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McMaster University

Director, Development

Posted On: February 28, 2024
Closing On: April 12, 2024

Location: Hamilton, ON
Employment Type: fulltime
Level: senior
Salary Range: $107,073.00 - $160,611.00 (annual)


McMaster University is seeking a highly strategic and experienced Director, Development supporting DeGroote School of Business in their advancement priorities. The new Director will intentionally build relationships, leverage innovative approaches and drive revenue development in the Faculty.

Reporting to Associate Vice-President, Pan-University Advancement (Faculties and Units) within University Advancement and working closely with the Dean in the Faculty, the new Director will work collaboratively with leaders within the DeGroote School of Business and University Advancement to formulate strategies, develop programs, and execute campaigns and initiatives to raise private revenue in support of the Faculty’s priorities. The Director is a key senior development leader within the broader, integrated University Advancement team, and our new Director will espouse our shared values that help us to achieve University Advancement’s vision and mission; Quality, Respect, Service, Strategy and Teamwork.

The Director, Development will be charged with leading, advancing and enhancing the relationships and resources of McMaster and the Faculty through relationship building and revenue generation. This includes leading and managing a wide-ranging Development portfolio. The new incumbent will proactively champion partnerships and opportunities for new revenue in support of McMaster’s research and educational goals. This includes attaining the ambitious private donor revenue goals for the DeGroote School of Business on an annual basis, with a focus on gifts in the range of $250K+. Consistent with our team approach to development strategy, the Director will also work with University Advancement senior leadership on gifts of $1M+, which have a mid-to-high degree of complexity and involve several internal and external partners.

This is an exciting time to join McMaster as a key advancement leader as we move towards an ambitious campaign for the University’s highest priorities. Working collaboratively with advancement and academic leadership, you will support the development of multi-year campaign strategies that frame the Faculty’s unique strengths and opportunities, align with University-wide campaign structures and practices, integrate alumni and development strategies, maximize support, and rally the Faculty community around a compelling vision for the Faculty’s longer-term aspirations and goals.

The salary range for this position is $107,073 – $138,000 plus performance pay bonus eligibility of up to 10% of base salary, along with an excellent benefits package. University Advancement is dedicated to creating a flexible work environment that attracts top talent and fosters a vibrant campus community. Three campus locations (Hamilton, Burlington and downtown Toronto – 180 Bloor) offer flexibility in work location, and remote and hybrid work empower staff to engage effectively with donors, alumni, and stakeholders in advancing institutional goals in a fast-paced campaign environment. This role is hybrid in nature with 3 days in person per week, inclusive of donor activity. It is understood that the Director, Development will routinely travel to meet donors and engage with alumni and key partners.


Founded in 1887, McMaster University is a research-intensive public university. McMaster is dedicated to advancing human and societal health and well-being. McMaster is ranked in the world’s Top 80 publicly funded universities by the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings.

With a total student population of more than 33,000, McMaster welcomes students from 120 countries as well as Canada. Home to more than 70 research centres and institutes, McMaster University is comprised of  the six faculties of Business (DeGroote School of Business), Engineering, Health Science, Humanities, Science, and Social Science.

McMaster’s 30-acre main campus, located in the Westdale neighbourhood of Hamilton, Ontario, is comprised of 300 acres of scenic property at the western end of Lake Ontario, between Toronto and Niagara Falls. McMaster University also has three other regional campuses:, Burlington, Kitchener-Waterloo, and Niagara.

Working at McMaster

Here at McMaster, you will find a community of talented individuals who are inspired by the University’s Mission and the sense of purpose this mission brings. It is through these talented individuals, their creativity and drive for results that McMaster University has earned its reputation as being Canada’s “most innovative” university.

Our leaders in The Management Group (TMG) are vital contributors to McMaster’s renowned culture of creativity, innovation and excellence. We demonstrate the value we place on our leaders with a highly competitive total rewards package featuring compensation, well-being, growth and inclusion provisions.

McMaster University strives to embody the values of integrity, quality, inclusiveness and teamwork, and has a strong commitment to employment equity. Building an inclusive community with a shared purpose is something that McMaster University prioritizes. We believe it is important for our workforce to reflect the diversity of our students and community. The diversity of our workforce is at the core of our innovation and creativity and is a key area that strengthens our research capabilities and teaching excellence.

