Research Associate

27 Sep 2018
End of advertisement period
27 Nov 2018
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Law
Contract Type
Full Time

Position Focus:

Reporting to the Director of Individual Giving in the Office of Alumni Affairs and Development, the Research Associate is responsible for preparing high-quality, confidential research materials on current and potential donors, and proactively identifying new prospects in support of the fundraising activities of Yale Law School. The Research Assistant is also responsible for supporting the Director and other staff in prospect management activities.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities including but not limited to:

Research/Data Collection/Analysis
A. Conduct biographical, business, and financial research on individuals, boards, corporations and foundations using a variety of on line services, databases and other public information as well as internal sources.
B. Analyze research information to evaluate a prospect's financial capacity, ability to give, willingness to give, charitable interests and connection to the organization.
C. Assist with maintaining wealth ratings and updated contact information for all donors in gift officers' portfolios.
D. Verify, update, and record various types of information in database.

Prepare Confidential Materials
A. Prepare confidential research briefings, in-depth profiles, and event bios for members of the development staff, senior leadership team, and Office of the Dean.
B. Proofread/edit materials to ensure information is complete, accurate, and presented appropriately.

Pipeline Development
A. Perform detailed wealth screenings on alumni, donors, and other groups of current or potential supporters. Make recommendations for gift officer assignments.
B. Assist in the identification of individual giving, planned giving, major gift, corporate, and foundation prospects.
C. Monitor news publications for potential prospects as well as news articles on current Trustees, and major donors, and alumni. Identify, implement, and utilize tools such as Google Alerts to support these activities.

Prospect Management
A. Support prospect, database, and portfolio management activities.
B. Assist in the preparation of portfolio reviews by updating prospect information, analyzing portfolio information, making recommendations, and preparing materials.
C. Develop and maintain working relationships with frontline fund raisers and the stewardship team.
D. Actively participate in cultivation and solicitation planning and the creation and implementation of stewardship strategies.

Essential Duties

  1. Identifies, investigates, analyzes, organizes and evaluates information yielded from a variety of sources to determine a donor prospect’s financial capacity, ability to give, philanthropic interests, and relationship to the University.
  2. Devises research strategies and methods to identify potential donors and/or new donor prospects. Identifies the type of information to look for and determines what relevant donor information (biographical and financial, philanthropic interest, history of previous donations, prior university solicitation, etc.) is needed to craft fundraising and cultivation strategies.
  3. Identifies new sources of wealth and tracks existing sources to strengthen donor relationships with the University.
  4. Analyzes financial publications and corporates disclosures to deepen relationships with current donors and to identify new donor prospects to build a robust University donor base.
  5. Writes donor prospect briefings for development team.
  6. Investigates new donor prospects and constantly re-evaluates and monitors established donor sources.
  7. Participates in planning long – and – short-term development strategies with the team to solicit funds and meet department fundraising targets.
  8. Assesses client needs, manage own schedules.
  9. May present lectures at industry conferences.
  10. May perform other duties as assigned. 

Required Education and Experience

Bachelor’s Degree and two years of related work experience or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Required Skill/Ability 1:

Expertise in internet-based prospect research tools and techniques.

Required Skill/Ability 2:

Excellent writing and oral communication skills. Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate effectively.

Required Skill/Ability 3:

Demonstrated ability to think critically and analytically. Ability to analyze large amounts of data and summarize in a user-friendly format.

Required Skill/Ability 4:

Strong computer skills, including proficiency in Microsoft Office. Strong attention to detail.

Required Skill/Ability 5: 

Ability to work independently on multiple projects and prioritize work in a deadline driven environment. Flexibility to adjust to changing priorities and deadlines in a fast-paced environment. Proven ability to exercise independent initiative. Commitment to treat all information as highly confidential.

Preferred Education, Experience and Skills:

1-3 years in a fundraising department of a non-profit organization. Experience in a professional environment strongly preferred. Familiarity with Lexis Nexis, Foundation Center, Guidestar, Donor Search, Foundation Search, iWave, Wealth-X, and Customer Relationship Management software.

Background Check Requirements

All candidates for employment will be subject to pre-employment background screening for this position, which may include motor vehicle, DOT certification, drug testing and credit checks based on the position description and job requirements. All offers are contingent upon the successful completion of the background check. Please visit for additional information on the background check requirements and process.

Posting Disclaimer

The intent of this job description is to provide a representative summary of the essential functions that will be required of the position and should not be construed as a declaration of specific duties and responsibilities of the particular position. Employees will be assigned specific job-related duties through their hiring departments.

Affirmative Action Statement: 

Yale University considers applicants for employment without regard to, and does not discriminate on the basis of, an individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability, status as a veteran, or national or ethnic origin; nor does Yale discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects people from sex discrimination in educational programs and activities at institutions that receive federal financial assistance. Questions regarding Title IX may be referred to the University’s Title IX Coordinator, at, or to the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, 8th Floor, Five Post Office Square, Boston MA 02109-3921. Telephone: 617.289.0111, Fax: 617.289.0150, TDD: 800.877.8339, or Email: