Director of Major Gifts

Decatur, Georgia
Sep 01, 2017
Oct 01, 2017
Position Type
Full Time
Degree Level
Willingness to Travel
50 - 75%
Experience Level

Columbia Theological Seminary (Columbia) is located on a 57 acre campus six miles east of downtown Atlanta, Georgia. We are an educational institution of the Presbyterian Church (USA), and a community of theological inquiry and formation committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion in the service of the Church of Jesus Christ.  Established in the Reformed tradition, we are an ecumenical school hosting a large table for people of all denominational backgrounds.

We are seeking a Director of Major Gifts who is responsible for planning, executing and evaluating a program to secure major gifts to support the mission and work of Columbia.  The Director works collaboratively with other development staff and volunteers to identify, cultivate, solicit and secure major gifts.  The Director of Major Gifts reports to the Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

Essential Functions:

  • Identifies, cultivates and solicits major gifts prospects; recommends and implements cultivation and solicitation strategies for individual prospects, working with development staff, administration, faculty and volunteers as appropriate.
  • Leads the reporting and evaluation process for moves management for all staff and volunteers involved in individual fundraising for identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of individual major gifts, major gift prospects and other key funding relationships.
  • Carries a portfolio of 150 donors and an expectation of raising a minimum of 5 times salary.
  • Participates in creating approved strategic proposals and cases for donors in collaboration with the President’s Council and other key partners in the seminary raising capital, annual, and endowment funds for the Seminary through outright gifts/pledges and other giving vehicles.
  • Plans and implements a planned giving marketing strategy.
  • Designs and implements special programs and events on and off campus to enhance the cultivation and stewardship of major gift donors and prospects.
  • Performs other duties and responsibilities as requested.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree required; master’s or equivalent degree preferred
  • Three to five years of successful development or related experience
  • Strong verifiable record in a leadership role of acquiring individual major gifts of at least $25,000


  • Strong interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills
  • Ability to design and present gift plans that attract substantial assets to the Seminary
  • Ability to use data and metrics to assess and improve effectiveness of moves management program
  • Ability to work with a wide variety of constituents
  • Ability to utilize volunteers strategically in major gift solicitation
  • Ability to work cooperatively in a team environment
  • Ability to establish goals and processes necessary to implement a strategic vision and program for major gifts and planned giving fully integrated with other department programs
  • Ability to work mutually with all staff to design and implement projects to meet the objectives of the Seminary and play a leadership role exhibiting and implementing best practices in fundraising
  • Analytical skills for problem solving and decision making
  • Familiarity with and enthusiasm for the PC(USA) and other denominations
  • Ability to travel at least 50% of the time
  • Theological education preferred
  • Raiser's Edge experience preferred

To apply, submit your cover letter, resume, and three professional references to  Please include the title of the position in the subject line of your email.  All offers of employment are subject to a satisfactory background screening.

Columbia provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion (except as a bona fide occupational qualification for certain positions at the seminary), sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Columbia complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

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