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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 Global Health Initiatives at RBHS. 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. Rutgers having celebrated its 250th anniversary last year, 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 and Global Health. 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 Chairs 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 heads, 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.
Other - RBHS
New Brunswick
New Jersey

The Rutgers University Foundation’s Athletic Development Team seeks an ambitious, dynamic and collaborative leader to serve as its next Associate Athletic Director / Director of Athletic Development (herein “Director”). The Director reports to the Senior Associate Athletic Director/Associate Vice President for Athletic Development and will be a part of a 12-person development operation. As a member of the Big Ten, on the back end of a $100M campaign along with R Big Ten Build campaign underway, s/he will have the opportunity to build the tremendous momentum that has the Rutgers’ campus buzzing with energy. The Director will lead a team of two frontline major gifts fundraisers, manage a portfolio of donors with the capacity to give 6- and 7- figure major gifts and strategize with senior leadership on the strategic vision and priorities of athletic development. The successful candidate will join the team during a pivotal time for Rutgers University Athletics and be impactful in making Rutgers Athletics a force in the Big Ten conference.

The ideal candidate will have a track record of individual fundraising success with 5-, 6- and 7 figure gifts and passion for collegiate athletics and athletic fundraising. With seven or more years of major gifts experience, s/he will be prepared to work with athletic development leadership, engage with and solicit both current and new high potential donors while leading and managing a team that is dedicated, ambitious and welcomes a challenge. S/he will be capable of demonstrating an ability to be flexible and strategic, along with the ability to communicate with and motivate those around them.

Rutgers University Athletics & R Big Ten Build Campaign

Rutgers University Athletics has a storied history that began way back in 1869, when the first game of intercollegiate football was played between Rutgers and Princeton, which Rutgers won 6-4. Since then, athletics at Rutgers has evolved into a Division 1 school in the highly competitive Big 10 conference with 24 athletic programs and over 600 student athletes from across the country. Several programs including basketball, football, soccer, wrestling, baseball and most recently lacrosse have achieved top 15 nationally ranked status at some point over the past 20 years.

Rutgers is committed to building championship contenders in the Big Ten. This commitment means the university must build premier training facilities for elite student-athletes from New Jersey, the nation, and around the globe. To fulfill this objective, Rutgers Athletics is embarking on the Big Ten Build, a targeted campaign to raise $100 million for new or upgraded athletic facilities.

Phase I of R Big Ten Build, created in collaboration with the University Physical Master Plan, includes three projects: a Multisport Training Complex (RWJBarnabas Health Athletic Performance Center), adjacent to the Rutgers Athletic Center (RAC), a Lacrosse and Soccer Training Complex, and an enhanced Football Training Complex, at the Hale Center. These pivotal projects will result in additional square feet of critical training space and will have a dramatic and wide-ranging impact on all 24 Rutgers athletic programs and on the 600 student-athletes who represent Rutgers on a national stage.

R Big Ten Build will provide state-of-the-art practice centers for football, men’s and women’s basketball, wrestling, and gymnastics, as well as key support areas for men’s and women’s lacrosse, and men’s and women’s soccer. These facilities will meet a crucial need for high-performance training, exceptional academic support, first-class sports medicine, and critical shared pathways that will support a championship culture at Rutgers.

Rutgers Athletics’ core mission is to graduate student-athletes. To that end, the vacated space in the RAC will become a much-needed expanded academic center and gathering space for all 14 sports that train on the Livingston Campus.

As the newest member of the Big Ten, Rutgers has gained unparalleled exposure. The university’s ascent to national prominence will depend on your key support of this game-changing plan.

More information on the Big Ten Build Campaign can be found at


Athletic Director Patrick Hobbs

A New Jersey native with over 20 years of leadership experience in higher education and public service, Patrick Hobbs serves as the Director of Athletics at Rutgers University.  

Hobbs joined the Scarlet Knights on Nov. 29, 2015. During his time at Rutgers, Hobbs restructured Athletics leadership to enhance communication, improve resource allocation and to enrich customer service and the game day experience. This new leadership is charged with developing a comprehensive strategic plan that will communicate a defined vision for Rutgers Athletics. He served as Dean at the Seton Hall School of Law from 1999 to 2015 and oversaw the Department of Athletics for the Seton Hall Pirates from 2009 to 2011

As the Interim Director of Athletics at Seton Hall, Hobbs assumed supervision of the department and led searches for men's and women's basketball head coaches. He also conducted the search for and hiring of a permanent athletic director and added the sport of women's golf, which earned two Big East titles in the last five years. Another major accomplishment was negotiating a contract with the Prudential Center as a home site for men's basketball games.

Hobbs was influential in fundraising at Seton Hall Law by spearheading the $25 million plus campaign, Seton Hall Law Rising, the school's largest fundraising initiative. Part of the success stemmed from revitalizing alumni support with over 70 percent contributing during the campaign.

During his tenure, Hobbs established several centers of excellence: The Center for Health & Pharmaceutical Law & Policy; the Center for Policy and Research; and the Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology. Under his leadership, Seton Hall Law achieved worldwide prominence through a series of groundbreaking initiatives emanating from the school's social justice mission.


Associate Vice President for Athletic Development Richard Knupp

Previously an Associate Athletic Director, Knupp was promoted to his current position in September 2016.

In his current role, Knupp leads the athletic development efforts, including oversight of the day to day operations of the department as well as executing strategy on capital and annual fund campaigns.

