Assistant Director/Director of Gift Planning

Assistant Director/Director of Gift Planning

Department:    Office of Development and Alumni Relations

Reports to:      Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations

Status:             Full-time, Salaried


Primary Purpose

Assistant Director/Director is responsible for the qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major gift donors at the $25,000 + level.  S/he will provide strategic assistance to the Development and Alumni Relations team, president and senior members of the administration as an essential function of this position.



Report to the Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations. Holds primary responsibilities including, but not limited to:


  • Manage a portfolio of 120-150 planned and major gift prospects/donors with a goal to increase number of major and planned gifts.


  • Conduct at least 10-15 face-to-face visits with donors and prospects per month (travel required).


  • Serve as a key member of the fundraising team and actively participate in developing strategies to achieve over-all fundraising goals for financial support and alumni participation.


  • Work closely with members of the Lake Forest College senior leadership team, faculty and staff to guide the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major donor relationships.


  • Provide counsel and education to donors, their advisors, other outside professionals, College staff and faculty on structure, benefits and implications of various giving vehicles, such as annuities, charitable remainder trusts, bequests, etc.


  • Collaborate with Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations for major and planned giving proposal approval and development of gift agreements.


  • Prepare proposals and illustrations of life income and estate gift arrangements.


  • Work closely with colleagues in the Marketing and Communications office to increase awareness of major, planned, and leadership annual gifts through press releases and feature stories in Spectrum magazine, the College website, social media and print publications.
  • Will maintain professional affiliations and continue to enhance his/her knowledge in the advancement field by keeping abreast of the latest information and trends in major gift fundraising, including deferred giving techniques, estate planning and tax laws.


  • Propose regional events that are integrated with major and planned giving efforts.


  • Other duties as assigned by the Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations.



The Assistant Director/Director will have a strong ability to engage and collaborate with those who directly and indirectly support Lake Forest College’s fundraising initiatives. The incumbent must be able to work and communicate effectively, orally and in writing, manage budgets, work independently, solve problems, handle confidential information with utmost discretion, and navigate sensitive situations.  S/he will need to be comfortable working in an environment where fundraising metrics play an essential role in annual performance evaluations.


Experience with Microsoft Office programs (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) and experience with constituent relations software such as Jenzabar is preferred.


Regional and national travel is required. Flexibility to work evenings and weekend hours is required.




For consideration, please email your resume and cover letter to