers are responsible for managing a portfolio of 150 major gift prospects within assigned geographic regions by qualifying prospects and cultivate potential contributors; designing, and developing solicitation strategies; identifying gift opportunities that match donors' interests; and personally soliciting gifts and continually stewarding major gift donors. The Major Gifts Officer will achieve and document 150 prospect visits per year as well as achieve 15 asks of $250,000 or above per year.

Major Gifts Officers carry portfolios with geographic regional assignments requiring significant travel. Working in a highly collaborative environment, members of the Major Gifts team have opportunities to engage with multiple Columbia schools and faculty, participate in project teams, and manage volunteers. Experience working in complex organizations and ability to navigate multiple priorities is recommended. Officers may be asked to perform related tasks, as needed. Major Gifts Officers are expected to be self-motivated, well-organized and collegial partners, and, above all, persuasive advocates for Columbia University's priorities.   

Minimum Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree required. Minimum 5-7 years’ related experience, preferably in fund raising or related transferable experience, with demonstrated success in annual or capital giving or applicable ability. Excellent writing and communication skills, tact, sensitivity and mature judgment are required. Must be professional, organized, creative and efficient, able to work successfully both individually and as part of a team. This position requires evening and weekend work and travel 30-50% time.

Preferred Qualifications

Advanced degree preferred. Preference given to candidates with a documented record of successfully closing gifts within or near the range of gifts expected from the incumbent. Experience with higher education fund-raising also preferred. 

Subject to business needs, the Office of Alumni and Development supports a hybrid work arrangement for this position. Options will be discussed during the interview process.

Equal Opportunity Employer / Disability / Veteran

Columbia University is committed to the hiring of qualified local residents.

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