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Senior Director of Development, Development & Alumni Engagement

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Job ID: 14572

Updated: March 8, 2018

Location: Main Campus

Position Overview

Development & Alumni Engagement is currently seeking a Full-time Regular Senior Director of Development.

The University of Calgary is Canada's leading next-generation university, a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. The university has a clear strategic direction, Eyes High. We aspire to be Canada's most entrepreneurial university in the country's most enterprising city. To this end, we've launched Energize: The Campaign for Eyes High, a $1.3 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign, which promises to positively charge our campus community, our city and beyond through philanthropic support for student experiences that unleash potential; research outcomes that benefit society and community connections that strengthen our ties.

The Senior Director of Development is a senior position reporting to the Associate Vice-President, Development. This position is responsible for leading and supporting members of the University's development team, strategic planning, and procedure development for key fundraising operations that support the university's development goals and partnerships. This position is also responsible for advancing institutional donor relationships through face to face meetings, personally managing a number of the University's key donor relationships and driving a significant portion of the University's annual fundraising goal.

This position requires an ability to work under pressure, juggle multiple timelines, manage professional staff, negotiate with donors, and interact with a diverse client base including other members of the fundraising team. The impact of the decisions of the incumbent will have a significant effect on the Development & Alumni Engagement Office and the University.

This senior position is frequently a first point of contact for key stakeholders including major donors, community leaders, as well as the University's program directors, Deans and Department Heads. The advice, decisions and actions of the Senior Director may create contractual, legal, tax and ethical implications for the University. This role depends on leadership, diplomacy, foresight and sound judgment being effectively exercised by the Senior Director to ensure continued goodwill and financial support for the University.

Position Description

Summary of Key Responsibilities (job functions include but are not limited to):

  • Develop and implement plans and strategies to enhance the University's development program and to generate consistent and significant increases to the funds generated through all development staff
  • Provide leadership and counsel to a team of professional staff members working in support of institutional and faculty-based priorities
  • Lead assigned faculty and institutional development portfolios
  • Actively engage with select major gift prospects and donors to advance their philanthropy
  • Evaluate and make recommendations to the Associate Vice-President, Development and university senior leadership, regarding human resources strategies for development operations: recruiting, hiring, ensuring sound orientation and ongoing training, and support professional development
  • Conduct regular and ad hoc review meetings with directly reporting staff as well as formal mid-year and annual evaluations
  • Ensure that all staff within their portfolios are well-managed and all HR requirements are met
  • Ensure own actions and those of staff reflect sensitivity to the needs and interest of many campus areas with diverse development objectives
  • Engage with University's executive leadership, faculty deans, department heads, institute and/or centre directors to guide fundraising strategies and ensure that fundraising tools such as cases for support and proposals are in alignment with institutional goals
  • Ensure the key components of faculty and institutional fundraising campaigns are coordinated with faculty-based and other campaigns to capitalize on relationships with the corporate community, foundations, alumni, and individuals and promote achieving development goals
  • Ensure compliance with prospect management procedures
  • Develop annually a comprehensive business plan and budget
  • Provide direction and leadership to direct reports to ensure goals are met on schedule
  • Ensure ongoing familiarity with University direction, economic environment, current trends in philanthropy and best practices in fundraising and leadership
  • Lead by example in building a strong culture of trust, collaboration, innovation and team work

Qualifications / Requirements:

  • A University Bachelor degree with 7 plus years fundraising experience
  • Substantial exposure to the non-profit sector, within a University environment or a large, complex organization is required
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Excellent listening skills, proven leadership ability, strong organizational skills
  • Ability to analyze the market place and make appropriate recommendations
  • Ability to combine people and resources in a manner that will achieve objectives within established limits; ability to coach and mentor a portfolio of development teams and individuals
  • Good negotiation skills, ability to manage relationships, honesty, integrity, high standards, understanding and commitment to an academic environment
  • Innovation, ability to motivate others, and a passion for what you do
  • Sound judgment and decision making capabilities and the ability to work both independently and collaboratively are required
  • Proven leadership, management of professional staff and effective setting of goals and priorities
  • Organizational abilities including planning and organizing complex programs and high-impact projects with minimal direction
  • Proven ability to build fundraising strategies in support of organizational goals, develop prospective donors and secure major gifts
  • Experience in all facets of an integrated development program including events, sponsorship, annual giving, major gifts and legacy giving
  • Regional development experience is an asset; must be comfortable working directly with members of the University's executive leadership team, Deans, and Department Heads; ability to exercise a high level of tact and discretion in both internal and external interactions
  • Fundraising expertise in a large, complex environment
  • Accomplished leadership skills, strategic vision and successful change implementations in a large/complex organization
  • High level of knowledge about relational database systems and technology applications to enhance business workflow and scalability
  • Capacity to analyze, translate and report financial and statistical data
  • Sound judgment and ethical decision-making capabilities and the ability to work collaboratively
  • Strong customer-focused attitude
  • Excellent problem solving and critical thinking skills
  • Sound facilitation, strategic planning, project and resource management

Application Deadline: This position will remain open until filled; however, applicants will be reviewed as they are received.

We would like to thank all applicants in advance for submitting their resumes. Please note, only those candidates chosen to continue on through the selection process will be contacted.

For more information, please contact:

Allan Nelson or Heather Fookes

Davies Park

530, 1000 - 7 Avenue SW

Calgary, AB T2P 5L5 Phone: (403) 263-0600


Additional information can be found at: 


Additional Information

This position is classified in the Management Career Band, Level M3 ($105,600-$169,000 annual) of the Management and Professional Staff Career Framework. 

The University of Calgary’s  comprehensive benefits and pension program is designed to promote a productive level of health and well-being to staff members through coverage for health, dental, life insurance, income protection for disability, and retirement income planning. To learn about our comprehensive benefits package please visit:

Business address and job location: University of Calgary 2500 University Drive NW, Calgary AB, T2N 1N4.

The primary language and communication within the department is English.

To find out more about management and staff opportunities at the University of Calgary and all we have to offer, view our Management and Staff Careers website. For more information about Development & Alumni Engagement visit

About the University of Calgary

The University of Calgary is Canada’s leading next-generation university – a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. Located in the nation’s most enterprising city, the university is making tremendous progress on its Eyes High journey to be recognized as one of Canada’s top five research universities, grounded in innovative learning and teaching and fully integrated with the community it both serves and leads. The University of Calgary inspires and supports discovery, creativity and innovation across all disciplines. For more information, visit

The University of Calgary recognizes that a diverse staff/faculty benefits and enriches the work, learning and research experiences of the entire campus and greater community. We are committed to removing barriers that have been historically encountered by some people in our society. We strive to recruit individuals who will further enhance our diversity and will support their professional success while they are here. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply, however preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.


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