Gift Officer, Planned Giving

Yale University seeks an experienced and successful planned gift officer to join the distinguished university division of alumni affairs and development. As a member of the Planned Giving team, the officer is responsible primarily for the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of a robust portfolio of over one hundred planned giving prospects of alumni and friends university-wide. With an emphasis on securing blended gifts, the planned gift officer collaborates with other fundraising colleagues and serves as a resource to other frontline staff in gift discussions with potential donors.

More specifically, the planned gift officer qualifies donors for inclusion in a planned giving portfolio or for proper assignment within development during the fast pace of a comprehensive fundraising campaign; assumes responsibility for the tracking, reporting, and analysis of activity related to assigned planned giving prospects; and prepares gift illustrations, tax information, and other documents related to life income and other planned gifts. In addition, the planned gift officer serves as a planned giving content expert to development colleagues across the university and partners with staff to create planned giving opportunities (including joint visits with colleagues and preparation of planned giving proposals that meet donors’ personal, financial, and philanthropic goals) and evaluates and recommends giving vehicles most suitable for individual prospects.

The planned gift officer has a comprehensive knowledge of the technical aspects of planned giving and the related tax and estate consequences of gift plans. Experienced in raising major gifts through bequests, charitable gift annuities, charitable remainder trusts, and other complex gift arrangements, the planned gift officer determines the donor’s philanthropic interests and works with them and their financial and legal advisors to secure both outright and planned gifts in conjunction with donors’ needs and university priorities.

This position is an ideal opportunity for a high-performing, collaborative, and motivated development professional to come in on the ground floor of Yale’s next campaign.

Principal responsibilities

  1. Identifies, cultivates, and solicits Yale alumni/alumnae and friends who are capable of making gifts to the university. Meets assigned activity and revenue goals.
  2. Devises and implements cultivation and solicitation strategies. Evaluates various gift opportunities and giving vehicles; recommends the most suitable for a particular donor. Develops, writes, and presents proposals in keeping with university needs and in line with donor’s interest and financial situation.
  3. Initiates and maintains contact with current, past, and prospective donors, promoting positive donor relations. Engages volunteers proactively as needed. Determines and executes events and programs in support of development activities, assessing the success of such events/programs and recommending changes. Identifies disaffected or disinterested donors and devises strategies to encourage/redirect their interests as appropriate.
  4. Interacts with internal contacts such as deans, directors, faculty, officers, and other development staff to consult on university needs, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship strategies, and potential donors. Keeps abreast of university events and disseminates university information to donors, prospective donors, volunteers, and team members as appropriate.
  5. Performs other duties as assigned.

Skills and abilities

  1. Demonstrated ability in personally and consistently raising six-figure or larger gifts from donors, utilizing industry standard best practices and a donor-centric approach. Ability to maintain confidentiality. Must possess the willingness/ability to travel to identify, cultivate, and solicit new planned giving donors and steward existing ones.
  2. Excellent written and oral communication skills. Exhibits behavioral and linguistic flexibility as well as strong intellectual and social curiosity. Demonstrated ability synthesizing and prioritizing information from a wide array of sources while maintaining an attention to detail and effectively managing overall workflow.
  3. Proven ability building and maintaining long-term donor relationships. An active listener with a successful track record of interacting with donors and their advisors, colleagues, faculty, and administrators at the highest level. Demonstrated ability to leverage relationships to implement strategic solicitation of donors for stretch gifts.
  4. Proactive, productive team contributor with a positive attitude and sense of humor. Demonstrated ability to follow through on commitments and take personal responsibility for outcomes. Persistent, results oriented and driven to succeed personally, and is inspired by challenging team goals.
  5. Demonstrates initiative, drive, and a resourceful and a data-driven work ethic. Creative, innovative, flexible, with excellent organizational and analytical skills and with the ability to work independently, manage multiple projects effectively, and maintain a high degree of professionalism in a team-oriented, complex environment.

Required education and experience

Bachelor’s degree required, two to eight years of fundraising experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience. Job title and level will be commensurate with experience.

Preferred education and experience

Bachelor’s degree, with advanced degree preferred, plus four to eight years of fundraising or related experience with a minimum of two years’ concentration in planned giving, estate and financial planning, or charitable giving tax law. Familiarity with planned giving software, i.e., PG Calc’s Planned Giving Manager and GiftWrap.