Corporate and Foundation Relations Specialist

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Located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the Versiti Blood Research Institute (VBRI) is the largest blood-focused research institute in the United States. With over 30 basic, translational, and clinical researchers, the institute is dedicated to advancing scientific knowledge and developing innovative therapies related to blood and blood disorders. The institute’s research interests encompass a wide range of topics, including transfusion medicine, cellular therapy, thrombosis/hemostasis, immunology, and hematologic malignancies. As a vital part of Versiti, a non-profit organization with a blood bank at its core, the VBRI strives to improve lives through innovative research and the development of novel diagnostics and treatments.

With support and leadership from the Vice President of Philanthropy, this position develops proposals to obtain funding from organizations, including private and corporate foundations, for investment in strategic funding priorities of Versiti Blood Research Institute and Versiti, Inc. This role has the primary responsibility for identifying, educating, inviting, and acquiring corporate and foundation donors. The Corporate and Foundation Relations Coordinator drafts proposals for Corporate and Foundation donors based on their areas of interest. Proposals are reviewed by the Vice President of Philanthropy and EVP for Research.

  • Understands the nature and peculiarities of corporate and foundation programs and the relevant administrative and financial regulations.
  • Develops and implements goals and objectives for the Corporate and Foundation fundraising program.
  • Work with Versiti Executive Leadership Team to identify and solicit vendors for the annual Imagine Gala.
  • Work with those Vendor Sponsors to secure logos and to deliver benefits at various donor levels.
  • Works as a partner with researchers on a variety of fundraising initiatives and maintains and enhances collaborative relationships with Versiti Blood Research Institute Foundation, Board members, and benefactors.
  • Responsible for conducting local, regional, and national corporate and foundation research to identify viable philanthropic partners that complement the work of researchers/investigators and staff at the Versiti Blood Research Institute and Versiti Inc.
  • Prepares and presents proposals to prospective philanthropic partners and/or their Boards and advisors.
  • Maintains an understanding and knowledge of corporate foundation fundraising techniques, for use in impact and principal gift invitations.
  • Organizes and prepares for visits to/from corporate and foundation benefactors; and include appropriate colleagues, researchers, board members and other natural partners.
  • Prepares monthly progress reports detailing current and potential benefactor activity
  • Maintains personal professional growth and development plan.
  • Works with colleagues in Marketing and Blood Operations to raise funds in support of Blood Operations.
  • Maintains a positive image when dealing with executive staff, benefactors, potential philanthropic partners, Board and Committee members, fundraisers, and other colleagues
  • Performs other duties as assigned
  • Complies with all policies and standards


  • Bachelor’s Degree required


  • 4+ years experience in Corporate and Foundation fundraising required
  • Experience working in a biomedical or scientific research environment preferred
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