Chief Development Officer
Job Title: Chief Development Officer
Reports to: Chief Executive Officer
Location: Washington, DC
Job posted: April 7, 2023
A national public charity based in Washington, D.C., the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy is dedicated to building a stronger, more equitable America through literacy. Since the Foundation’s establishment in 1989 by first lady Barbara Bush, it has supported evidence-based family literacy programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The Barbara Bush Foundation is the nation’s leading advocate in breaking the multigenerational cycle of low literacy and improving the quality of life for families. Recognizing that this multigenerational issue has been historically under-resourced and under-researched, the Foundation believes that investing in adult literacy will positively impact economic, health, and social outcomes, transforming families, historically marginalized communities, and our nation as a whole.
The Foundation envisions that one million adults will achieve proficiency in literacy in the next five years, spurring positive economic, health, and social outcomes in the U.S.
The Barbara Bush Foundation is brimming with energy under the visionary leadership of President and CEO British A. Robinson, who has led the Foundation’s transition from a grantmaker to an implementing organization with a mission-forward profile since her 2018 appointment. The Foundation has identified adult literacy as its area of core focus and is compellingly articulating its impact on workforce development, jobs, and poverty alleviation. The Foundation is currently developing marketing plans to complement the high level of individual external relations activity of its President and CEO to bring greater visibility to its transformational work.
The Foundation is committed to building out a best-practices development program and fundraising team on par with the overall excellence of the organization. Amid this environment of forward-looking investment and expansion, the Foundation is seeking a seasoned, entrepreneurial fundraising leader to propel its philanthropic future in a period of rapid growth. Reporting directly to the President and CEO and serving on the executive leadership team, the Chief Development Officer (CDO) will be responsible for creating and implementing the Foundation’s fundraising strategy and leading a major-gifts-focused, comprehensive development program. They will be a key visioning and thought partner to the President and CEO and the Chief Operating Officer for fundraising and organization-wide strategy, also serving as proxy for the chief executive or other senior Foundation leaders when necessary.
The CDO will be an enthusiastic ambassador for the Foundation and will foster catalytic philanthropic growth, developing and deepening critical engagements with partners and driving broader awareness and philanthropic support for the organization. The CDO will lead the Development team’s efforts to implement a comprehensive development program in order to significantly grow the Foundation’s philanthropic revenue from a broad base of supporters, including individuals, corporations, foundations, government entities, and community organizations. The CDO will be empowered to evaluate and enhance the functional and/or organizational alignment of the current Development team in consultation with the President and CEO, with the understanding that additional team capacity will be needed going forward.
The successful candidate will have demonstrated success in implementing, growing, and managing a high-performing development program, as well as a proven ability to partner with organizational leadership. They will have experience in successful solicitation strategies for high-capacity individual, corporate, and foundation donors, and working with partners to support a comprehensive, multi-phased development effort.
While the Foundation will consider a broad range of backgrounds, the ideal candidate will have the following qualifications/experience:
- Passion for the Barbara Bush Foundation’s mission.
- Fifteen years or more in nonprofit fundraising with increasingly responsible experience in the creation and execution of development strategy and programs, with an established track record of growing a donor base and increasing philanthropic revenue. Broad knowledge of all functional areas comprising a multi-faceted, comprehensive development program (e.g., individual, institutional, major, planned, digital, and annual giving; special events; donor communications; stewardship; operations).
- Knowledge of and fundamental adherence to the principles, ethics, and best practices of modern fundraising.
- Five or more years of experience managing a team of development professionals. Ability to recruit, lead, evaluate, and develop staff and contribute to the ongoing fostering of a results-oriented, multiracial/multicultural workforce. Experience managing budgets and revenue forecasts.
- Demonstrated commitment to and understanding of how to build diversity, equity, and inclusion in the development function; culturally competent with respect to issues such as racial, cultural, religious, sexual, and gender identity.
- Demonstrated success in developing the case for support and strategic, innovative fundraising plans, and executing those plans to grow fundraising and exceed goals. Significant experience identifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding major gifts from individual and institutional donors at the level of six to seven-figures or greater.
- A forward thinker with a track record of utilizing new methods of constituent engagement and connectivity.
- Demonstrated ability to integrate data into decision-making and strategy development.
- Working knowledge of modern data management practices and innovations that can streamline development processes and contribute to the integration of related functions.
- Ability to travel on a national scale.
- Current authorization to work in the United States; must have such authorization by the first day of employment.
All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy has retained the DSG Fundraising & Advancement Practice of the Diversified Search Group to assist in this confidential search process. Inquiries, nominations, and applications (current resumes and cover letters) may be submitted here,
or directed to:
Gerard F. Cattie, Jr.
Managing Director and DSG Fundraising & Advancement Practice Leader
Diversified Search Group
The Chrysler Building, 405 Lexington Avenue, 49th Floor, New York, New York 10174
firstname.lastname@example.org | 212.542.2587