Development Director - Michigan History Foundation

Posted on 4/2/24  

Position Summary

The Development Director (DD) is responsible for leading fundraising efforts for the Michigan History Foundation (MHF). These efforts are focused on supporting the programs and projects of the Michigan History Center (Center), which manages the State History Museum together with nine other museums and historic sites throughout the state, and the Archives of Michigan.

In addition to fundraising responsibilities, the primary duties of the position include supporting the Foundation’s board of directors, working closely with the Michigan History Center staff, managing a donor database and donor relations through a variety of communication tools and fundraising initiatives.

This is a part-time, nonsupervisory position.

Scope and Responsibilities

1. Fundraising. Direct fundraising activities for the Foundation, project-driven campaigns, annual giving, legacy giving, and other fund raising activities and the development of all solicitation and marketing materials consistent with the Center’s needs and jointly established fundraising priorities between the Foundation and Center.

2. Donor Cultivation. Identify and cultivate major gift donations and sponsorships from corporate, government and foundation sources that have an interest in the preservation of Michigan history.

3. Database Management. Leverage the Foundation’s donor database through contact strategies that are intended to both grow participation of current donors and encourage participation of new donors in Foundation campaigns.

4. Foundation-Center Collaboration. To foster a collegial partnership with the Center and Archives, collaborate with Center and Archives staff, including regular attendance at Center management meetings, to ensure alignment between Foundation activities and the Center’s and Archive’s fundraising needs.

5. Brand Awareness. When necessary, serve as an ambassador for Michigan history and build public awareness of the Foundation through publications, the Foundation website, social media and other digital tools, and managing the Foundation’s relationship with the media and other communications outlets with an interest in Michigan history. 

6. Board Relations. Participate in quarterly Foundation Board of Director meetings, monthly executive committee meetings, and other committee meetings as necessary, including helping in the preparation of board meeting materials.

7. Program Evaluation. Help establish performance measures, monitor results, help the Board evaluate the effectiveness of the Foundation’s fund development program, and make recommendations to the Board for areas of improvement.

Knowledge and Skills

  • A passion for telling Michigan’s story, and connecting more people to Michigan’s history. 
  • Successful experience in fundraising and donor cultivation, with a preference for experience in fundraising and donor cultivation for history-related organizations. 
  • Great communications skills, including the ability to connect with individual donors, grantmaking organizations, the media, and other external stakeholders. 
  • Proficiency with donor databases and other common software applications, such as the Microsoft suite of applications.  Strong organizational skills and the ability to work on multiple projects at the same time. 
  • A “can-do” attitude, with excellent problem-solving, analytical, and critical thinking skills.
  • Experience in working with boards of directors of small, nonprofit organizations. 
  • The ability to be flexible and display appropriate professional discretion, tact, and judgement.
  • The ability to work in a collegial environment with Board members, Center and Archive staff, and others to achieve common goals.


The Development Director is a part-time, non-supervisory position that is estimated to work between 25 and 29 hours per week. The Board expects that this position will be compensated at between $50,000 and $65,000 per year, with the potential for performance-based bonuses as approved by the Board. The Foundation does not offer a benefits package.

About the Michigan History Foundation

The Michigan History Foundation is a (501)(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was created to raise private funding to assure Michigan’s rich history and culture are preserved for future generations. The Foundation encourages the preservation and utilization of Michigan’s historical resources as cultural, economic and educational assets. It accomplishes this mission through a long-standing partnership with the Michigan History Center the Archives of Michigan and other state agencies and organizations.

To Apply

Submit a cover letter and resume to:

Michigan History Foundation Board of Directors

ATTN: Development Director Search Committee

P.O. Box 12331

Lansing, MI 48901

The position will remain open until filled.

Thank you to our Partners!

Michigan Museums Association       313-334-7643       PO Box 5246, Cheboygan, MI 49721

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