Director of Development-Seminary Relations

California Lutheran University
Thousand Oaks, CA

Director of Development-Seminary Relations

Position Category: Staff (Exempt)

FLSA: Exempt

FTE: 1

Location: Thousand Oaks

University Background:

Founded in 1959, California Lutheran University is home to more than 3,000 undergraduate and 1,300 graduate students who come from more than 49 countries and represent a wide variety of faiths. Our dedicated, accomplished faculty works with small classes of students who are open-minded—about ideas, about people, and about faith—and are seeking to grow as individuals. Both in the classroom and outside of it, everyone at Cal Lutheran is committed to helping each student pursue their passions to discover their purpose, and follow that purpose to transform their community—and the world.

Cal Lutheran is a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) that administers an array of Title III, Title V, and TRIO programs including the McNair Scholars Program. Cal Lutheran advocates for justice and fairness for all people and is looking for candidates with a demonstrated commitment to and success working in diverse communities of, but not limited to, varying races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations and expressions, socio-economic statuses, ages, abilities, religions, and nationalities.

Basic Function:

Reporting to the Vice President for Mission and Identity, the Director of Development-Seminary Relations is responsible for the cultivation and stewardship of congregational and donor relationships for the development of the seminary and the university. The Director advances the university's mission by building relationships and effectively communicating its mission to donors and to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) synods and congregations of Regions I and II. The Director is responsible as the lead seminary gift officer for planning and implementing a program of identification, cultivation, visitation, and solicitation of congregational gifts, individual major gifts, planned gifts, and endowment fund development in support of university strategic priorities and seminary fundraising. The Director also works as a part of the University Advancement team to cultivate and solicit major gifts (10,000 K+ for the seminary; 25,000 K+ for the university.)

Representative Duties:

• Steward schedule so that 60% of the work focuses on generating new giving congregations and donors. 

• Develop and implement an annual plan for the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of ELCA Region I and II congregational gifts for the seminary and university. 

• Manage a portfolio of congregational proposals within ELCA Region I and II to include charting plans and timetables for each congregation to include cultivation, involvement, solicitation, and appropriate acknowledgement. 

• Convene monthly working group of Rector, Executive Director of Development Programs, Vice President for Mission and Identity, and Associate Director of Seminary Relations related to congregational engagement to coordinate assignments, messaging, and travel to build relationships with strategic congregations, their rostered leaders, and synodical staff of ELCA Regions II and II. 

• Work in collaboration with the Rector of Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (PLS) to advance mission critical fundraising in connection with the strategic plan of the seminary. 

• Develop an annual plan for the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major gifts for the seminary and the university. 

• Manage a portfolio of donor prospects, including alumni and individuals, to include charting plans and timetables for each prospect related to cultivation, involvement, solicitation, stewardship, and appropriate acknowledgement. 

• Develop strategies to meet estate and planned gift revenue objectives and increase the number of estate and planned gift donors for the seminary. 

• Manage a portfolio of planned giving donors including the PLTS Advisory Board and Donor Advocates. 

• Develop operations and implement new endowment funds aligning the wishes of donors to strategic goals of the seminary under the direction of the Rector; Maintain strategic relationships with succeeding generations of donors to steward continuing support of endowment funds. 

• Work with the Business Office of the University concerning the management of funds related to major, estate, planned, and endowed gifts in compliance with all relevant Board authorization. 

• Prepare reports on initiatives and donor prospects to the Vice President for Mission and Identity, Rector, and Executive Director of Development Programs. 

• Monitor budget for expense control. 

• Coordinate with the Executive Director of Development Programs in the development of an overall long range plan and annual action plan for advancement functions within seminary relations. 

• Actively participate in engagements and meetings pertaining to the Division of Mission and Identity, University Advancement Leadership Team, and other officers of the university and seminary. 

• Maintain continuing relationships with ELCA Region I and II synods and congregations through attendance at significant synod gatherings and engagement with Bishops and synod staff. 

• Other duties as assigned.

Knowledge Of:

• ELCA both nationally and globally and of different religious traditions and cultures.

• Mission, vision, identity and goals of California Lutheran University

• Policies and practices involved in the candidacy process of the ELCA and its full communion ecumenical partner churches

• Cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies and fundraising techniques in generating significant commitments from individual sources

Interpersonal skills in building relationships

• Group facilitation and collegial team building

• Public speaking techniques

• Relevant donor data base software

Ability To:

Influence and engage a wide range of donors and build long-term relationships.

• Work both independently without close oversight, but also as a team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels of seniority within the organization

• Cognizant, appreciative of, and sensitivity to all cultures

• Clearly and succinctly communicate a wide variety of information to a diverse set of audiences

• Lead change initiatives with emphasis on fundraising growth and increased performance.

• Use of specialized software (Raiser’s Edge)

• Establish and maintain effective working relationships; work effectively with volunteers and other staff members

• Plan and organize work, meet schedules and deadlines

• Analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action

• Be available for evening and weekend work as needed

• Work confidentially with a variety of prospects, donors and leadership volunteers

• Travel throughout the United States

• Use strong organizational and time management skills with exceptional attention to detail

• Be professional, creative and resourceful approach to problem-solving

• Communicate effectively in both written and verbal mediums across a myriad of audiences to include higher education administration and leadership, donors, congregations, and corporations

Minimum Qualifications:

Any combination equivalent to: A Bachelor’s Degree and seven years of progressively responsible experience in Higher Education Fundraising, Nonprofit Fundraising and/or Seminary Fundraising.

Preferred Qualifications:

Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) designation

Rostered leader in the ELCA or a full communion ecumenical partner church of the ELCA (Presbyterian Church (USA), Reformed Church in America, United Church of Christ, The Episcopal Church, The Moravian Church, and United Methodist Church)

Master’s degree or Master’s of Divinity degree

Licenses and Other Requirements:


Working Environment:

Office environment; traveling to meet donors; evening or variable hours.

This position is headquartered on the Thousand Oaks campus of California Lutheran University

Posting Number: Staff002772020

Number of Vacancies: 1

Desired Start Date: 06/01/2021

Open Date: 04/01/2021

Open Until Filled: Yes

To apply, visit

California Lutheran University is committed to providing equal opportunity in employment for all persons, regardless of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by applicable law. No person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination in any program, activity or facility of the University on the basis of these factors in a manner consistent with applicable federal and state laws, regulations, ordinances, orders and rules, and University’s policies, procedures, and processes.

Upon request, reasonable accommodations in the application process can be provided to individuals with qualifying disabilities. Please contact the Human Resources Department for further information or to request an accommodation.

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