Director, Donor Engagement

The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine
Job Location: 
Farmington, CT
Job Description: 

The Director of Donor Engagement is responsible for creating engagement and outreach programs to enhance the effectiveness major gift and annual gift fundraising initiatives. As part of the Development Operations team, the Director of Donor Engagement reports to the Senior Director of Development Operations and provides support to the Vice President of Development and Communications, Senior Director of Development, and other fundraisers by managing donor stewardship, recognition events, and development communications and marketing.
• Ensures accurate and timely reporting to major gift and leadership annual donors on the impact of their giving, including managing production of acknowledgment letters, impact statements and endowment and programmatic reporting. Develops and helps execute individual stewardship strategies for top prospects and donors, in conjunction with gift officers, prospect management staff and development leaders. Manages, on an annual basis and in conjunction with the Finance Office and President, the audit of endowed funds to ensure that funds are distributed and used in accordance with donor intent.
• Creates and executes strategies for delivering high-touch, broad-based stewardship and engagement communications to annual, leadership annual, and major gift donors, as well as alumni, in coordination with the Communications office. This includes but is not limited to scripting phone calls, drafting emails and letters, creating web content and overseeing the production of videos, printed publications and relationship-building tools. Collaborates closely with other departments to ensure that engagement outreach and communications are seamless and consistent with the institutional branding and messaging.
• Develops strategy and oversees planning, implementation and evaluation of donor recognition and engagement events and tours, including events for specific donor groups, alumni, leadership councils and volunteer committees, building and space dedications, campaign meetings and events, as well as other third party and other special events. Partners with the Trustee Relations and Special Communications officer to oversee the planning and execution of quarterly board meetings and related events. Ensures that all events are executed successfully, meeting the highest standards of professionalism, quality and service.
• Serves as a strategic leader for developing new programs and publications recognize leadership annual and major gift donors. Develops and recommends donor engagement policies, procedures and standards, including naming opportunities; soft crediting; donor confidentiality; and gift club levels and benefits. Works with development and communications staff to provide appropriate donor recognition through physical plaques, publications, the website, events and publicity vehicles.
• Develops and oversees the implementation of alumni engagement strategies to feed the annual giving program including, but not limited to, events, mailings, emails, regional activities, surveys.
• Partners with the Database Administrator to develop and maintain tracking systems for accurate and timely reporting of engagement efforts.
• Develops, recommends and manages donor engagement budget and help train and advise staff on best practices in donor engagement.
• Provides leadership and supervision to the two Associate Directors of Donor Engagement.
• Maintains strong relationships with frontline fundraising staff to promote effective engagement and stewardship of donors.


• Bachelor’s degree required.
• Minimum of five years’ experience in donor relations and events management.
• Demonstrated ability to work effectively with internal and external constituencies including major donors, volunteers, faculty and others.
• Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
• Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a team with diverse individuals.
• Flexible and self-directed with exceptional organization and time management and prioritization skills and the ability to create efficient systems in a fast-paced environment.
• Strong computer skills including advanced proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
• Familiarity with Raiser’s Edge and/or fundraising database(s) and project management software preferred.
• Ability to maintain a positive, customer service oriented outlook.
• Ability to travel and work evenings and weekends as needed.
• Proven supervisory experience.

Contact Information: 

Please forward your CV and cover letter to requisition #4091 at

About Our Organization: 

The Jackson Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institution based in Bar Harbor, Maine, with a facility in Sacramento, Calif., and a new genomic medicine institute in Farmington, Conn. We employ more than 200 Ph.D. scientists and a total of more than 1,400 employees. In 2011 and 2012, researchers voted The Jackson Laboratory among the world’s top 15 “Best Places to Work in Academia” in a poll conducted by The Scientist, a magazine for people working in the life sciences. The Laboratory draws on an 83-year reputation for excellence in mammalian genetics, built on the groundbreaking discoveries of its own researchers and on the development and global distribution of the most diverse collection of genetically unique mouse strains in the world. The Jackson Laboratory is a National Cancer Institute – designated cancer center. Our research covers a broad range of genetic disorders, including cancer, diabetes, neuromuscular and neurodegenerative disorders, autoimmune disorders, and conditions related to reproduction, development and aging. The Laboratory’s mission is to discover the genetic basis for preventing, treating and curing disease, and to enable research and education for the global biomedical community.