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Position Opening: Development Director, Isabella Santos Foundation

Position:           Development Director 

Organization:    Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF)

Location:           Remote in Charlotte metro area

Reports To:       President

 

Organization Overview 

Mission & Vision
The Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF) is a 501(c)3 childhood cancer foundation dedicated to raising funds for research for neuroblastoma, other rare pediatric cancers, and charities that directly impact the lives of children with cancer. ISF was founded in honor of Isabella Santos from Charlotte, NC who lost her battle against neuroblastoma. ISF works to improve rare pediatric treatment options in an effort to improve the survival rate of kids with cancer.

History
In 2009, ISF was established through Isabella’s parents to raise awareness and research funds for neuroblastoma and received its tax-deductible 503(c)3 status in 2010. What began as an effort of a circle of friends has emerged into one of Charlotte’s fastest-growing nonprofit organizations. The goal of the foundation is to raise money and awareness for rare solid tumor cancer research in an effort to increase survival rates of kids with cancer so they can live their dreams. Through Isabella’s legacy, ISF works to help impact other kids fighting cancer in her name. To date, ISF has donated over $3.5 million to support its mission.

For more information about Isabella Santos Foundation, please visit isabellasantosfoundation.org.

Opportunity

Through the Isabella Santos Foundation, people across the country are raising money for solid-tumor cancer research and treatments. The foundation currently focuses on events, direct donations, sponsorships and peer-to-peer as the core fundraising strategies.

The Isabella Santos Foundation recently launched the Rare & Solid Tumor Program at Levine Children’s Hospital, ensuring children and families will have access to the latest cancer expertise in Charlotte and the surrounding region. The Isabella Santos Foundation made a commitment in 2018 to raise $5 million to create the Rare & Solid Tumor Program at Levine Children’s Hospital.

To achieve these goals, ISF is seeking a Development Director to source new donors and manage the organization’s fundraising strategy. The full-time Development Director is responsible for leading resource development activities toward generating $300,000 – $400,000 annually.

The Role

Reporting to the President, the Development Director will be responsible for implementing and managing a development program through a variety of revenue streams with a focus on the cultivation and expansion of new donors and stewardship of existing relationships.

The Development Director will be responsible for crafting a development plan and budget that supports the strategic plan of the staff and board leadership on an annual basis. The Director will be responsible for the design and execution of a comprehensive written annual fundraising plan and goal revenue projection to include individual donors and peer-to-peer strategies. Key responsibilities include:

Development Planning

  • In partnership with the President, craft annual development plan outlining the full-year of giving strategies to sustain and increase support from corporations, events, foundations and individuals
  • Create multi-year strategies for implementing a moves management model of resource development, prospecting, recruiting, engaging, soliciting and stewarding donors and sponsors

Culture Development

  • Establish a first-class stewardship program that effectively engages all constituents (staff, board, volunteers, donors) in supporting the ISF mission and in creating a culture of philanthropy
  • Activity participate in professional fundraising associations and industry groups to stay current of all new practices and innovations in the development field, employing appropriate best practices at ISF
  • Follow current fundraising trends in philanthropy and the nonprofit community

Individual Fundraising

  • Prioritize focus on acquisition strategies to uncover new sources of individual donors, building relationships to onboard them as constituents to the organization
  • Develop new peer-to-peer giving strategies to grow the base of funders and onboard constituents to the organization’s compelling mission
  • Oversee the organization’s efforts to deepen relationships, facilitating activities that increase affinity and engagement, increasing involvement and financial support
  • Maintain ongoing communication with major gift donors, stewarding their engagement with organizational leaders

Development Operations

  • Maintain timely records of all donor, sponsor and prospect contacts in donor database
  • In collaboration with the marketing team, develop content for a variety of channels related to fundraising
  • Assure accurate and timely member, donor, sponsor recognition, acknowledgements, and renewal letters for all financial and in-kind donations
  • Research effective ways to integrate social media strategies into giving campaigns

Required Qualifications & Competencies

The ideal candidate would have the following capabilities and qualities:

  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience in resource development or related field (i.e. marketing, external relations, business development/sales, community relations)
  • Demonstrated expertise in the areas of fundraising, especially cultivating and stewarding donors, peer-to-peer giving strategies and corporate sponsorship
  • A commitment to the ISF mission and ability to speak publicly about the mission with passion
  • Strong ability to make connections easily and create authentic relationships with a wide variety of individuals and groups
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • A self-starter, capable of working in a decentralized work environment
  • Solid analytical skills and basic understanding of financial levers
  • Proficiency with Google Suite, Microsoft Office and CRM software
  • Bachelor’s Degree required, with a preference for candidates with continuing education in advancement, fundraising and philanthropy; CFRE designation is a plus
  • Ability to work extended hours, including nights and weekends, as needed

Compensation
Base compensation will be in the $65,000 – $70,000 range with opportunities for performance-based bonuses.

