National Foundation for Cancer Research

Job Description

Position Title: Major Gifts Officer  

Reports To: Senior Director of Development  

Direct Reports: None

Date: November 17, 2017


Overall Objective:        The overall purpose of the position

The Major Gifts Officer is a member of the Foundation’s fundraising team who cultivates and leads the  major gift development activities to raise funds for long-term, transformative cancer research that promotes discoveries in cancer prevention, detection and treatment as well as funding for related public education.  The incumbent’s efforts are focused on the identification, cultivation, stewardship and retention of individual donors who commit to major gifts, preferably on a multi-year basis. 

Duties:             Key functions and responsibilities; what is done is more important than how

Major Gifts

  • Leads the Foundation’s major gift program; meeting with donors and responding to inquiries to develop major gifts as a critical component of the Foundation’s strategic fundraising plan.
  • Conducts donor discovery through research and data mining to identify, contact, solicit and steward major gift prospects to meet measurable goals, including developing and executing a full range of donor cultivation activities.
  • Represents the Foundation at research and fundraising events; may develop and make presentations, as needed.  
  • Regularly informs Foundation leadership of major gifts fundraising performance as compared to budgeted projections.
  • Answers current and prospective donor inquiries; maintains relationships with existing donors through regular contact, providing reports and statements; oversees donor recognition events and data collections activities.
  • Works with the donor relations team to recognize major gift donors and promote interaction with major gift prospects.
  • Participates in speaking engagements and major gift/development seminars.
  • Writes correspondence, reports, proposals and marketing materials; enters data in the donor database and assures accurate electronic and hard copy files of major gift donors and prospects.
  • Ensures that all major gift activities comply with local, state, and federal regulations and laws governing non-profit business operations.

Accountability:             Level of position authority and scope of role

Serves as a member of the Foundation’s fundraising team responsible for the major gifts program. Primarily an externally facing individual contributor role.  Responsible for the operational execution and success of the major gifts program and its coordination with donor relations.  Carries out responsibilities in accordance with Foundation policies and applicable laws.

Skills/Competencies:     Knowledge, Skills & Abilities; Education/Experience needed for success

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Fundraising: Considerable knowledge of major gift fundraising.  Skill in successfully predicting donor enthusiasm and willingness to commit to major giving.  Skill in identifying and interacting with prospective donors, cultivating current donors and coordinating activities with colleague fundraisers.  Knowledge of legal recordkeeping requirements for fundraising and documentation of donations. 
  • Interpersonal/Communications: Energetic, enthusiastic, rapport-building people person with skill in building and sustaining relationships; a persuasive negotiator able to achieve results.  Ability to work independently, and on a team, and successfully meet goals and objectives.    Excellent writer and presenter, with the ability to inspire commitment and action in others. Demonstrates genuine caring for cancer victims and motivated to find a cure.
  • Organizational/Financial:  Business and financial acumen.  Skill in using word processing and spreadsheet software, as well as major gift giving and/or fundraising software.   Ability to research and analyze large sets of data.  Self-motivated, well organized and detail oriented.

Education and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in a business, marketing or related field.   
  • Three of more years of experience with a proven fundraising track record in major gifts, preferably in a non-profit organization or academic setting.
  • Certified Fund-Raising Executive (CFRE) or other fundraising related certifications offered by the Association of Fundraising Professional preferred.

Work Environment:      Intermittent or consistent requirements of a physical or unusual nature

Physical demands are representative of those expected of an individual contributor manager in a non-profit organization.  Approximately 30% of work is performed in an office environment, and 70% of work is in the field meeting with donors.  Time commitments outside of regular office hours may be frequent. 

How to Apply:
NFCR offers a competitive salary, commensurate with experience, and a generous benefits package. Please send us a cover letter and resume to