Associate Director of Development, School of Business

The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association* (WFAA) is seeking a development professional to join the advancement team working on behalf of the Wisconsin School of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The Associate Director of Development is primarily responsible for qualifying major gift prospects and soliciting leadership annual gifts in support of the Wisconsin School of Business, including annual and special gifts between $1,000 and $25,000.

WFAA is the private fundraising and alumni relations organization for UW-Madison. The Wisconsin School of Business (WSB) is one of the University’s major units, with more than 3,000 students and over 40,000 alumni. Founded in 1900, the School is a consistently top-ranked business program that is rooted both in tradition and in progress. Development efforts strive to involve alumni and friends in the life of the school, resulting in their increased engagement and philanthropic support.

The successful candidate for this position will drive strategic promotion of development initiatives pertaining to the identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of individual donors, with an emphasis on lead annual gifts for the School. The successful candidate will be forward thinking, dynamic, energetic, and an innovative team player who can effectively engage donors with the vision and strategy of the school and campus.

*The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association is the “doing business as” name of the merged organization comprising the University of Wisconsin Foundation ( and the Wisconsin Alumni Association (, whose legal corporate name is registered as the University of Wisconsin Foundation.

Primary responsibilities:


  • Develop strategies for lead annual gifts and initial major gifts related to annual campaigns, capital campaigns, and ongoing fundraising support in collaboration with dean/faculty/staff, WFAA team and colleagues.
  • Implement development strategies with assigned constituencies, managing a portfolio of prospects and donors in varying stages of involvement to advance them strategically through the development process.
  • Work with prospect management, WFAA research and development colleagues to identify and qualify a portfolio of major gift prospects from existing and potential donors.
  • Plan and conduct visits/trips, events and other ongoing contact to build relationships with donors, effectively presenting the case for philanthropic support and explaining gift opportunities.
  • Work both locally and in assigned territories to manage portfolio responsibilities—resulting in approximately 25% travel.

Donor Relations/Stewardship/Recognition 

  • Plan and implement recognition for donors, including writing thank you letters, making personal calls, arranging meetings, hosting events, etc.
  • Coordinate with Alumni Relations team on volunteer opportunities to more deeply engage donors and prospects.


  • Write regular progress reports on prospect cultivation and solicitation, completing and filing thorough reports of all contacts in a timely manner.
  • Collaborate on writing of Memoranda of Agreement (MOA’s) as necessary.
  • Monitor giving patterns and results for prospects/donors in portfolio and provide regular written or oral reports on progress and results of work with these prospects.


  • Communicate effectively and meaningfully with groups and individuals in diverse settings using a range of techniques including face to face, telephone, email, written correspondence, public speaking and meeting facilitation.
  • Build and maintain effective working relationships at all organizational levels – colleagues, dean, campus staff, donors, volunteers and others.
  • Possess excellent interpersonal skills, including political acumen, and ability to work collaboratively to achieve common goals.
  • Demonstrate strong initiative and attention to detail.
  • Available for some evening and weekend work.
  • Continually acquire and utilize professional knowledge/skill/ability and share that expertise with others in the organization.
  • Use a computer for communicating via e-mail, writing, researching prospects, completing reports, etc.
  • Travel by car, plane, cab, and foot (or with assistive device, e.g. wheelchair).

Support a service-oriented atmosphere in accordance with WFAA mission, values and philosophy

Strategic beliefs

  • The University of Wisconsin-Madison has a transforming impact on students, alumni, and society;
  • Authentic, lifelong relationships and engagement with alumni, donors and friends are fundamental to sustaining the reputation and continued success of the University;
  • Philanthropy has an essential and growing importance on the future progress of UW-Madison;
  • The highest level of stewardship and fiduciary responsibility in financial, investment, data and gift administration is vital to maintaining trust with our stakeholders;
  • Diverse views, experiences and perspectives strengthen WFAA and the university community.

Organizational values

  • We are serious about delivering results;
  • We work together and with our campus partners as a team;
  • We are committed to alumni, donors, volunteers and others;
  • We are open-minded;
  • We create a positive work environment.


  • Minimum of a bachelor degree; advanced degree preferred.
  • Minimum 3 years’ experience in gift development.
  • Ability to articulate the case for support with sufficient effectiveness so that individuals understand the vision and strategy of the department and College, and choose to invest in the vision.
  • Excellent oral, written, interpersonal, analytical and organizational skills required.
  • Self-directed, team player who has a strong work ethic, ability to multi-task, and a results orientation.
  • Ability to work effectively with University officials, faculty, prominent alumni, business leaders and other high-level individuals.
  • Entrepreneurial skills, creativity, and ability to innovate.
  • Ability to meet travel requirements (minimum of 25%).

The Associate Director of Development reports to an Associate Vice President and Managing Director of the Foundation. This is a full-time position involving travel. We offer a competitive salary and an excellent benefit program!