Chief Development Officer, College of Engineering

POSTED: April 8, 2019

BUSINESS: Purdue Research Foundation

LOCATION: Purdue University Campus

POSITION TYPE: Full-time/Exempt

START DATE: Immediate Availability

Essential Functions:

  • Work in direct partnership with the Senior Associate Vice President for Advancement and the Dean of the College of Engineering to advance the College’s private fundraising efforts.
  • The Chief Development Officer is responsible for securing major gifts aimed at meeting the strategic goals of the College’s leadership, its programs, and disciplines.
  • Responsible for making a minimum of 120 visits annually with donors and prospects.
  • Provide vision and leadership by planning and executing fundraising efforts while managing expectations and balancing resources to achieve transformational success.
  • Orchestrate and realize the advancement of relationships with prospective donors through the appropriate stages of qualification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship. 
  • The selected candidate will have a fundraising goal of $3M annually.
  • Supervise development professional and support staff. 

Additional Responsibilities

  • Collaborate with appropriate development and academic staff to develop prospect strategies and build relationships.
  • Use the full complement of the fundraising process, including personal visits and asks to move relationships forward. 
  • Set specific objectives to effectively advance toward solicitation of major gifts. 
  • Ensure appropriate coordination with the College’s corporate and business partners and various unit and University constituencies. 
  • Prepare proposals and solicit prospects for gifts in support of the College’s fundraising priorities. 
  • Host or co-host receptions and other donor events locally and regionally.
  • Provide stewardship of gifts including acknowledgement process, coordinating recognition events, dedications, and working with the University Development Office on appropriate recognition. 
  • Become familiar with and understand key initiatives of the College relating to faculty, students, instruction and research.
  • Continually improve professional competency through training and participation in and/or leadership in professional, organizational and other not-for-profit organizations.
  • Become adept at using the Advance and Reeher database in support of major gift activities.

 Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Familiarity with the programs across the College of Engineering is desired but not a requirement. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including the ability to speak before large groups.
  • Ability to articulate the mission of Purdue University as needed.
  • Ability to interact with stakeholders from a wide range of professional and cultural backgrounds.
  • Ability to use good judgment, diplomacy, maintain confidentiality and represent the University with tact and diplomacy at all times.
  • Possess initiative and the ability to collaborate effectively as part of a team.
  • Excellent relationship building skills, organizational skills and ability to handle multiple projects.
  • Must have strong problem solving and decision-making skills, as well as attention to detail.
  • Desire to continuously improve professional competency through participation in professional development opportunities.
  • Ability to travel and perform evening and weekend duties as required.
  • Regular and reliable attendance are requirements of this position.


  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • A minimum of five years of experience in fund development, including solicitation of major gifts and/or related work experience required.
  • Experience in higher education or other non-profit organizations is preferred but not a requirement.

Application Instructions:   

If you are interested in applying for this position, please send a cover letter and resume to the Director of Human Resources at by Friday, May 3, 2019. 

A criminal conviction check and negative controlled substance test are required for employment in this position. 

Purdue Research Foundation does not accept resumes from third-party recruiters.

Purdue Research Foundation is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer fully committed to achieving a diverse workforce.


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