Chief Advancement Officer for the Campaign - Red Cloud Indian School, Inc.

AFP SE WI Administrator
April 15, 2019

The mission of Red Cloud Indian School, a Catholic Institution administered by the Jesuits and the Lakota People, is to develop and grow as a vibrant Church, through an education of the mind and spirit that promotes the values of the Lakota Culture.  We strive to educate both the minds and the hearts of the 600 Lakota students we serve, developing the Lakota leaders of tomorrow who will become agents of social change on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.  Additionally, we minister to the needs of the students’ families through ten churches across the Reservation, and we provide cultural education, heritage tourism, and economic development through a vast collection of Native art at The Heritage Center.

Position Summary: Red Cloud Indian School is seeking to fill the position of Chief Advancement Officer at a time of unprecedented growth in the organization’s advancement efforts.  Currently, we are quietly moving through a multi-year campaign to provide programmatic and capital improvements and endowment security for Red Cloud Indian School so that the impact that is being provided today will be available for future generations.

This person’s initial responsibility is to help lead the organization to the conclusion of what has to date been a very successful campaign. This initial responsibility should last twenty-four to thirty-six months.  Central to the role will be to continue educating prospects about Red Cloud Indian School, engaging them, stating the case, and soliciting their partnership through an active schedule of visits and events.  Nationwide travel is required with donors heavily concentrated in Boston, New York, DC, Milwaukee, Chicago, Omaha, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and other locations.  This person will manage small team to support individual giving.

The ideal candidate for this position has a proven track record in strategic fundraising, understands the needs and interests of major donors, and is a sophisticated, passionate communicator, committed to going out and getting gifts at the $25,000 - $ 1 million plus level.

To date the school has raised $14million. No final goal has been set.

Principal duties:


  • Bring to successful conclusion the Campaign for Red Cloud Indian School
  • To capitalize on the current cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship activities so as to strategically maximize the number of asks and gifts to the mission
  • Set and monitor annual revenue targets for campaign gifts, developing regular updates on institutional donor revenue for leadership and Board of Directors.
  • Make numerous decisions on cultivation time committed vs. expected gift response, determine key participants in prospect and donor relationships and decide the most effective and productive use of travel time to achieve annual fundraising goals.
  • Travel extensively, communicating to campaign donors and prospects a strategic understanding of Red Cloud Indian School’s priorities and projects
  • Research, write, edit, and oversee the preparation of persuasive and accurate solicitations, correspondence and other materials communicating to donors and prospects reflecting a strategic understanding of Red Cloud Indian School’s priorities and projects

This position will report directly to and work most closely with the President. He/she will also work with members of the board, and other advancement staff.  It could lead to longer term opportunities within the organization. 

Post campaign, the Chief Advancement Officer position could then be responsible for continuing to solicit funding toward meeting the institution’s approximately $14 million in annual operating expenses. The Chief Advancement Officer would be instrumental in continuing to develop the infrastructure and mechanics to move forward from the current campaign initiative, as well as establishing a solid framework for the future stability of the organization’s major gift effort.

Post Campaign

  • Work closely with Red Cloud’s leadership and each major gift officer to create and carry out strategies and departmental goals for solicitation and stewardship of an active portfolio of high net worth individuals.  This will include a portfolio of 150+ major givers and their proactive cultivation, solicitation and stewardship activities, integrating support requests into long-term relationship strategies.
  • Help to assemble and manage a national team of major gifts staff to manage the Red Cloud’s major donor program, The Leadership Society.
  • Prepare Red Cloud senior staff for key meetings and donor cultivation.
  • Further develop and implement ways to identify major and planned gift prospects
  • Make timely and effective use of Red Cloud’s records management resources to ensure        appropriate records management of donors and prospects, developing regular updates.
  • Perform miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Desired Knowledge and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher. Master’s preferred.
  • At least five years of progressive experience in cultivating and soliciting individual prospects capable of five-, six-, and seven-figure gifts.  Preference to those who have led campaigns previously, in positions of progressive responsibility.  Demonstrated success in donor solicitation, gift closing and stewardship.
  • Able to initiate, analyze, monitor, evaluate and advance strategic advancement plans.
  • Demonstrated leadership and the ability to successfully manage and operate with multi-functional or diverse areas.
  • Excellent communication and writing skills: ability to gather understand and synthesize
    • information from a variety of sources and articulate the organization’s mission, program
    • objectives, and resource needs persuasively to potential donors.
  • Strong strategic, analytical and project management skills with a demonstrated ability to take primary responsibility for a diverse number of projects and to complete them in a timely manner with limited supervision.
  • Knowledge of tax laws that impact charitable giving, personal assets and estates, including options and benefits related to planned giving vehicles.
  • Creative and entrepreneurial with strategic problem-solving skills.
  • Superb networking, teamwork and interpersonal skills with the ability to work effectively with multiple, culturally diverse stakeholders.
  • High level of maturity and motivation, with a firm commitment and ability to develop high quality and time sensitive work products and prioritize major donor prospects.
  • Able to nurture, empower, and work effectively with diverse members of the staff of Red Cloud Indian School.
  • Previous experience in education, museums, and/or social justice and strong dedication to Red Cloud’s mission.
  • Excellent computer skills, including Microsoft Office and Google products and project management databases, and 2-3 years of experience with The Raiser’s Edge.

To apply, interested candidates should submit the following materials:

  • Cover letter expressing interest in Red Cloud Indian School, aligning your skills and experiences to your understanding of the position
  • Current resume with all dates included
  • Description of previous campaign work and responsibilities
  • A copy of Red Cloud’s employment form found online

Given the nature of this position – questions and inquiries can be made to Michael Welch,


Please submit your completed application by May 17 to:

Director of Human Resources
Red Cloud Indian School
100 Mission Drive
Pine Ridge, SD 57770

Red Cloud Indian School is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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