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Vice President, Development Operations

Posted: 03/05/2023

Position Title:              Vice President, Development Operations
Member of:                 Senior Development Leadership Team
FLSA Status:                 Exempt
Position Summary:         
Professional position responsible for strategically leading KU Endowment’s development operations team, including oversight of staff leadership in the areas of annual giving, communications and donor relations, and the broad department of advancement services (gift processing/biographical records and prospect management/research). The position is an integral member of KU Endowment’s senior development leadership team, and collaborates with a wide audience of Endowment staff, volunteers, counsel, and University leaders.
The individual in this position is expected to embrace KU Endowment’s stated core values – passion for KU, partnership with donors, perpetual support for KU, and a people-centered approach – and demonstrate support for them through professional interactions and activities.
Examples of Duties and Responsibilities:
  • Provides strategic direction and implements strategies, plans and procedures in the areas of annual giving, communications and donor relations, and advancement services. Sets comprehensive goals to ensure operational functions are carried out and internal and external customer support needs are met. Provides and develops leadership to address complex situations while encouraging maximum performance and dedication to the mission of KU Endowment.
  • Fosters and maintains a positive, respectful, and productive team environment. Establishes performance goals, objectives, and priorities aimed at continuously monitoring and assessing performance. Shares information and communicates through appropriate staff meetings and interactions. Identifies and responds to training opportunities across all areas of oversight.
  • Encourages and harnesses cross-departmental cooperation and collaboration. Creates a culture of teamwork to foster new ideas, shared workloads, significant process improvements and continuous learning.
  • Works closely with members of the Senior Development Leadership Team to ensure that a successful and effective fundraising culture and program are sustained at the highest levels throughout the multi-campus reach of KU Endowment, particularly in support of front-line fundraising.
  • Serves as a contributing partner in digital transformation as KU Endowment executes on and transitions to its new database and associated development reporting systems.
  • Actively participates in the Senior Operations Leadership Team – a team comprised of cross-Endowment leaders and managers who shape and execute policy and key operational activities and strategies daily. The team meets monthly to broaden discussion and engender collaborative processes on substantive administrative and operational issues.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.
Minimum Qualifications:
Training and Experience:  
Bachelor’s degree required.  Eight years experience in higher education fundraising, with an emphasis in development operations, annual giving, donor relations and communications, and successful major/leadership gift acquisitions required.  Experience planning for and working in a multi-year comprehensive campaign environment is preferred. Demonstrated success leading various teams.  Valid motor vehicle license.
Strong communication and organizational skills are imperative.  Knowledge of KU Endowment fundraising processes, practices, people, and the University of Kansas helpful. Must possess the ability to articulate, initiate, organize, and follow through with planning initiatives.   Must be able to establish and maintain effective working relationships with both internal and external KU Endowment constituents.  Must exercise good judgment with minimum supervision and foster an attitude of professionalism, teamwork, and achievement.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement
At KU Endowment, we recognize that we best achieve our mission of building a greater University of Kansas by embracing diversity, equity and inclusion. We are committed to cultivating a people-centered environment that is welcoming to the spectrum of differences among us in an atmosphere of respect and fairness. Accordingly, our staff, Board of Trustees, volunteers and donors will work together to create a more representative, equitable and inclusive KU Endowment.
Application Instructions:
Please attach your cover letter and resume when applying for the position.

Review of applications begins immediately and continues until the position is filled.  Because of the sensitive nature of KU Endowment business and the importance of our reputation with donors, KU Endowment conducts a comprehensive review of applicants.  By submitting your application, you authorize us to conduct reference checks and a review of available public information.  Employment is contingent upon background and reference checks that KU Endowment finds acceptable.


Job Type: Full Time