Assistant Vice Chancellor for Principal and Major Gifts

Assistant Vice Chancellor for Principal and Major Gifts (P#01004820)

Position Summary:

The University of North Carolina has enjoyed a long-standing place among leaders in higher education since it was chartered in 1789 and opened its doors for students in 1795 as the nation's first public university.  Situated in the beautiful college town of Chapel Hill, NC, Carolina has earned a reputation as one of the best universities in the world. Carolina prides itself on a strong, diverse student body, academic opportunities not found anywhere else, and a value unmatched by any public university in the nation.

Carolina Development is proud of its donor-centered philosophy, pursuing activities that always respect the interests and intentions of the donor as well as the University.  The organization's collaborative nature is a critical component to fulfilling our mission of raising private funds to benefit the university.  

The Assistant Vice Chancellor for Principal and Major Gifts (AVC) reports to the Vice Chancellor for Development and is a member of the Vice Chancellor’s senior leadership team. The AVC is responsible for developing and managing a strategic individual gifts program for Carolina, working with the university's senior leaders, deans, lead development officers, major gift officers and volunteers. The AVC will manage an individual gifts program of identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of prospects with a significant focus on principal gift-level prospects, specifically those donors with the ability to make gifts of $5,000,000 and greater. The AVC will work closely with the Vice Chancellor for Development and others to develop strategies for principal and major gifts, particularly as the University enters the public phase of its next comprehensive campaign.  In addition, the AVC will oversee the University’s regional program of major gifts and global development.

Principal Functions:

  • With the Vice Chancellor, manage the Chancellor's principal gifts portfolio, developing strategies, providing written materials and oral briefings, and assisting with solicitations. Assist in managing the principal gift prospects assigned to other university leaders developing strategies, providing written materials and oral briefings, and assisting with solicitations. Organize a program of principal gifts solicitation that coordinates activity among the schools and units and the University Development Office. Establish a strong culture of collaboration and work collaboratively with schools and units to achieve principal and major gift fundraising objectives. Plan and staff the Chancellor, as appropriate, and the Vice Chancellor in meetings concerning strategies for top prospects to the university. Develop and execute strategies to engage new principal gift prospects. Oversee and advise on briefings and strategies for the Chancellor and other key leaders involved with principal gifts solicitations. Develop a portfolio of prospects and maintain active efforts to evaluate prospects identified through fieldwork, screening, and research. Monitor and evaluate principal gift fundraising progress and develop strategies and adjustments as needed. Maintain chancellor's contacts and coordinate communication. Maintain principal gift prospects using Davie. Prepare and assist in prospect management meetings when principal gift prospects are discussed or assigned. Develop personalized stewardship plans for principal gift donors.
  • Oversee the regional and global development teams to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated program of individual giving across the University.  Establish strong coordination and cooperation between and among the schools and units, creating a donor-centric philanthropic culture across Carolina.
  • Serve as a key member of the Vice Chancellor's executive team, sharing the responsibility for the overall strategic direction of the institution’s development and alumni relations program. Participate in budget planning and approve expenditures for the principal gifts unit. Prepare annual operating plans for principal gifts program, including campaign strategies. Supervise a principal gifts team (professional and administrative staff) adhering to university policy and procedure related to hiring, terminating, and evaluating employees.  Mentor development and non-development staff, and serve as a contributing member of the OneCarolina team.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by Vice Chancellor.

Education Requirements:  Bachelor's degree

Qualification and Experience Requirements:

The Assistant Vice Chancellor for Principal and Major Gifts will be a polished fundraising executive who knows and understands the nature and purpose of public higher education.  Leading candidates will have:  Ten or more years of experience with demonstrated successful experience and effectiveness in major and principal gift fundraising, preferably in a higher education setting; significant experience working with volunteers and volunteer groups; demonstrated ability to handle multiple, complex fundraising activities simultaneously and coordinate solicitation strategies in a decentralized environment; ability to plan and implement a fundraising plan; excellent oral and written communication skills; high level of creativity, initiative, and motivation; team orientation and willingness to set an example for real leadership; ability and willingness to travel.  Strong ability to and enthusiasm for working as part of a collaborative team.

Candidate Instructions:

Please apply online at 

All candidates must apply online and submit a cover letter and resume.  

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer and welcomes all to apply regardless of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. We also encourage protected veterans and individuals with disabilities to apply.

Additional questions about the application process may be directed to Lisa Waldeck, HR Consultant at 919-962-0015 or