Major Gifts Officer

Vacancy Announcement

Major Gifts Officer (MGO)

Exempt Position # A1A002


Position Summary

The Major Gifts Officer (MGO) is a full time, FLSA exempt, senior level administrator charged with identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gifts for Adams State University (ASU).  Reporting to the Adams State University President, this position provides support for the University’s fundraising efforts and works closely with the ASU President and supports the ASU Foundation Board to plan, manage, and assist in carrying out the institution’s strategic plan.  The MGO will engage in direct efforts to attract foundation donors, individual major gifts and corporate gifts while providing exemplary stewardship and solicitation of current major donors and developing relationships that will lead to major gifts.


The MGO will serve on campaign committees and provide key leadership.  The MGO will act as an ASU ambassador and develop relationships and connect constituents throughout the United States and internationally.  The MGO will be responsible for identifying matches between constituent’s philanthropic intent and the needs of ASU.  The position will be located in the Denver, Colorado metro area.


The MGO will identify, establish and manage a large portfolio of major gift prospects (portfolio of 110-150) and donors who have the capacity to make multi-year commitments of $1,000,000+ and above.  The position is responsible for making 140-180 face to face visits annually with active and prospective constituents to qualify, cultivate, solicit, and steward them along the giving cycle.  The MGO will also qualify newly identified prospects as future potential major donors and secure unrestricted and restricted annual gifts as prospects are cultivated towards a major gift.


The MGO will work with the highest level of donors and ASU Foundation Board of Directors, and have an understanding of financial planning and tax implications for philanthropic activity for individual and corporate donors.  Gifts solicited range from major commitments for unrestricted and restricted needs, to specially targeted endowment gifts, to bequests and other deferred giving instruments.  While the MGO’s primary focus will be on growing and securing individual major gifts, there will remain an ongoing expectation to see corporate donations.


The MGO will possess a thorough knowledge of Adams State University and its strategic needs.  The MGO will have productive working relationships with the ASU President, ASU Foundation Board and senior administrators with the goal of leading ASU’s Foundation in cultivation and solicitation of major gifts.


The ideal candidate will be a consummate professional and will thrive in a fast-paced campaign, metrics results-driven fundraising environment. The MGO must be able to set priorities, work independently and/remotely and build cross collaborative teams.  The MGO will have a strong work ethic and a successful track record of building and growing a development program and a demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with colleagues, faculty and community partners. Successful candidates will need to be organized, articulate, and have the ability to multitask. 




Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree and 5+ years of relevant experience (development, sales, customer relations, etc.) or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience in a higher education or non-profit setting preferred; direct experience with fundraising, volunteer management and knowledge of Adams State University is highly desired.
  • Proven ability to solicit and close philanthropic gifts on the $500,000 - $1,000,000+ level, or equivalent experience in a related field such as sales.
  • Strong organizational and planning skills with the ability to initiate, collaborate, implement, monitor, evaluate and advance strategic plans that support the activities of the program and contribute to the overall goals and objectives of advancement and the fundraising enterprise.
  • Superior interpersonal skills with proven ability to successfully interact and collaborate with varied constituencies in a professional manner, exhibiting excellent written and oral communication skills, team-building skills, and demonstrating tact, poise and diplomacy while working with a wide variety of personalities.  An ability and comfort in meeting and interacting with individuals of considerable social status and affluence is required.
  • Demonstrated ability to be donor-centric, collegial, and effective in working with dynamic, diverse groups to include families, students, faculty, alumni, professionals, university leadership and others. Demonstrated knowledge of and relevant ability with culturally diverse communities among potential target and constituent populations.
  • Ability to apply good judgment and proven responsibility decision-making skills; tact and discretion are required to deal with highly confidential alumni, parent, student, family, donor and prospect information.
  • Must be a detail-oriented, self-starter with a demonstrated ability to work independently and manage multiple projects and priorities to meet aggressive timelines and challenging deadlines.
  • Working knowledge of electronic mail and calendars, the Windows environment, including Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access, and other gift software such as Talisma-Donor 2, etc.
  • Must be able and willing to work evenings and weekends.
  • Must be able and willing to travel frequently to attend relevant programs and events and to meet with current and prospective donors and leadership volunteers to further cultivation and solicitation strategies.
  • Ability to treat others with respect, civility, and courtesy and to work honestly, effectively, and collegiality with employees, students, and the community.  This includes the ability to use appropriate conflict management skills to effectively manage any disagreement that might arise or to bring the disagreement to management for assistance in productive resolution when the situation requires.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collegially and collaboratively with diverse internal and external constituencies.