To Apply

Isabella Santos Foundation has partnered with Next Stage to help in this hire. Beginning September 16, 2019, all inquiries, nominations and applications should be directed via email to Next Stage (search@nextstage-consulting.com). Applications must include a compelling cover letter and CV to be considered for the role. Please also indicate where you learned of the opportunity.

Please note that only those candidates invited for screening will be contacted. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

Isabella Santos Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in its works and staff. Employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sex, national origin, physical or mental disability, age, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable state of federal law. ISF encourages candidates of all groups and communities to apply for this position.

About Next Stage

Next Stage is a strategy and implementation firm based in Charlotte, NC and serving nonprofit organizations and social cause start-ups throughout the Carolinas.  Next Stage works with nonprofit organizations to develop game-changing strategies and strengthened operations in service to mission and long-range vision. We partner with clients through three key service lines: strategic planning, resource development planning, and talent development. For more information about Next Stage, please visit nextstage-consulting.com.

CULTIVATE: Strengthening the Board of Directors (Module #3)

by Josh Jacobson

Throughout 2018, Next Stage will share the progress of organizations participating in the inaugural year of CULTIVATE, the firm’s incubator for emerging nonprofit organizations in the Charlotte area. The year is broken into 12 modules lasting one month in length. In March, CULTIVATE participants are focused on strengthening the board of directors. 

A distinguishing factor of nearly all nonprofit organizations with strong, long-term outcomes is a high-performing board of directors.  It is a fundamental building block.  Some organizations may be able to overcome a weak board for a period of time, but the passage of time tends to ferret those nonprofits out. There simply is no surrogate for a dynamic, bought-in board.

Nonprofits are certainly unique business models – the governance responsibility for managing these public assets is placed in the hands of volunteer leaders who are rarely compensated for their efforts. These volunteers must work collaboratively to serve the best interests of all people, not just the individuals prioritized in the organization’s mission statement.  There is no other system quite like it.  Very likely with good reason – it is rife with potential pitfalls.

The March work of CULTIVATE participants has been devoted to designing, launching and maintaining a plan for optimizing their boards.  Whether an organization is in its initial stages of building its first board of directors or at an important turning point of moving past the founding board to find new recruits, the March curriculum for CULTIVATE suggests creating a strong governance platform in service to future growth.

Governance Design

The board of directors for most emerging organizations look pretty similar – a handful of individuals sourced from the founder’s network mixed with individuals who have been inspired to join along the way.  As the organization experiences success, the design of the board becomes increasingly important – what was once a helpful group of volunteers who were taking their cues from the founder must become a system of leadership through which the founder works. This “flipping” of the board, from following to leading, occurs in nearly every organization that succeeds beyond a decade, and comes with it a design challenge: what is the best way to design a board of directors to serve the long-term needs of the organization?

CULTIVATE participants are exploring methods of structuring the governing board to ensure near-term and long-term success, including the need for other types of volunteer structures, and delineating roles and responsibilities for all volunteers serving in a leadership capacity.

Sourcing Strategy

With the governance structure well-articulated, the next step is to attract volunteers who are willing to do the work.  This is no easy task and requires thoughtfulness.  There is no more frustrating outcome for a nonprofit founder or executive director than to realize too late that the wrong person has joined their board – an activity that can result in not only lost time and resources but potentially also discord and in extreme cases mutiny.

That’s right, I said mutiny, at least in the eyes of the founder who has placed his or her trust in the hands of a group of others. These others are often not the same people who “walked the walk” with the founder in the early days, and can be ill-suited for the ups and downs of the “emerging nonprofit” phase of the organization’s lifecycle.

Too often, nonprofit founders are treating “willingness to serve” as the chief criteria when sourcing board members, and this can be a mistake. In March, CULTIVATE participants are learning how to leverage assets in service to board sourcing.  This includes diversifying to span boundaries and building an intentional moves management nomination process encapsulated in a board development plan.

Buy-In & Accountability

It is the word most often aligned with the board of directors – accountability.  Since board members are volunteers, it can be mightily difficult to encourage them to own their governance responsibilities.  Accountable board members are self-motivated to own their responsibilities, and that usually starts on day one.

Show me a nonprofit board and I am certain it has its challenges with accountability. Only the highest flying boards have created the sort of culture that would vote off the island immediately anyone who wasn’t pulling his or her weight. Encouraging accountability is both a singular and group activity.

CULTIVATE participants are designing onboarding strategy for new board members that prepare these new leaders for decision-making.  Participants will also understand a human-centered approach to encouraging accountability and how to implement it with their boards.

Next Up in April: Sourcing & Optimizing Volunteers and Staff (Module #4)