This job listing has expired and may no longer be relevant!
23 May 2022

School Network Staff Director of Development

Making Waves Foundation
 Richmond, Contra Costa County, California, United States

Job Description


MWF is a private operating foundation that supports Making Waves Academy (MWA), a 5-12 grade public charter school serving over 1,000 students in Richmond, CA, and the College & and Alumni Program (CAP), a college success program providing a critical bridge between college acceptance and graduation for over 600 college students. We are among the first organizations to focus on both college access and success as a strategy to support underserved and underrepresented students – from 5th grade through early career. Together, MWA and CAP form a unique, holistic educational model that supports students academically, socially, emotionally, and financially on their journey to, through, and beyond college.In 2020, Making Waves Foundation launched a new ten-year strategic plan centered on increasing the effectiveness of our existing program and expanding that programming to reach more students across Contra Costa County. 

MWF seeks to hire a Director of Development to lead our organization’s fundraising efforts to ensure the financial sustainability of the foundation and Making Waves Academy (MWA). The annual fundraising goal is $3.5m with the majority of our funds coming from long standing individual supporters local to the Bay Area. The Director of Development will spend the first six months in their role focused on building relationships with key stakeholders (e.g. our Chief Executive Officer, existing donors, MWF staff, and MWA leadership), conducting a landscape analysis of our development department, and partnering with the Chief Finance and Strategy Officer to build a robust forecasting and progress tracking process. We anticipate that the majority of fundraising dollars earned in FY23 and FY24 will come from renewals from existing donors and that the Director of Development will need to identify and secure $500K in new funding by the end of FY24.

In the first two years, the Director of Development will be responsible for supporting and collaborating with the CEO in crafting a clear and coherent multi-year strategy to diversify our donor base which could include seeking money from corporate, government, foundation, and/or major gift avenues. Our ideal candidate is energized to build thoughtful programming that connects potential and existing donors to our work, is adept at the mechanics of individual giving, and either has experience in or is excited to learn about other funding streams. This position reports to the CEO, Patrick O’Donnell, will hire and manage one full time employee, and will have access to resources to hire consulting support to supplement both capacity and experience gaps as needed.



We are proud of the above market total rewards package to our employees in line with our guiding principles of centering transparency and equity, rewarding expertise and performance, and championing professional wellness. The Director of Development is a full-time, exempt role, and will be eligible to receive:

  • A competitive base salary range of $99,200 – 148,800 based on requisite work experience and performance during the interview process. In line with our commitment to equity, fairness, and transparency, we have adopted a no salary negotiation policy. We understand the historical inequities created by salary negotiations and believe in offering a starting salary that is fair and grounded in evidence collected during a clear, competency-aligned hiring process. 
  • Signing bonus of 5% of base salary
  • 51 total days off per fiscal year (a combination of company-paid holidays, vacation, sick, and personal time)
  • 100% employer paid medical (Kaiser HMO Platinum), vision, and dental benefits for the full-time staff member and a spouse/domestic partner or dependent child(ren).
  • An array of well-rounded benefits, including monthly staff lunches, retirement match, mental health benefits (HSA), FSA for medical and childcare expenses, and a professional development stipend
  • A hybrid work environment where staff work from the office 1-2 days per week and have flexibility to work remotely otherwise. We provide a monthly wi-fi reimbursement and a home set-up stipend to set staff up to successfully work remotely 



The Director of Development’s Primary Responsibilities include:

  • Fundraising strategy, execution and tracking
      • Ensure that the organization consistently hits fundraising targets (estimated at $3.5mm for both FY23 and FY24)
      • Conduct an initial landscape analysis and create an annual strategy centered on assuming leadership of existing fundraising and driving towards diversified and increased fundraising in out years (corporate, government, foundation, and/or major gifts)
      • Build donor facing programming to connect existing and potential donors to our work
      • Partner with the Chief Finance and Strategy Officer to set a vision for forecasting that is grounded in a weighted pipeline and run a process to periodically review fundraising picture and strategy
      • Anticipate fundraising outcomes and create smart pivots and/or contingency plans to mitigate risk
      • Ensure that the organization is operating in Salesforce in ways that ensure strong data integrity and accurate reporting
  • Supporting the CEOs of Making Waves Foundation and Making Waves Academy
      • Connect to and operationalize the MWF CEO’s vision for the board experience (e.g. managing scheduling, team preparation, and meeting logistics)
      • Conduct research and create differentiated strategy for donor cultivation and stewardship for both CEOs
      • Provide coaching and support to both CEOs around storytelling and donor communication
      • Building infrastructure and systems to reduce data entry and other operational responsibilities for both CEOs
  • Hire, train, and manage a full time staff member to job performance and satisfaction
      • Partner with VP of Talent to hire and onboard a development support staff member
      • Leverage experience and resources (e.g. team management software, MWF-sponsored management training) to build a culture of continuous feedback and development 
      • A track record of inclusively leading a team of direct reports and cross-functional partners to ambitious outcomes
      • A commitment to continuous learning and development in managing others 
  • Actively Engage in Continuous Improvement and Organization Processes
      • Prioritize Professional Growth: Research, schedule, and participate in professional development opportunities in service of their professional growth and impact on the organization  
      • Participate in organization-wide systems, processes, and rituals (e.g., annual and quarterly goal setting, employee engagement surveys, All Hands); commit to providing feedback to improve our work in the future  