To learn more about the total rewards available to you as part of the The Management Group at McMaster, please access our interactive guide with a summary of the compensation, benefits, retirement income, work life, development and career opportunities, and performance and recognition provisions offered at McMaster. To further explore the extensive total rewards program, detailed information can be accessed through the links throughout the guide.

DeGroote School of Business

Mission: To foster interdisciplinary thinking and evidence-based management to transform business and society.

Vision: To be ranked among the top tier business schools in Canada, and to be globally recognized as a leader in research, teaching, and community-building – especially in healthcare management and the management of digital innovation – by 2020.

Values: We support a culture that embraces bold, interdisciplinary thinking; drives the creation and application of evidence-based knowledge; and expects collegial activity undertaken with integrity.

The DeGroote School of Business (DSB) is a comprehensive, research intensive, business school offering undergraduate, graduate and executive development programs across two campuses in Hamilton and Burlington. DSB’s mission is to foster interdisciplinary thinking and evidence-based management to transform business and society.

 The Faculty provides outstanding educational programs to over 4000 students across Bachelor of Commerce, MBA, executive MBA, Masters and PhD programs.  Annually, over 1300 students enroll in DeGroote’s Executive Education development programs and the Directors College.  Over 1200 participants register annually for external outreach events.

Consistent with its mission, The DeGroote School of Business has joint programs and partnerships with the Faculties of Engineering, Health Sciences, and Humanities and intends to continue to expand interdisciplinary programs as part of the University’s Strategic Mandate Agreement and the School’s strategic plan.

DSB is also the administrative home of several of the interdisciplinary programs and enterprises including the Health Leadership Academy, MSc in eHealth, Bachelor of Commerce in Integrated Business and Humanities

DSB is the most intensive research business school  (2018 – current), we have a large and comprehensive PhD program with further details available here: We are in the process of expanding our faculty complement by 30% over the next three years and continuinh to co-champion major initiatives with Faculties of Engineering and Science..



McMaster’s vibrant student experience, world-class research, and community engagement are empowered by the support of thousands of alumni and donors who also believe strongly in McMaster. Together, our donors and alumni help make the university what it is today and help nurture the next generation of leaders in our world.

University Advancement at McMaster University is comprised of four teams: Development, Alumni Engagement, Stewardship, and Advancement Services & Operations.  The heads of each of these departments report to the Vice-President (University Advancement). Collectively, the Advancement leadership team provides overall strategic leadership and direction in the areas of fundraising; developing and building partnerships; and engaging with donors, alumni and stakeholders.

The Advancement team also plays a critically important role in advancing the university’s strategy, in support of McMaster’s ambitious vision, in partnership with the academic and administrative leaders across the University. The Advancement team has a centralized/decentralized structure, with strategies established and coordinated centrally, along with some programs and services (e.g. Annual Giving, Estate Giving & Legacy Planning, Stewardship, overarching Alumni programs, Research & Prospect Analytics, and Gift Processing services), whereas other programs and services are delivered ‘locally’ through decentralized, dedicated Development and Alumni staff embedded in Faculties and units.

This is achieved by many people across the institution working together, including academic and administrative leaders, faculty and staff, and volunteers. University Advancement plays the role of coordinating and supporting these collective efforts. As well, the University Advancement team supports the engagement of over nearly 230,000 alumni from across the university, in collaboration with our Faculty and unit-based partners.

We also coordinate with colleagues to manage and steward the University’s endowment fund comprised of philanthropic gifts given to support McMaster in perpetuity. The capital of the endowment remains untouched and the income from the endowment is used to support a variety of activities and programs. McMaster has approximately 1,830 individually named trust funds restricted for certain purposes such as scholarships, bursaries and faculty chairs or professorships. In addition, McMaster has a general endowment to which undesignated bequests are directed. McMaster’s endowment is currently valued at over $850 million, one of the largest in Canada.

Advancement in DeGroote School of Business

The current Advancement team for the DeGroote School of Business consists of the Director, Development role along with   Manager of Development, a Senior Development Officer, Manager, Alumni, Alumni Officer and Events and Marketing Associate as well as a Manager, Stewardship and Engagement.

This team collaborates closely with colleagues from Development, Alumni and University and Faculty leadership, to engage DeGroote School of Business faculty, alumni and donors, to build relationships and resources for the Faculty. The Director, Development also supports all revenue-generating campaigns undertaken by the University Advancement team and is accountable for aligning and integrating the campaign strategy, case for support and a revenue goal as related to the Faculty.

