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Career Center 

Vice President/Chief Development Officer

Company: JCFS Chicago
Location: Chicago, IL
KEES has been exclusively retained by JCFS Chicago in its search for a new Vice President/Chief Development Officer.

JCFS Chicago seeks a senior level philanthropic professional to serve as the agency’s next Vice President/Chief Development Officer (VP/CDO). The role reports directly to Howard Sitron, President and CEO.

The successful candidate will be dually focused on agency Leadership and Individual Giving, leading a high functioning team responsible for effective management of a comprehensive philanthropy program, and managing a portfolio of high potential donors, including board and committee members for cultivation, solicitation and stewardship. The VP/CDO will work closely with the CEO and Board to determine annual philanthropic goals, including a strategy and follow-through steps to achieve or exceed them. The position will be based at the Joy Faith Knapp Children’s Center in Chicago’s West Rogers Park neighborhood.

Specific Requirements Include:

  • Serve on the core leadership team of the agency, ensuring excellency in all areas of program delivery and service to the community.
  • Serve as the primary face of all things relative to philanthropy within JCFS Chicago and beyond. Be a prominent face in Jewish social services locally and nationally and show leadership and initiative in broad issues facing the sector and the community.
  • Support the Board of Directors and the President and CEO to exemplify the highest level of strategic donor interaction.
  • Manage all aspects of campaigns (e.g. designated, capital, comprehensive, etc.) from project planning through successful completion. The current annual campaign of $3.64M has already exceeded that goal.
  • Develop and manage a caseload of prospective major donors who give or have the capacity to invest at $10,000 or higher.
  • Work diligently to meet agreed upon monthly and annual activity and income production goals, and be purposeful about every visit, communication, and the desired outcome for each “touch.”
  • Lead all agency fundraising events directly or through designee, including coordination with lay leadership, board/staff committees, staff and auxiliaries.
  • Monitor budget and revenue targets and ensure that those supervised perform within revenue and expense guidelines and expectations.
  • Track industry trends, strategy and best practices, including educating others and evaluating opportunities for continuous improvement. Act as a resource for current practice and strategy, particularly around published materials on current industry trends.
  • Maintain active membership and a strong presence in professional organizations, community groups, and other spaces relevant to the work of JCFS Chicago and its mission.
  • Create and implement a plan to identify and build strong relationships with key donors, community leaders and volunteers, and engage organizations with which JCFS Chicago should partner.
  • Serve as a primary agency partner to the key donor (The Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago) and other large funding organizations.
  • A minimum of seven years of fundraising experience in roles demonstrating increasing levels of responsibility; three or more managing a multi-functional team.
  • Highly effective interpersonal, conversational and presentational skills, demonstrating emotional intelligence and situational awareness.
  • Proven ability to solicit and secure 6-figure gifts.
  • Experience working closely with the CEO, Executive Team and Board Leadership in a complex agency, training and assisting leadership in managing major donor relationships.
  • Knowledge and understanding of the local Jewish community strongly preferred.
  • Career track record that shows stability with an organization and capacity to develop and nurture relationships culminating in overall success.
  • Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s in Philanthropy, Social Work, Business, Marketing or related graduate degree preferred.

This position offers a competitive salary with strong benefits. Relocation assistance may be offered. All inquiries will be held in strict confidence.

JCFS Chicago embraces diversity. Our commitment to inclusivity is woven throughout our services, programs and welcoming workplace. Clients, employees, volunteers and community partners have a right to be treated fairly and with dignity and respect, free of all discrimination and harassment including that which is based on race, culture, religion, disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or any other classification protected by law.


To assure confidential tracking of all applicants, no applications will be accepted via email. ALL INQUIRIES WILL BE HELD IN STRICT CONFIDENCE.

This search is being managed by Heather Eddy, President and CEO, and Laura Weinman, Assistant Vice President of KEES. Questions may be addressed to Megan DeVoe at mdevoe@kees2success.com.

KEES is a retained executive search and consulting firm that builds transformative teams and leaders in the nonprofit sector. KEES was founded in 2013 as an expansion of Alford Executive Search. For more information, please visit www.kees2success.com.

The mission of JCFS Chicago is to provide help, healing, and caring services infused with Jewish values to strengthen lives in our community. JCFS Chicago offers individualized help to support people of all ages and abilities as they strive to live successfully in their community, while enhancing social-emotional well-being for adults, children, teens, families, and individuals with disabilities—regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, ability, gender, or sexual orientation. For more information, please visit https://www.jcfs.org.