Web Site:www.pittsburghopera.org
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Director of ProductionFull-Time
Manager of Special Events

Job Summary:
Pittsburgh Opera is seeking qualified applicants for the position of Manager of Special Events. The Manager of Special Event reports directly to the Director of Development and is an integral part of Pittsburgh Opera’s development staff. This individual will manage a portfolio that cultivates  philanthropic relationships with Pittsburgh Opera patrons, ticket buyers and friends through various events, ranging from large-scale, formal galas to intimate gatherings in homes.

As this position requires extensive contact with Pittsburgh Opera’s Board of Directors, major donors and major gift prospects, the Manager of Special Events is considered a part of the frontline fundraising staff and will utilize events as a donor cultivation and stewardship vehicle and be able to assist in developing event strategies to further these relationships with Pittsburgh Opera. The Manager of Special Events works with the Director of Development, Manager of Individual Giving, and Manager of Corporate Development to promote attendance of and secure underwriting from corporations and individuals for events.

Job responsibilities:

  • Special Events: Plan, produce and execute major events of the highest caliber throughout the year, managing Board-approved revenue and expense budgets to generate approximately $500,000 in net income for the company. Work with the development staff to coordinate event logistics for cultivation events involving donors and prospects. Maintain, research and expand event prospect lists. Work with volunteer committees and event co-chairs to carry out the event theme, to co-ordinate and interface with event vendors, to determine matters involving all-aspects decorations and menus, to secure entertainment, auctioneers and auction items, and to ensure the success of all aspects of planning the event within budget. Supervise development of promotional materials, invitations and manage electronic media, print production and direct mail projects related to the event. Coordinate event logistics and invitation processes from developing guest lists to producing invitations, recording responses and processing payment and timely acknowledgments. The Manager of Special Events in a timely manner will acknowledge all gifts, purchases and contributions and track all income and expenses from events, and fulfill delivery of all auction items.In all responsibilities, the Manager of Special Events will coordinate with the marketing department, finance department, production department and other Pittsburgh Opera departments as necessary.
  • Event Sponsorships: Work with volunteer chairs, committee members and with staff to achieve revenue goals by selling sponsorships, tables, and tickets and by soliciting cash contributions. Research, identify, cultivate, and solicit new, renewing, and lapsed relationships; keep Director of Development, other Opera staff and, as appropriate, event co-chairs up to date on event planning progress and revenue and cost projections; provide appropriate benefits, timely acknowledgments, and reports/ records of all events.


  • Bachelor’s degree plus three or more years of professional experience in special events management and development, preferably in a nonprofit organization;
  • Experience managing special events, fulfilling sponsorships, maintaining project budgets and organizing successful auctions with appropriate follow-up. A record of increasing the ROI of corporate campaigns or special events;
  • A positive, donor-centric approach to interfacing with donors and event volunteers;
  • Familiarity with and appreciation of opera/classical music; high energy and passion for Pittsburgh Opera’s mission;
  • Superior written and verbal communication, as well as organizational and time management skills, with exceptional attention to detail and how those details effect, and are a part of, donor cultivation strategies;
  • Proficiency in donor/customer relationship management software, such as Tessitura (preferred) or Raiser’s Edge and Microsoft Office (Outlook, Excel, Word and PowerPoint);
  • A professional, sophisticated and resourceful style; The ability to take initiative, and to manage multiple tasks independently and to thrive in an open, fast-paced office environment;
  • Candidates must have a valid drivers’ license, a personal vehicle, and be available to work nights and weekends.

Salary and Benefits:
This is a salaried, exempt position. Salary commensurate with experience and demonstrated skills. Benefits include medical and vision; paid vacation days and holidays.  Pittsburgh Opera is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization and is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

To apply:
Please respond by email only to Kristin Gatch at kgatch@pittsburghopera.org. Your email should include a cover letter, resume and a brief (1-2 pages) writing sample.


Questions about Membership or this application? Please contact Vincent Covatto, organizational membership manager, at VCovatto@operaamerica.org or by calling 646.699.5237.
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