Assistant Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations

Southern Methodist University
May 3, 2022
Dallas, TX
Job Type


Salary Range:

Salary commensurate with experience and qualifications

About SMU

SMU’s more than 12,000 diverse, high-achieving students come from all 50 states and 90 countries to take advantage of the University’s small classes, hands-on research opportunities, leadership development, community service, international study and innovative programs. The University offers a strong foundation in the humanities and sciences and undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs through eight schools.

Now in its second century of achievement, SMU is increasingly recognized for the ways it supports students, faculty and alumni as they become ethical leaders in their professions and communities. On the most beautiful college campus in the country, SMU Mustangs are energized by unbridled opportunities – from teaching, learning and research to creativity, performance and athletic endeavor.

About the Department:

Development and External Affairs (DEA) supports SMU by securing funding for University priorities; by promoting meaningful involvement in the life and work of the University; by heightening international, national, state and local awareness of SMU; and by supporting the enrollment of a diverse and able student body.

DEA comprises the offices of Office of the Vice President, Annual Giving and Alumni Relations, Development Services, Program Services and Donor Relations, Marketing and Communications, Principal and Major Gifts, and School and Project Development.

About the Position:

The Assistant Director for Corporate and Foundation Relations in the office of Corporate and Foundation Relations (CFR) is responsible for writing, reviewing and editing corporate and foundation grant proposals and stewardship reports for the Director of CFR.

The Assistant Director serves as project manager for the development and submission of corporate and foundation proposals to local and regional donors at funding levels up to $100,000.00.

Essential Functions:

  • Proposal Development - The Assistant Director serves as project manager for the development and submission of corporate and foundation proposals to local and regional donors at funding levels up to $100,000, and assists the Director of CFR with proposals of all levels. The Assistant Director works with the School and Unit fundraisers to gather narrative and budget information and synthesize it into clear and concise solicitations for funding. The Assistant Director is responsible for working with the Assistant Vice President for Principal and Major Gifts (AVP) to draft proposals as needed. When necessary, the Assistant Director may act as a liaison to other offices including faculty, Sponsored Projects or school and unit financial officers to develop needed content for submission.
  • Corporate and Foundation Stewardship - The Assistant Director will work with the Director of CFR, school and unit fundraisers, faculty and staff to develop and submit stewardship reports for corporate and foundation gifts.
  • Research and Development of Funding Opportunities - The Assistant Director will work with the Director of CFR and fundraisers to identify academic programs that may qualify for corporate and/or foundation funding and develop strategies for those programs.  The Assistant Director will represent the CFR office in meetings among internal audiences to develop solicitation strategies that will create new and strengthen existing university relationships.
  • Prospect Development - The Assistant Director will maintain a portfolio of prospects that they will research, evaluate and may contact donors via email, Zoom, phone, personal visit, etc., to determine areas of focus, strategies for submitting requests and schedules for solicitation for funding opportunities.
  • CFR Project Management - The Assistant Director will work with the Director of CFR to maintain calendar of proposal development, submission and stewardship reporting.  The Assistant Director will work with the Director of CFR to develop and implement effective and accurate processes and continuously evaluate work flow to assure timeliness and project completion. The Assistant Director will maintain the proposals in the shared drive and Development archives.
  • Other Duties as Assigned



 Education and Experience:

A Bachelor’s degree is required. Master's preferred.

A minimum of three years of progressive experience focusing on corporate and foundation outreach and building connections among organizations with a successful track record of generating revenue; business development; and partnerships. 

Experience with budget and project management is also required. Proven direct and successful funder partnership experience is strongly preferred.

Experience in a non-profit or academic institution desired.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

Candidate must demonstrate strong interpersonal and verbal communication skills, with the ability to communicate broadly across the University and develop and maintain effective relationships with a wide range of constituencies. Must also demonstrate strong written communication skills. A strong customer service orientation is essential.

Candidate must possess strong problem-solving skills with the ability to identify and analyze problems, as well as devise solutions. Must also have strong organizational, planning and time management skills. A strong focus on attention to detail is essential.

Candidate must have strong project management skills. Must also have a strong working knowledge of Microsoft Office.  Experience with prospecting database (Foundation Directory, FoundationSearch or Candid/Guidestar, etc.) preferred.

Physical and Environmental Demands:

  • Sit for long periods of time

Deadline to Apply:

May 27, 2022.

Priority consideration may be given to submissions received by May 16, 2022.

EEO Statement:

SMU will not discriminate in any program or activity on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender identity and expression. The Executive Director for Access and Equity/Title IX Coordinator is designated to handle inquiries regarding nondiscrimination policies and may be reached at the Perkins Administration Building, Room 204, 6425 Boaz Lane, Dallas, TX 75205, 214-768-3601,


SMU offers staff a broad, competitive array of health and related benefits. In addition to traditional benefits such as health, dental, and vision plans, SMU offers a wide range of wellness programs to help attract, support, and retain our employees whose work continues to make SMU an outstanding education and research institution.

SMU is committed to providing an array of retirement programs that benefit and protect you and your family throughout your working years at SMU and, if you meet SMU's retirement eligibility criteria, during your retirement years after you leave SMU.

The value of learning at SMU isn't just about preparing our students for the future. Employees have access to a wide variety of professional and personal development opportunities, including tuition benefits.

Application Instructions

Deadline to Apply:

May 27, 2022.

Priority consideration may be given to submissions received by May 16, 2022.

Please apply using the following link:


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