Senior Assistant, Principal & Major Gifts

Job Details

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Job ID:

10 Brookline Place West, Brookline, MA 02445


Employment Type:
Full time

Work Location:
Full Remote: 4-5 days remote/wk


Located in Boston and the surrounding communities, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a leader in life changing breakthroughs in cancer research and patient care. We are united in our mission of conquering cancer, HIV/AIDS and related diseases. We strive to create an inclusive, diverse, and equitable environment where we provide compassionate and comprehensive care to patients of all backgrounds, and design programs to promote public health particularly among high-risk and underserved populations. We conduct groundbreaking research that advances treatment, we educate tomorrow's physician/researchers, and we work with amazing partners, including other Harvard Medical School-affiliated hospitals.


This position is considered remote, up to 1 day in the office at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week. DFCI guidelines state that employees must reside in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Rhode Island.


The Senior Assistant provides administrative support for one or two Assistant Vice Presidents (AVP), Principal & Major Gifts (PMG), which raises funds from individuals, families, and family foundations for priorities in research and care across Dana-Farber. This role includes managing revenue and activity reports, budgets, data entry for general fundraising activities, special projects, correspondence, scheduling meetings and appointments, and serving as a resource for colleagues on PMG and across the Division. Responsible for assisting the entire Division with reaching financial goals.

Embody Dana-Farber’s Core Values: Impact; Excellence; Compassion & Respect; and Discovery every day. Add value to the Dana-Farber community by seeking opportunities to collaborate across the Institute.  Foster an ethical, positive, results-oriented culture founded on open communication. 

Dana-Farber is pursuing an ambitious, multi-year fundraising effort to change the future of cancer research and care: The Dana-Farber Campaign. This $2 billion campaign is the largest in the Institute’s history and one of the largest ever in the U.S. focused solely on cancer. Philanthropy raised through The Dana-Farber Campaign will accelerate the Institute’s strategic priorities by supporting revolutionary science, extraordinary care, exceptional expertise, and essential opportunities—helping us prevent, treat, and Defy Cancer.


Resume and cover letter required with application submission.


  • Assist Assistant Vice President(s) in handling specific projects pertaining to team needs, including monthly, quarterly, and fiscal year reporting for revenue and budgets;
  • Assist in management and allocation of Principal & Major Gifts (PMG) budget through annual planning, opening and completing purchasing orders, ordering supplies, and reviewing and organizing p-card expenses;
  • Maintain organizational and management systems and databases; operate with a working knowledge of Microsoft Office, ClearView fundraising software, and other systems used by the Philanthropy office;
  • Serve as contact for PMG business rules for colleagues on PMG and across the Division;
  • Train new assistants on PMG procedures and serve as contact for data entry inquiries;
  • Assist Assistant Vice President(s) in fundraising activities, including tracking prospects, entering data, and conducting preliminary research on donors/prospects as needed;
  • Draft acknowledgements to donors and assist the development of cultivation material and gift proposals;
  • Work with Assistant Vice President(s) to facilitate prospect strategies and stewardship and liaise with Donor Relations colleagues to ensure timely donor reporting;
  • Process checks and gifts of securities, in coordination with gift processing and office protocols, handle terms of agreement and correspondence related to gifts;
  • Answer phones and respond to inquiries from Philanthropy and Institute colleagues;
  • Provide back-up support for front desk as requested.



Reports to Assistant Vice President(s). This position may have supervisory responsibilities of interns/temps but will seek major decision-making authority from direct supervisor. However, independent decision-making on day-to-day tasks and good judgment is required for interacting with confidential information, as well as Institute prospects/ donors, Trustees, faculty, and staff.


At Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, we work every day to create an innovative, caring, and inclusive environment where every patient, family, and staff member feels they belong.  As relentless as we are in our mission to reduce the burden of cancer for all, we are equally committed to diversifying our faculty and staff.  Cancer knows no boundaries and when it comes to hiring the most dedicated and diverse professionals, neither do we. If working in this kind of organization inspires you, we encourage you to apply.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is an equal opportunity employer and affirms the right of every qualified applicant to receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, disability, age, ancestry, military service, protected veteran status, or other groups as protected by law.


Associate degree and/or administrative training degree required. As this level position is often considered a “base” for someone pursuing a career in Philanthropy, a Bachelor’s degree is preferred. 1-3 years of administrative experience.


Excellent written and verbal communications skills are necessary with a strong orientation to customer service. Fantastic organizational skills and ability to manage a variety of projects are key. Excellent judgment a must.  Directed and self-starting attitude with the ability to work independently as well as part of a team and work with a variety of personalities. Solid computer skills and competency in Microsoft Office Suite products is absolutely necessary.

This position will evaluate current programs and create and execute approved plans to expand and diversify the donors and participants for the events assigned in order to broaden our donor base and create even more inclusive events. Experience with diverse donors is a plus.




Up to 1 day in the office at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week. Some over-time or weekend work may be required.


We’re stronger together.

In the Division of Philanthropy, we believe in the power of different voices. We encourage authenticity and diversity of every individual within our community. Our collective voices – donors, volunteers, staff, and patients alike – allow us to work together towards a world without cancer. Committed to being a place of inclusivity, belonging, and change, these are our core values. 

The above information on this description has been designed to indicate the general nature and level of work performed by employees within this classification.  It is not designed to contain or be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications required of employees assigned to this job.  Requirements are subject to possible modification to reasonably accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities.  This document does not create an employment contract, implied or otherwise, other than an “at will” employment relationship.

External and internal applicants, as well as position incumbents who become disabled as defined under the Americans With Disabilities Act, must be able to perform the essential job functions (as listed) either unaided or with the assistance of a reasonable accommodation to be determined by management on a case-by-case basis.

DFCI offers a competitive benefits package including generous healthcare and retirement plans, at minimum 3-weeks’ vacation time in addition to 10 paid holidays, a flexible work environment, and work/life balance. We also provide an array of professional development opportunities.*

*All benefits subject to Institute changes

We’re hiring! Learn more about working in the Division of Philanthropy and view all open positions.

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