The DeGroote School of Business achieves these private revenue targets by developing a pipeline of donors, supporters, and other funders to serve as a source of significant revenue for the Faculty’s priorities. The primary means of raising funds for both current and future gifts are through strategies that involve face-to-face and in-person meetings and visits, often involving significant Canadian and international leaders, as well as University leadership, key volunteers and researchers. Members of the advancement team drive the identification, cultivate on, and development of a customized ask and recognition/stewardship plan for some of DeGroote School of Business and McMaster’s most significant donors.

As a trusted advisor who provides counsel to senior academic leadership on the largest gifts to the Faculty, the Director is directly involved in efforts to secure and grow its Faculty’s base of major and principal gift-level supporters, and to steward these supporters in a manner so as to inspire them to establish, grow, and sustain meaningful relationships with the University.  Consequently, the Director and the entire Advancement team work hard to create and maintain positive, productive relationships with colleagues in the Faculty and across the University.


  • Model a culture of collaboration, integration and service to support the University’s core research and academic missions.
  • Employ a leadership approach that demonstrates a commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion and indigeneity, and encourages inclusive behaviour and practice.
  • Provide leadership and direction within DeGroote School of Business to support the implementation of fundraising plans, pipeline development, campaigns, strategies and practices to foster growth in revenue generation across the Faculty.
  • Work with senior leadership of the Faculty to develop advancement plans aligned with academic priorities, fostering a compelling vision and case for support that enables the pursuit of significant major gifts.
  • Build a high-performance team that is committed to fulfilling the vision, goals and priorities necessary to achieve the short and long-term goals of the Faculty.
  • Work in conjunction with University Advancement’s senior leaders to establish goals and objectives including annual professional development plans for team members to support a culture of continuous improvement and readiness for change.
  • Engage with, and support volunteer leadership within the DeGroote School of Business.

Operational Leadership within DeGroote School of Business

  • A commitment to meeting University Advancement’s and the Development team’s overall annual fundraising goals as well as the revenue goal for DeGroote School of Business fundraising program.
  • Support the development of plans with clear short- and longer-term priorities and implement all aspects of university revenue-generating campaigns and initiatives within the DeGroote School of Business.
  • Support University Advancement’s senior leaders with the engagement of the President, Vice Presidents and senior university leadership, as well as volunteers as required, in the cultivation and solicitation of principal gift supporters, including ensuring they are appropriately briefed, and relevant follow-up actions are taken.
  • May be involved as part of DeGroote School of Business leaders group as required, and provide expertise and guidance on achieving their goals and objectives.
  • Leading DeGroote’s Business Advisory Council relations
  • Responsible for the allocation of advancement budget within the Faculty and accountable to ensure resources are allocated and prioritized to meet university objectives and short and long-term outcomes.
  • Work in partnership with the AVP, Pan-University Advancement to develop and implement plans and strategies to enhance the University’s major giving program and to generate consistent and significant increases in new revenue to the University and lead the development and implementation of those strategies specific to their Faculty.
  • Play the lead role in executing campaign strategies for the Faculty by designing, implementing, and managing development activities related to the campaign.
  • Further the culture of philanthropy at the University within the DeGroote School of Business.
  • Provide leadership by monitoring campaign and initiative progress for the Faculty recommending changes to plans as appropriate, reviewing solicitation strategies and regularly reviewing the progress of strategies.
  • Develop and maintain a significant depth of knowledge of the Faculty’s activities, needs and priorities in both research and teaching and apply this knowledge in matching the interests and needs of potential supporters.
  • Assume responsibility for identifying, cultivating and soliciting support from a portfolio of supporters, both individually and in collaboration with senior academic leaders to the Faculty, senior development leadership and key volunteers for the Faculty, resulting in increased engagement and financial investment in the University.
  • Work in collaboration with stewardship to support the creation and delivery of major gift announcements and events and accompanying stewardship in collaboration with the appropriate advancement staff.
  • Represent DeGroote School of Business and McMaster University, with the team, at all relevant community and University events, nationally and internationally.
  • Work closely with other areas of University Advancement to support the success of the operation’s annual financial goals as well as Advancement’s mission and strategic goals.

