Job Opportunity: Head of Major Gifts

Posted by Jerri Barrett, VP of Outreach on January 14, 2016 | Outreach

Update (March 14th 2016): This post has been filled.

SENS Research Foundation is seeking an executive to lead its campaign to develop high value donations.

The Organization

SENS Research Foundation (SRF) is a 501(c)(3) public charity that is undertaking one of the most ambitious goals in history:  ending the human suffering resulting from age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.  Our goal is to apply the principles of regenerative medicine to build a rejuvenation biotechnology industry; what makes us unique is that rather than developing more sophisticated ways to treat disease, we are developing more sophisticated ways to preserve health, and thereby prevent such diseases from ever taking hold.

The Foundation’s work comprises three main areas:

  • we support research, at our research center and at leading regenerative medicine institutes;
  • we drive education, with student grants and intern programs; and
  • we promote awareness, through conferences, presentations, meetings, and media.

The Opportunity

Since our founding in 2009 we’ve grown into a significant force for change in medical research: 

  • Our founding CSO, Aubrey de Grey, is a recognized global leader in theoretical biogerontology;
  • We’ve created collaborations with top gerontologists and regenerative medicine scientists;
  • We have top-flight industrial and academic conferences;
  • Our sophisticated outreach program attracts significant media and public attention; and
  • We run a robust development function with grassroots, crowdfunding and matching funding programs, and the long-term support of a few high-profile individual and foundation donors.

SRF’s current annual funding – over $4M – comes roughly one-half from renewable sources and one-half from a multi-year trust which will expire next year.  The challenge we now face is to build quickly upon our successes, and to be able to create our truly transformational next generation of research, education and outreach programs without losing momentum.

The role of the Head of Major Gifts will be to raise at least $2M/annum in new funding, and to guide us in developing new channels sufficient to create sustainable income of $5 – 10M/annum, from high net worth individual, foundation, corporate and government sources. 

Your Responsibilities

Reporting directly to the CEO, you will be responsible for creating and executing the plan to bring in new major gifts and grants.  This will require:

  • Cultivating and nurturing relationships with current and potential corporate, foundation, and individual high net worth donors;
  • Developing an organizational development plan leveraging the Foundation’s assets, including identifying specific actions for staff, leadership, the management and advisory Boards, and advocates, and training and supporting those human resources;
  • Creating new contact opportunities, and campaigns and appeals to increase the pipeline of high value gifts and grants;
  • Identifying corporate, foundation, and government funding opportunities and writing grants or overseeing/advising on submissions;
  • Advising on messaging and collateral development as they relate to gift development; and
  • Integrating aspects of our grassroots and campaign development programs into a major gifts campaign.

Initially, we are seeking a consultant relationship for full-time work for one to two years.  For an exceptionally experienced candidate with a strong network of new potential contacts, we will certainly consider a part-time relationship. 


  • A proven track record of major donor cultivation and closing;
  • At least ten years’ experience in development, preferably in biomedical research institutions;
  • Experience in expanding major gift networks and building new pipelines, and access to extensive networks of potential donors/grantors;
  • A history of establishing and/or strengthening brands and brand awareness;
  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills and organizational skills, including
    • A genuine passion for, and ability to compellingly translate, our complex, technical biomedical research to a broad range of stakeholders and potential donors;
    • The ability to target multiple donor demographic groups; and
    • The ability to advise and engage leadership staff, Board members, and other senior stakeholders.

To learn more about the SENS Research Foundation go to www.sens.orgTo apply email  Please include a cover letter. This post has been filled.