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Major Gifts Officer

Job Type: Full Time
Location: Christian Theological Seminary
Category: Advancement

Position Title:     Major Gifts Officer

Department:       Advancement

Reports to:          Vice President for Advancement

Classification:    Full Time, Salary Exempt



Christian Theological Seminary (CTS) is a fully accredited ecumenical graduate school in Indianapolis, IN, related to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and serving the whole people of God. We welcome all faiths to explore/ engage in an intellectually rigorous, spiritually formative, and emotionally supportive education that equips our students to go out into the world and serve—whether in the church or the community. CTS also offers a robust counseling program that provides professional counseling preparation and spiritual/theological integration for those training to become mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists, pastoral psychotherapists, and spiritual care specialists.



Christian Theological Seminary (CTS) is searching for a major gifts officer to serve as an integral leader in a growing and mission-driven advancement team.  The successful candidate will be responsible for planning and managing the institution’s major gift activities and helping develop a stronger effort to market planned gifts, all supporting the Seminary’s mission.



  • Assist the President, Vice President, and others by serving as the institution’s primary gift officer dedicated to major and planned gifts activity, the first year of which will be focused heavily on identifying and building a portfolio of prospects. First-year activities will also focus on learning about and developing a marketing plan for planned gifts (with internal and third-party assistance).
  • Actively engage in the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of prospects and donors capable of gifts at the $10,000 level and above.
  • Strengthen external relationships with the Seminary by building and managing a portfolio of approximately 200 prospects and donors through 125 substantive moves, at minimum, each year.
  • Strengthen donor stewardship activities and lead the institution’s commitment to and acknowledgment of 1924 Lifetime Society and CTS Legacy Society members and activities.
  • Partner with selected third-party vendors to develop and execute a multi-year marketing plan for planned gifts; partner with internal colleagues to help drive content for social media, website, publications, appeals, and donor acknowledgments to achieve shared philanthropy objectives.
  • Partner with the data resource coordinator to research and develop cultivation and communications strategies that build awareness of and affinity with organizational priorities.
  • Implement strategies to achieve key performance indicators (KPIs) for goals and objectives; refine program success metrics and consistently track, evaluate, and communicate progress.
  • Lead the collaboration with colleagues, volunteer leaders, and alumni to identify major and planned gift prospects and engage and steward existing donors.
  • Represent the advancement office and support seminary events/activities as appropriate; perform other duties and special projects requested by the vice president.



The successful candidate will report to the vice president for advancement and should possess the knowledge, skills, and ability to fulfill the essential functions of the position and demonstrate successful experience and proficiency in the following:

  • Annual and major gifts cultivation and solicitation experience; fundraising campaign and planned giving experience are a significant plus.
  • A functional knowledge of planned giving or a willingness to learn and recognize planned gift opportunities, at a minimum.
  • Time and project/program management skills, including attention to detail, deadlines, and deliverables, and the ability to manage multiple priorities and projects in a collaborative environment.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including written and verbal communication skills, and an ability to work with diverse constituencies, including alumni, students, faculty, administrators, and volunteer leaders.
  • Strong analytical skills, including data-driven decision-making and program evaluation.
  • Established in the principles, standards, regulations, and practices of philanthropy, fundraising, and data/constituent confidentiality.
  • Database platforms for constituent relations management (CRM) and fundraising; experience with Raiser’s Edge / RE NXT is a plus.
  • Word, PowerPoint, and Excel; experience with Adobe is a plus.



  • Bachelor’s degree and a minimum of five years of major gifts solicitation experience; CFRE, CAP, or other certification is a plus.
  • Demonstrated capacity to foster open and productive relationships with internal and external constituents.
  • Resonance with the mission, vision, and core values of Christian Theological Seminary.
  • The ability to travel to meet with a wide variety of seminary constituents (some evening and weekend hours, as well as overnight travel, may be necessary).
  • Experience in a seminary, theological institution, faith-based or social services organization preferred but not required.


Please submit a cover letter and resume to The position will remain open until filled. Applications and nominations will be initially screened by Norton Philanthropic Counsel, LLC, on behalf of CTS.

CTS is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate with respect to recruitment, hiring, or any other status of employment based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, or any other category protected by law.

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