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Emporia State University Foundation
Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
30+ days ago
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Emporia State University Foundation
Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
30+ days ago


The Emporia State University Foundation (ESUF) in Emporia, Kansas is in a regional search for a Director of Donor Relations. The director is responsible for designing, directing, and implementing a comprehensive donor relations and stewardship program to strengthen relationships with, promote interaction with, and recognize donors at all levels, in support of the Foundation’s objectives of increasing gift revenue and donor retention rates and attracting new donors and new gifts.

The ideal candidate for the Director of Donor Relations role will be a proven relationship builder, a talented event and communication designer, and a skilled project manager who can both set vision and execute strategy effectively. A passion for Emporia State University’s mission is essential. The director will report to the Foundation’s Vice President for Alumni & Stewardship and will manage a Donor Relations Coordinator and a Donor Relations Graduate Assistant.


  1. Work with Foundation and University leadership to create and implement customized stewardship plans for major donors. Coordinate personalized opportunities for donors to meet with those who directly benefit from their generosity. Lead the preparation of stewardship videos to be shared with donors. Coordinate Foundation response to donors’ deaths, marriages, major achievements, retirements, and other life events.
  2. Manage and improve the current donor recognition system, which includes coordination of special correspondence and private events. Oversee creation and installation of donor recognition and honor/memorial plaques.
  3. Lead and execute the annual stewardship report program, targeting named scholarship, professorship, special purpose, and lecture fund donors.
  4. Manage acknowledgment communication for the Foundation President, University President, and other advancement leaders.
  5. Manage stewardship plans for gift societies, including donor recognition/stewardship events, plaques, publicity plans, and customized reporting of gift impact.
  6. Maximize relationship building through design and implementation of donor receptions, dinners, and events.


This position requires creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, discipline and initiative.  The director must possess strong project management skills, excellent written and verbal communication skills, and a mature ability to manage relationships. The director will demonstrate the ability to organize and prioritize work, handle pressure while managing multiple deadline-driven projects and tasks, and work well with all of the University’s diverse constituencies.

The majority of the attributes and qualifications listed in this section are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. You don’t have to satisfy every requirement or meet every qualification listed in order to be successful in this role. Depending on the applicant pool and applicants’ relevant experience, we may consider hiring at the assistant director or associate director level, and allowing you to grow into the director position.  If your skills are transferable and you feel inspired by this opportunity, please apply!

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's or Associate’s degree in communications, marketing, public relations, business or a related field.
  • A minimum of five years of related experience.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience within the nonprofit or higher education environments.
  • Demonstrated success with event conceptualization, planning and execution.

The Ideal Candidate Is:

  • A passionate people-person with strong desire and proven ability to create and maintain relationships with campus colleagues, donors, and community members.
  • An outstanding communicator and collaborator who is able to navigate high pressure situations with ease.
  • A creative thinker who derives energy from the freedom to build and execute highly-customized experiences.
  • A storyteller with a demonstrated ability to craft compelling narratives.
  • A committed advocate for advancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts.
  • A proactive planner with strong project management and organizational skills.
  • A learner who is actively engaged in ongoing professional development and best practices within the field of donor relations.
  • A leader who brings compassion, integrity and a sense of humor to their work.
  • An emotionally mature teammate with demonstrated ability to use good judgment and maintain confidentiality.

COMPENSATION:   Salary will vary widely from $40,000 to $70,000 or more, depending upon the level at which the successful candidate is qualified.  Assistant, Associate, and full Director level candidates will be considered.  Excellent benefits including medical, dental, vision, retirement package, generous vacation days and administrative/holiday closures.


Applicants must submit a cover letter addressing their interest and qualifications for the position and a resume to Aileen Miller by uploading to https://bitly/3yGpcRo.   Background check and official transcripts will be required prior to hire.  Review of application materials will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Emporia State University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, national origin, ethnicity, religion, gender, sex, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, parental status, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as an individual with a disability, status as a protected veteran, or any other factors which cannot be considered by law.

About the Foundation: 

Emporia State University Foundation’s mission is to raise and manage philanthropic resources to advance the mission of Emporia State University.  The Foundation was established in 1952 as a 501(c)(3) corporation.  The Foundation works closely with individuals, corporations and foundations who support and advocate for the University‘s goals and initiatives through charitable gifts that improve, enhance and expand the vitality of Emporia State University.

About the Alumni Association:

Formed in 1880, the ESU Alumni Association's purpose is to connect ESU alumni with one another and their alma mater, and to promote alumni service and support of ESU.  Their mission is to build relationships for Emporia State University - today and tomorrow.

About the Together, Forward Campaign:

Emporia State University is on its way to raising $50 million by October of 2021 as part of the leadership phase of a comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together we can accelerate learning, shine brighter and transcend limitations. This campaign lifts up high impact learning opportunities, supports talent award scholarships and promotes flexible funds to help us seize opportunities. To learn more about Together, Forward, visit

About the University:

“Emporia State University prepares students for lifelong learning,

rewarding careers, and adaptive leadership.”

Emporia State University offers more than 200 academic programs in the School of Business, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, School of Library and Information Management and The Teachers College. ESU is the only public university in Kansas to have earned national recognition as a College of Distinction, an honor for universities that demonstrate innovative application of high-impact education. In addition, in the Best Colleges 2018 guidebook by U.S. News and World Report, ESU is ranked No. 2 in lowest student debt of all Midwest regional universities. U.S. News also cited ESU’s School of Business as a best value for both in-state and out-of-state students and ranked the online graduate education and non-MBA online programs in the Top 100 programs in the nation. For more information, visit

About the Community of Emporia, Kansas:

Located at the doorstep of the beautiful Flint Hills between Kansas City and Wichita on Interstate 35, Emporia is a family-oriented and vibrant community of 25,000 residents. With the University as its anchor offering cultural and educational pursuits, the city provides a wide range of recreational, artistic and civic options. National Geographic Magazine highlighted the beautiful Flint Hills – the nation’s last great expanse of tall grass prairie – in its April, 2007, edition. The parks of Emporia are the flagship of recreation due to their variety and size. In all, Emporia’s 18 parks mass a little over 250 acres. The Jones Aquatic Center, the many city parks and the David Traylor Zoo all provide opportunities for fun and entertainment. Emporia’s Recreational Center offers a gymnasium that hosts basketball and volleyball games as well as many other athletic and recreational options. The municipal golf course is host to many regional tournaments. The Emporia Arts Center has been established as a center for the city's fine arts and artistic education. The historic Granada Theatre, constructed in 1929, offers a 1,400-seat capacity. In April, 1985, the theatre was placed on the National Register of Historic Places and in 1994 a group of citizens formed the Emporia Granada Theatre Alliance to ensure the ongoing preservation of the Theatre.

Job Information

  • Job ID: 58304900
  • Location:
    Emporia, KS - Kansas, United States
  • Company Name: Emporia State University Foundation
  • Position Title: Director, Donor Relations
  • Industry: 4-Year College or University/Higher Education Institution
  • Job Function: Donor Relations & Stewardship
  • Job Type: Full-Time
  • Min Experience: Mid-Career

Please refer to the company's website or job descriptions to learn more about them.

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