Director of Development – Stanley Museum of Art, University of Iowa


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Full Job Description I Notes:

The University of Iowa is one of America’s premier public research universities. Known for its excellence in both the arts and sciences, Iowa granted the nation’s first MFA degrees and is home to globally recognized programs in the study and craft of writing as well as an acclaimed academic medical center. The University of Iowa Center for Advancement (UICA) works to support the University of Iowa through engagement and philanthropy and is seeking a Director of Development to lead fundraising efforts for the newly reopened University of Iowa Stanley Museum of Art.

Envisioned as a library and a laboratory for the Arts, the Stanley recently completed a $25 million+ capital campaign and opened a new museum building in August 2022. Led by Director Lauren Lessing, the Stanley will build on the University of Iowa’s pioneering legacy of support for artists and scholars by leveraging its new state-of-the art building, its renowned permanent collection, and its leading-edge exhibitions to support research, teaching, and learning between prominent scholars and artists alongside University of Iowa students.

The Director of Development is integral to future fundraising success and will develop and execute an ambitious endowment fundraising strategy, strengthen and establish new donor engagement and giving opportunities, and create a first-in-class major gift fundraising program for the museum during the University of Iowa’s next comprehensive campaign. This position reports directly to the Assistant Vice President, Main Campus Development at the University of Iowa Center for Advancement and works closely with UICA colleagues and museum leadership, staff, board members, and donors. Expected travel is 25-50%.

Position allows for telecommuting/work from home (up to 5 days per week depending upon business need and leader approval). Candidate must be within driving distance of office located in Iowa City, IA.


Advances the University of Iowa (UI) and the initiatives of the assigned unit by optimizing a portfolio of major gift prospects and skillfully moving those prospects through the steps of an established process of donor engagement, collaborating with other UI Center for Advancement (UICA) fundraisers as needed. Manages fundraising program for assigned unit and partners with campus leaders (deans/directors) to develop a strategic annual and multi-year fundraising plans. Provides input to UICA leadership. Serves as a trusted philanthropic advisor, educating donors about giving opportunities that would enable them to achieve their desired impact on the University of Iowa and beyond.


  • Advises Prospect Management staff in the identification of prospects (based on capacity, giving history, and affiliation) from among pools that may include alumni, fans, patients, or other supporters of the university
  • Works with Prospect Management staff and supervisor to develop strategy for managing prospects
  • Efficiently conducts proactive outreach calls and messages in order to secure face-to-face qualification meetings
  • Provides strategic input into the design and implementation of engagement events and referral

programs designed to build long-term relationships and attract major gifts

  • Conducts all activities, particularly those involving patient data, according to established laws, policies, procedures, and standards and with the full support of UICA, UI, and UI Hospitals and Clinics as relevant


  • Optimizes qualification pool of potential major gift prospects with the goal of growing a continuous pipeline of donors capable of making gifts of $50,000+
  • Skillfully adapts structured questions to validate prospect’s capacity and inclination and understand strength of affinity
  • Uses gathered information to independently determine whether prospects should be disqualified or moved into the portfolio
  • Models the role of a trusted philanthropic advisor, using transparent communication and educating donors about the giving process


  • Manages portfolio of active major gift prospects and develops their readiness to advance
  • Builds travel plans demonstrating judicious use of time and resources, including strategic meetings with active prospects and additional qualification and stewardship meetings
  • Develops and implements donor-centric cultivation strategies, collaborating with colleagues as needed
  • Manages deliberate sequence of interactions with each prospect, intended to build engagement and move them through the steps of an established donor engagement process
  • Maintains expert knowledge of funding priorities within and beyond assigned unit, consulting with UICA colleagues and campus partners as needed
  • Facilitates prospects’ decision-making process; helps them understand next steps and articulate the link between their personal objectives and institutional priorities
  • Maintains expert knowledge needed to ensure donors are fully informed about the full range of planned giving options


  • Meets expectations for solicitations, gifts closed, and average gift size (goals established annually with the supervisor in alignment with organization-wide metrics)
  • Knows where prospects fall in the donor engagement process and plans next steps accordingly
  • Identifies meaningful ways for donor to achieve their desired impact while meeting funding needs
  • Employs and models the use of communication and meeting preparation tools in order to achieve stated objectives for each step of the process
  • Ensures documentation reflects donor intent and sets expectations for recognition and stewardship


  • Develops, implements, and participates in appropriate stewardship activities (e.g., acknowledgement letters, publicity events) for donors as relevant, working with stewardship staff as needed
  • Maintains integrity of constituent database through timely submittal of stewardship plans and contact reports for all significant interactions

Constituent Management

  • Partners with campus leaders and UICA leadership to develop strategic fundraising priorities and a comprehensive multi-year plan to increase private gift support
  • Clearly articulates the vision and priorities of the unit in a compelling and broadly understandable way
  • Manages fundraising program for assigned unit, including any special campaigns for program and capital support, in cooperation with campus partners/leaders
  • Leverages trusted working relationships with campus partners/leaders (deans/directors) as well as external groups with ties to the unit; Communicates frequently regarding progress toward goals
  • Prepares partners/leaders as necessary for donor meetings and guides their critical role in the giving conversation and donor engagement process
  • Collaborates with CFR staff as relevant to identify and cultivate corporate and foundation gift prospects for assigned unit
  • Provides direction on annual giving strategy and the development of fundraising materials for assigned

units including mailings, brochures, donor recognition, reports, etc.

UICA Program Leadership

  • Plans and oversees the overall operational, reporting, budgetary, and financial responsibilities of assigned UICA unit
  • Develops and maintains work systems, procedures, and productivity standards that advance the mission

and goals of the UICA unit and enable optimum performance of the people and other resources within it

  • Allocates resources to effectively accomplish the work of the UICA unit
  • Monitors, evaluates, and aims to improve effectiveness of unit operations
  • Makes business decisions that are consistent with UICA mission/vision and our organizational culture and values

Education & Experience: Bachelor’s degree and 5+ years of related experience required, preferably in nonprofit arts and culture organizations, but not required.

Salary Range $80,000 – $100,000

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