Advancement Team Leadership

  • Oversee human resources activity for direct reports including recruiting and onboarding, goal setting, performance management, development, and engagement initiatives.
  • Manage, provide clear direction, motivate and mentor a team of development professionals; and offer support across-the-board to development colleagues.
  • Attend University Advancement meetings to provide an update on individual and team activities and results, and to keep informed of all development activities.
  • Participate in strategic planning meetings for Development initiatives.

Relationship Development

  • Work closely with McMaster’s Vice-Presidents, Deans and advancement and volunteer leadership across the DeGroote School of Business to identify and qualify new major gift supporters and develop custom strategies to engage these individuals.
  • Liaise with Vice-President, University Advancement, academic leadership, and other front-line development leaders for opportunities for development initiatives including joint solicitation strategies or shared gifts.
  • Engage strategically with McMaster’s top donors, supporters, alumni, and volunteers of the DeGroote School of Business support goals.
  • Collaborate with volunteers and competing organizations on joint solicitation strategies or shared gifts.
  • Liaise with legal and financial institutions on complex gift agreements and/or future gifts to resolve complex donor issues by acting as lead and intermediary for all concerned parties.


  • Ensure compliance with relevant policies and procedures for fundraising and revenue generation.
    • Management of budget
    • Timely updating and reporting of activity on relational donor database (currently Ellucian Advance Web).
    • Development of donor documents (proposals, gift agreements, financial models).
    • Participate on advancement boards and/or committees.
    • Financial reporting and attestations on trust and endowment statements, etc.


  • Proven track record of success in securing and contributing to the closing of $1M+ and other complex donations and partnerships.
  • Demonstrated experience and success in major giving fundraising, preferably within the post-secondary system or other complex organizational environments.
  • A proven commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, and indigeneity, with the ability to apply this lens to fundraising leadership, strategy and tactics.
  • Experience leading and managing high-performing, donor-centred development professionals.
  • Superior skills and knowledge in attracting and maintaining relationships with donors and supporters.
  • Donor-centred and goal-oriented with a reputation for integrity and transparency.
  • High level of comfort and credibility working with senior academic leaders, as well as donors and volunteers.
  • Competencies to understanding Canadian tax legislation and philanthropic landscape.
  • Ability to work at the highest strategic levels of the DeGroote School of Business, to gain and maintain the trust of senior academic leadership and supporters and take strategy and move it through to tactics and action.
  • Experience in staffing, supporting, and partnering with senior leaders on fundraising visits.
  • Superior skills in critical analysis, judgement, decision-making and building effective relationships.
  • Vision and the ability to think strategically and use a creative and entrepreneurial mindset to meet goals.
  • High level of initiative, tact, and diplomacy.
  • Ability to navigate and be effective within a complex organization that values collaboration in addition to individuality and creativity.
  • The ability to quickly develop a deep understanding of the mission of a research-intensive university.
  • Superior communication and interpersonal skills; writing winning proposals and associated development materials and correspondence.
  • Superior administrative skills in human resources, volunteer, and budget management, with strong financial acumen and comfort with data analytics.
  • Strong skills with computers and relational donor databases (Advance).

How To Apply
To apply for this job, please submit your application online.

Employment Equity Statement
McMaster University is located on the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee and Mississauga Nations and within the lands protected by the “Dish With One Spoon” wampum agreement.

The diversity of our workforce is at the core of our innovation and creativity and strengthens our research and teaching excellence. In keeping with its Statement on Building an Inclusive Community with a Shared Purpose, McMaster University strives to embody the values of respect, collaboration and diversity, and has a strong commitment to employment equity.

The University seeks qualified candidates who share our commitment to equity and inclusion, who will contribute to the diversification of ideas and perspectives, and especially welcomes applications from indigenous (First Nations, Métis or Inuit) peoples, members of racialized communities, persons with disabilities, women, and persons who identify as 2SLGBTQ+.

As part of McMaster’s commitment, all applicants are invited to complete a confidential Applicant Diversity Survey through the online application submission process. The Survey questionnaire requests voluntary self-identification in relation to equity-seeking groups that have historically faced and continue to face barriers in employment. Please refer to the Applicant Diversity Survey – Statement of Collection for additional information.

Job applicants requiring accommodation to participate in the hiring process should contact:

to communicate accommodation needs.

Hybrid Work Language
To ensure an ongoing and vibrant University community that meets the needs of our students, staff and faculty and supports the University mission, ability to work on-site continues to be a requirement for most University positions. The University is supportive of exploring flexible work arrangements that effectively balance operational needs and employee interests.