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Director, Philanthropy & Alumni - Capilano University

Now in its 51st year of operations, Capilano University has grown significantly as a post-secondary institution. What was originally a small community college serving Vancouver’s North Shore is now a vibrant regional University that attracts and services thousands of students from around the world. Our evolution has been one of rising to the real and changing needs of our region and our province as a leader in the development and delivery of exceptional experiential learning.

CapU is guided by Envisioning 2030, its ambitious and compelling course for the future. To support this plan and the University’s significant momentum, the Development and Alumni department seeks a new leader to build and ensure diverse and sustainable fundraising programs and community engagement. The Director will work to lead an engaged and motivated team of nine reports with oversight of annual fundraising, major and legacy giving, endowments, campaigns, and fundraising special events. The Director will also grow the relationship with CapU’s alumni through and with an energized Alumni Association.

The Director will report to the Vice President, University Relations, and be an on-campus leader across portfolios. Experienced advancement leaders ready for the next step in their careers will be excited to:

  • Finalize a current capital campaign and leverage this success for future capital opportunities.
  • Build a comprehensive program by ensuring best practices are adopted and championed.
  • Bring Envisioning 2030 to life through community engagement.
  • Enhance the University’s culture of philanthropy and establishing the team as go-to experts and resources.
  • Leverage the passion and connections of excited and keen faculty and Deans, and join a true community of like-minded professionals on a beautiful campus.
  • Carry a prospect and donor portfolio of some of the University’s most important donors.
  • Evolve CapU’s advancement program to being one of Canada’s best-in-class, highly regarded, and a first choice for donors and advancement professionals alike.


Over five decades of education and service, Capilano University (CapU) has earned an international reputation for incomparable teaching and exceptional programs. As the designated University for the Sea-to-Sky Corridor, Sunshine Coast, and Vancouver’s North Shore, CapU is committed to student success and preparing skilled graduates who are primed to take their place in BC’s work force. CapU’s 9,000+ students are enrolled in 97 credit programs spanning the areas of arts and sciences, business and professional studies, fine and applied arts, education, health and human development, and global and community studies, delivered in an innovative and inspiring learning community. Credentials offered at CapU include bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, post-baccalaureate diplomas, advanced diplomas, and certificates.

CapU respectfully acknowledges that our campuses are located on the territories of the LíỈwat (Lil’wat), xwməθkwəỷəm (Musqueam), shíshálh (Sechelt), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and SəỈílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. In addition to our main campus at the base of BC’s stunning North Shore mountains, CapU offers programs at our newest location at the Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver and serves the communities of the Sunshine Coast with a regional campus in Sechelt. CapU credit courses are also provided through the Ts̓ zil Learning Centre located in Mount Currie, BC in partnership with the LíỈwat Nation.

For more about our campuses, see

CapU boasts a vibrant alumni community nearly 100,000 strong and is one of the largest employers on the North Shore of Vancouver with close to 1,000 employees (600+ faculty and 300+ staff). In 2021, for the third year in a row, CapU was recognized as one of BC’s Top Employers.

Envisioning 2030

Envisioning 2030, CapU’s strategic plan, finds its spirit in a unique synergy between a renewed institution inspired by imagination and the unprecedented engagement with the communities CapU serve. 

Our Vision: Inspired by Imagination

Capilano University transforms the lives of learners, employees, and communities with experiences and engagement opportunities to actualize their passion and potential.

We are a dynamic and accountable place of thought and action that inspires imagination, prioritizes health and well-being, and positively contributes to people and the planet.

Our Purpose:

At Capilano University we cultivate life-enhancing learning experiences in diverse and inclusive environments.

Our programs proactively respond to our fast-evolving world by sharing and creating relevant knowledge and timely skill development opportunities.

We are committed to partnering with our communities for the greater good and for generations to come.

We will continuously reflect on and learn from our decisions and achievements to effectively advance our commitment to co-create a distinct University experience.

In this way, we will improve learning and research opportunities and the health and well-being of learners and employees.

For more information about the University, see


Fundraising Priorities & Results:

Current supporters of CapU contribute to a variety of projects and needs. A few projects to highlight are:

  • Promoting student excellence through scholarships & awards;
  • Removing student financial barriers through bursaries;
  • Student-focused resources;
  • The BlueShore at CapU Theatre “Take a Seat” appeal; and,
  • We Believe: Support Women to Succeed at Capilano University.

Thanks to generous investments in scholarships, awards, bursaries and program funding, the University provided over $2 million in direct support to more than 2,000 students through 2020-21. CapU’s generous community of supporters donate an average of $1.6 million every year, which is certainly bound to go up with the current campaign.

