Leadership Gift Officer

February 2020 | Wallingford, CT

Choate Rosemary Hall seeks an ambitious and collaborative Leadership Gifts Officer to join a high performing frontline team in achieving a successful $300M Campaign.

 

About Choate Rosemary Hall

Choate-Rosemary-Hall-students-on-lawnThe internationally recognized and forward-thinking Choate Rosemary Hall began originally as two distinct schools. Rosemary Hall, a school for girls, was founded in 1890 by Mary Atwater Choate. In 1896 Mary’s husband, Judge William G. Choate, established The Choate School for boys on the same family property in Wallingford. Just a few years later at the turn of the century, these two schools separated their operations and would remain independent until their merger in 1974. Today’s combined school was created on the strength of a shared purpose – inspiring excellence for future generations of students – and its impressive campus can be found once again on the original family property in Connecticut where it began more than a century ago.

Dr. Alex D. Curtis was appointed in 2011 as just the sixth Head of School in the institution’s long history. He continues the record of accomplishment and growth set by previous heads, bringing Choate to new levels of success, achievement, and recognition as a global leader in secondary education. Dr. Curtis is in his ninth year as Head of School, and has since shepherded a number of initiatives including the full adoption of a one-to-one iPad program, a campus master plan, a task force on community, and a strategic planning process which culminated in the implementation of the School’s unprecedented 2013 strategic plan. He has also overseen the design and construction of three important LEED-Certified campus facilities: the Cameron and Edward Lanphier Center for Mathematics and Computer Science (opened in 2015), the St. John Hall Student Center (opened in 2017), and the recently completed Ann and George Colony Hall, which is home to Music and Dance and includes an auditorium large enough to accommodate all members of the school community (opened Fall 2019).

Choate-Rosemary-Hall-Robotics-ClassA leader in curricular innovation, Choate works continuously to provide the best possible educational environment and experience for both students and educators. Choate is known for a rigorous academic program and the breadth and depth of their curricula. One of Choate’s strengths is their Signature Programs, which offer opportunities for immersive study and research in areas such as environmental science, performing arts, and robotics and artificial intelligence. One of the first independent schools in the country to adopt a one-to-one iPad program, Choate is committed to using technology thoughtfully to enhance teaching and learning both in and out of the classroom. Faculty spearhead initiatives to maximize student engagement such as the flipped classroom model, teaching online courses, and participating in multi-school collaborative efforts. The Lanphier Center, a state-of-the-art math and computer science building, houses two i.d. Lab spaces that promote hands-on, experiential learning with a strong foundation in design thinking. Choate draws on a rich tradition of excellence while it seeks to prepare students to thrive in an ever-changing world.

Philanthropy at Choate Rosemary Hall

With a sizable endowment of more than $390M, generous alumni and engaged Board members, and a strong philanthropic program responsible for raising $38M in 2018, Choate is in the enviable position of being able to provide their advancement staff of 25+ with the budget and resources they need to be successful.

Head of School Dr. Curtis, along with School and volunteer leadership, have demonstrated continued investment in philanthropic priorities such as the fast-approaching campaign. Guided by Dan Courcey, Executive Director, Development and Alumni Relations, and Mari Jones, Director of Development and Alumni Relations, the campaign is slated to launch publicly in Fall 2020. This campaign will focus on increasing both current-use and endowment resources, allowing the school to grow investment in financial aid, faculty and the important work they undertake, student life and well-being, and the residential housing system. The campaign is focused on 4 major areas:

  • Affordability and Access
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Campus and Community
  • The Annual Fund
Choate-Rosemary-Hall-Science-Class Choate-Rosemary-Hall-orchestra

About the Position

The incoming Leadership Gifts Officer (LGO) will be joining Choate as they prepare to announce an ambitious $300M campaign. This position offers a remarkable opportunity for a high-performing frontline fundraiser to elevate their experience with a rich portfolio of high capacity individual donors with the momentum of a transformative campaign.

Reporting to Heather Cordes, the Director of Leadership and Annual Giving, the LGO will focus on the cultivation, solicitation, and closure of major, annual and capital gifts by managing high net worth prospects and donors with the capacity to help meet Choate’s fundraising objectives. They will also have the benefit of inheriting a robust portfolio of prospects, offering a pipeline from well cultivated and engaged donors to high potential discovery work. The incoming LGO can anticipate joining a collaborative, collegial environment with an active and accessible senior management team. They should have an authentic desire to be in an independent school environment and possess the ability to communicate the School’s mission and priorities to a diverse audience.

Key Responsibilities

Choate-Rosemary-Hall-Hill-HouseManage and develop a portfolio to generate significant contributions to campaign:

  • Cultivate, solicit, and close major, annual, and capital gifts from a select portfolio of 150 prospects and donors
  • Build and expand the engagement of Choate’s leadership prospect pool; identify strategies and opportunities to align prospects with various School priorities as a key component of the comprehensive campaign
  • Attain an annual visit goal and achieve annual personal and team revenue goals
  • Partner with colleagues in Gift Planning, Annual Fund, and Parent Giving to maximize contributions and ensure clear communication in the cultivation and solicitation process

Build strategic and collaborative relationships with partners across Choate community:

  • Develop and maintain a thorough understanding of Choate’s strategic priorities and goals
  • Create opportunities to engage the Head of School, Trustees, campaign volunteers, faculty, and staff members in the cultivation and solicitation of current and potential donors

Key Qualifications

Required:

  • 4-6 years of frontline, donor facing major gift experience
  • Record of success cultivating and soliciting 4-5+ figure gifts from individuals
  • High level of comfort with pipeline and prospect management systems
  • Ability and desire to travel regionally and nationally
  • Relevant leadership qualities (vision, strategy, capacity to motivate)
  • Collaborative and communicative contributor
  • Independent with high level of accountability
  • Goal oriented and metrics and data driven

Highly preferred:

  • Experience with capital or comprehensive campaigns
  • Experience fundraising for private education institutions
  • Record of success with alumni and parent donors

If you are interested in learning more or being considered for this upcoming search, please email your cover letter and resume in confidence to:

ChoateLGO@developmentguild.com

Maya Grevatt

Consultant

Development Guild DDI

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