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Director, Development, Lazaridis School of Business & Economics - Wilfrid Laurier University

Application Deadline : 2020-04-13
Institution : Wilfrid Laurier University
Description :

The Opportunity

Laurier’s Lazaridis School of Business & Economics (Lazaridis) is one of Canada’s most selective and prestigious business programs. With more than 32,000 alumni, 160 full-time faculty and 6,000 students, the Lazaridis School is one of the largest business schools in Canada. The mission of Lazaridis is to develop leaders with the skills in management and economics for a rapidly changing and complex global environment. We seek to advance knowledge and practices in these fields by supporting both theoretical and applied research. Furthermore, we strive to serve business and our community by fostering mutually beneficial alliances with leaders at local, national and international levels. The Lazaridis Director of Development works closely with the Dean to uphold the Lazaridis mission and to support the work of one of Canada’s largest business schools. 

Located within one of the most vibrant start-up communities in Canada, the Director and their team will be based on Laurier’s Waterloo campus with travel required to the university’s campus in Brantford, which is home to our Business Technology Management bachelor’s program, to downtown Toronto – the location of our Toronto MBA and Master of Finance programs and to the Lazaridis Institute for the Management of Technology Enterprises’ Executive Development Centre in Kitchener. 

Reporting to the AVP Development with accountabilities to and direction from the Dean of the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics, the Lazaridis Director of Development develops and implements major gifts and donor relations strategies in support of the priorities and values of Lazaridis established by the Dean of the Lazaridis School in collaboration with University Development.  They will lead and manage the Lazaridis development team, made up of a Development Officer and Development Coordinator, in executing on the vision of the Dean and AVP of Development to meet fundraising goals.

The incumbent will manage and advance an assigned list of approximately 50 - 100 major gift donors and prospects to secure gifts and pledges of between $25,000 to more than $1 million from individuals, corporations and foundations in support of the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics.

This position has a Faculty-specific mandate and is based at the Waterloo Campus. The incumbent provides leadership in a multi-campus environment, requiring regular interaction, communication and collaboration with staff and stakeholders at the Waterloo Campus, Brantford Campus, the Lazaridis Institute’s Kitchener office and external partners. The Director will ensure the unit’s policies, programs and services are delivered equitably across all campuses and reflect the needs of local stakeholders.

As a key member of the Development team at Laurier, the Director participates in Faculty -wide planning and initiatives which enhance fundraising.

Key Responsibilities

Major Gift Fundraising and Prospect Management

  • Manages an assigned list of major gift donors and prospects representing individuals, foundations, corporations and associations for the purpose of securing financial support;
  • With the Lazaridis development team, develops and implements strategies for identification, cultivation, and solicitation of prospects to achieve financial targets;
  • Coordinates prospect/donor calls, makes visits and ensures all necessary follow-up including correspondence to donors, contact reports, updates to Banner, and drafting of terms and conditions;
  • Develops, submits and follows up on funding proposals to prospective donors;
  • Develops and implements, in concert with the Donor Relations Officer, stewardship strategy for individual donors, including gift announcements, donor cultivation/recognition events, and reports to donors on progress and outcomes of fundraising projects they have supported with a view to strengthening those relationships.

Faculty Specific Fundraising, Planning, Strategy Development and Reporting:

  • Advances the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics’ involvement in the overall Development program; collaborates with Faculty resources in fulfilling the plan;
  • Participates in revenue projections and forecasting through fundraising activity to satisfy KPI’s in the Development Plan;
  • Provides practical advice on fundraising success probabilities for projects and appeal to external funders;
  • Maintains a good working knowledge of the activities, priorities and needs in teaching, research and other areas of Lazaridis;
  • Reports bi-weekly to the AVP, Development, and at minimum, on a monthly basis to the Dean of Lazaridis on all fundraising and donor relations initiatives; 
  • Recommends specific actions to increase the effectiveness of development activities including own performance;
  • Engages and assists the Dean of Lazaridis and individual faculty members in fundraising and donor relations activities on behalf of the unit;
  • Develops and implements plans for fundraising activities which support the priorities of the units, including specific measureable goals for visits and solicitations;
  • Develops reports on fundraising progress;
  • Meets regularly with the Lazaridis Development team to review progress and plans, develop strategy and ensure goals are achieved;
  • Participates in Dean’s Advisory board meetings and other relevant bodies by reporting regularly on development activities;
  • Works collaboratively with peers within the Development team, specifically Directors of Development and the AVP Development; to ensure prospect identification and relationship building occurs;
  • Maintains collaborative and productive working relationships with peers within the External Relations team including: Alumni Relations, Advancement Services Government Relations,   Communications and Marketing, etc.;
  • Maintains a high degree of sensitivity to the specific needs, values and culture of the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics and engages faculty members as appropriate.

External Communication:

  • Collaborates with other Advancement staff to prepare and coordinate all communication pertaining to fundraising and donor relations within the units;
  • Prepares and edits relevant communications materials, such as project descriptions, case statements, funding proposals, and gift agreements;
  • Assists and advises the AVP of Development on specific fundraising initiatives and strategies.

Volunteer Management, Faculty Liaison and Administration

  • Identifies, recruits and manages volunteers to assist in fundraising activities as appropriate;
  • Provides direction and advice to student fundraising initiatives;
  • In consultation with other colleagues, ensures the effective and efficient use of centralized resources and information;
  • Contributes to the preparation and management of the annual budget for Development;
  • Assists in the management of the daily activities of the Development Coordinator.


