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Associate Director of Major Gifts, Family Philanthropy, Northeastern University

Pearl Street Collective
Job Title: Associate Director of Major Gifts, Family Philanthropy, Northeastern University
Job Type:
Job Search Ends:
August 31st, 2022


Northeastern University seeks a thoughtful, strategic, and entrepreneurial development professional to serve as an Associate Director of Major Gifts, Family Philanthropy Program (ADMG). Assuming a frontline fundraising role and advancing meaningful relationships with current parents, grandparents, and parents of alumni, the Associate Director of Major Gifts will help increase the University’s fundraising capacity by cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding family prospects with the capacity to make a major gift.

Through participation and philanthropic support, Northeastern parents are creating life-changing opportunities for students on campus and around the world – deepening their academic, cultural, athletic, and professional experiences. The Family Philanthropy Program helps to facilitate communications within the parent community; serves as a resource for domestic and international parents; and supports and participates in fundraising efforts to help advance the mission of the university.

Reporting into the Executive Director of the Family Philanthropy Program, Eva Rosenn, the ADMG is responsible for maintaining a portfolio of parent prospects for major gift cultivation and solicitation and assist in the creation and implementation of strategic fundraising initiatives that successfully meet donor interests and leverage their full philanthropic potential. A highly visible representative of the University, the ADMG will establish effective relationships with family prospects and donors while demonstrating an appreciation for Northeastern as a global university system enabling lifelong learning and discovery. 

In addition to the support of colleagues within the Family Philanthropy Program, the ADMG will leverage available resources including the Family Fellows Program—targeted to current and past parents who have the capacity to make significant gifts to the institution in support of a wide range of priorities across the university, and the Parents Leadership Council—an active, diverse volunteer group of Northeastern parent ambassadors. The ADMG will also serve as an active partner to colleagues in Northeastern’s Office of Advancement and across the University’s nine colleges and schools to foster strategic, effective, and collaborative advancement practices. 

The ideal candidate will demonstrate a track record of success in five and six-figure gifts, an entrepreneurial approach to fundraising that encourages innovation and transparency when building relationships, and a deep sense of respect coupled with superb attention to detail as philanthropic conversations with parents and family members progress. Often serving as a key point of contact for families, the ADMG will be engaging, empathetic and solution oriented. They will be a natural problem solver with a superb customer service orientation who is able to connect families to university resources and opportunities as needed. 


• Manage a portfolio of 125+ family prospects and donors with a focus on elevating gifts to $100k+ over the course of the family giving cycle.

• Make discovery and qualification calls, establish cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies.

• Perform a minimum of 120 visits per year, in-person and virtual; maintain a regular travel schedule to visit identified parent prospects, and meet or exceed annual strategic goals.

• Work with Executive Director and Development Research to identify and assign new parent prospects.

• Create and coordinate fundraising activities related to key programming and initiatives, recruit and steward volunteer leaders, and enhance program visibility.

• Communicate efforts and collaborate with central- and college-based Development staff, as well as affinity-based colleagues.

• Recommend and implement new initiatives that will provide meaningful and substantive engagement opportunities for family prospects.

• Support the Family Fellows fundraising program. 


• A highly entrepreneurial, energetic and collaborative individual with at least three to five (3-5) years of progressive individual giving experience, preferably in higher education.

• Proven track record in soliciting and closing leadership and major gifts, and able to demonstrate successful relationship building.

• Strong interpersonal skills necessary for building relationships with external (donors, prospects, trustees) and internal (deans, faculty, staff, colleagues) constituents.

• Must possess high degree of independent initiative and innovation, negotiation, interpersonal and networking skills, and ability to build trust with keen communication skills.

• Demonstrated ability in strategic thinking to assist in devising a comprehensive, sustained operation to carry out the vision, goals and fundraising aspirations of the university. Associate Director of Major Gifts | Family Philanthropy Program 3

• Tested ability to work closely and diplomatically with all constituencies.

• Superior verbal and written communication and presentation skills.

• Excellent attention to detail. • Ability to travel frequently including overnights and weekends.

• An appreciation for lifelong learning and the value of skills gained through a structured education as well as through hands-on work experience. 


Under the direction of Eva Rosenn, Executive Director, the Family Philanthropy Program enriches the Northeastern parent experience by building meaningful relationships between parents and the university through philanthropy, volunteerism, and community building. 


Led by President Joseph Aoun, Northeastern University is a global, experiential, research university built on a tradition of engagement with the world, creating a distinctive approach to education and research. The university’s global network of campuses includes the Boston flagship campus, which offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate and graduate programs leading to degrees through the doctorate in nine colleges and schools, as well as graduate campuses in Charlotte, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Seattle, Toronto, Vancouver, London, and Portland, ME. 

Northeastern recently announced a merger with Mills College, which brings Mills’ distinctive mission focused on access, equity, social justice, and women’s leadership into Northeastern’s global network. In addition to Mills College at Northeastern University, the merger will establish the Mills Institute, dedicated to advancing women’s leadership and to empowering BIPOC and first-generation students. 

Classified as a top-tier research institution and listed at #49 according to the U.S. News & World Report 2022 Best National Universities Rankings and one of the top universities for international students, Northeastern has elevated itself to a powerhouse on par with the nation’s elite research colleges and universities. These achievements build upon Northeastern’s unprecedented momentum, which includes continued investments in research and faculty recruitment, recordhigh student applications, and momentous fundraising success. 

The Office of University Advancement plays an integral role in furthering Northeastern’s gamechanging vision of transforming the University into diverse networks of learners and innovators, empowering members of its global community to succeed in an era of unprecedented technological and cultural change. Guided by Senior Vice President for University Advancement, Diane MacGillivray, the Office of University Advancement is a thriving fundraising environment with an engaged, dedicated, and generous donor universe that is ensuring a strong, sustainable future for Northeastern University. 

The Northeastern community continues to thrive during unprecedented and challenging market conditions and has shown tremendous dexterity and resilience during the current pandemic. Quickly transitioning to remote learning and recognized in the media as a forerunner in safely welcoming back students for in-person learning through advanced planning and continuous testing, the institution continues to educate its students and advance the frontiers of knowledge through its research.  

Strategic Plan: See the future in Beyond 2025, which presents a unique vision of the future of education rooted in experience, emphasizing impact in the world through education and research, and promoting deeply held values at the heart of Northeastern’s mission: https://strategicplan.northeastern.edu/


Please submit your resume and cover letter to fp-admg@pearlstreetcollective.com. Maeve Clifford, Managing Partner, and Caitlin Graham, Search Consultant, at Pearl Street Collective, a national women-owned search firm committed to serving as allies and uplifting all voices, are leading the search. 

Northeastern University is an equal opportunity employer seeking to recruit and support a broadly diverse community of faculty and staff. Northeastern values and celebrates diversity in all its forms and strives to foster an inclusive culture built on respect that affirms inter-group relations and builds cohesion.  

All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law. 

To learn more about Northeastern University’s commitment and support of diversity and inclusion, please see www.northeastern.edu/diversity. 

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