Additionally these attributes will be considered:

  • Experience in managing complex, multi-disciplinary fundraising projects.
  • Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or government regulations. 
  • Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, alumni, donors, students, parents, and the general public.


Salary and Benefits


Salary ranges from $120,000-$140,000.  Adams State University offers a competitive benefits package.




Completed applications must include the following and must be submitted electronically:


  • Letter of application describing interest in the position as described above and directly addressing the applicant’s qualifications
  • Current resume/vitae
  • Names and contact information for five professional references
  • Unofficial or official transcripts from all postsecondary education institutions attended (official transcripts required upon hiring)


Submit applications to:


The University reserves the right to check additional references, with prior notification given to the candidate.

NOTE: The successful candidate must provide official transcripts of academic work completed and, under U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services regulations, be able to submit evidence of the ability to accept work in the U.S. by the day employment begins.



Adams State University – Alamosa

Adams State University is a state-supported liberal arts university in Alamosa, Colorado, United States. The university offers undergraduate programs in physical and social sciences, fine arts, business and nursing, and specializes in educator curricula in several disciplines. Adams State also offers graduate degrees in history, art, business (MBA), and educator programs, including counselor education; the school also has a postgraduate (PhD) program in counselor education. The university has an active athletic program, both in participatory sports and in athletics educator training; the Adams State Grizzlies athletic teams compete under the auspices of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.

Alamosa, Colorado

Alamosa was established in May 1878 by the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad and quickly became an important rail center. The railroad had an extensive construction, repair and shipping facility in Alamosa for many years and headquartered its remaining narrow gauge service here with tracks reaching many points throughout southwest Colorado and northern New Mexico. Alamosa is now a notable tourist town with many nearby attractions, including the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve and Colorado Gators Reptile Park. The town hosts "Summer Fest on the Rio" which occurs the first weekend in June, the Early Iron car show over the Labor Day weekend, and "Weekends on the Rio" on various Sundays throughout the summer.   The city takes its name from the Spanish adjective Alamosa, meaning "of cottonwood", for the cottonwood forests which grow along the Rio Grande and throughout town.

Alamosa features a cold desert climate with long, cold winters and warm summers, and dry weather year-round. Normal range from a low of −4 °F (−20 °C) in January to a high of 82 °F (28 °C) in July. Annual precipitation is only 7.25 inches (184 mm), with summer being the wettest. The aridity depresses mean snowfall to around 32 inches (81 cm), and the median to only 22.3 inches (57 cm).

The altitude and dryness of the air cause day-night temperature differences to be severe year-round. Alamosa's geography and nighttime temperatures account for it being listed as the coldest city in the contiguous United States, with a record average of 227 nights per year with a minimum temperature of 32 °F (0 °C) or less,[16] and 48.7 nights with minima below 0 °F (−17.8 °C).

In compliance with the Clery Act of 1990, the University’s annual security report is available at

Adams State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran status.  Additionally, the University complies with all other relevant, federal, state, and local laws regarding employment practices.

In compliance with the Immigration Control Act of 1968 candidate for positions must provide proof of eligibility to work before an offer of employment can be made final.

Adams State University performs background checks as a condition of employment for prospective employees and current employees seeking certain promotional opportunities. Offers of employment are contingent upon completion of an acceptable background check. Applicants will be asked to provide personal data and sign a release form before the background check is conducted. Applicants who fail to provide the data and consent form will not be considered for employment or promotion. Background checks include review of criminal records and sex offender registry background. Credit and driving record background may apply to certain positions.

Adams State University is dedicated to fostering Inclusive Excellence and especially encourages applications from women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ+ community, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and other historically underrepresented populations. Given the university’s mission and student body composition, the institution is committed to increasing the diversity of its professional staff and is actively seeking qualified applicants who have experiences, skills, and/or personal attributes that augment the perspectives of our current faculty and staff; we will give particular consideration to qualified applicants with experience in ethnically diverse settings or who possess varied language skills and have a record of successful experience in engaging diverse communities and student populations. Additional information about the university and the academic mission may be found at