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Director of Development

Position: Director of Development

Type: Full time


The Biggs Museum of American Art is a dynamic, accredited art museum in Dover, Delaware, founded in 1993 by collector Sewell C. Biggs. The Biggs is nationally recognized for its exceptional collections of American decorative arts of Delaware and the Delaware River valley, and for its collections of American art from 1700 to today. Since opening, the Biggs has tripled its operating budget and doubled its exhibition space and programs. It welcomes thousands of visitors per year and has a growing, engaged membership base. The Museum staff and board recently finalized a five-year strategic framework, including a Diversity, Equity, Accessibility & Inclusion Plan.


The Director of Development is an inspiring and effective leader and manager, an articulate and persuasive communicator, and a relationship-builder of the highest integrity. Energized by working in the community, the Director of Development will be a passionate, visible, and informed advocate for the Museum effectively engaging existing and potential supporters in its mission and programs. Comfortable balancing both relationship-oriented and task-focused responsibilities, the Director of Development will structure compelling opportunities for support to positively impact the organization’s long-term success.

This is a unique opportunity to serve on the new Museum Director’s leadership team, working with a cadre of talented colleagues and committed Board of Trustees at a nimble, creative museum, overseeing current fundraising efforts (individual, corporate, government and foundation support, annual fund, major gifts, and planned giving) while implementing and executing a strategy to support a new phase of growth.


  • In close collaboration with the Director, members of the Development Committee, Board of Trustees and senior staff develop and implement a strategy for the long-term financial support of the Museum including objectives and metrics for annual and multi-year development goals.
  • Prepare for a major development initiative to increase the endowment for the core mission of the Museum and a capital campaign. Coordinate with board and staff leadership in executing campaign plans, tracking campaign progress, and planning campaign related events.
  • Create specific fundraising goals, identify new opportunities, employ new approaches, and aggressively execute them. Solicits gifts, sponsorships and other forms of support.
  • Solicit and steward a portfolio of select major donors.
  • Formulate and oversee a comprehensive plan to maintain and increase upper-level membership, promoting a culture of philanthropy.
  • Deliver creative and compelling fundraising and cultivation events.
  • Develop and implement strategies for successful grant applications including researching prospective sources, writing, monitoring and tracking grants from private, corporate and government sources. Manage grant reporting requirements.
  • Effectively manage research, information, and organization for major donor efforts. Maintain a robust donor/member database.
  • Create and implement a strategic plan for annual fundraising including direct marketing strategies, solicitation schedules and the publication process.
  • Research, identify and cultivate new and established philanthropic sources, including individuals, businesses, foundations, and government agencies.
  • Serve as staff liaison to the Development Committee of the Board of Trustees.
  • Regularly attend Museum events and programs to develop and cultivate positive professional relationships with donors, trustees, members and the public.
  • Supervise development associate.


  • Minimum of five years’ comprehensive experience in a non-profit development operation, preferably in an art museum or cultural institution in the Mid-Atlantic region.
  • A Bachelor’s Degree in a related field.
  • Demonstrated success in soliciting major or planned gifts with a track record of building donor relationships and success closing gifts in a six-figure range.
  • Value diversity and inclusion, and the ability to work across teams and engage a variety of stakeholders.
  • Exceptional strategic, analytical, organizational and decision-making skills with a high attention to detail.
  • Demonstrated experience leading a comprehensive development operation, especially working in close collaboration with senior staff in solicitation and cultivation.
  • Enthusiastic self-starter with ability to engage in self-evaluation with regard to leadership, performance, and professional growth and work independently with moderate supervision.
  • Flexibility and the ability to make thoughtful independent decisions in a fast-paced environment.
  • Persuasive and articulate communicator and active listener with strong written and presentation skills.
  • Excellent relationship-building skills, both externally and internally, and the ability to effectively represent the Museum in all venues.
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook), Email (Constant Contact) and CRM (Donor Perfect and Agile) databases is required.
  • The ability to travel both locally and regionally sometimes necessitating an overnight stay.


The work schedule generally is Monday through Friday, 8:00am – 4:00pm or 9:00am – 5:00pm. A flexible work schedule or additional work hours may be necessary to meet the requirements of this job position, which could encompass evening hours and weekend work. The responsibilities and required interactions of this position are not conducive to virtual work arrangements. This person must reside in close proximity to the Museum. Non-local candidates should complete their relocation within a reasonable time after beginning work.



The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those a Director of Development encounters while performing the essential functions of the role:

Climate controlled art museum with display galleries, standard offices, museum shop, and other non-public spaces. Work is performed primarily indoors and occasionally outdoors at the Museum, however there will be occasions where work is performed outside the Museum in public spaces such as restaurants, event venues, private homes, offices and meeting rooms.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to receive oral and written instructions in English and to clearly communicate in English in person, over the telephone, through email and through other electronic means. The employee is required to move about their work area, between galleries and storage areas, ascend and descend stairs; and stand and/or sit for extended periods of time. The employee is occasionally required to lift, drag and/or move up to 15 pounds unassisted. The employee is required to identify, observe, and assess visually and comply with Museum health and safety-related protocols.

Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with a disability to perform the essential functions to the extent the Biggs may do so without undue hardship. The term “qualified individual with a disability” means an individual who with or without reasonable accommodation can perform the essential functions of the position.



The preceding job description has been designed to indicate the general nature and essential functions and responsibilities of work performed by the employee in this job position. It may not contain a comprehensive list of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications required for this role. Nothing in this job description restricts management’s right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time.


The salary range for this position is $75,000 – $90,000 based on experience.



The Museum provides a comprehensive program of benefits that includes:

  • Paid time-off and holidays
  • Medical, dental & vision insurance
  • Life, AD&D, Short Term/Long Term Disability insurances
  • Retirement savings program with Museum match
  • Relocation Assistance


We are committed to an inclusive workplace and actively seek to employ a diverse group of people who embody our organizational values. We welcome and encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply and are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, disability, ethnicity, familial status, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other protected status.

Please send a resume and cover letter addressed to the Assistant to the Director, Natalie Osorio, to Submissions will be reviewed and considered as received. No phone calls, please.