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Special Events Manager


Title: Special Events Manager
Reports to: Director of Development
Department: Development
Employment Classification: Exempt (salaried)
Job Description (PDF)

Job Summary

The Special Events Manager plans, coordinates and executes all special events for the Santa Fe Opera, including major fundraisers, donor benefit/stewardship and cultivation events, and pre- and post-performance events.

The individual serves as a key member of a highly-effective development team and is critical to overall fundraising success of the organization.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work closely with the Director of Development to plan and execute all revenue-generating special events including the Opening Weekend Celebration, Opening Night Dinners, Summer and Winter Galas, among others.
  • Serve as the primary project manager for all other events including cast and company parties, and cultivation events throughout the year.
  • Assist the Director of the Annual Fund to plan and execute Donor Week events.
  • Assist the Business Council Manager to plan and execute Business Campaign Kick-off event, Business Council reception and dress rehearsal, and other events.
  • Assist Major Gift Officers and/or planned giving staff to plan and execute the Aria! Society Luncheon and other planned giving events.
  • Work with the Director of Operations to meet with outside groups hosting their events on the opera grounds.
  • Work with the Director of Development and Major Gift Officers to secure homes/hosts for events including quarterly board cocktail events, Opening Weekend private home dinners and cast welcome parties.
  • Work with the Director of Development to plan and execute quarterly board dinners with local hotel partners.
  • With the Director of Development, oversee the creative direction of events including event décor and florals, artistic content/musical programming, and featured speakers.
  • With the Director of Development, oversee the creative direction of print materials including save-the-date and invitation design, benefit committee materials such as solicitation letters, as well as dinner programs and signage.
  • Manage all aspects of special event mailings including building and maintaining lists and extractions from Tessitura database.
  • Prepare Event Memos for all special events detailing logistics and attendance.
  • Work with research team to ensure accurate research profiles and photos for all event attendees.
  • Interface with Artistic Staff to coordinate event invitations for creative team members and artists.
  • Maintain accurate Tessitura records (activities and elevated events) tracking attendance, seating, dietary preferences, and other pertinent guest information.
  • Oversee donor lists and special recognition for event attendees and hosts in season program book.
  • Manage invoicing for all event underwriting gifts and processing for all event-related in-kind donations.
  • Secure in-kind donations from vendors for event-related goods and services.
  • Oversee all event-related staffing requirements including interns and volunteers.
  • Recruit, hire and manage Special Events Intern during the summer festival season.
  • Maintain accurate revenue projections and expense budgets for all events and prepare quarterly event reports.
  • Reconcile and submit vendor invoices for payment.
  • Maintain annual events calendar.
  • Attend all special events. This may include many late nights during the season as well as weekends.
  • Other duties, as assigned.

Essential Job Requirements

Undergraduate degree and 5 years of combined fundraising and special event experience required.

  • Must have excellent interpersonal communication skills, exemplary phone manners, demonstrated organizational ability, and an eye for detail with the ability to manage multiple projects.
  • Ability to initiate and complete projects and assignments with minimal guidance.
  • Knowledge of opera/artists and other performing arts organizations is preferred.
  • Excellent computer skills with a strong knowledge of Microsoft Office is required; a working knowledge of Tessitura is preferred.
  • Flexible schedule and ability to attend and drive to all SFO-related events on evenings and weekends is required.
  • Valid driver’s license and access to an automobile is necessary.

This job description in no way implies that these are the only duties to be performed by the employee occupying this position. The fundamental job requirements are included and these are the essential job functions. Employees will be required to perform any other job-related duties assigned by their supervisor. All requirements are subject to possible modification to reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities.

The Santa Fe Opera has an industry-wide reputation as an excellent employer, providing rewarding opportunities amid a setting of great natural beauty. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, The Santa Fe Opera celebrates diversity and inclusion. We do not discriminate against any employee or job applicant on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, creed, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, disability, age, veteran status, political affiliation or philosophy. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply.

Application Process

Submit a completed employment application form, your resume, cover letter and e-mail to Human Resources or by mail to:

The Santa Fe Opera
Attention: Human Resources
Post Office Box 2408
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504-2408

application process
Application Form (PDF)