Prospect Research Analyst

The Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association (WFAA)*, the private fundraising entity for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is seeking an experienced professional to join its Research and Prospect Management (RPM) team as a Prospect Research Analyst. In collaboration with multiple Foundation development teams, the Prospect Research Analyst provides prospect information and consultation in support of effective fundraising programs and activities. This position synthesizes, analyzes and disseminates prospect information to development officers and other staff as appropriate.

Primary responsibilities will include:

Prospect Information Duties

  • Track top domestic and international prospects/donors, corporations and foundations through the use of news alerts. Effectively communicate relevant information to appropriate staff and ensure prospect records are updated and tracked.
  • Maintain and update information on top prospects [board members, parents, Chancellor’s prospects, etc.] in database.
  • As requested by development staff, research, discover and analyze relevant information on corporations, foundations and individuals, as appropriate for their stage in the development cycle.
  • Prepare biographical briefing documents on corporations, foundations and domestic and international individuals as needed for specific stages of development and strategic meetings with campus executives.
  • Respond to requests that require an information professional, including locating historical information, legal and public records searches, etc.
  • Identify associates and acquaintances through relationship mapping with information acquired from development staff, university leadership and external sources.
  • Work with Advancement Services teams to gather background and updated contact information on new prospects and routinely monitor contact reports from development.
  • Complete special requests as assigned, such as gathering historical background and family relationships, and validating electronic wealth screenings.
  • Create competitive intelligence reports to support executive management in making strategic decisions for the organization.

Prospect Qualification Duties

  • When appropriate, identify potential prospects using research techniques and send to Prospect Identification Analysts for qualification.
  • Interpret SEC documents, corporate press releases, real estate records, private company data, liquidity events, philanthropic interests and other indicators to assess viability, and identify potential wealth capacity and provide rationale for unit assignment.

Development Consultative Services

  • Consult with development clients to define objectives of research requests, and articulate outcomes with an emphasis on customer service.
  • Coordinate with WFAA staff and campus partners to document alumni in the news and elevate prospects discovered in publications monitored.
  • Participate in strategy review meetings for prospects as needed.

Project Management

  • Independently manage and lead priority team projects and report outcomes.
  • Organize and lead group meetings as needed to determine deliverables and requirements for projects.

Participate as member of Research and Prospect Management Team

  • Attend and participate in regular team, client and organizational meetings.
  • Share best practices and provide training for research colleagues.
  • Attend and participate in development group meetings as needed.
  • Lead or participate in strategic planning.
  • Recommend research information sources and other tools for subscription renewal, new purchase, or as an addition to regularly used free web sources.
  • Participate in organization-wide task forces or other appropriate groups.

Professional Development

  • Participate in appropriate professional development, continuing education courses, or workshops on a regular basis.
  • Present information on prospect research function during staff training and orientation sessions.
  • When applicable, share prospect research expertise with development officers and researchers at other organizations.

Support a service-oriented atmosphere in accordance with WFAA mission, values and philosophy

  • Strategic beliefs
    • The University of Wisconsin-Madison has a transforming impact on students, alumni, and society;
    • Authentic, lifelong relationships and engagement with alumni, donors and friends are fundamental to sustaining the reputation
      and continued success of the University;
    • Philanthropy has an essential and growing importance on the future progress of UW-Madison;
    • The highest level of stewardship and fiduciary responsibility in financial, investment, data and gift administration is vital to maintaining trust with our stakeholders;
    • Diverse views, experiences and perspectives strengthen WFAA and the university community.
  • Organizational values
    • We are serious about delivering results;
    • We work together and with our campus partners as a team;
    • We are committed to alumni, donors, volunteers and others;
    • We are open-minded;
    • We create a positive work environment.


  • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree in journalism, library science or related qualitative research-based discipline. Advanced degree preferred;
  • One year’s experience in prospect research, prospect management, development, or information field desired;
  • Familiarity with using a variety of online databases and internet search tools;
  • Experience with MS office products, particularly Word and Excel, is required;
  • Experience with relational databases, preferably Blackbaud CRM or Raiser’s Edge;
  • Ability to prioritize and work with a high degree of independence;
  • Ability to work well as part of a team;
  • High degree of customer service skills;
  • Excellent analytical and interpersonal skills, including ability to express all appropriate information clearly and concisely, whether written or verbal;
  • Ability to manage several projects simultaneously, set priorities and meet deadlines;
  • Understanding of basic financial principles and an unwavering attention and commitment to matters of discretion and confidentiality.
  • This is a full time, exempt position reporting to the Prospect Research Manager. We offer a competitive salary and an excellent benefit program.

To apply, please submit cover letter and resume to:

Apply Now

If you have questions please contact Denise Jelinek at The position will remain open until filled, so apply now.