Skip Navigation
Print Share

Prospect Research Associate

Company: LSU Foundation
Date Posted: August 10, 2017

The Prospect Research Associate is an integral member of the development enterprise. Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to, identifying, researching, and providing analysis on major and principal gift prospects. This research and analysis serves as the foundation of a capital campaign and directly contributes to the campaign’s success. Using a client services model, the Prospect Research Associate supports select fundraising initiatives and academic units, participating and consulting directly with development directors and leadership to identify and qualify major and principal donor prospects who have the capacity and affinity to support campus wide initiatives and campaigns. The Prospect Research department collaborates with the Prospect Management department to provide critical prospect development support and services to development officers. 


Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide high-quality research on individuals, corporations, and foundations, by gathering information on known wealth indicators (from financial, biographical, and organizational sources, and other ethical intelligence-gathering techniques) as well as known liabilities.
  • Analyze the confidential and relevant information to assess financial capacity, philanthropic tendencies, giving propensity, and affiliation to LSU. Communicate key information to fundraising clients that will inform assessment and cultivation strategies.
  • Identify and research potential candidates for board and campaign committees and specialized engagement events.
  • Compose documents (profiles, biographies, project/event summaries) using style, grammar, and content appropriate to LSU standards.
  • Manage proactive “alerts” on a defined set of prospects; keep clients updated as needed on changes that inform prospect strategy.
  • Interpret and translate complex financial, legal, and corporate language into easily comprehensible terms, while adhering to LSU Foundation standards of discretion and confidentiality.
  • Prospect knowledge (e.g., assets, biographical information, ratings, interests, connections) acquired through research is to be preserved and maintained in the Advance database that is accessible to campus wide fundraising staff and used to develop future cultivation and solicitation strategies.
  • Proactively and independently plan and execute strategies to identify sources of major and principal gift support, using proven research methodologies to ensure that campus wide fundraising initiatives have sufficient prospects to meet fundraising goals.
  • Working in collaboration with the Prospect Management department, develop and execute strategies to ensure that newly identified prospects are presented and assigned to the appropriate fundraisers in a timely manner.
  • Reactively research and qualify potential prospects identified through various sources.
  • As a liaison to development officers, collaborate with the Prospect Management department and other LSU Foundation and campus contacts to anticipate needs of portfolio development, and assess cultivation and solicitation strategies.
  • Interpret results and provide direction on the segmentation and management of large groups of prospects identified through peer and vendor screenings.
  • Provide consultative services and orientation sessions on research methodologies and resources to development officers and other key campus personnel involved in fundraising.
  • Maintain a working knowledge of assigned fundraising initiatives and academic units.
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Demonstrated experience in prospect research, development, library research, or an information related field, preferably in a higher education environment.
  • Demonstrated knowledge about or the ability to understand and articulate ethics as it is defined in the Association of Professional Researchers for Advancement (APRA) Body of Knowledge.
  • Demonstrated experience using analytical skills to initiate and perform complex analyses and organize information.
  • Demonstrated project management skills, including the ability to define goal/objective of the initiative and the means to achieve the goal. Demonstrated ability to work in a demanding environment.
  • Strong computer skills and demonstrated background in Internet-based research. Experience working with a relational database extracting data and reporting, preferably Advance. Experience working with the Microsoft Office suite of products, including Excel. Ability to download and export information between systems.
  • Excellent oral and interpersonal skills, including diplomacy required to function effectively among development officers, leadership, and other campus constituencies to bring large scale projects to completion. Ability to work in a team environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently, prioritize work, and independently manage multiple, diverse, and competing priorities while meeting deadlines. Ability to maintain confidentiality and work with sensitive information.
  • Exhibit a strong customer service and solution-oriented work ethic.
  • Ability to recall, recognize, and communicate interrelated information pertaining to donors and prospects.