Carnegie Institution for Science,

Major Gifts Officer

1 month ago
Employment type
Closing date

About this organization

Carnegie is where the next generation of big ideas are born. Our research breakthroughs have fundamentally changed how we understand biology, our planet, and the universe.

From genomes to ecosystems and from planets to the cosmos, Carnegie Science is an incubator for cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research that is expanding our knowledge of all that is around us. On a scale encompassing the entire natural world, and at myriad intersections of both related and disparate disciplines, our investigators are tackling the biggest questions of our time. What are the origins of our universe? How did life emerge? How can we combat the devastation of climate change?

Andrew Carnegie founded this institution in 1902 as a home for world-transforming scientific discoveries. Today, Carnegie Science’s mission—to advance investigation, research, and discovery, and apply that knowledge to the improvement of humankind—is more urgent than ever. An independent research institution, we provide our scientists with the flexibility to follow their discoveries, seize opportunities, and define new fields of investigation. Our researchers continue to ask and answer compelling questions where we have the expertise, the leadership to mobilize the international research community, and the vision to transform our understanding.

We are now entering a time of scientific discovery unparalleled in our history. This new age brings a convergence of trends in scientific practice and technology that allows interdisciplinary research to thrive. New instrumentation and technologies, such as next-generation massive telescopes and gene-editing tools like CRISPR, are opening entirely new fields of research. And incredible advances in computation are revealing deeper and ever-more complex opportunities for insight. Our growing partnership with Caltech, including significant collaborations on the technology driving 21st-century science, is accelerating our ability to capitalize on this pivotal moment.

About this job

The Major Gifts Officer will partner with Development leadership and peers to help build a fundraising program to grow the culture of philanthropy across the Institution in support of Carnegie’s scientific community. This newly created position will have a West Coast regional focus, with its primary office in Pasadena, CA. The Major Gifts Officer will strive to develop the pipeline of major and principal gifts by engaging with Carnegie’s donors, prospects, and other stakeholders to strengthen existing relationships, as well as, expand the institution’s portfolio of donors. Discovery work is a significant component of the position, offering an opportunity to establish and deepen relationships that benefit the institution.

Roles & responsibilities

Essential Functions: The qualified candidate must be able to perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.

Contribute to the development of the major gifts pipeline by leveraging relationships with donors, supporters, scientists, staff, and others.

Execute thoughtful moves management and interactions that deepen relationships, increase giving, and achieve a higher level of giving among donors.

Move prospects through the donor continuum by identifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding donors to successfully close gifts.

Participate in efforts to deepen individual donor engagement in Carnegie Science, including opportunities for donors to participate in prospect identification.

Identify, pursue, and develop relationships that lay the groundwork for 5-, 6-, and 7-figure solicitations.

Increase donors at the leadership annual fund level of 5-6 figures through membership in “philanthropy circles”.

Build relationships with donors and prospects via personal visits, Zoom meetings, phone calls, ongoing written contact, and events.

Collaborate with other development partners to understand the philanthropic interests and priorities of constituents and help them realize their philanthropic potential as supporters of Carnegie Science.

Participate in activities that help meet the goals and objectives of the development team, including attendance at institution-wide meetings, departmental community lectures, scientific presentations given by department scientists, as well as at other engagements.

Build awareness of Carnegie Science to foster donors in the philanthropic community

Work with leadership and colleagues to craft appropriate and consistent messaging regarding Carnegie Science’s fundraising.

Write proposals and other cultivation and stewardship materials.


Minimum Qualifications:

Bachelor’s Degree

At least 3-5 years of experience in non-profit development

Preferred Qualifications:

Prior experience, or strong and genuine interest, in science is preferred.

Understanding of, commitment to, and ability to articulate Carnegie Science’s mission to engage donors.

Knowledge of how to build a major donor pipeline and implement best practices of donor stewardship.

Ability to guide, manage, and support volunteers and other stakeholders in the fundraising process.

Ability to design and implement effective cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies for individual giving.

Ability to build and maintain relationships with high-net-worth individuals; must know how to build strong relationships through donor engagement.

Proficiency in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and donor tracking software (preferably Salesforce).

Ability to apply good judgment and handle confidential materials and situations with sensitivity and discretion.

Comfort working in a fast-paced, flexible, collegial, goal-oriented and scientific environment.

To apply

Visit to apply.

At Carnegie, we are committed to building a diverse and inclusive community. We believe academic environments should be places where diverse groups of people with a variety of viewpoints and ideas can thrive and work together. As such, we encourage applicants from under-represented groups and backgrounds to apply.

The Carnegie Institution is an equal-opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or any other protected group status.

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