Senior / Development Program Specialist, Department of Surgery

The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association (WFAA)*, the private fundraising and alumni relations organization for UW-Madison, is recruiting for a Development Program Specialist / Senior Development Program Specialist to support the Department of Surgery team within the WFAA Wisconsin Medicine Advancement Group.  This is a non-exempt position supporting donor and campus relations, stewardship, prospect data management, and office administration activities that advance team goals and objectives. This position requires effective communication and organizational skills.  This position will be a combination of remote, in-office, and on-site work environments.  


The Department of Surgery is the second largest academic department in the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and in the University of Wisconsin system.  The Department of Surgery at the University of Wisconsin offers one of the leading surgical programs in the nation, excelling in patient care, surgical education, and surgical research. Our surgeons perform almost 22,000 operations per year for pediatric and adult patients in the specialties of acute care and regional general surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, colorectal surgery, endocrine surgery, minimally invasive surgery, otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, pediatric surgery, plastic surgery, surgical oncology, transplant surgery, and vascular surgery. We invite you to browse the website for additional details about clinical expertise, research programs and training opportunities at


Please note:  This position can be filled at the Development Program Specialist or Senior Development Program Specialist level, depending on skills/experience of selected candidate. 



Who is WFAA?
The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association is a private, nonprofit corporation that encourages individuals and organizations to make gifts to the university and to connect with the UW. In 2014, the UW Foundation merged with the Wisconsin Alumni Association® to better serve a growing population of UW alumni and donors. We believe that private support grows out of good relationships between campus leaders, faculty and program staff who need support, and the alumni and friends who want to invest in UW–Madison. We provide important engagement opportunities to link UW–Madison alumni to each other and to their alma mater, building a strong community of Badgers.


Diversity and Inclusion:

Just as the university community benefits from differing viewpoints, perspectives, and experiences, inclusion and diversity are imperative for the success of our mission. WFAA values people and the differences that they bring to the organization, and creates an environment in which all staff members and constituents feel respected and have opportunities to thrive.  


Primary Responsibilities

Donor and Campus Relations 

  • Serve as primary liaison to campus partners, working to build mutually beneficial relationships, improve communication and collaborative teamwork, and increase campus understanding of the development process.
  • Work in collaboration with the school’s Communications and Advancement office on projects including, but not limited to, the Board of Visitors meeting, annual fund campaigns, stewardship and information/data pulls.
  • As appropriate, coordinate with WFAA resources such as Business Intelligence and Research to compile data and other information that better informs strategic planning, donor recognition, stewardship activities for the unit.
  • Serve as the liaison with school’s scholarship team, working closely with scholarship coordinators (undergraduate and graduate) and have an understanding of the scholarship program, application system and awarding cycle as well as donor stewardship tactics.
  • Serve as the unit’s primary contact for all internal and external inquiries ensuring accurate and responsive communications.
  • In coordination with or independent of the WFAA events team, plan, implement, and manage events designed to identify and cultivate new prospects and build relationships with existing donors. Ensure appropriate event follow-up is complete.
  • Actively participate in meetings and other activities with campus partners that support unit development efforts.
  • Provide directors of development with materials as requested in preparation for donor visits and appropriate follow-up in CRM system, etc.
  • Assist directors of development with donor visits to campus, including on-site logistics, greeting and hosting guests, and responding to miscellaneous needs as they arise.
  • Respond to donor and campus questions regarding unit gifts and funds, identifying those inquiries, requests, or issues that require additional review and action.
  • Assist directors of development with the preparation, signature routing, and final distribution of gift legal documentation (e.g. Memoranda of Agreement, Fund Operation Agreements, Gift Commitment Forms, etc.) in accordance with established WFAA business processes.


  • Coordinate and distribute routine gift reports.
  • Coordinate and manage gift impact reporting.
  • Work with directors of development to implement, execute and manage new opportunities for donor engagement and stewardship.
  • Work with the Business Intelligence team as needed, refine and customize donor lists for special mailings, invitations, donor recognition, etc.
  • Assist directors of development with other prospect and donor stewardship activities as required.
  • Prepare gift, milestone, and other acknowledgements for assigned team members.

Constituent/Prospect/Fund Management 

  • Coordinate fund administration process, including all activities related to the creation, documentation, notification, review, and stewardship of unit funds.
  • Pull CRM self-service reports and request business intelligence (BI) reports.
  • Provide expertise in navigating WFAA systems including CRM database and fund management systems.
  • Maintain contact updates, donor biographic information, and other constituent record management duties.
  • Maintain advisory board memberships, donor recognition society memberships, and other affiliated groups.


Office Administration

  • Coordinate the direct mailing of solicitations, campaigns, announcements, and event invitations.
  • Provide development support for advanced administrative needs when necessary or appropriate.
  • Suggest areas for process improvement and assist in improvement implementation.

Requirements and Qualifications

Required Qualifications

  • 1 + years of relevant professional work experience 
  • Proficient in MS Office, particularly Word, Excel and Outlook;

Other Qualifications

  • Experience working in non profit, healthcare, or higher ed industry.
  • Excellent oral and written skills.
  • Exhibits high level aptitudes in managing multiple tasks, advanced office and administrative management skills.
  • Keen attention to detail.
  • Ability to interact well with all internal and external constituents in an entrepreneurial environment.
  • Strong team building skills.
  • Ability to work independently.
  • Creativity, innovation, flexibility and ability to work with loosely defined parameters.


WFAA is committed to provide our employees with an environment that is inspiring, creative and respectful.  We offer competitive pay and an excellent benefits program, which includes a 10% 401k contribution after 1 year of service!


The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association is an Equal Opportunity Employer *The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association is the “doing business as” name of the merged organization comprising the University of Wisconsin Foundation ( and the Wisconsin Alumni Association ( Its legal corporate name is registered as the University of Wisconsin Foundation.


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