Major Gifts Officer

Rank: Administrator V
Search Number: S21-053A & S21-053B
Job Posted: April 25, 2022

Southern Connecticut State University is a diverse and student-centered university dedicated to academic excellence, access, and service for the public good. Southern provides a supportive and welcoming environment for all members of its community through a campus wide commitment to social justice.  Founded as a teacher’s college in 1893, Southern has evolved over the past century into a comprehensive public university of more than 10,000 students, offering graduate and undergraduate programs in the liberal arts and professional disciplines. It is one of four universities in the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities System. The University is located in New Haven, a city rich with arts and culture, and less than 90 miles from New York City and 140 miles from Boston.

The Major Gifts Officer will develop measurable goals and strategies for major giving at Southern Connecticut State University. Will research, identify, engage, cultivate, solicit, and manage a portfolio of major gift prospects and donors while continuing to expand the donor pipeline.

Position Responsibilities

Focuses on building the University's major gifts program by identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gifts in support of the University's needs and programs, including but not limited to specific initiatives, unrestricted funds, growth of the endowment and support for scholarships.

Generates major gifts and pledges for the SCSU Foundation annually.

Identifies potential major gift donors and undertakes all necessary prospect research in order to increase the major gift prospects and donor pipeline which will result in major gifts and pledges.

Conceptualizes and creates fundraising proposals for the solicitation of major gifts to be presented to individuals, corporations and foundations, both prospects and current donors after educating them about relevant University projects, programs and areas of need and determining what their priorities and preferences for supporting the University are.

Manages all logistical details and makes all necessary arrangements for personal visits, programs and other methods of contact between themselves or other representatives of the Development or President's Office and any prospect or current source of major gift support for the University.

Ensures accurate and timely recording, reconciliation and acknowledgement of major giving donors' gifts and pledges and is responsible for carrying all actions needed for the proper recognition and stewardship of all major gift donors.

Monitors progress against their major gift fundraising objectives, prepares regular progress reports for the Director of University Development, including plans to reach objectives.

Identities and implements new strategies to identify, engage, and solicit major giving prospects to build and maximize the donor base.

Monitors and evaluates the status and effectiveness of programs/projects for which major gifts are received and completes appropriate reporting of all solicitations and communications with funding sources to ensure continued good relations. Identifies problems, recommends improvements, and institutes appropriate changes.

Assembles and involves collaborative teams of SCSU administrators, Foundation board members, faculty and staff to effectively implement engagement and solicitation strategies for major gifts.

Develops and maintains a thorough working knowledge of SCSU, each of the schools and other specific areas and programs as necessary to effectively speak about and present information to current and potential donors.

Works closely with and collaborates regularly with all other members of the Institutional Advancement staff, as well as those in the Offices of Alumni Affairs, University Relations, and Publications and Design.

Represents the Institutional Advancement department at both internal and external campus events and activities as necessary.

Assists with SCSU Foundation, Institutional Advancement and University events as needed.

Performs other duties and responsibilities related to these enumerated above which do not alter the basic level of responsibility of the position.


Bachelor’s degree in appropriate field. Five years of development experience with at least three years of major gifts fundraising experience. financial systems and advanced accounting functions.  Excellent computer and mathematical abilities. Thorough understanding of all approaches and techniques used in the development process, including prospect identification and research, relationship building, solicitation and stewardship. Proven track record of closing major gifts. Excellent verbal and written communication skills and technologically proficient. These qualifications may be waived for individuals with appropriate alternate experience.


For full consideration, please submit a letter of application, resume, and contact information for three professional references to Brett Santo at For full consideration, please submit application materials no later than May 25, 2022.  The position will remain open until filled.


Southern Connecticut State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. The University seeks to enhance the diversity of its faculty and staff. People of color, women, veterans, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.