Association of Fundraising Professionals Triangle, NC Chapter

11 January 2018
 January 11, 2018

Development Assistant, Development

Duke University

Occupational Summary

This position will provide advanced level of direct administrative support to two Regional Major Gift Directors.  This position will handle administrative duties, which include but are not limited to, arranging meetings, travel and events, recording gifts and pledges accurately, drafting high level correspondence and briefings, conducting research, as well as providing technical and logistical support to the directors.  This position will also work cooperatively with other Development Assistants, the Director and Assistant Director for Administration and Operations and Regional Major Gift Directors (RMGD) within the Office of Major Gifts.

Essential Job Functions

Travel and Events

  • Coordinate RMGDs trip preparation and travel arrangements, including providing suggestions on prospect visits, establishing the itinerary, making flight and hotel arrangements, and preparing the travel binder. Anticipate and identify appropriate supporting documentation and briefing materials for the RMGDs such as research materials and historical gift, biographic and prospect information.
  • Contact Duke Alumni, parents and friends to request and schedule RMGD appointments. Respond to inquiries from donors, especially in the RMGD’s absence.
  • Participate in the planning of select events for cultivation, solicitation and/or stewardship purposes. Compile and maintain lists for major gifts events or meetings. Serve as liaison to University Development special events office to oversee implementation of meetings and events.


  • Draft a wide variety of written materials including detailed individual prospect briefings, letters and internal and external correspondence. Gather information from faculty, administrators, academic units, and other colleagues to support the development of gift proposals.
  • Develop the criteria, initiate the requests and follow up on reports required by the RMGDs. Verify the data and proof financial and fundraising reports after receipt. Research and investigate gift commitments using office files and the database and prepare reports.
  • Assist in the tracking of major gift proposals, endowment agreements and contact reports. Use the moves management database to enter moves and solicitations and check the accuracy of reports consisting of moves management data.


  • Screen and prioritize mail and documents to determine which items to respond to independently or which to bring to director’s attention based on content of communication and knowledge of office activities.
  • Set up and maintain varied office files of records, reports and correspondence required for reference and efficient operation of office.
  • Maintain RMGD calendars including scheduling internal /external meetings, alerting RMGD to important dates. Prepare and/or provide necessary documents for RMGD’s use in meetings. Attend meetings as requested to take minutes.


  • Assist in the training of new employees. Participate as a team member by sharing workloads and maintaining knowledge of colleagues’ activities.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein. The above statements describe the general nature and level of work being performed by individuals assigned to this classification. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required of personnel so classified.

 Required Behavioral Competencies

  • Attention to Detail: Accurately maintains schedules or calendars to monitor details for more complex assignments or projects. Regularly follows up with others to ensure information is complete.
  • Planning, Prioritizing and Multitasking: Identifies and categorizes assigned tasks based on level of importance and urgency with little supervision.
  • Collaborating with Others: Ability to work collaboratively, formally and informally within one’s team and across the organization.
  • Listening: Attentive to the speaker’s message. Attentive to verbal and non-verbal cues that lead to deeper understanding.  Asks questions which clarify speaker’s message.
  • Initiative: Acts and works independently, taking prompt action to accomplish objectives. Responds in an appropriate timeframe when presented with a problem. Requires limited prompting.
  • Provides Excellent Customer Service: Responds to customer’s requests in a timely manner, proactively identifies customer needs, and takes responsibility to resolve complaints.


  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Programs: Calendar, Excel, Word, PowerPoint
  • Superb attention to detail.
  • Demonstrated ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and deadlines.
  • Demonstrated ability to work autonomously and as a member of a team.
  • Demonstrated high level of initiative and motivation.
  • Outstanding communication skills, tact, and diplomacy.
  • Demonstrated ability to handle sensitive and confidential information and issues on a daily basis.
  • Must be able to communicate professionally and confidently with a wide variety of constituents, Duke University administrators, university donors, fundraising leadership, and university colleagues.


  • Work requires a broad knowledge of clerical and accounting principles and practices normally acquired through two years of post-secondary education in secretarial science or a related business field.


  • Work generally requires two years of related secretarial/clerical experience to acquire skills necessary to administer office functions related to office management, communications, and budgetary/accounting activities.


The intent of this job description is to provide a representative and level of the types of duties and responsibilities that will be required of positions given this title and shall not be construed as a declaration of the total of the specific duties and responsibilities of any particular position. Employees may be directed to perform job-related tasks other than those specifically presented in this description.

To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, one brief writing sample (at least 2 paragraphs); and the names, email addresses and telephone numbers of three references (2 professional, 1 personal) to

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