Director of Donor Relations

Phoenix Seminary - Phoenix, AZ

Phoenix Seminary is seeking a director of donor relations to support its leadership team and to help implement its three-year strategic fundraising plan. This position is regular, full-time, exempt, and reports directly to the President.


Founded in 1988, Phoenix Seminary is a Protestant, evangelical seminary that trains men and women for Christ-centered ministry for the building up of healthy churches in Phoenix and around the world. Phoenix Seminary continues to be the only accredited graduate-level theological seminary in the state of Arizona and located in the heart of Phoenix—one of the country’s fastest-growing cities for years!

Under its fourth figurehead instated in 2019, President Brian Arnold is committed to a biblical foundation for its academic and ministry programs that seek to address the needs of our times. The priorities of the president include doubling enrollment, attracting and retaining world-renown faculty, and to be the premier seminary the Southwest. Phoenix Seminary is well on in its way—having experienced 10% increase in student body size just this last year.

Overall, Phoenix Seminary promotes personal and spiritual growth in its students and members through its three core educational values—theological understanding through Biblical study, character development through mentoring, and ministry skills through practice.

For more information about Phoenix Seminary, please visit https://ps.edu.


The Director of Donor Relations (DDR) will work alongside the President to advance the mission and growth of the Seminary. Overtime, this position can grow into a director of development and/or cabinet-level leader. This position will help inform decisions related to development, planned giving, church relations, communications and marketing, and events.

The DDR will largely focus on building relationships with major donors—managing up to the President and working closely with the board, senior leaders, and fundraising consultants. This position will require a high degree of initiative, excellent interpersonal communication skills, and the ability to work strategically to drive success. Phoenix Seminary fosters a culture of trust and accountability and is seeking a person who can thrive with little to no supervision, embodying a high degree of integrity and worth ethic.

Importantly, the DDR will help execute a three-year strategic plan which prioritizes prospects who, through personal cultivation and relationship building, will form the core of support in sustaining the Seminary now and for future generations. The DDR will utilize donor recognition structures for major gifts, stewardship strategies, and cultivation and solicitation practices. The successful candidate will have experience in moves management (ideally, Virtuous and/or Monday.com) and a proven track record of success in analyzing existing donor records to identify and prioritize donors who would be inclined to move up the giving ladder or would consider providing for the Seminary in planned gifts.

The DDR must be a positive advocate for the Seminary and capable of inspiring others in supporting its mission—which at times will include a model of encouraging donors’ own relationship with Christ and understanding and connecting their needs and charitable objectives to the mission of the Seminary. The ideal candidate will have a passion for ministry and will be able to receive a theology degree from the Seminary as part of the benefits package.

The Seminary supports the development and growth of its staff through trainings and conferences.

This position is based out of the Phoenix campus and reports directly to President. Salary is competitive, commensurate with experience, and includes a full benefits package.


The primary responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Managing an approximate caseload of 100 active major donors;
  • Cultivating and soliciting assigned donors, serving as the face of Phoenix Seminary;
  • Meeting with donors in-person and attending regional events;
  • Maintaining Phoenix Seminary’s donor database system (Virtuous) and using information systems to ensure timely and appropriate stewardship;
  • Adhering to stewardship best practices and department policies and procedures;
  • Reviewing fundraising key performance indicators and revenue goals quarterly;
  • Identifying, researching, cultivating, and soliciting prospective donors;
  • Using wealth screening information and other research to create individual cultivation and solicitation plans, with assistance from fundraising consultants, for all active and prospective donors;
  • Helping to draft or reviewing solicitation, cultivation, or collateral materials, including quarterly newsletter and annual report, for caseload;
  • Analyzing weekly online and direct mail donors from the region and thank donors accordingly.
  • Maintaining the fundraising calendar and key events;
  • Assisting with coordination donor events and outreach, as needed;
  • Representing Phoenix Seminary in the community and deepening understanding of and credibility for the mission and vision among volunteers, donors, and the Christian community;
  • Assisting the President in strengthening his portfolio of about 40 donor relationships through shared accountability and regular personal communication; and,
  • Assisting the President to leverage and advance the willingness and capability of board members to participate in the identification, cultivation and solicitation of major donors.


No experience in donor relations or nonprofit fundraising is required. Preferred 5+ years of nonprofit experience, including fundraising and soliciting five-figure asks is recommended for success in this role. Strong preference given to experience in seminary/theological education. He or she will also:

  • Demonstrate a mature and growing personal commitment to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
  • Have theological compatibility with the Seminary’s statements of faith and values.
  • Model integrity, accountability, and a strong sense of professional ethics and confidentiality.
  • Support, embrace, and advocate the Seminary’s mission and vision passionately and persuasively.
  • Have a solid understanding of fundraising practices, particularly with major gifts, and donor databases (ideally Virtuous).
  • Be able to communicate ideas clearly and effectively both orally and in written form.
  • Establish trust and strong working relationships with colleagues, institutional partners, and donors.
  • Be adept in managing multiple projects and competing priorities.
  • Be motivated by taking initiative and driving success.
  • Be able to travel up to 50% locally, 5-10% nationally, with some weekend commitments.


  • Cover letter that outlines your interest in the position, how your values align with the Seminary, a highlight of your professional and/or personal achievements that have relevance to the position’s responsibilities
  • Resume
  • Writing sample from professional experience (i.e. solicitation letter)
  • Three professional reference

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