New Mexico State University

Development Officer / Senior Development Officer

Las Cruces, NM

Position Description

Executive Summary

New Mexico State University (NMSU), New Mexico’s flagship land-grant and space-grant institution, and the NMSU Foundation seek a highly-collaborative, thoughtful, and entrepreneurial fundraising professional to serve as (Senior) Development Officer. The Development Officer (DO) will join a dedicated advancement team, contributing to the Foundation’s growth, and will play a critical role in identifying opportunities to support NMSU community impact, especially for students and faculty. Responsible for the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individuals capable of making gifts of five- and six-figure and up, the DO will manage and develop a diverse portfolio and will collaborate closely with fellow Foundation staff to ensure prospects and donors are best served in their pursuit of helping the NMSU Aggie family reach their fullest potential. This is a wonderful opportunity for an accomplished fundraiser to develop their craft further, raise philanthropy at NMSU to the next level, and join a vibrant community.

Founded in 1888, New Mexico State University is the oldest institution of higher education in New Mexico. NMSU ranks in the top 20% of all selective public colleges in moving students from the lowest income tier to the middle and is among the best in the nation at moving people from the bottom tier to the top. Over 50% of NMSU students are first generation college students and over 60% are Hispanic, meaning NMSU is one of the most important and effective drivers of economic mobility in the state. Rated as a military and veteran friendly university, NMSU dedicates significant resources and support to active-duty military, their dependents, and veterans. The University also has a storied history of top-tier and deeply impactful research. This is particularly true in the College of Engineering, which has strong partnerships with institutions such as Stanford University around innovation and private collaborations with companies like Intel, Boeing, Sandia Labs, and Northrup Grumman. Recently, the state of New Mexico approved a $20 million bond to help build an exciting new student-focused center. Across five campuses, 33 Extension offices, 12 agriculture and research science centers, NMSU reaches across New Mexico and strives to increase opportunity for all and invest in research to change lives.

For the NMSU community, private philanthropic support is vital to increased accessibility. The recently-completed Ignite Aggie Discovery Campaign, the largest in the university’s history, raised over $125 million across three distinct pillars – student discovery, faculty and staff discovery, and NMSU achievement. Of the total, $39 million alone was dedicated for student support, and $55.6 million was raised for programmatic and research support. With an endowment of around $175 million, NMSU and the NMSU Foundation have a massive opportunity to raise even more for student, faculty, and community success.

Critical to the continuation and growth of NMSU’s impact, and building off the momentum from the Ignite campaign, the University will rely on talented, motivated development leaders to amplify its fundraising and broader Aggie community engagement strategies. With a new Foundation President joining in Spring 2020, there is an energetic eagerness throughout the advancement team to develop and execute on an ambitious growth plan. To do so, NMSU is looking to attract professionals with the unique balance of fundraising success, authenticity, and passion for the New Mexico community.

Ideal candidates will be dedicated, hard-working, and curious. They must possess the proven ability to work with a widely diverse set of stakeholders and have the personal maturity and political acumen to communicate effectively with University leaders, state politicians, prominent alumni, and donors of all kinds. A personal and professional commitment to valuing the differences in who we are, what we’ve experienced, and how we think, is vital. Excellent leadership and organizational skills in addition to superior verbal, written and interpersonal skills are essential. While not required, Spanish-speaking ability is always a plus. Regular travel (around 40%) and evening/weekend work are required. Candidates with experience in nonprofit environments, particularly higher education, and the demonstrated ability to work directly with donors and volunteers are preferred.

The position requires a Bachelor’s degree and at least five years of fundraising experience or a combination of fundraising and other directly-related experience successfully soliciting gifts of five-figure and over. While the distinction between Development Officer and Senior Development Officer is not codified in stone, the latter level of the position requires demonstrated fundraising success well over the six-figure amount and some dedicated management/mentorship experience.

To Apply


Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your interest, the reasons why you are best suited for the position and would be a great addition to the NMSU community, and where you learned of the position. Nominations and applications should be sent directly to NMUS-MG@talentcitizen.com
Position Description

Search Team

Tracy Welsh  

Eva Kotilinek  

Connor Daley