Senior Director, Strategy and Prospect Development

POSTED: October 24, 2019

BUSINESS: Purdue Research Foundation/University Development Office

LOCATION: Purdue University Campus

POSITION TYPE: Full-time/Exempt

START DATE: Immediate Availability

Position Overview

Purdue’s University Development Office (UDO) is seeking a Senior Director to lead its progressive Prospect Development department, which currently serves approximately 100 front-line fundraisers across nearly forty fundraising units representing three campus locations. Using a combination of traditional research and prospect management methods, combined with cutting-edge analytics, the team was instrumental in Purdue surpassing its campaign goal for the recently completed Ever True: The Campaign for Purdue. The campaign exceeded its $2 billion goal by 25%, raising $2.529 billion over the seven-year effort, capped off with Purdue’s 150th year anniversary celebration.

The Senior Director will lead the current thirteen-member team and will be instrumental in planning for the appropriate growth to support Purdue’s aggressive expansion plan. The Foundation has recently added fifteen frontline fundraisers with another thirty-five planned for 2020. Currently, Purdue has 7,457 actively managed prospects with a combined gift capacity of $3.3 billion. Another ~20,000 potential prospects have been identified with a combined minimum gift capacity of nearly $4 billion. This presents a significant opportunity for Purdue to expand its Development team to leverage the untapped prospect pool and drive higher fundraising results.

The successful candidate will be an experienced prospect development professional who also has the ability to cultivate relationships at all levels of the organization. The Senior Director will collaborate with campus partners to leverage fundraising opportunities using job knowledge, experience, data, existing tools and emerging technologies. 


Purdue: It’s Happening Here!

This is a unique and exciting time to be involved in Purdue’s Advancement effort as it grows and prepares for the next capital campaign. With a core of Advancement and Purdue veterans, UDO is experiencing an influx of new talent. Together, this diverse and growing team will move Purdue’s fundraising enterprise to the next level; supporting current needs and building a pipeline for sustainability. A new talent manager is developing professional development programs to support staff member career goals, balanced with institutional priorities.

Purdue has recently completed a comprehensive study and search for a new Advancement technology platform. Over the next two years, the Advancement team will be leading Purdue in a campus-wide Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) platform implementation. The Senior Director for Prospect Development will help lead this effort, defining and implementing research and prospect management standards within the new platform.


Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Advanced knowledge of fundraising, prospect research, and prospect management techniques.
  • Strong leadership qualities, including ability to motivate staff, delegate tasks and authority appropriately, and maintain effective relationships.
  • Ability to organize teams and deploy resources to enable growth and expansion that will ultimately support high productivity needed to achieve campaign and other fundraising goals.
  • Advanced written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills, including the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with colleagues both internal and external to the department.
  • Must have good working knowledge of relevant technologies and ability to apply technology to solve problems, leverage opportunities, and generate actionable research recommendations.
    • Advanced knowledge of wealth ratings and predictive modeling techniques; ability to deeply analyze data sets and to implement the necessary tools for maximizing use of this information.
  • Regular and reliable attendance are requirements of this position.



  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • Seven or more years of experience in prospect development or advancement services in an academic environment.
  • Three or more years successfully leading a team of at least five staff members.
  • Experience engaging University leadership (President, Trustees, Deans, and others) in campaign and prospect strategy discussions.
  • Experience working in a fast-paced environment with ability to pivot to meet shifting demands and priorities.
  • Consideration will be given to similar experience in business (e.g. journalism, legal research, marketing, libraries, and corporate intelligence).


If you are interested in applying, please send a cover letter and resume to the Director of Human Resources at on or before Friday, November 18, 2019.

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

Purdue Research Foundation will not sponsor employment authorization for this position.

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

Purdue Research Foundation is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. PRF views, evaluates, and treats all persons in all Foundation-related activities solely as individuals on the basis of their own personal abilities, qualifications, and other relevant characteristics.  All qualified applicants for employment will receive consideration without regard to race, religion, color, gender, national origin or ancestry, genetic information, marital status, parental status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, disability, or status as a veteran.

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