Current Campaign - The Centre for Childhood Studies:

CapU is building Western Canada’s only degree-granting, purpose-designed, integrated centre for early childhood care, research, and lab school education. The new Centre for Childhood Studies will be an international hub for thought leadership, applied research, practice, and policy development in Early Childhood Care and Education. Project highlights include: two storey, 23,000-square-foot LEED Gold Centre north of campus, adjacent to transit and forest; a hub for applied research and policy development; a place for national conferences, workshops, and outreach for educators and families; and a custom-designed environment dedicated to optimizing the education of young children.

$5 million of the project’s overall $18 million costs will be contributed by the community, and with highly engaged campaign volunteers CapU is on target to reach its goal. 

For more information, see:

CapU Alumni Relations:

CapU’s 100,000+ alumni are engaged for the mutual benefit of the University and our community. Through events, mentorship, benefits, and other channels, CapU continually strives for a meaningful alumni experience. 

The Capilano University Alumni Association is a global network committed to providing our graduates with life-long learning, support, and inspiration. For more information, see

Capilano University Foundation:

The Foundation is the formal fundraising entity of the University. With about $15 million in assets, the Foundation holds the University’s scholarship and bursary endowments, and income from endowments together with other donations which are disbursed to students and faculty/program areas at Capilano University.


The Director of Philanthropy and Alumni’s mandate is to develop, establish, and carry out effective multi-year fundraising programs to support on-going faculty priorities, programs, projects, campaigns, scholarship, bursary, and awards and activities of the University.

In addition, the Director of Philanthropy and Alumni works to develop a long-term strategy to engage and solicit CapU’s alumni. The Director guides members of the Development and Alumni Relations team to ensure that all relationship management and fundraising activities are coordinated and in alignment with University priorities and policies.

The Director will work with the Chancellor, President and Vice Chancellor, Vice President, University Relations, Executive, and Deans in establishing and maintaining relationships. The Director will provide thought leadership in the areas of philanthropy and alumni relations, providing timely and relevant advice to the University’s leadership team. They may chair and/or participate in relevant committees for philanthropy and alumni relations within the University.

As the leader of the University’s development, philanthropy, and alumni relations programs, the Director will have responsibility for:


  • Leading the development team in establishing fundraising goals, strategies, benchmarks, and timelines; manages all fundraising and alumni deliverables.
  • Developing and successfully carrying out a strategic fundraising plan, in collaboration with the various internal and external stakeholders to fully maximize all potential opportunities.
  • Ensuring effective oversight of all fundraising programs, including:
    • Prospect development (foundations, corporations, individuals);
    • Major gift donor cultivation and solicitation;
    • Corporate sponsorship/fundraising program, including employer gift matching;
    • Legacy program development and implementation;
    • Alumni fundraising program and implementation;
    • Endowment giving;
    • Annual giving campaigns;
    • Fundraising Special Event opportunities;
    • Donor and prospect communications;
    • Donor recognition & stewardship program;
    • Continued support for our emerging, University-wide culture of philanthropy.
  • Identifies and develops appropriate cultivation strategies in consultation with University leadership (including the Chancellor and President), development staff, foundation board, and CapU Alumni Association members.
  • Inform and engage with the Vice President, University Relations on an ongoing basis.
  • Identify and build relationships with potential donors, alumni, and the community including securing commitments of donations, stewardship, and/or participation in events
  • Clearly articulate, prepare, and promote a strong case for support that grows the donor base and giving level; develop a keen sense of awareness of the University’s giving initiatives throughout the CapU community.
  • Partner with university leadership in identifying strategic priority areas; assume responsibility for resulting fundraising capital campaigns and projects.
  • Identify and direct key community volunteers and constituents, such as Foundation Board members or Board of Governors, that may be philanthropic champions of the University.
  • Attend community events (representing the President or Vice President, University Relations in their absence), meetings, or conferences to promote University goals or solicit donations or sponsorship.
  • Prepare annual plan as well as establish and monitor key metrics to make forecasts and evaluate ongoing performance, applying competence in the development of goals and targets, budgeting and fiscal prudency, communication, and reporting.
  • Utilize database systems within a data-driven and evidence-based organization; experience with Raiser’s Edge software is preferred.
  • Identify areas for continuous improvement regarding related fundraising policies and procedures, while building support and structure for effective implementation and change management in the area of Development and Alumni.

Alumni Relations

  • Responsible for the alumni relations strategy to engage more alumni and achieve the University’s development goals.
  • Manages the Alumni team and supports and evaluates the development of the alumni engagement program, including communications, events, services and programming, and benefits.
  • Collaborates with the leadership of the Capilano University Alumni Association to achieve alumni engagement objectives, including the establishment of KPI’s.


