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Planned Giving Officer

Planned Giving Officer

Seattle Opera is accepting applications for the position of Planned Giving Officer. This full-time salaried position reports to the Associate Director of Development. This position is directly involved in the identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of prospective planned giving donors as well as select major donors. The position oversees and conducts a variety of fundraising activities in order to secure support through wills, bequests, trusts, charitable gift annuities and other planned/deferred gift arrangements. The Planned Giving Officer will manage a personal portfolio of individuals and will work collaboratively with leadership staff, the Individual Giving team, Seattle Opera and Seattle Opera Foundation Board members, and other volunteers to secure deferred gifts. The Planned Giving Officer must be able to effectively communicate the mission, values, and scope of both Seattle Opera and Seattle Opera Foundation. 

Scope & Principal Accountabilities

This position is responsible for managing Seattle Opera’s planned giving program and growing legacy support from the company’s donor family in collaboration and coordination with all Development department communication, solicitation, and stewardship strategies. The Planned Giving Officer is responsible for all planned gift activities, including:

  • Identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward individual prospects capable of planned gifts at all levels with an emphasis on gifts of $50,000 and above. Host 80+ donor visits annually.


  • Prepare calculations and gift illustrations, draft letters of explanation and obtain advice and assistance from internal and external sources on behalf of the Seattle Opera and Seattle Opera Foundation.   

    Manage all aspects of the Encore Society, Seattle Opera’s group of legacy donors. Develop and implement the Encore Society’s growth plan, including marketing strategies and communication plan. Organize, in conjunction with the donor stewardship team, the annual Encore Society appreciation event. Create other planned giving program events, as needed, to support program goals.

    Manage the probate process where Seattle Opera and/or Seattle Opera Foundation is a named beneficiary.


    Plan and attend quarterly meetings of the Planned Giving Committee of the Board of Seattle Opera; report at the annual meeting of the Board of Seattle Opera Foundation. Attend and participate in other Board and Committee meetings as required.

    Serve as principal liaison to planned giving consultants and contractors, and institutional investment professionals. Function as an ambassador to the wealth and estate planning and non-profit legal community, as well as the community at large during community engagement programs and planned giving seminars.


    Preserve planned gift data in the Tessitura database and produce relevant and effective reports in partnership with Development Operations and Individual Giving teams.

    Act as company expert on planned giving trends and tax law as it pertains to planned giving and fundraising. Participate in professional development programs, particularly focused on life income arrangements, complex assets, charitable tax law and IRS regulations to strengthen and expand the knowledge base of the entire Development department. Share best practices and mentor Individual Giving colleagues. 

    Work Development department events, including donor lounge dinners and receptions, to cultivate prospects and steward donor relationships.


    Bachelor’s degree, preferably in the field of performing arts or non-profit management, with 3+years of fundraising experience with planned giving experience preferred.  Proven success in creating and executing work plans.  Must possess excellent interpersonal and communication skills, be self-motivated, and adept at working both independently and with a team.  Demonstrated use of Tessitura constituent management software, or comparable database, proficiency in Microsoft Office software including Word and Excel.  

    1. Desired Attributes

      Highly motivated individual with outstanding presentation skills.  Very organized with a proven ability to think creatively and strategically.  Able to plan ahead, meet deadlines and goals, manage multiple projects simultaneously, perform well under pressure and appropriately interact with donors in person and via phone and email.  Collegial and creative approach to assignments. Opera knowledge a plus.


      Special Requirements

      Able and willing to work evenings and weekends. Daytime office hours are flexible.



      Salary commensurate with experience.  Seattle Opera offers a benefit package that includes medical, dental, life and disability insurance, paid vacation, holidays, and sick leave. 


      Qualified candidates are invited to submit a cover letter and resume. Attn: Planned Giving Officer, 1020 John Street, Seattle, WA 98109 or e-mail jobs@seattleopera.org.  No phone calls, please.  Position is open until filled.


      Seattle Opera is an equal opportunity employer.

    Questions about Membership or this application? Please contact Vincent Covatto, organizational membership manager, at VCovatto@operaamerica.org or by calling 646.699.5237.
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