• Director of Development for the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School – Department of Surgery

    New Brunswick
    New Jersey
  • Overview

    The Rutgers University Foundation seeks an experienced, entrepreneurial, and creative fundraising professional to serve as its next Director of Development for the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (RWJMS), a part of the Rutgers University Biomedical and Health Sciences System (RBHS).  The Director of Development (DOD) reports to the Associate Vice President for RBHS Development and will work closely with the Department of Surgery and the fundraising savvy chair who leads the department.

    The Rutgers University Foundation is rapidly growing the RBHS fundraising team with the anticipation of a multi-billion University-wide campaign in the near future. In alignment with this, RBHS is simultaneously celebrating its stature as one of the largest academic medical systems in the country. The DOD will be joining the Foundation at a time of great enthusiasm for a future multi-billion dollar campaign, new Foundation facilities and office space, as well as an environment that encourages creativity, cutting-edge technology and out-of-the-box ways to work efficiently and intelligently. This DOD will be one of three fundraisers working with of Robert Wood Johnson Medical School’s doctors, patients and families, alums, residents, to identify increasing levels of philanthropic support while simultaneously planning for an expansion of the team in the coming years. The DOD will have a deep and exciting portfolio, overseeing prospects in connection to the units of Surgery. The successful candidate will have a rare opportunity to come in at the ground level for a growing development team that is supporting a highly ranked and well established Medical School.

    The ideal candidate will have a track record of fundraising success with, 6- and 7- figure gifts; experience within the medical school and hospital fundraising arena is preferred but not required. With seven or more years of experience, s/he will be prepared to work with Foundation leadership and have experience collaborating with faculty and/or doctors as well as alumni of a university or school. S/he will be capable demonstrating an ability to think and act strategically, while exhibiting creativity, taking initiative, and showing an ability to excel within a team-based environment. The DOD will be nimble and capable of working within a growing RBHS development team with a team-oriented and ‘can do’ approach. The DOD will solicit highly rated prospects and donors at an average of 15 qualified prospects and donors a month. It is also the DOD’s responsibility to engage volunteers in the fundraising process and maintain communication with internal and external constituencies.  S/he will be capable of composing proposals to advance the development agenda for the units within RBHS, in addition to matching prospects’ interested to appropriate projects. Frequent travel is expected. A Bachelor’s degree is required and an advanced degree is welcome.

    Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences

    As New Jersey’s premier academic health center, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS) thrives in educating students, providing clinical care, and conducting research, all with the goal of improving human health.  RBHS is equipped as never before to transform lives with its superior and professional staff along with their community of healers, scientists, and scholars.  Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences serves as the umbrella organization for eight schools, four centers, and institutes, and a behavioral health network.  It was created in July 2013 after the New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Education Act went into effect.  This act integrated Rutgers University with all of the units of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, except University Hospital in Newark and the School of Osteopathic Medicine in Stratford.  Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences was created and composed of legacy UMDNJ units and Rutgers School of Pharmacy, College of Nursing, and Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research.  Rutgers is one of the largest academic institutions in the United Stated providing health care education, research, clinical service and care.

    Led by chancellor Brian L. Strom, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS) comprises eight schools and their attendant faculty practices, centers, institutes, and clinics; New Jersey's largest behavioral health care network; and numerous additional centers, institutes, and clinics. RBHS also includes New Jersey's leading comprehensive cancer care center, the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, which reports directly to Rutgers' president, Robert L. Barchi. These units are found at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, including Piscataway; at Rutgers Health Sciences at Newark, Scotch Plains, Somerset, and Stratford; at Rutgers University–Newark; and at additional locations in New Jersey. RBHS, integral to Rutgers' mission, works synergistically with many other academic, research, and clinical units throughout the university and the region.

    Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

    As one of the nation's leading comprehensive medical schools, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in education, research, health care delivery, and the promotion of community health. In cooperation with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, the medical school's principal affiliate, they comprise New Jersey's premier academic medical center. In addition, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School has 34 other hospital affiliates and ambulatory care sites throughout the region.

    Robert Wood Johnson Medical School encompasses 19 basic science and clinical departments, and hosts centers and institutes including The Cardiovascular Institute, the Child Health Institute of New Jersey, and the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine. The medical school maintains educational programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate levels for more than 1,500 students on its campuses in New Brunswick and Piscataway, and provides continuing education courses for health care professionals and community education programs.

    Dean Sherine E. Gabriel

    Sherine E. Gabriel, MD, is Dean of the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and a distinguished professor of medicine and epidemiology at May Medical School since 2000.  She has been associated with Mayo Medical School in a variety of roles for nearly 30 years.  Educated at the University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, and the College of Pharmacy at the University Of Saskatchewan Medical School, before earning her medical degree at the University of Saskatchewan.  In her first year as dean of Mayo Medical School, Dr. Gabriel launched a program to design, implement, and disseminate a new education model to prepare future physicians to achieve better care, healthier patients/communities, and more affordable health care. This initiative has been recognized by the American Medical Association through a competitive award.  Her largely-NIH funded research has resulted in more than 250 peer-reviewed original scientific publications addressing the costs, determinants, and outcomes of the rheumatic diseases.  In addition, Dr. Gabriel was appointed by the U.S. Government Accountability Office to the Methodology Committee of the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) and has served as the committee's first chair. PCORI was created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. She has also served on many other governmental committees and advisory boards, including the FDA Drug Safety and Risk Management Committee.

