Development Officer

Las Cruces, NM

Position Classification Titles: Development Officer 

Incentive Compensation: 10% of Base Salary

Job Summary:

Responsible for implementing a broad range of fundraising activities centered on acquiring major gifts ($25,000+) and principal gifts ($500,000+). Acting in accordance with the core values of the NMSU Foundation, execute fundraising responsibilities to fulfill the financial needs and strategic initiatives of the Foundation and NMSU. Manages, plans, organizes, and implements fund-raising activities for one or more geographic territories and one or more units within NMSU.

About Us:

The New Mexico State University Foundation invites you to apply to join our diverse, dynamic, and welcoming team in Las Cruces, NM. The NMSU Foundation seeks to provide the pinnacle career experience for each member of our team. The Foundation is seeking talented individuals who are passionate about the mission of NMSU and committed to a continual pursuit of excellence. We build strong relationships with alumni, supporters, NMSU partners, and each other, while personifying our core values of integrity, teamwork, stewardship, innovation, and fun.

Established in 1959, the New Mexico State University Foundation’s mission is to build a brighter future for NMSU, one relationship at a time. As an independent nonprofit organization, the Foundation is the primary fundraising and alumni relations institution for NMSU. We are charged with raising and managing gifts of all types and coordinating the alumni association. We invest endowed gifts and disburse funding each year for the purposes designated by donors. The Foundation coordinates the efforts of the NMSU Alumni Association, which galvanizes the enthusiasm and loyalty of the NMSU alumni network of over 147,000 graduates to support the mission of NMSU while becoming better connected with each other.

Our team partners with alumni, corporations, foundations, and other supporters who want to match their charitable passions with opportunities for purposeful philanthropy and personal engagement at NMSU. Gifts create scholarships, advance faculty endeavors, enhance student programs, and make new and renovated educational and athletic facilities possible. These generous investments greatly enhance NMSU’s land grant mission to provide the highest quality academic programs, develop new understandings through research and creativity, and provide extension services across our state and region.

We offer a highly competitive salary including incentive compensation, an industry-leading benefits package, and a fun and fulfilling work environment. Qualified individuals with a high level of energy who are looking for a work environment that nurtures vision, performance, productivity, superior quality, and unsurpassed integrity are encouraged to apply for this career opportunity.

NMSU is New Mexico’s flagship land-grant and space-grant institution. Founded in 1888, NMSU is the oldest institution of higher education in the state and is a Hispanic-serving institution and a comprehensive research university dedicated to teaching, research, service, and outreach. NMSU serves more than 14,000 students from 49 states and 89 foreign countries and is among the best universities in the nation at moving students from the lowest income tier to the top. Over 50% of NMSU students are first-generation college students and over 60% are Hispanic, meaning that NMSU is one of the most important and effective drivers of economic mobility in the state. Las Cruces is located 45 miles north of El Paso, TX, and features an average of 294 days of sunshine annually. Situated in the heart of the historic Mesilla Valley between the Organ Mountains, Robledo Mountains, and Picacho Peak, Las Cruces is ideal for job seekers who enjoy hiking, mountain biking, and birdwatching. Las Cruces is New Mexico’s second-largest city and home to 111,000 residents. The median home price in Las Cruces is $285,000, far below the national average of $425,000. 

Essential Functions, Fundraising:

  • Create and manage a personal prospect pipeline of alumni, friends, corporations, and foundations through in-person visits, virtual visits, group presentations, phone contacts, and emails.
  • Travel regionally and nationally to qualify, cultivate, solicit, and steward prospects and donors, focusing on major gift opportunities.
  • Initiate a strategy specific to each prospect or donor, connecting them to the University and setting up a solicitation which is tailored to their situation and maximizes the impact for the University and its beneficiaries.
  • Discuss giving vehicles with potential donors, including cash, planned gifts such as charitable gift annuities and charitable trusts, securities, and tangible property.
  • Establish professional relationships with deans, faculty, and unit directors across campus leading to regional, national, and virtual travel to cultivate, solicit, close, and steward major gifts.
  • Document visits and solicitations in an appropriate and timely manner.
  • Update and inform supervisors and other staff of goal status, new plans, and project status, and ensure that a cooperative team effort is made to meet goals and objectives.
  • Meet quantitative and qualitative performance metrics, established annually by supervisor.
  • Provide input on annual travel budget to supervisor; may manage and coordinate the functions and operations of a development office that includes budget responsibility.
  • May produce or assist in producing marketing materials to support development efforts.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.


Minimum Required Education, Knowledge, Experience & Certification/License:

  • An energetic, well-grounded, innovative, service-oriented personality and calculated risk taker with a bias for action, a record of setting and surpassing objectives, and the proven “can do” attitude and drive to execute strategies and produce results beyond expectations.
  • Must be willing and able to travel regionally and nationally.
  • Must have access to reliable transportation and a valid driver’s license.
  • Occasional evening and/or weekend work may be required coinciding with events and meetings. Ability to work flexible schedule.
  • High degree of ethical conduct, integrity, dependability, use of sound judgment, diplomacy, and resourcefulness, that will inspire confidence with colleagues and donor prospects, while maintaining confidentiality in all matters relating to sensitive donor relations issues.
  • Familiar with a PC environment, including strong skills in using the computer as a tool for analysis, planning, and management. Ability to function in a highly networked environment using Microsoft Office.
  • Effective communicator and collaborator who excels in connecting with diverse internal and external constituents.

The above essential functions are representative of major duties of positions in this job classification. Specific duties and responsibilities may vary based upon departmental needs. Other duties may be assigned similar to the above consistent with the knowledge, skills and abilities required for the job. Not all of the duties may be assigned to a position.

Education & Experience:

Development Officer: 

  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field.  
  • No major gift experience required. 1 year of professional experience preferred.
  • An interest in pursuing higher education fundraising as a long-term career