  • Works closely with AVP of Development, VP of Advancement & External Relations, and Dean of Lazaridis to establish annual and multi-year fundraising goals for Lazaridis campaign goals;
  • Leads the Lazaridis Development team and oversees direct reports: Development Officer, and Development Coordinator in executing specific fundraising activities to meet Lazaridis fundraising goals;
  • Oversees the development and implementation of customized strategies and individualized strategic approaches to engage the interest and philanthropic investment (of major gifts $250,000 and up) of individuals (alumni and friends) corporations, and foundations, in support of priorities of Lazaridis; 
  • Develops and manages timelines for various fundraising activities to ensure strategic plans and critical fund raising processes are carried out in a timely manner;
  • Manages the Lazaridis team’s work with senior administrators, faculty or volunteers;
  • Monitors and evaluates Lazaridis fundraising activities to ensure that the fundraising goals are being achieved;
  • Coaches Lazaridis Development team as needed to strengthen strategies to ensure success.

Experience & Competencies

  • Minimum Bachelor’s degree.
  • Established leader with at least 5 - 7 years related experience providing leadership in development and fundraising.
  • Progressive and proven experience in a major gift fundraising and donor relations function, Capital Campaign experience preferred.
  • Strong experience closing at the $25,000 level and experience or exposure with engaging and closing gifts over $1,000,000.
  • A strong interest and recognition in value of the post-secondary education and continuous learning.
  • An understanding of how to partner with subject matter experts to promote an engagement and investment the university culture and the various regulations pertaining to fundraising.
  • Proven ability to foster relationships with internal and external stakeholders and create effective partnerships to advance the University’s mission and vision.
  • Ability to engage people, inside and outside of the University, working collaboratively, effectively and successfully to advance Laurier’s philanthropic efforts.
  • Demonstrated leadership and team building skills including experience in goal setting, motivating, leading, supervising, evaluating and developing a capable team of professionals.
  • Exceptional verbal and written communications skills, especially with senior officials.
  • Appreciation of diverse perspectives and ability to work with diverse groups including members of the media, senior administration, faculty, members of student government, staff and students.

Organization Profile

Wilfrid Laurier University

Wilfrid Laurier University is a leading Canadian university that excels at inspiring lives of leadership and purpose. Its holistic approach to learning integrates innovative programming with hands-on experience outside the classroom. Students gain both the knowledge and skills needed to succeed and the inspiration to make their mark.

Laurier has been ranked #1 in student satisfaction for the past four years, thanks in no small part to its unique community-centered culture. From day one, students feel welcomed and find their place in the many faculties, clubs, teams and associations Laurier has to offer. Students build supportive and collaborative relationships with faculty and staff, as well as lasting connections to the communities in which they live, learn and work. Life-changing international exchanges help students establish their place in the global community, and thousands of engaged alumni carry the Laurier legacy throughout the world.

Through its community of researchers, leaders and educators, Laurier has built a reputation as a world-class institution known for its academic excellence and global impact. In acknowledgement of its exemplary workplace policies and programs, and its commitment to sustainability and lifelong learning, Laurier was named one of the Waterloo Area’s Top Employers in 2019.

Laurier specializes in arts and social sciences, business and economics, music, science, social work, education and theology. The university has 20,000 students, campuses in Waterloo and Brantford, locations in Kitchener and Toronto, and a research office in Yellowknife. Laurier was established as the Evangelical Lutheran Seminary of Canada in 1911 and remains the home of the federated Martin Luther University College (formerly Waterloo Lutheran Seminary). 

Laurier is committed to partnerships and collaborations aligned with our academic priorities. Laurier’s research community consists of more than 500 researchers in eight disciplinary faculties forming a highly interactive and interdisciplinary academic community. The university supports more than 20 research centres and institutes that stimulate innovation, attract research funding, and enhance the experience of faculty, students, postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars.

Laurier is also a leader in integrated and engaged learning, which connects academic programming and co-curricular activities. An example of this experiential approach is our highly regarded co-operative education program, which offers options in Arts, Business and Science, and is the largest business co-op program in Canada.

Laurier’s strategic themes of Thriving Community and Future Readiness are outlined in the Laurier Strategy: 2019-2024 – Today. Tomorrow. Together.

For more information on Wilfrid Laurier University, please visit:

Wilfrid Laurier University

Wilfrid Laurier University: Links & Additional Information

About Us:

Strategic Roadmaps:


Development and External Relations:

Application Process & Deadline

KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) has been retained to conduct this executive search on behalf of Wilfrid Laurier University. For further information about this leadership opportunity, please contact Tara George, Partner / Lead, KCI Search + Talent, by email at

Interested candidates are invited to send resume and letter of interest to the above email address by April 13, 2020

To view the full executive brief please visit:

Diversity and creating a culture of inclusion is a key pillar of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Strategic Academic Plan and is one of Laurier’s core values. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any sexual identities and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact Employment Equity & Accessibility at

We have strived to make our application process accessible however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources at 519-884-1970 ext.2007 or

Members of the above designated groups must self-identify to be considered for employment equity. Candidates may self-identify, in confidence, by filling out a Self-Identification Questionnaire, which will be provided by KCI to all applicants.