Director of Development, Zimmerli Art Museum – Rutgers – New Brunswick
The Rutgers University Foundation (RUF) seeks an experienced, entrepreneurial, and relationship-oriented fundraising professional to serve as the next Director of Development (DOD) for the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University. This opportunity comes at a moment of refreshed leadership and energy as strategic growth plans are underway at RUF in anticipation of the University’s next comprehensive campaign.
The DOD will create a comprehensive development program that includes providing leadership, strategic direction, management, and coordination for individual major gift fundraising as well as contributing to a strategy that further engages diverse audiences from alumni, parents, friends, and the wider public. This is an exceptional opportunity for a development leader to join an institution at the vanguard of generating new ideas that empower the arts to create societal impact and that is poised to reach higher levels of philanthropic success.
The Zimmerli Art Museum is one of the largest and most distinguished university-based museums in the country and is located on the New Brunswick campus of Rutgers University. The museum collects, preserves, researches, and exhibits world-class works of art to provide the university community and diverse regional, national, and international audiences with direct experience of the visual arts. Scholarly activities make art accessible through exhibitions, publications, and educational programs.
Reporting to Museum Director, Maura Reilly, and Associate Vice President for Development for Rutgers-New Brunswick, Tee Williams, the DOD will operate as a vital member of the museum’s senior management and lead the advancement team. Focused on major gifts through individuals as well as corporate and foundation partnerships, the DOD will play a critically important role in enhancing the museum’s existing development efforts, focusing on relationship-driven donor cultivation while uncovering innovative opportunities and partnerships. The position will primarily focus on the identification, cultivation and stewardship of individual donors and will be able to leverage resources across the central foundation and collaborate with central foundation colleagues across Institutional Giving, Gift Planning, and Annual Fund to maximize fundraising for the Zimmerli.
As the chief development officer for the Zimmerli Art Museum, the DOD will have the opportunity to be out front with museum leaders and translate the museum’s work in a way that personally compels current and future audiences. The DOD will serve as the initial point of contact for funders and will develop engagement strategies that strengthens existing ties to donors and supporters and attracts interest from new audiences. They will bring the creativity needed to identify and engage both traditional and non-traditional funding streams, a collaborative approach, charisma, and a sense of curiosity when partnering with museum staff and colleagues.
A proactive and empathetic leader, the DOD will manage a development and membership manager. They will also partner with the museum Director to develop cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies for Zimmerli’s top prospects and work with the director and curators as needed to move those relationships/gift conversations forward.
The successful candidate is expected to have at least five to seven years of experience with a proven track record in museum fundraising and engagement. They must demonstrate the ability to identify and cultivate donors, and steward long-standing partnerships, particularly with high-profile individuals and community leaders. Experience raising funds from arts philanthropy circles is a plus but not necessary. The candidate will offer excellent organizational and interpersonal skills, including impeccable verbal and written communication. An accessible and collegial leadership style is a prerequisite, as is the creativity and energy to convince and persuade varying constituencies of new ideas and directions. A willingness to become an engaged member in the artistic life of Zimmerli is a must.
MAJOR GIFT FUNDRAISING
- In collaboration with the Director, development colleagues, and museum staff, design and execute a strategic development plan that results in increased philanthropic support for the museum, both in the near term and for future support.
- Personally maintain a major gifts portfolio with a focus on top prospects rated at $100,000+ through face-to-face meetings, events and other activities with an average of 15 qualified contacts per month with donors or prospects. Meet fundraising metrics for proposals, closed gifts and dollars raised in accordance with established annual goals.
- Increase engagement and identify additional capacity from existing donors while simultaneously discovering, identifying, and soliciting new donors.
- Compose effective proposals and ensure donors are appropriately stewarded. Maintain proper communication with internal and external constituencies.
- Clearly articulate, in written and verbal form, the needs and priorities of the museum in a way that establishes a compelling case for support and leverages collaborative opportunities.
- Build successful relationships with Rutgers alumni, patrons, donors, prospects, volunteers, faculty, campus partners, staff, and students; identify and leverage connections to alumni and friends to facilitate prospect engagement, solicitation, and stewardship.
- Recognize and celebrate the complexity and innovation work at the museum and correspondingly seek to support it.
COLLABORATE WITH INTERNAL PARTNERS
- Strategically organize the Director’s time and resources in matters of development. Staff the Director in school/university leadership meetings and conversations, at donor solicitations, and special events.
- Model “best practices” for relationship-driven fundraising for campus partners and guide their participation in the donor cycle, including solicitations. Provide coaching to curators and staff in pursuing philanthropic support.
- Support the Director and campus partners in organizing and facilitating donor/prospect meetings, managing logistics for these meetings, and drafting briefing materials, follow-up reports, documents, and other external correspondence.
- Maintain information about donors/prospects in the development database; prepare meeting briefing memos for the Director and other campus partners; draft meeting call reports for the University’s files; ensure the maintenance of records in the Development database; and use technology effectively to research, organize and present information about assigned donors/prospects.
VOLUNTEERS AND SPECIAL EVENTS
- Partner with and provide guidance to the Zimmerli Advisory Board of Directors and other volunteer groups (e.g., alumni association and faculty committees) in support of the museum’s fundraising goals.
- Attend museum functions to develop a strong understanding of the culture of the university, the Zimmerli, and alumni base.
