Senior Director Prospect Development – The Ohio State University Office of Advancement

Senior Director Prospect Development – The Ohio State University Office of Advancement

Job Type
Posting Date
September 10, 2019
Location of Position

Columbus, OH

Company Summary

For 144 years, The Ohio State University's campus in Columbus has been the stage for academic achievement and a laboratory for innovation. It's where friendships are forged. It's where rivalries and revelry are born.

The university's main campus is one of America's largest and most comprehensive. As Ohio's best and one of the nation's top-20 public universities, Ohio State is further recognized by a top-rated academic medical center and a premier cancer hospital and research center. As a land-grant university, Ohio State has a physical presence throughout the state, with campuses and research centers located around Ohio.

The Ohio State University is proud to be a premier employer that provides an exceptional total rewards package including medical, dental, vision and many other “hidden” benefits. Our competitive benefits package is offered to all eligible faculty and staff in order to attract, develop and retain top performers eager to share their talent, time and success. Our benefits support your health and financial goals and include not only health insurance, but also generous state retirement, tuition assistance for our employees and their dependents, wellness initiatives, and much more. Please visit for detailed information. Be your best at The Ohio State University!

Duties and Responsibilities

The Ohio State University is seeking a Senior Director to serve as the leader of its award-winning Prospect Development department. Prospect Development serves approximately 150 front-line fundraisers across 32 fundraising units at the university, supporting university-wide fundraising activities via best practices in research and prospect management. The insights generated by this team have propelled the university to hit record fundraising amounts, including last fiscal year when $623M was raised. On October 3, the university will publicly launch its next fundraising campaign and this position will serve as a key leader in its successful completion.

The Senior Director will lead full application and integration of research and prospect management resources, set priorities, goals, and vision for the prospect development team, and drive innovation in products and services. The position leads a strong team of 23+ prospect development professionals, with 2-3 direct reports running day-to-day operations. It reports to the Assistant Vice President, Strategy and Administration and partners frequently with AVPs and VPs of development. A particularly strong relationship will be built with the Business Intelligence and Data Science Department to assess and analyze the full spectrum of available data in order to provide a framework for strategic, actionable fundraising plans.

While the successful candidate will be an experienced prospect development professional with emphasis in both research and prospect management disciplines, they should also have the ability to develop positive relationship and work effectively with a variety of leaders, colleagues, and clients.  They will collaborate with Advancement colleagues to create and implement organizational strategies that ensure effective utilization of prospect development resources, drive change and continuous improvement across the organization by focusing on the application of data analytics and data-driven decision-making, and build strategic partnerships and participate in various Advancement initiatives.

Position highlights include opportunities to accomplish the following:

  • Bring together multiple advancement teams to innovate and solve fundraising problems using data, technology, and fundraising expertise
  • Increase opportunities to leverage prospect data utilizing an incredibly robust database (Blackbaud CRM)
  • Serve as an integrated partner in building out Advancement’s data strategy
  • Work with team to create strong professional/career development plans

Why Join Ohio State Advancement Now?

The Office of Advancement brings together Engagement, Fundraising, Marketing, and Strategy/Administration professionals to introduce new and exciting change to The Ohio State University community. Ohio State is one month away from the public kickoff of the next fundraising campaign which coincides with the celebration of the university’s 150th birthday. Focused on healthy, vibrant communities; students; and research, the goal of the upcoming campaign will be well above $4B. At Ohio State, a major gift is considered to be $100,000+ and a principal gift is $5M+. All members of Advancement are part of creating an inclusive culture that inspires an exceptionally diverse and talented team and are measured on their adherence to the following core competencies:  leadership, continuous improvement, teamwork and collaboration, and communication/interpersonal effectiveness.

Performance Objectives

In the first 60-90 days of employment, the successful candidate for this position will accomplish the following:

  • Build positive relationships with direct reports and Prospect Development team
  • Become familiar with current university-wide research and prospect management activities, including projects related to campaign readiness
  • Work with Prospect Development leadership team to build FY20 priorities and goals
  • Build positive relationships with Advancement leaders and understand their strategic priorities and needs and understand Prospect Development’s role in the campaign
  • Leverage and further strengthen the partnership with analytics team

Longer-term goals include the following:

  • Assess current research and prospect management activities, making recommendations on future revision and expansion of products and services
  • Understand, refine, and add to existing plans for program/staff expansion
  • Explore new and innovative technologies in this space
  • Expand training opportunities across Advancement to maximize understanding and knowledge of prospect development and fundraising analytics
Position Requirements

Desired qualifications include experience within a large, public university and/or non-profit organization; and the proven ability to drive positive change within a complex, dynamic environment.

Required Experience

Possession of a bachelor’s degree; 6 or more years of prospect development (research and/or relationship management) experience working in higher education/non-profit environments; knowledge and awareness of industry trends in prospect development; 3 years progressively responsible experience leading staff and managing programs; experience with data-driven decision-making and application of data analysis; Strong experience with CRM systems

Apply Here

What You Need To Know About Columbus

Columbus is the 14th largest city in the nation, the 7th smartest city in the world, full of fantastic food and we can’t stop winning national awards in technology, transportation and culture. Aside from the unparalleled benefits of working for The Ohio State University and working in the friendly, diverse, smart, safe, fun and growing city of Columbus, Ohio, this opportunity will provide exceptional rewards that arise from working for a land grant institution where you will truly feel the impact of your work. And cost of living is comparatively low. Learn more here:

Closing Statement

The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, national origin, disability status, or protected veteran status.