Claflin University Taps Myers McRae to Find Major Gifts Officer

July 17, 2017 – Executive search firm Myers McRae has been retained by Claflin University to conduct its search for a major gifts officer. Kenny Daugherty, president for the recruiters, is leading the assignment.

Founded in 1869, Claflin University is the oldest historically black college in South Carolina. Located in Orangeburg, the independent, four-year institution is affiliated with the United Methodist Church and is recognized as being among the top liberal arts schools in the nation. For this current year, Claflin has an enrollment of 2,000 students, a record for the school. Its recent freshman class was also the largest in the school’s history.

The Role

The major gifts officer plays a key role in securing substantial financial resources and gifts. This development officer provides the school with administrative support for all major and planned giving efforts, managing a portfolio of 125 to 200 major and planned giving prospects each year. Additionally, this officer assists in the administration and maintenance of all policies and procedures for accepting major and planned gifts.

The person chosen for the job is expected to help to design, plan and implement an aggressive marketing program to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward major gifts from alumni and friends of the university. This executive will also be in charge of designing and implementing a program to bring selected alumni and friends to the campus and to visit each year.

Candidates should possess a bachelor’s degree, with a master’s degree in non-profit management or philanthropic studies, public administration, marketing/ public relations or a related field preferred. Being a certified fundraising executive and/ or a licensed insurance agent would be a plus. Candidates must also have three to five years experience in soliciting major gifts. Considerable knowledge of Council for Advancement and Support of Education and / or Association of Fundraising Professionals fundraising concepts, techniques and practices are also required.


Why Recruiters Fixate On Fundraising Skills
Nearly two million non-profit organizations employ approximately 10.7 million people and produce revenue in excess of $1.9 trillion. That figure elevates non-profits as the third-largest employer.


Unique Role, Growing In Prominence

Major gifts are the largest donations an organization receives. Major gift officers lead all major giving areas for non-profits and fundraising organizations. From identification to cultivation to solicitation to stewardship, they build relationships with prospective donors.

Major gift officers at a large non-profit are likely to be part of a team of officers, whereas a smaller organization might have an existing staff member take on the responsibilities.

Education Recruiters

Myers McRae is an executive search firm serving colleges, universities, independent schools and other not-for-profit institutions. Nearly all of its search professionals have at least 20 years experience in higher education. Most of the firm’s assignments have been for presidents, chancellors, provosts, vice presidents, deans, and other senior academic and administrative leaders.

Mr. Daugherty has an extensive background in higher education administration, having served 28 years in public and independent institutions. Throughout his career in higher education, he had personnel responsibilities and served on numerous search committees for professional staff and administrators for the institution. He has conducted hundreds of searches for schools across the nation, including presidential searches for the University of Montana Western, Northwest Missouri State University, McDaniel College, Oakwood University, Kentucky Wesleyan College, Pasco-Hernando State College, Pierpont Community and Technical College, Wichita Area Technical College and the Georgia Independent College Association.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Will Schatz, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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