Now Hiring: Chief Development Officer

May 26, 2023


Position Title:
Chief Development Officer


Directly Reports to:
President & CEO

Pay Range:
90K – 110K

How to Apply:
Interested applicants please submit a cover letter and resume to:  Subject Line: DPSF CDO POSITION. 

About DPS Foundation: 

The Detroit Public Schools Foundation’s (DPSF) mission is to create and enhance educational opportunities that are equitable and inclusive for the Detroit Public Schools Community District’s (DPSCD) students, families, and educators by building strong community philanthropic partnerships and advocating for policy and systematic change. DPSF has worked collaboratively with the Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) since 2009 as its fundraising and fiduciary arm and has implemented and managed over 100 programs focused in several areas that improves 

education and serves the students holistically with major priority areas being: education and literacy, health, science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM), workforce, college pathways, and experiences beyond the classroom. This is achieved by executing fiduciary responsibilities over donations, leveraging partnerships and resources, grant administrative management and fiscal and programmatic oversight. The DPS Foundation in partnership with DPSCD has established an exciting strategic plan with key fundraising opportunities for the next five years that includes a capital campaign, alumni engagement, supportive services initiatives, and major gifts. 

Chief Development Officer Position Summary: 

The DPS Foundation is seeking a passionate and highly experienced fundraising executive ready to lead an impactful and sustainable multilayered annual giving campaigns and initiatives to holistically support the students, families, and teachers at the Detroit Public Schools Community District. Working in partnership and closely with president and CEO, the Chief Development Officer will execute the organization’s philanthropic initiatives, with a primary focus on building critical individuals and major gifts with key stakeholders and overseeing government and foundation grants. The CDO will assist in representing the agency in a variety of settings in support of our mission to build equitable and inclusive educational opportunities for students and families. A successful candidate will require strong communication skills, political/social savvy, program implementation and close attention to detail.  

Additionally, this position will have the ability to build a team to ensure success and will work closely with communications and operations. This position will direct the development operations, encompassing direct mail, special fundraising events, volunteerism, and special campaigns focused on increasing revenue for The DPSF and DPSCD. The successful candidate must be a self-starter, have strong leadership, management, financial, supervisory, and administrative skills, but most importantly, the ability to develop and cultivate strong relationships with a broad range of individual and institutional stakeholders. This position serves as a member of the senior leadership team and will have mentorship, recruiting, and supervisory responsibilities as the development team expands. A compelling candidate will be self-directed and have strong analytical and project management skills. Fundraising, grant writing, and major gifts experience with demonstrated success in development planning and capacity building are required. 



Responsibilities and Duties


• Collaborate to implement the strategy that will deliver $3,000,000+ in new gifts and commitments on an annual basis.

• Implement the overall strategy to track fundraising, including goal setting, and engagement.

• Work alongside the president and CEO to set the overarching direction, establish metrics, in donor culttvation and solicitation efforts, demonstrating the ability to close the deal.

• Has the ability to lead the development of government grants, foundation grants from conception to completion.

• Develop and steward strong relationships with major donors, funders, and stakeholders, resulting in financial support.

• Represent the organization at a wide variety of events/meetings to engage with donors, prospects, community leaders and other decision makers.

• Implement and execute major and planned giving strategies.

• Successfully solicit major gifts from individuals, corporations, and foundations.

• Develop and execute volunteer, fundraising, planned giving, endowment, and other fundraising strategies.



• Lead development department and some relevant board committees in devising comprehensive fund development strategies and associated performance measurement criteria and track the performance of current and potential future projects against these standards.

• Participate on the foundation’s executive team.

• Maintain strong relationships with other leaders and departments within DPSCD.

• Oversee the hiring, supervision, and mentorship of development staff.

• Plan and execute special events with the support of enttre DPSF staff.

• Volunteer coordinatton and scheduling.

• Ensure full compliance with all funder/ donor requirements.



• Bachelor’s degree from a 4-year accredited college or university.

• Experience in fundraising in workforce development, college readiness, youth enrichment, youth educatton, social services, or human services.

• CFRE credenttals preferred but not mandatory.

• Excellent public speaking, writen, and interpersonal communicattons skills.

• Experience securing government and local grants.

• 7+ years’ progressive experience in professional fund development, with measurable success.

• Experience directly solicittng six-figure and higher contributtons.

• Working knowledge of capital campaigns, planned giving and endowment strategies.

• Proficient in budgettng and financial management skills

• Ability to lead in a fast paced and hybrid office/remote work environment.

• Demonstrated ability to skillfully navigate internal and external polittcal structures/systems.

• Experience in donor database management, knowledge of Donor Perfect preferred.

• DPS/DPSCD graduate preferred, not required.

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