Durham, NC

Assistant Director of Development, Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University
The Organization

The Center for Documentary Studies is dedicated to capturing the reality of people’s diverse experiences in our complex culture. It reflects a commitment to documenting people’s daily struggles and to using varied approaches to understand the human condition. The Center will work hard at supporting such elusive and often-touted values as scholarship, literary skill, activism, and self-reflection.
—From the Center for Documentary Studies’ first brochure

Created in 1989 through an endowment from the Lyndhurst Foundation, the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) at Duke University was the country’s first institution dedicated to documentary expression as a mode of inquiry and catalyst for social change. CDS is today the preeminent place to learn, make, and share documentary across all mediums—photography, film, video, writing, audio, experimental and new media—for people of all ages and backgrounds. We provide cutting-edge learning experiences; produce and support original work that connects life, learning, and art; and present work by artists who create new ways of seeing and understanding the human experience.

As a nonprofit affiliate of Duke, the Center for Documentary Studies is more than a traditional educational center. We combine the educational advantages of an internationally renowned institution with profound engagement in the wider world through the documentary arts, emphasizing the role of individual artists in contributing to society.

Position Overview

Duke University and the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) aspire to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas—an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values. The CDS community is committed to sharing values of diversity and inclusion to achieve and sustain excellence. CDS invites applications from a widely diverse cross-section of professionals to further enrich diversity among our staff and the study and practice of documentary and related disciplines.

Occupation Summary:

Reporting to the Development Director at the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS), the Assistant Director of Development will be responsible for the planning, coordination, and implementation of a comprehensive annual giving, engagement, and stewardship program.  The Assistant Director will identify, cultivate, and solicit individual prospects and leadership donors through individual outreach and coordination with CDS staff, faculty, and volunteers.  The Assistant Director will be responsible for the development and implementation of an engagement and stewardship program that will help to identify new donors or volunteers, retain supporters, cultivate increased giving, increase awareness of CDS and its programs, and provide constituents opportunities for engagement with CDS.

Work Performed:

Annual Giving

  • Oversee, coordinate, and implement annual giving programs that will increase support for CDS’s unrestricted fund and special initiatives.
  • Work closely with the Development Assistant to establish and maintain tools and/or processes that will assist in the analyses, evaluation, and reporting of annual giving programs.
  • Assist in the development of budgetary recommendations for annual giving efforts; record and accurately report on actual costs and evaluate the use of funds within assigned programs and activities.
  • Stay current on the wide variety of CDS programs and associated giving opportunities.

Prospect Management and Development

  • Develop and maintain personal relationships with CDS alumni, prospects, friends, and donors via telephone, email, online platforms, and domestic and local travel, in order to qualify interest, cultivate awareness, secure support, and provide stewardship.
  • Support overall efforts to grow and enrich CDS’s prospect pipeline.
  • Assist in the identification, cultivation, and transition of potential major gift supporters.
  • Coordinate donor strategies and efforts with the Full Frame Development Associate.
  • Assist in the development and implementation of the annual CDS Development Plan.

Engagement and Stewardship

  • Lead the development, implementation, and coordination of an overall engagement program that will help to identify new supporters and volunteers, raise awareness of CDS and its programs, and bring value and benefit to CDS.
  • Assist in the development, roll-out, and communication of a new comprehensive stewardship program.
  • Assist with the development and production of materials and digital content that can be used to cultivate, solicit, and steward supporters.

Collaboration and Special Initiatives

  • Collaborate with gift officers from other Duke University schools and units on identifying, cultivating, and soliciting multi-interest prospects.
  • Act as a CDS representative on University-wide special initiatives meetings and/or groups.
  • Participate on various CDS committees and groups.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.

Preferred Qualifications: 

Bachelor’s degree required. Three years of experience in alumni affairs, public relations, fund raising, sales and promotions, marketing, student activities or a related field in order to acquire skills necessary to administer, coordinate and/or participate in general fund-raising activities and proposal development. Candidates should possess a demonstrated knowledge of and ability to work effectively with individuals from diverse communities and cultures. Familiarity with and appreciation of Duke University, arts organization, or higher education fundraising preferred.

Candidates must demonstrate successful project management experience, including meeting numerous deadlines and objectives and managing multiple concurrent projects with limited resources. Excellent communication skills are required. Experience and comfort in interacting with prospects from a variety of different communities, class years, and professional backgrounds. Required technical skills include proficiency with Word, PowerPoint, and Excel as well as a willingness and ability to master Access and SAP-based database tools.

Must have a strong work ethic and be able to work in a fast-paced, results-oriented team environment. Ability to work evenings, weekends, and travel as needed. Creativity, adaptability, diplomatic skills, and sense of humor needed to be successful in this job.

Duke University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual’s age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status. Duke also makes good faith efforts to recruit, hire, and promote qualified women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans.

How To Apply

Two (2) steps are necessary. Please note applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

 1)    Send cover letter, resume, and three references to docstudies@duke.edu (with Assistant Director of Development Search in the subject line) or to the mailing address below. Your cover letter should outline how your qualifications, work history, and experience make you a good fit for this position (References will not be called without the candidate’s knowledge).

Assistant Director of Development Search

Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University

1317 West Pettigrew Street

Durham, NC  27705

 2)    Go to the Duke University jobs site https://hr.duke.edu/careers/apply and follow the instructions to submit an application for the following requisition number: 401562299.

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