Careers at the Aspen Institute
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Aspen Institute employees come from a wide range of backgrounds and possess a unique blend of education, skill, and policy experience. We recognize that our people are our vital resource and we value their knowledge, enthusiasm, and commitment. At the Aspen Institute we offer competitive salaries and a wide variety of benefits to our employees and their families.

If you would enjoy working in a dynamic environment and are looking for an opportunity to become part of a stellar team of professionals, we invite you to apply online today.

Executive Director, Society of Fellows

Location: Washington, DC

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute has campuses in Aspen, Colorado, and on the Wye River on Marylandís Eastern Shore. It also maintains offices in New York City and has a global network of partners.

More information is available at 


The Executive Director, Society of Fellows oversees the strategic direction and growth of the Instituteís Society of Fellows (SOF) program, a vital group of 2,100 donors and philanthropic partners who collectively contribute more than $5 million in annual operating support. The Executive Director is the lead architect of SOF donor-exclusive programming across the country in formats that range from discussion receptions and salons, symposia, forums and dialogues. Additionally, the Executive Director in collaboration with other division directors will ensure that SOF donors and partners are properly stewarded and that major philanthropic and planned giving opportunities are, as appropriate, promoted and presented. The incumbent actively represents the Institute at major meetings and events across the country, specifically in Washington, DC, New York, San Francisco and Aspen, CO.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  •  Management: 
    • Oversite of staff who are regionally located across the country in Aspen, NY, SF, and WDC. Provide and support professional development of staff and continuous evaluation of their performance
    • Set fundraising goals, evaluate and measure performance as well as programmatic impact
    • Prepare, monitor and report against annual departmental plan and budget, including annual programming, fundraising and targeted campaigns
    • Facilitate SOF Program Advisory Committee meetings that are comprised of a representation of our SOF constituency
  •  Intellectual:
    • Design and oversee the execution of national programmatic offerings for SOF constituents
    • Provide leadership at a national level in helping to identify and prepare program forum moderators
    • Periodically, moderate select forums
  •  Fundraising: 
    • Increase contributions from current Fellows and solicit new supporters
  •  Relationships: 
    • Actively engage and steward entire SOF community of 2,100 members
    • Actively manage a portfolio composed of approximately 50 current and prospective Fellows with major and/or planned gift potential
    • Facilitate consistent communications to Fellows including event invitations, SOF e-newsletter, brochures, and online presence

Knowledge, Education and Experience:

  •  Masters degree in a relevant course of study
  •  Ten or more years of professional experience in fundraising or related field, with at least five years in a management role
  •  Possesses a strong intellectual curiosity, passionate interest in ideas in the broadest sense, current events and trends, and especially those related to the Instituteís work and mission
  •  Superior written and verbal communication skills
  •  Demonstrated experience in event planning and implementation
  •  Knowledge of effective volunteer management
  •  Keen sense of personal integrity and discretion when handling sensitive information
  •  Proficiency with Microsoft Word and Excel; knowledge of Salesforce preferred
  •  Strong budget and management skills
  •  Team player, able to work both independently as a self-starter, and cooperatively in a challenging, fast-paced, complex organization whilst nurturing and empowering departmental staff 

Level of Authority:

  •  Supervises team of nine staff who are regionally located
  •  Budgetary authority
  •  Significant travel required

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

Candidate must have the ability to work under pressure and handle stress. Candidate must also have the ability to meet regular attendance policy of the Aspen Institute.

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