Philanthropy Officer (Principal Gifts)

Updated: about 5 hours ago
Deadline: Location: Vienna

Development Office
Application deadline date: 
November 1, 2021
Starting date: 
As soon as possible

Work Location: Vienna, Austria or Remote - preferably London/UK or New York/US

CEU’s Development Office (DEVO) is responsible for securing philanthropic support and developing strategic partnerships to help sustain the University and ensure it has the financial resources needed to innovate through its educational, research, and community engagement programs. This support comes primarily from foundations, corporations, and individuals, complementing revenues from a variety of other sources. DEVO works with current and potential donors to identify mutual interests and support investments across the University while liaising with leadership, faculty, and staff to demonstrate the impact of these contributions. As the University seeks the resources to develop a new campus in Vienna and implement its CEU 2025 vision, the Philanthropy Officer will play a key role in achieving rapidly accelerating fundraising targets by building a pipeline of prospects for transformational giving; cultivating potential funders; soliciting support; and providing ongoing donor stewardship.  


Job summary:

The Philanthropy Officer will advance DEVO’s revenue goals by raising leadership gifts from high net-worth individuals, primarily those unaffiliated with CEU. The Philanthropy Officer will be part of a team dedicated to building the University’s global philanthropic partnerships as part of a comprehensive campaign to support the CEU 2025 strategic vision. This is an excellent opportunity for a mid-level development professional to build on proven successes and gain substantial experience within a dynamic, purpose-driven international environment. 




Duties and responsibilities:


The Philanthropy Officer, Principal Gifts is responsible for identifying and building relationships with new donors, with a focus on securing six- to eight-figure gifts from high net-worth individuals in support of the University’s highest priorities. These include ensuring access for vulnerable students; enabling pathbreaking research; and developing a new campus in Vienna, Austria. The Philanthropy Officer will report to the Vice President for Development, working closely with the Director of Philanthropy and Strategic Partnerships and the Development and Alumni Relations offices to strategically grow the University’s global network of funders. The Philanthropy Officer will also work directly with CEU faculty and researchers to build networks of relationships with potential donors as well as develop and execute department/center-level fundraising strategies.  


Core responsibilities include but are not limited to the following: 

  • Build and manage a starting portfolio of 50+ leadership prospects and donors with the capacity to contribute €/$500,000 and above. Collaborate on the development of portfolio growth targets for subsequent years. 
  • Develop appropriate cultivation strategies and actionable plans to move potential donors toward solicitation and closure in an appropriate and timely fashion to achieve campaign targets.  
  • Conduct prospect visits and direct solicitations, often in concert with CEU leadership. 
  • Support the design and creation of leadership giving structures that effectively engage, recognize, and steward top funders. 
  • Support strategic events relevant for the portfolio, ranging from large-scale celebrations to intimate dinners.  
  • Develop, write, and edit proposals, reports, and other donor communications. This includes collaborating with colleagues to produce impactful reporting and recognition.   
  • Serve as a thought partner in developing and improving elements of CEU’s case for support and overall donor engagement strategies.  



Professional Qualifications & Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree and four to six years experience in fundraising, especially in major and leadership giving with private individuals. Experience working with foundations and trusts is also essential. 
  • Native or near-native English fluency. German proficiency is a plus.  
  • Personal success in soliciting and closing six- and seven-figure gifts; eight-/nine-figure gift experience highly preferred. 
  • Experience in fundraising within an academic context and/or in a European setting is an advantage. 
  • Track record of successful proposal writing, budget development, and donor stewardship. 
  • Proven capacity to manage and develop cultivation and stewardship activities of varying scales. 


Professional skills & knowledge:

  • Very strong fundraising skills and knowledge of relevant compliance requirements. Familiarity with planned and legacy giving is a plus. 
  • Exceptional written, oral, and visual communication/presentation skills. 
  • Excellent organizational and interpersonal skills. 
  • Ability to handle sensitive information and maintain strict confidentiality. Familiarity with European privacy regulations.  
  • Capable of working in a fast-paced, deadline-intensive environment, while managing pressure and navigating competing priorities. 
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office and Adobe Creative Suite. Experience with relationship management software is a plus, with Raiser's Edge NXT being an advantage. 
  • Ability to work remotely and, health safety protocols permitting, travel internationally as needed. 


Personal Qualities: 

  • Demonstrated commitment to CEU’s founding principles: democracy, human rights, and respect for diverse cultures and peoples. 
  • Impeccable ethical standards; intellectual depth and maturity; collaborative, with ability to lead and influence others.  
  • Proactive and self-directed individual who takes responsibility and is accountable for meeting funding and relationship-building targets. 
  • Creative and entrepreneurial mindset, with deep intellectual curiosity. 
  • Ease in working with people, including: (1) prospects and donors worldwide; (2) team members working on different continents, and (3) the culturally and linguistically diverse CEU community. 



We offer a competitive gross annual salary of 48,000 - 58,000 EUR, commensurate with experience as well as a dynamic and international academic environment.  

How to apply

Applicants need to submit in English:

  • A cover letter, explaining how the candidate’s experience fits the responsibilities and expectations of this position,
  • A full CV or resume,
  • A writing sample, preferably a major gift funding proposal.

Please send your complete application package to - including the job code in the subject line: 2021/067.

 Application review will begin 20 Sept 2021. 

We do not ask for reference letters at the first stage of application; the referees of long-listed candidates may be contacted for references later by CEU.

About CEU

Central European University (CEU) is a research-intensive university specializing in the social sciences, humanities, law, public policy and management. It is accredited in the United States, Austria and Hungary. CEU's mission is to promote academic excellence, state-of-the-art research, research-based teaching and learning and civic engagement, in order to contribute to the development of open societies. CEU offers bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs and enrolls more than 1,400 students from over 100 countries. The teaching staff consists of resident faculty from over 50 countries and prominent visiting scholars from around the world. The language of instruction is English.

For more information, please visit .

CEU is an equal opportunity employer.

The privacy of your personal information is very important to us. We collect, use, and store your personal information in accordance with the requirements of the applicable data privacy rules, including specifically the General Data Protection Regulation. To learn more about how we manage your personal data during the recruitment process, please see our Privacy Notice at:  (Hungary: Közép-európai Egyetem, Central European University) or  (Austria: Central European University, CEU Central European University Private University).

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