Managing Director of Advancement

Organization Overview:
Scholar Athletes (SA) is committed to supporting academic achievement through athletics and was designed to reduce the opportunity gap for urban public high school students. Through its programming, which includes Academic Coaching and Mentoring, Health and Wellness initiatives, and Post-Secondary Planning, Scholar Athletes strives to enhance the scholar-athlete experience, provide regular instruction to the coaching staff, and improve academic performance and personal growth.

With the support of former Boston mayor Thomas M. Menino and former Boston Public Schools (BPS) Superintendent Dr. Carol Johnson, Scholar Athletes launched as a small pilot program in 2009 with Suffolk Construction’s CEO John Fish as the founder. Seven years later, SA is a multi-million dollar program pursuing its mission across more than twenty school sites in Boston, Springfield, and Everett, MA.

To read more about the program’s impact, visit our scholar-athletes
Position Summary:
Scholar Athletes is seeking an experienced and engaging Managing Director of Advancement to further develop and execute an overall fundraising strategy for the organization. With primary responsibility for diversifying revenue streams and broadening the donor base, the Managing Director of Advancement will work closely with the Executive Director, founder, and Board to develop a pipeline of major gift prospects/donors, successfully solicit and steward a sizable portfolio of donors; and contribute to the overall improvement and infrastructure strengthening of the development function at Scholar Athletes.

Position Outcomes:
A successful Managing Director of Advancement will:
• Develop new and expand existing best practices around fundraising operations, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship, with a particular focus on expanding individual and major gifts
• Raise at least $1M a year for the organization from individuals, foundations, corporations, and other partners, and
• Develop strong relationships with board members and key volunteers to increase their involvement and support to ensure Scholar Athletes achieves its fundraising goals
• Contribute to the overall development and improvement of fundraising strategy and actively participate as a member of the SA Executive Leadership Team to help set and achieve organizational goals

Key Responsibilities:
In order to achieve the above outcomes, the Managing Director of Advancement will:

Development Operations, Strategy, and Team Management:
• Hire, supervise, mentor, and develop a small development team, ensuring that roles and responsibilities are established to best serve organizational needs and meet fundraising goals
• Further develop and assess the organization’s Annual Fund and process for ongoing cultivation and stewardship of small individual donors to complement the efforts to develop a Major Gifts pipeline
• Strategically contribute to and assist with several fundraising and cultivation events which will be developed in collaboration with other members of the team, as needed, and which will recognize the unique motivations and individuality of each prospect

Major and Individual Giving:
• Identify, develop, and manage a portfolio of 125+ major gift prospects/donors who are capable of making gifts in the magnitude of 5-7 figures or more
• Conduct 150 face-to-face prospect meetings annually for the purpose of identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship.
• Play a critical role in soliciting sponsorships for the Scholar Athletes annual Gala, which raises approximately $2.2M for the organization; and plan and implement other cultivation events in donors’ homes and businesses, as needed
• Manage, maintain, and update individual prospect/donor files with correspondence, invitations, acknowledgements, stewardship and communication and communicate this information to all appropriate individuals within the organization in order to ensure individualized attention and to maximize satisfying, long-term relationships

Board Management:
• Serve as primary liaison from Development team to the organization’s Board of Directors
• Work closely with Board members, organization leaders, and other volunteers and other staff, as appropriate, ensuring that Scholar Athletes achieves its fundraising goals
• In consultation with the Executive Director and Board Chair, set mutually agreeable performance goals/standards to effectively measure the quality and quantity of the relationships, gift results and donor satisfaction

• Significant fundraising experience, including at least three years of proven success in major gifts solicitation
• Demonstrated knowledge of development practices and principles and a successful track record in managing major gift prospects and closing gifts in at least the 5-6 figure range
• Experience in organizing and leveraging special events around major gifts fundraising
• Proven interpersonal and communication (oral and written) skills
• Strong and thoughtful people management skills, with demonstrated success managing and inspiring teams to achieve goals
• Demonstrated ability to interact well with high-level executives, trustees, community members and partner organizations
• Superior organizational and leadership skills with demonstrated ability to work in a fast-paced, professional environment
• Highly motivated; a self-starter with the ability to work independently and as part of a team and a knack for coordinating and managing many projects simultaneously
• Ability to handle confidential materials with discretion and to exercise good judgment, sensitivity, tact, and diplomacy
• Strong computer skills and familiarity with development software and prospect management (Salesforce preferred)
• Candidate must possess Scholar Athletes’ Core Values: Driven, Committed, Focused and Innovative
• Bachelor’s degree required

To Apply:
Please upload a resume and thoughtful cover letter, outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position and stating how you heard about this opportunity, both in Word format, addressed to Scholar Athletes at

Scholar Athletes offers a competitive salary and benefits,
commensurate with experience and skills.
Scholar Athletes is an equal opportunity employer.

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