Knupp’s responsibilities include developing strategy and oversight of “R B1G Build” campaign, a target campaign to raise $100 million for new or upgraded athletic facilities.  The initiative, which has raised more than $72 million from 2,200 donors as of April 2017, has received 14 donations of more than $1 million, including the three largest gifts in Rutgers Athletics history, which combined to exceed $11 million.

Knupp has consistently exceeded his annual major gift fundraising goals, raising significant support for scholarships, facility projects, coaching salaries, and other operational support. Major projects overseen in his tenure include developing the premium seating pricing model at Rutgers, initiating the first-ever letter winners association, Varsity R, and leading a critical fundraising campaign to renovate the Hale Center lobby, hallways, tunnel, and equipment room.

Prior to Rutgers, Knupp was employed by Lehigh University as the Director of the Lehigh Athletics Partnership. He managed the overall fundraising efforts for the Athletic Partnership and led a team of five staff members that generated over $2.1 million in annual support. Before entering the field of intercollegiate athletics, Knupp spent time as an Analyst for Merrill Lynch Global Markets and as a Senior Accounting Associate at Prudential International Insurance.

Knupp acquired his B.A. in economics from Dartmouth College in 2005 and later earned his M.B.A. in finance from Lehigh University in 2011.  While at Dartmouth, Knupp was a three-year letter winner in football at defensive end.

By the Numbers

Rutgers Athletics raised a record $30.3M dollars in 2016, eclipsing the previous record in 2010 of $16.8M (~80% increase) and 2015’s total of $14.4M (~105% increase). Last year between January and May, Rutgers athletics received 10 gifts of $1M or more including the largest donations in Rutgers Athletics history with three donors giving more than $11M combined.

Director of Athletic Development

Specific Responsibilities and Duties

  • In collaboration with the AVP for Athletic Development and athletic development staff, the Director will work to execute the donor identification and solicitation strategy set by Athletic Development leadership that can sustain and grow Rutgers’ athletic programs and secure its financial future. The Director will work closely with the Rutgers University Foundation and his/her fundraising colleagues to marshal the resources necessary to be successful.


  • Actively meet with current and prospective donors across the country with the capacity to make gifts of $100,000 and higher; shepherd donors/prospects through every step of the donor solicitation cycle (identify-qualify-engage-solicit-steward); collaborate with various partners to expand pool of potential donors and strengthen engagement of current donor pool including sports specific boosters on behalf of student athletes.


  • Provide exemplary leadership and direction to the entire Athletic Development Office. Manage two frontline major gifts fundraisers, including mentoring, training and leading by example. As one of three Directors on the senior team, this role will act as a strategic partner working to execute the vision as set by Athletics leadership.


  • As a member of the athletic development team, the Director will be expected to cultivate and maintain strong working relationships with assigned prospects, as well as members of the Rutgers’ staff and student body. S/he will seek and utilize various connections to alumni and friends in order to facilitate meaningful prospect engagement, solicitation and stewardship.


  • Work with Rutgers alumni and non-alumni volunteers to identify, engage, solicit, and steward potential donors. Attend athletic, alumni, and campus functions to develop a familiarity with the culture of the athletics program, campus, and alumni base. Appropriately participate in the design and execution of donor/prospect programs and events.


Qualities of the Ideal Candidate

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

  • A minimum of seven years of experience in fundraising or related programs. Demonstrate a passion for Rutgers University and its various athletic programs. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of major gift fundraising, maintaining and growing a portfolio and big picture strategy. The ideal candidate would also have an understanding of the impact that collegiate athletics, and more specifically, athletic fundraising has on a university. A passion for sports or experience as a former athlete is a plus.


  • Experience in managing at least one fundraising professional along with the ability to mentor other fundraisers in the department. 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.


  • Ability to multitask and manage time effectively in a fast moving environment. The ability to quickly gain substantive knowledge and comprehension of Rutgers Athletics initiatives, projects, and activities to effectively present potential giving opportunities to prospective donors The ability to quickly and adeptly learn new concepts, and to effectively communicate them to donors.


  • Evidence of strong interpersonal skills, and to work effectively and collaboratively with various groups including donors, teammates, and student athletes. A team-first mentality and willingness to help strategize in all aspects of athletic development along with solicitation including cultivation and stewardship. Must have the ability to travel and work during evenings and weekends as needed.
Fundraising - Major Gifts
New Brunswick
New Jersey

Upcoming search: more details to come in following weeks.

Fundraising - Major Gifts
New Brunswick
New Jersey

Rutgers University’s Graduate School of Education (herein GSE) seeks a seasoned, creative and resourceful advancement professional to serve as its next Director of Development.  Arriving on the heels of the University’s highly successful $1+ billion “Our Rutgers, Our Future” campaign, the new Director will have the opportunity to invest in and build on the existing philanthropic momentum at the School.  Ranked first in New Jersey and third in the New York metropolitan region by U.S. News & World Report, the Graduate School of Education has a distinguished record of excellence in teaching, research and service aimed at advancing Excellence and Equity in Education.
Since 1923, Rutgers’ Graduate School of Education (GSE) has been a national leader in preparing highly sought after educators, many of whom serve in the state of New Jersey. As a professional school within Rutgers, a premier public research university and New Jersey’s state university, the GSE is uniquely positioned to offer rigorous master’s and doctoral degree programs as well as research-based professional education for teachers, administrators, and other education leaders. Accordingly, our instructional programs are designed to produce graduates who become effective educational practitioners, transformative educational leaders, and accomplished educational researchers.

Fundraising - Major Gifts
New Brunswick
New Jersey