  • Lead a diverse team of exempt and unionized development and alumni relations professionals, ensuring clarity of roles, responsibilities, and success measures.
  • Support team members in their professional growth, providing ongoing evaluation, coaching, and mentoring.
  • Become familiar with union policies and collective agreements as required.
  • Ensure University leadership, including but not limited to the President and Vice President, University Relations, are fully engaged with philanthropy and alumni relations, leveraging their time as efficiently and strategically as possible.
  • Partner with units across campus, including faculty, financial aid, financial services, student success, and campus planning
  • Inspire employees, University executive, students, and the foundation board to build a culture of philanthropy.


  • Ensures donor and alumni information and data is used in accordance with Provincial and Federal legislation and CapU policies.
  • Develop and manage department budget through integrated planning, ensuring fiscal responsibility and return on investment.
  • Oversee the development and implementation of policies and procedures for gift processing and timely donor acknowledgement, database management, and financial reports including industry reporting such as EAB (Education Advisory Board).



The Director of Philanthropy and Alumni is a seasoned fundraiser who can supervise an outstanding team that is passionate about the University, donors, alumni, students, sponsors, employees, and those that they engage with. The leaders, staff, and donors of the University believe that the new Director should be:

  • Inspirational and optimistic. Seizes opportunity. Dynamism and energy. A curious listener. Politically savvy.
  • A credible fundraiser with a “closer” mindset. Excellent communicator. A compelling story- crafter and storyteller.
  • A builder. A credible subject matter expert to bring others on-side. Empathetic and kind, yet decisive. Able and willing to make difficult decisions. Pursues innovation and critical thought. Leads by example and leans into challenges.
  • A campus leader. Passionate about University education and demonstrates a desire to be immersed in the community. Builds and fosters collaborative networks within the University. Able to understand the link between one’s own responsibilities and the broader operation and institutional goals and needs.
  • Adaptable. Thrives in an evolving organization. Patient and has persistent long term focus paired with day-to-day pragmatism. Appreciates the role of education in communities.
  • Assertive and confident. An advocate for development and alumni on campus. Persuasive. Champions and models principles of inclusivity and diversity.
  • A teacher and mentor. Collaborative in seeking input before making changes. Can lead at individual, collective, and systems levels. Empowering and supportive.



  • Seasoned fundraising professional with a solid track record of personally securing major and legacy gifts, including first-hand experience in cultivation, solicitation, and closing gifts.
  • Capital and/or comprehensive campaign experience is a tremendous asset.
  • Experience leading a comprehensive fundraising program including major, legacy, and annual giving, ideally in the educational sector.
  • Ability and experience leading staff, ideally in a unionized environment.
  • A deep understanding of the role and value of alumni relations, and its interactions with other aspects of advancement programs.
  • Experience in managing and coordinating activities involving senior level business and community leadership volunteers.
  • Knowledge of Society legislation, CRA guidelines and regulations.
  • Experience with Raiser’s Edge or other fundraising software required.
  • Completion of a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent training and experience is required.
  • CFRE designation is an asset.
  • During a typical working period, some travel around the Lower Mainland, Sunshine Coast and Sea to Sky Corridor would be required and occasional national or international travel. Working hours are variable to attend events and meetings.



Candidates will be screened on an ongoing basis, with the goal of having the role filled as soon as possible. While the incumbent must be based within the lower mainland area, flexible relocation timing will be considered given current public health guidelines on travel and movement.

Enquiries, expressions of interest, and confidential nominations are welcome. To learn more or to apply, please contact Christoph Clodius, Vice President of The Discovery Group, at 604-836-1972, or

At Capilano University, we understand that there is more to life than work. That is why we offer comprehensive benefits and support to help you and your family live a balanced life. To learn more about working at CapU, see  

Normal starting salary placement for pay grade 15 is between $102,897 – $137,197. Compensation beyond the control/mid-point requires approval by the Public Sector Employer’s Council Secretariat (PSEC), up to $157,776.

Diversity and inclusivity are an integral part of Capilano University’s campus community. Our multicultural student body, faculty, and employees enrich our learning environment and experience.

CapU is committed to attracting and retaining a respectful and diverse workforce. Justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion underpin our employment practices and policies. We are proud to be an equity employer and encourage applications from members of groups that have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, including First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Peoples within Canada, Indigenous Peoples of North America, Black-identified persons, other racialized persons, persons with disabilities, and those who identify as women and/or LGBTQIA2S+.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and Permanent Residents will be given priority.


Application Deadline : 2021-08-02
Institution : Other/Autre