    Rutgers University Foundation

    Created in 1973, the Rutgers University Foundation advances Rutgers' pursuit of excellence in education, research, and public service. The Foundation provides the bridge between donors and the schools, programs, faculty, and students that make up the University. The Foundation helps to match caring people with satisfying and meaningful opportunities to make gifts that have an impact on Rutgers. Founded in 1766, Rutgers is the eighth oldest institution of higher education in the nation. Today, Rutgers, a member of the Association of American Universities, is New Jersey's premier public research institution and flagship state university. More than 100 majors offer students vast opportunities. On July 1, 2014, Rutgers University joined The Big Ten Conference of world-class universities whose member institutions share a common mission of research, graduate, professional and undergraduate teaching and public service. The Foundation is a 501(c) (3) tax-exempt organization. Our sole mission is to support Rutgers University.

    Denise Gavala, Associate Vice President for RBHS Development

    Denise P. Gavala has more than 25 years of experience in major and principal gifts and development management, with the last 19 years in higher education.  Since 2004, she has specialized in healthcare and biomedical sciences and is currently the Associate Vice President for Development at Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS).  For more than 13 years, she has overseen fundraising for Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, the School of Public Health, the Graduate School for Biomedical Sciences and, more recently, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy and the School of Health Professions. She also oversees several Research Institutes, including the Child Health Institute and the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine.

    Through her career in healthcare development, she has raised more than $150 million for clinical care, research and education, guided leadership in soliciting and closing major gifts, and worked closely with individuals, corporations and foundations, grateful patients and alumni groups to engage, close and steward major gift prospects. Ms. Gavala also shared in the integration and roll out of the grateful patient and family program at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, which encompasses 20 basic science and clinical departments and three major institutes.

    Previous to serving in her current position, she was Director of Development at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, where she concentrated on the sciences, including chemistry and biology. Ms. Gavala holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science and a mini MBA in business essentials, both from Rutgers University. 

    Director of Development: Specific Responsibilities and Duties

    Major Gift Fundraising

    ·         In collaboration with Department Chair and the Associate Vice President for RBHS Development, Foundation staff and faculty, cultivate prospects and donors rated at $100,000 and above as assigned and through face-to-face meetings, alumni events, corporate/organization interactions, etc. More specifically, actively solicit prospects, patients and donors on an average of 15 qualified contacts per month.

    ·         Work with Department head, doctors and research directors to identify donors and collaborate with for solicitation. Proper communication with internal and external constituencies must be maintained.  Must work closely with faculty to maximize grant funding potential and produce promotional materials to advance the development agenda for this unit. 

    Working with Internal Constituencies

    ·         In collaboration with the Department Chairs, Institute Directors, VP-RBHS and AVP-RBHS, the Director of Development will develop and implement plans for effective stewardship of donors.  S/he will need to maintain a positive, professional working environment with the Department Chairs, faculty members and various offices.  S/he will help orient university colleagues to RUF practices and services in addition to clearly articulating, in written and verbal form, the needs and priorities of the School. 

    ·         Assist in planning and executing special events that will engage prospective donors and prompt campus visits.  Provide useful data to university colleagues to help project fundraising results.  Director of Development will also work with the alumni association volunteers for this unit to guide their programming so that it supports the unit fundraising goals.

    Collaborate with and leverage the Rutgers University Foundation staff and resources

    ·         Understand and adhere to RUF policies and procedures as they relate to prospect management, solicitation and follow-up.  Maintain timely reporting and tracking of contacts, solicitations, communications through the RUF tracking systems (Radar, AWA, etc).  Collaborate with RUF offices including Corporate and Foundation Relations (CFR), Annual Giving, Alumni Relations, Planned Giving, Donor Relations, Accounting and other units, including other major gift officers.  Work with development support professionals including prospect research, IT, etc.  Be a "team player" and help RUF colleagues to understand the priorities and distinctions of RWJMS.  Help donors obtain services, as needed from RUF (fund balances, reports).

    Work with Volunteers/External Constituencies and Special Events

    ·         Will work with various volunteer groups (alumni association and faculty committees).  Attend school, alumni, and campus functions to develop a strong understanding of the culture of the university, school, and alumni base.  Maintain knowledge of best practice trends in higher education philanthropy.  Provide coaching to faculty/staff in pursuing philanthropic support.

    Qualities of the Ideal Candidate

    The DOD can be expected to have the following personal characteristics and professional qualifications:

    ·         A minimum of seven years of experience in fundraising or related programs, ideally in medical fundraising. Demonstrated success in cultivation, solicitation, gift closure, and stewardship of five, six and seven-figure gifts. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of fundraising, communications, and development of support materials for unique and distinguished academic, research, or conservation programs;

    ·         Demonstrated personal interest in and affinity for RWJMS’ specialties. A B.A./B.S. in a related field is preferable

    ·         The ability to quickly gain substantive knowledge and comprehension of scientific programs, projects, and activities to effectively present potential giving opportunities to prospective donors;

    ·         Evidence of strong interpersonal skills, particularly the ability to lead teams and to work effectively and collaboratively with various groups and diverse constituencies;

    ·         Creativity and insight in identifying effective collaborations between institutional goals and needs and prospective donors. The ability to quickly and adeptly learn new concepts, and to then effectively communicate them to donors;

    ·         Integrity, creativity, energy, and independence; a collegial, understanding leadership style that will value team members and institutional partners and will allow an appropriate amount of responsibility delegation;

    ·         The ability to travel and work during evenings and weekends as needed.


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