- Maintain knowledge of best practice trends in higher education philanthropy and an awareness and understanding of trends in university-based museums.
The DOD will have the following personal characteristics and professional qualifications:
- Five to seven years of experience in fundraising, including management experience.
- Demonstrated success in cultivation, solicitation, gift closure, and stewardship of six-figure philanthropic gifts from a variety of sources and donors.
- Track record of fundraising from a variety of audiences, including experience in non-constituent outreach.
- The ability to quickly gain substantive knowledge and comprehension of programs, projects, and activities to effectively present potential giving opportunities to prospective donors.
- Creativity and insight in identifying effective collaborations between institutional goals and needs and prospective donors. The ability to learn new concepts quickly and adeptly and to then communicate them effectively to donors.
- Integrity, creativity, energy, and independence; a collegial, understanding leadership style that will value team members and institutional partners and delegates appropriately.
- Acts in a selfless manner and models the ethical values of the university. Exhibits sound decision-making in response to rapidly changing and often complicated situations. Brings a sense of humor and perspective.
- Interprets, adapts, and further develops the “language” of Rutgers in describing the institution’s collective work, aspirations, and impact.
- When it is safe to do so, is able and willing to travel to develop and maintain relationships with prospects and donors.
- A Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field or equivalent work experience.
ZIMMERLI ART MUSEUM
For over fifty years, the Zimmerli Art Museum has enriched the intellectual and social life of its local and regional communities. As an interdisciplinary teaching museum located in an urban center, the Zimmerli educates, inspires, and challenges through the direct experiences of art. As a leading public research university museum, we present exhibitions and programs that significantly contribute to scholarship on campus while remaining accessible and relevant to visitors of all ages and backgrounds.
As part of the beloved community of Rutgers, and under new directorship, the “new Zimmerli” is committed to upholding diversity, equity, access, and inclusion as guiding principles for operations, exhibitions, collecting, programming, and outreach. Systemic racism and structural inequities have shaped the museum in numerous ways, as well as our home city of New Brunswick, NJ, starting with the dispossession of this land from the Lenape and Munsee peoples.
As such, we have affirmed our commitment to confronting racism and other forms of oppression present in the collections we preserve and display, and we are building our collections and staff to be more reflective of the diverse communities we serve. As part of the museum’s ongoing work of decolonizing the institution, the permanent collection galleries have been re-organized to address historical gaps in representation and to advance our commitment to diversifying the collection through the acquisition and presentation of underrepresented artists. More information about the museum can be found at: https://www.zimmerli.rutgers.edu/
MUSEUM DIRECTOR, MAURA REILLY
Maura Reilly is the Director of the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University. She has held several leadership positions in the arts, including as Executive Director of the National Academy of Design and as Senior Curator at the American Federation of Arts. She is the Founding Curator of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum, where she developed and launched the first exhibition and public programming space in the USA devoted entirely to feminist art. While there, she organized several landmark exhibitions, including the permanent installation of Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party and the blockbuster Global Feminisms (co-curated with Linda Nochlin), among others. Reilly has curated dozens of exhibitions internationally with a focus on marginalized artists and social justice concerns, including, most recently, Wandamba yalungka/Winds change direction for PERFORMA (Summer 2021), and the forthcoming transfeminisms, which premieres at Mimosa House in London in 2023, followed by the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art in 2024. Reilly has authored several books on global contemporary artists and has also written extensively on curatorial practice, including, most recently, Curatorial Activism: Towards an Ethics of Curating (Thames & Hudson, 2018), which has received many accolades, including a listing as one of the “Top 10 Best Art Books” of 2018 from the New York Times. Her next book, Museums & Social Justice, is forthcoming from Thames & Hudson in 2023. Reilly received her M.A. and PhD in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University.
RUTGERS UNIVERSITY FOUNDATION
Since its founding in 1973, Rutgers University Foundation has advanced Rutgers’ pursuit of excellence in education, research, and public service. The foundation inspires philanthropic support and enduring connections with alumni, parents, friends, corporations, foundations, and other supporters, raising money for university priorities and empowering Rutgers to better the world. The foundation is a tax-exempt 501 (c)(3) organization and also encompasses the Rutgers University Alumni Association, which builds community and fosters scarlet pride through the meaningful engagement of current and future alumni. For more information about Rutgers University Foundation, visit support.rutgers.edu.
EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY
It is Foundation policy to provide equal employment opportunity to all its employees and applicants for employment regardless of their race, creed, color, national origin, age, ancestry, nationality, marital or domestic partnership or civil union status, sex, pregnancy, gender identity or expression, disability status, liability for military service, protected veteran status, affectional or sexual orientation, atypical cellular or blood trait, genetic information (including the refusal to submit to genetic testing), or any other category protected by law. As an institution, we value diversity of background and opinion, and prohibit discrimination or harassment based on any legally protected class in the areas of hiring, recruitment, promotion, transfer, demotion, training, compensation, pay, fringe benefits, layoff, termination or any other terms and conditions of employment.
Under Presidential Executive Order 14042, Executive Order on Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors, employees must be fully vaccinated prior to beginning employment with the Rutgers University Foundation.
The Foundation will consider requests for exemptions from the executive order’s vaccination requirement for medical or religious reasons. However, if you are not granted an exemption for medical or religious reasons, you must be fully vaccinated against COVID.
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