What you’ve accomplished (required):

  • 6+ years of relevant work experience with 3+ years of management experience
  • Fundraising experience that includes leading the entire donor lifecycle with an individual (e.g identify, qualify, cultivate, ask, secure) resulting in 5-, 6- and/or 7-figure gifts
  • Experience working on a development team that successfully forecasts and conducts regular progress to goal conversations
  • Experience managing full time staff members to strong job performance and satisfaction


Other things you might have accomplished or would be excited to learn here:

  • Fundraising experience with institutions (e.g. corporate, foundation, government, etc.)
  • Experience working at a matrixed organization fundraising for multiple entities at once
  • A working knowledge of education systems, including schools and college access, and an excitement to stay current on trends within education at the national level and local to the Bay Area


Skills you have developed and knowledge you have acquired:

  • An adept operator who is capable of complex project management in a relationship funnel context and is highly effective at managing others to outcomes through solid and dotted lines 
  • A highly relational professional with the capacity to build strong, trusting relationships at both Making Waves organizations and the gravitas to compel existing and potential donors to support our work
  • A strategist who approaches work through an analytical lens in service of thoughtful prioritization, disciplined and purposeful pivots, and contingency planning to ensure outcomes are met
  • An experienced fundraising professional with the content knowledge necessary to find success in this role:
    • Knowledge of best practices to identify and build network maps of high wealth individuals and institutions
    • Full understanding of the major gift donor life cycle and a depth of knowledge to drive differentiated strategy and approach across donors
    • Ability to oversee team and stakeholders towards strong data integrity
    • Ability to lead effective forecasting and progress to goal conversations
    • Ability both fully own donor relationships and to support executives to efficiently and effectively fundraise


How you work and what you value:

  • You relate with and align with our core values (drive impact, promote equity, build community, do hard things, learn and grow)
  • You have a deep and authentic commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and are eager to manage staff, serve on our leadership team, and lead our development function in ways that are fully centered on these values
  • You will be excited to innovate, enjoy the iterative nature of that work, and are a entrepreneurial self starter
  • You enjoy working on a team and will operate in ways that will build trust with teammates (integrity, reliability, empathy, etc.)
  • You enjoy fundraising, are driven by results, and will be satisfied in a leadership role that fully spans high level strategy to tactical execution
  • You enjoy managing others and are adept at coaching and developing others to strong job performance and satisfaction outcomes



Making Waves Foundation has partnered with RCG Talent Solutions on our search for the Director of Development. Please follow this link to submit your application and direct all questions to RCG Talent Solutions will review all applicants and, upon qualification, contact you to determine next steps.



Making Waves Foundation has implemented a hybrid work model starting in January 2022. Making Waves Foundation is requiring all staff members who work on-site to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, as defined by the CDC. Accommodations or exceptions can be requested directly to someone on the Talent Team for medical or religious reasons.

Making Waves Foundation strives to build a staff that reflects the cultural diversity of the communities that we partner with. Making Waves Foundation provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. We encourage BIPOC identifying individuals to apply.


This job description reflects Making Waves Foundation’s assignment of essential functions and qualifications of the role. Nothing in this herein restricts management’s right to assign, reassign, or eliminate duties and responsibilities to this role at any time.

How to Apply

Making Waves Foundation has partnered with RCG Talent Solutions on our search for the Director of Development. Please follow this link to submit your application and direct all questions to RCG Talent Solutions will review all applicants and, upon qualification, contact you to determine next steps.

Bureaus: Bay Area. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: School Network Staff. Salaries: 100,000 and above.