Position: Director, Research

February 2014

Position Summary

The Director of Research leads the research office’s effort to support the fundraising of the Metropolitan Opera by providing research on individuals, corporations and foundations and identifying and qualifying Patrons. Supervises a staff of three.

Primary Responsibilities


  • Responsible for the content, caliber, presentation and availability of all individual, foundation and corporate research. 
  • Perform research using standard reference sources and in-house databases and files.  
  • Establish research procedures and policies. 
  • Provide research to high-level volunteers and executive staff members. 
  • Provide research for cultivation and ticketed events. 
  • Identify prospective and current Patrons who have the inclination and capacity to upgrade their membership to higher giving levels. 
  • Lead and administer prospect meetings. 
  • Ensure that research staff adheres to industry ethical standards and maintain confidentiality. 
  • Interact and provide research to other Metropolitan Opera departments.



  • Supervise and hire research staff.
  • Responsible for the creation of the Met’s annual Board Directory, requiring interaction with Met leadership and Board members and coordinating the efforts of researchers, writers, photographers, and graphics department
  • Manage the annual Research Department budget. Responsible for all budget preparation, re-forecast and tracking distribution of all monies.
  • Manage the daily calendar of Research projects and set long-range goals and objectives.
  • Maintain in-house request tracking system
  • Evaluate available products and negotiate with outside vendors to ensure services necessary to operate multi-faceted department.
  • Responsible for training selected members of the Development staff on general research tools.
  • Establish policies and procedures regarding periodical file collections

Data and Records

  • Develop and maintain an expert familiarity of the Tessitura database; become well versed in Met business practices regarding location and use of information in the database; act as department authority regarding database issues
  • Act as Development liaison with Application Support and Finance regarding data issues; oversee and vet appropriateness of modifications to database; represent Development’s interests on the Met’s Tessitura leadership team
  • Work with Assistant Director Donor Information and with Application Support to develop and fine tune reports to best serve development needs
  • Update and Maintain accurate Board information and record changes in Tessitura, ensuring that an accurate Board list may be pulled from Tessitura at all times
  • Approve of all  Met Board Lists, announce changes in Board composition to GM Office and Development Staff, IS and Press Departments 
  • Oversee the maintenance of donor files

Qualifications and Skill Requirements

  • Strong management skills.
  • Strong supervisory skills.
  • 5-7 years in prospect research.
  • Extensive knowledge of research databases such as Lexis/Nexis, BoardEx, PRO, DnBi, etc.
  • Must have excellent communication and writing skills.
  • Must have sophisticated end-user computer skills and experience using databases, with Tessitura experience preferred.
  • Ability to multi-task.

To Apply:

Please send your resume with a cover letter to resumes@metopera.org.

E-Mail (Preferred): resumes@metopera.org