Director of Development, Oregon Symphony

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The Director of Development is a new leadership position within the development department. The position will be one of three direct reports to the Vice President for Development. The Director will supervise some staff, with oversight for the pipeline for individual giving and the business operations of the department. The successful candidate will step into this newly upgraded position at an exciting time.

Strong, diverse programming—including subscription series for classical, pops, and kids, as well as numerous specials and presentations—has fueled subscription and single ticket sales. Bucking a national trend in waning ticket sales, the Oregon Symphony has grown total earned revenue by 57% over the last five years, reaching an all-time high of $9.6M with a healthy pipeline of new patrons who comprise 20% of the 180,000 tickets sold on its main stage.

The organization is poised for further growth. In FY17, we set a new record with $8.4 million in contributed revenue, up more than 9% year-over-year, and 2% above an aggressive goal. Our annual gala has set records for four consecutive years, with gross proceeds exceeding $1 million in both 2017 and 2018.  The Board leads by example, sustaining a level of significant investment that has been an integral element of our success. We expect to close FY18 at $8 million, and the total number of donors is on the rise, fueled by the growth in new ticket buyers. 

The new Director can rely on development colleagues for collegiality, collaboration, communication, and motivation. The team is smart, works hard, and has fun.

Director of Development Job Description:

Department:  Development

Reports To:   Vice President for Development

Supervision Exercised: Annual Giving Manager, part time Gift Officer, Events Coordinator, Development Associate, volunteers

FLSA Status:   Full time, exempt


The Director of Development is responsible for oversight of annual fund, events, and operations of the Development program. Position focuses on two primary areas of responsibility:

  • Combined annual portfolio valued at $1M+:
  • Oversight for the business operation of the Development program:
  • Personal portfolio valued at $500K+ (specific goal to be factored each year) comprised of donors and donor prospects between $2,500 and $5,000+
  • Supervision of Annual Giving Manager with portfolio of direct mail, email, and telefunding programs totaling $500K+ annually from outreach to donors and prospects up to $999
  • Supervision of part time Gift Officer with portfolio of donors and donor prospects between $1,000 and $2,499 totaling $200K+ annually (NOTE: The Gift Officer also coordinates details of sponsor activation on behalf of the wider team)
  • Supervision of Development Associate, who executes all aspects of gift processing (daily mail, deposit, gift entry, batch reports and review, acknowledgments)
  • Supervision of Events Coordinator, who designs and executes donor events, meetings and other related programs (NOTE: The VP for Development retains oversight of $1M+ revenue goal for annual Gala)
  • Oversight of Development systems, including the above as well as reporting, forecasting and reconciliation, list building and queries, optimal use of Tessitura database, budget management, and coordination with Finance, IT, Production, Tessitura database administration; supervision of subcontracted services as needed
  • Quality-manage process and documentation to ensure thoughtful stewardship as well as smooth operation, efficiency, and compliance with applicable law and best practice

Position requires the flexibility to work evenings and weekends as needed during concert season.


  • Provide leadership for developing the Individual Giving program pipeline for donors from $100 to $5,000+, collaborating as needed with the VP for Development on goal setting, campaign strategies, and prospect identification methods.
  • Manage relationships with assigned donors ($2,500 - $5,000+ range), developing individual strategies for each donor to ensure regular contact with appropriate Symphony representatives. Emphasis on face-to-face contact in 1:1 meetings, but also leveraging intermission receptions, pre-concert dinners, and phone and email communication.
  • Supervise Annual Giving Manager, part time Gift Officer, Events Coordinator, Development Associate, and subcontractors as needed, conducting regular meetings and reviewing project schedules to ensure progress toward goals. Consult/include VP for Development as appropriate.
  • Provide leadership and oversight to develop and ensure robust processes for gift coding and entry, acknowledgment, pledge tracking and invoicing, program book donor listings, donor stewardship program, and other key operational elements.
  • Establish and maintain complete, timely, and accurate record in Tessitura of personal portfolio work plan following established data guidelines, and oversee direct reports in doing so.
  • Take responsibility to ensure accurate gift entry, acknowledgments and pledge invoices for donors in assigned portfolio, and oversee direct reports in doing so.
  • When requested, assist in providing staff support to board development committees.
  • Other duties as assigned.


The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required to perform this job successfully. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Bachelor's degree plus 3-5 years’ experience in Development, specifically with annual fund campaigns and leadership annual giving; OR equivalent combination of education and experience. Evidence of ability to achieve goals. 
  • Strong leadership and organizational skills; self-starter; ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously; ability to effectively manage and grow relationships. 
  • Outstanding communication skills, both interpersonal and written; excellent customer service focus and skills; ability to interact effectively and empathetically, and build rapport, with people from a wide variety of backgrounds.
  • Robust knowledge of use and applications of a donor database software, and of Excel and other programs in the Microsoft Office suite, are essential. Experience with Tessitura a plus.
  • Quantitative and logic skills; ability to budget and forecast with accuracy.  Positive, imaginative, and pragmatic approach to problem-solving.
  • Sense of humor required. Passion for live symphonic music a plus. 

Nonprofit Professionals Now is proud to partner with the Oregon Symphony to fill this important position with the right nonprofit professional. To apply, all applicants are asked to submit a resume, cover letter and complete the screening questions for consideration.

Application Deadline:  July 2, 2018

Salary/benefits information upon request.

Location: Portland, OR
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