Executive Director of Development and External Affairs



The UC Davis Graduate School of Management is consistently ranked among the premier business schools in the United States and internationally. The school has nearly 600 MBA students enrolled in the Daytime MBA and Working Professional MBA programs on the UC Davis campus, in Sacramento and in the San Francisco Bay Area. U.S. News & World Report has ranked UC Davis among the top 6 percent of MBA programs in the nation.

The division of Development and Alumni Relations (DEVAR) and the Graduate School of Management embrace and value diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). We are committed to employing and retaining a diverse workforce and have programs and policies in place to ensure all employees can succeed regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender expression, gender identity, gender transition status, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, ancestry, marital status, age, sexual orientation, citizenship or service in the uniformed services, including protected veterans. In acknowledgment of historical and current injustices faced by marginalized members of our global UC Davis community, we are firmly committed to supporting our Principles of Community and applying tenets of diversity, equity, and inclusion into every aspect of our everyday work and organizational culture.


Under the joint direction of the Dean and the Associate Vice Provost School and Unit Programs, the Executive Director of Development is responsible for designing, developing, delivering, and administering fundraising programs. The Executive Director of Development will identify, qualify, cultivate, solicit and steward individual prospects capable of making major gifts of $50,000+, developing and implementing annual and long-range fundraising goals, and setting objectives and strategies to maximize private support of prospects for the Graduate School of Management.

The Executive Director will manage a portfolio of major gift prospects and manage stewardship of donors. Provide leadership and strategic planning to for fundraising for the GSM in the key areas of planning, administration, analysis, and execution of solicitations to assure the achievement of the featured objectives. Manage the preparation of proposals and executive level staffing of volunteers and the Dean. Responsible for creating an extensive program of engagement between the School and external constituencies that will encourage private philanthropy to the School. The Executive Director will actively seek support for all areas including the Centers and Institutes within the GSM.

This position will interface with the larger division of UC Davis Development and Alumni Relations as we complete our Expect Greater comprehensive campaign. The Executive Director of Development will also represent the GSM at appropriate campus & university meetings and events.


  • Plans, implements, organizes, and directs fundraising campaigns which include multiple components, with a focus on the academic and comprehensive campaign priorities for the fundraising efforts in support the GSM with a strategic focus on identifying new prospects. Works in collaboration with DEVAR. Will serve as an expert and lead development professional for the GSM.
  • Manages a portfolio of donors capable of giving $50K or more, with a focus on qualification and cultivation of new donors. Identifies, cultivates, solicits and/or stewards major gift prospects and donors.  Meets fundraising metrics prescribed and determined as part of an individual annual business plan. 
  • Evaluates programs using financial feasibility studies and market research, including planning and evaluating annual solicitation programs and making recommendations for improvements. Participates in short and long-range strategic planning. Develops strategies within existing policy guidelines.
  • Serves as an active member of UC Davis development team; works and coordinates with colleagues to plan and implement creative cultivation and stewardship strategies.
  • Writes proposals for solicitation of individual prospects.
  • Recruits, trains, and supports key volunteers who assist in advancement efforts.
  • Assists with the donor stewardship programs; participates in annual reporting to donors and implement other strategies to carefully steward donors.
  • Ensures that predetermined fundraising goals are met.
  • Prepares annual unit/individual development business plan and performance goals and objectives for prospect cultivation, solicitation and stewardship, as well as revenue goals.
  • Must comply with UC Davis Development policies and utilize the services and systems of the UC Davis Development Prospect Management System (PMATS) and Advance database.


  • Conceives, writes, & edits proposals to individuals for support of the School’s priorities.
  • Develop key messages & highlight the impact of gifts received.
  • In conjunction with appropriate academic leadership, formulate an annual strategic plan for the School’s development goals, to meet Dean’s fund-raising priorities.
  • Participates in prospect coordination system (PMATS); files contact reports, records proposals, coordinates with colleagues on strategies, etc.
  • Participates in appropriate projects, training, and meetings for development professionals. Participates in strategically relevant special events.
  • May oversee the work of support staff involved in the implementation of multi-component fundraising programs.


  • Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent combination of education and experience. Minimum of five years of professional or volunteer fundraising experience involving major gifts, including knowledge of proven cultivation and solicitation techniques for gifts of six-figures or higher.
  • Experience with effective interactions with diverse groups, including professional colleagues, volunteers in academic, business, and medical settings, donors’ professional advisors, and donors and their families.
  • Demonstrated progressively responsible fundraising, preferably in higher education, with a demonstrated success to solicit major gifts of $50,000 or more by identifying and qualifying prospects, managing a prospect portfolio, designing and implementing cultivation and solicitation strategies, and ensuring follow-up activities and stewardship. Experience working in a metrics fundraising environment to meet or exceed fundraising goals and objectives is a plus.
  • Demonstrated working knowledge of the principles and practices of fundraising and understanding of confidential nature of information that is used in fundraising.
  • Skills to maintain a large number of solicitations moving through the donor pipeline; to build and maintain strong personal relationships among all constituencies; to understand and articulate academic goals and work collaboratively with academic leadership; and to engage in strategic planning at all levels of the organization.
  • Demonstrated skill in writing and editing effective proposals for major and/or principal gifts, and creative solicitation materials.


  • Experience in business and industry is a plus, and/or an advanced degree beyond bachelor’s degree.
  • 7+ years of progressively responsible major gift fundraising responsibilities, especially if within a higher education setting.
  • Excellent interpersonal communication and presentation skills; skills to express ideas, concepts and the case for financial support clearly and concisely.
  • Awareness, knowledge, and skill in applying diversity, equity and inclusion to one’s work. A profound belief in the value of a diverse and safe workforce and a commitment to achieve this goal through collaboration and team building, working cooperatively with a diverse group of department and campus constituencies.