Director of Advancement & Engagement

Job title: Director of Advancement & Engagement
Organization: The May Festival and Vocal Arts Ensemble
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio

Job Description

The Cincinnati May Festival and the Vocal Arts Ensemble of Cincinnati (MF/VAE) is seeking a passionate, enthusiastic, and forward-­‐thinking professional for its Director of Advancement & Engagement. Reporting to the Executive Director, the Director of Advancement & Engagement will work closely with staff colleagues and the Boards of Directors to achieve and exceed contributed revenue goals. Responsible for developing and implementing comprehensive advancement plans, which will include and are not limited to key fundraising programs, planned and annual gifts, and corporate and foundation relations. The director will provide leadership and day-­‐ to-­‐day management for development-­‐related programs, and must be comfortable and effective at building strong relationships with the organizations’ volunteer leadership and donor base.


Portfolio Management – 60%

  • Responsible for the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of current and future individual supporters, corporate/foundation donors, and other funding partners, including the annual ArtsWave and Ohio Arts Council application submissions; lead efforts to develop a pool of broad-­‐based givers and major gift prospects through personal interaction opportunities
  • Provide vision and direction to build a strategic benefits program, and actively engage givers and prospects through unique opportunities that connect passion with our missions
  • Work collaboratively with and in support of board committees, board members, and other staff to identify, cultivate, and solicit renewed and/or increased gifts; steward prospective members to meet annual fund campaign goals
  • Maintain a portfolio of donors and prospects at various stages of development in the gift cycle
  • Work to enhance the planned giving program, including prospecting, events and recognition
  • Coordinate and strategize key meetings between the Executive Director, artistic leadership, Board member(s), and major donor prospects
  • Develop, prepare, and present formal fundraising proposals to major foundation (private and public) and corporate sources
  • Write annual fund campaign letters to fulfill overall individual giving strategy
  • Identify prospective foundation and corporate grant opportunities for organizations, both locally and nationally

Special Events – 10%

  • Plan and execute advancement-related events, working with the Executive Director and volunteers in establishing and achieving event goals.
  • Ensure preparation and timely distribution of all event-related securing sponsorships, patron packages, and in-­‐kind support

Management Responsibilities – 30%

  • Provide leadership and direction to ensure success of all aspects of fundraising goals and special events
  • In collaboration with the Directors of Marketing and Communications, ensure all fundraising communications are met and within brand standards
  • Collaborate with Data Services Department to ensure donor correspondence and proper tracking is fulfilled including, but not limited to: pledge letters, acknowledgment letters, invoices, and gift agreements
  • Research current local and national philanthropic trends
  • Act as a strategic partner for the Marketing and Communications departments, actively working with those teams to increase interdepartmental communications to deliver a core coordinated/unified message to effectively increase engagement of patrons
  • Manage advancement-related budgets
  • Perform other duties as assigned or directed

Experience and Characteristics Required:

The ideal candidate is an experienced fundraiser with the ability to work collaboratively with staff, board of directors and other high-­‐level volunteers. Must be a strategic and analytical thinker who is self-­‐ motivated, personable, and skilled at communicating passion and storytelling through written and visual campaigns.

  • Minimum Bachelor degree and 4-­‐6 years of related/relevant work experience
  • Proven success in major and individual fundraising, and developing strategies to grow annual giving
  • Expertise in campaign fundraising desired and knowledge of planned giving programs a plus
  • Ability to understand the interests and needs of patrons to develop and deepen their engagement with the May Festival and Vocal Arts Ensemble
  • Experience working in a deadline-­‐driven environment within faced-­‐paced organization
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Extreme discretion and attention to detail
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office applications and donor tracking software
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills, with the ability to manage under pressure and with competing priorities
  • Ease with public speaking on behalf of the organization
  • Knowledge of choral and classical music a plus
  • Flexibility to work outside normal office hours at concerts/events

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Record of achievement with a minimum of four years progressive experience leading a successful fundraising program and activities for a non-profit organization
  • Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) certification

Please send cover letter and resume to: 

Please put “Director of Advancement and Engagement” in the subject line.

No third party applications will be accepted.