Director of Gift Planning – (Los Angeles, California, United States)

The University of Southern California (USC), founded in 1880, is located in the heart of downtown L.A. and is the largest private employer in the City of Los Angeles. As an employee of USC, you will be a part of a world-class research university and a member of the “Trojan Family,” which is comprised of the faculty, students and staff that make the university what it is.

University Advancement’s Office of Gift Planning is seeking a Director of Gift Planning to join its team. The Director of Gift Planning reports directly to the Associate Vice President for Gift Planning and serves as an expert or lead development professional in a highly specialized planned giving program at the University of Southern California.

A qualified candidate should have excellent communication skills, the ability to build bridges and strong collaborative relationships across a complex organization with astuteness and agility, can demonstrate commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and is expected to work on weekends and evenings when needed.

University Advancement is committed to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture in which all advancement staff and our stakeholders have the opportunity to connect, belong, and grow while supporting the University of Southern California’s mission, values, and goals.


  • Strategize and collaborate with internal colleagues and external professional advisors to support the University’s planned giving efforts and maximize the University’s interactions with major gift prospects.

  • Research and acts as a central source to donors, development officers, and outside professionals of information with respect to complex gifting techniques and tax issues, such as charitable gift annuities, donor advised funds, charitable remainder trusts, revocable gifts made through living trusts, estate planning instruments, current tax legislation. 

  • Use specialized gift planning knowledge to evaluate donors’ financial situations and goals to recommend optimal gifting options. 

  • Prepare gift agreements, as well as documents to establish charitable gift annuities, charitable reminder trusts, charitable lead trusts, and other forms of planned gifts. 

  • Manage multiple major gift planning prospects and initiatives at the same time. 

  • Prepare and present planned giving proposals to major donors and prospects. 

  • Educate USC development officers — as well the broader USC community — on issues surrounding planned and other major gifting techniques and developments. 

  • Participate in professional organizations and maintain visibility in the local planned giving community. 

  • Commitment to acquire and maintain a high level of planned giving technical proficiency.

Performs other related duties as assigned or requested.  The university reserves the right to add or change duties at any time.


  • A Bachelor’s degree in a related field. An MBA or JD degree, and/or a CPA is desired. 

  • Seven (7) years of planned giving or fundraising experience and/or experience with trusts and estates, tax, accounting, financial planning or wealth management with increasing levels of responsibility desired. 

  • Excellent interpersonal and communication (written/verbal) skills, including the ability to interact effectively with internal staff and external stakeholders. 

  • Excellent organizational and planning skills. 

  • Knowledge of various planned giving vehicles and expertise with financial planning techniques and related tax laws.

Required Documents and Additional Information:

Resume and cover letter required (may be uploaded as one file). Please do not submit your application without these documents.

The salary range for this position is $150,000 – $180,000. When extending an offer of employment, the University of Southern California considers factors such as (but not limited to) the scope and responsibilities of the position, the candidate’s work experience, education/training, key skills, internal peer equity, federal, state, and local laws, contractual stipulations, grant funding, as well as external market and organizational considerations. 

USC has excellent benefits, including health benefits for staff & their family with access to the renowned university medical network; retirement plans when you meet the Program’s eligibility period; tuition benefits for staff & their family; free Professional Development classes; central Los Angeles location with easy access to commuter trains, buses & free tram pick up services; discounts to football, basketball & other campus events.

The University of Southern California values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity in employment.

Minimum Education:
Bachelor’s degree

Additional Education Requirements:
Combined experience/education as substitute for minimum education

Minimum Experience:
5 years

Minimum Skills:
Major campaign, fundraising, public relations and/or volunteer management experience.

Preferred Education:
Master’s degree

Preferred Experience:
7 years

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