Posted On: 2017-11-10
Closing On: 2017-11-20
Location: Toronto, ON
Employment Type: Full-Time
Level: Senior

Job Description

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is one of Canada’s most important cultural institutions, recognized internationally as an outstanding orchestra and proud to represent Canada on the world stage. The TSO exists to inspire, enrich and engage audiences of all ages, to enhance our city, and to serve as a showcase of the beauty and power of orchestral music. It is an exciting time in the organization’s history with initiatives underway that will strengthen the TSO’s foundation, deepen its connection with the community, and provide music lovers with meaningful opportunities to get involved.

The Opportunity

The TSO is seeking a Director of Major Gifts who is a seasoned fund development leader with a proven track record of success working with major gift fundraising (gifts $25,000+) and individual giving, having personally closed six-figure gifts and grown overall major gift program revenues. As an accomplished and ambitious builder, the incumbent’s experience will also include the development of comprehensive program strategies and accompanying tactics.

Reporting to the Vice-President (VP), Development, the Director of Major Gifts will provide leadership and mentorship related to the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major donors.

Key responsibilities

  • Actively manage a portfolio of 75-100 major gifts prospects, personally conducting cultivation visits, solicitations calls, and stewardship activities.
  • Continually identify, qualify, cultivate, solicit and steward new donors and prospects.
  • With the Vice-President, Development, create and implement an ambitious strategic framework for Major Gifts fundraising, and oversee the development, implementation and evaluation of a multi-year plan aligned with the TSO’s strategic priorities and based in best practices.
  • With the Vice-President, Development, manage the participation of senior staff, volunteers and other key stakeholders in major gifts fundraising activities to effectively advance relationships with donors and prospects, and build a pipeline of support for the future.
  • Liaise with staff in other departments to remain current with existing and planned TSO initiatives and priorities in order to identify, cultivate and promote opportunities for philanthropic support.
  • Develop and implement appropriate and customized cultivation and moves management strategies.
  • Prepare and/or oversee the development of proposals, brochures, letters, briefing notes, call reports and other fundraising materials for assigned prospects.
  • Build and manage a Major Gifts program including hiring, coaching, and evaluating staff.
  • Measure portfolio performance against core metrics and report bi-weekly on activity and financial results.
  • Participate in the development and evaluation of departmental infrastructure, budget and strategic plan with senior Development staff.

Required Experience & Skills 

  • Exceptional strengths in major gift solicitation and demonstrated success in closing six-figure gifts.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of fundraising principles, practices and techniques (7+ years of fundraising experience preferred; CFRE desirable).
  • Ability to build strong relationships with prospective and current donors, board members and other senior volunteers, as well as senior leadership team members.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Strong analytical skills, with proven experience in developing and analyzing business cases and opportunities.
  • Strong business acumen, proactive approach with strong critical thinking and problem solving skills.
  • Ability to work effectively in a fast-paced environment.
  • Well-organized, detail-oriented, self-motivated, and effective at follow-through and priority setting.
  • Highly professional, tactful, mature, conscientious; high degree of personal integrity.
  • Interest in and knowledge of orchestral music highly desirable.

Flexibility in hours and ability to work evenings and/or weekends (during the Sept. to June concert season) as part of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra team is required. 

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra provides a collegial, entrepreneurial work environment and opportunities for advancement and professional development.

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra is an equal opportunity employer and encourages all qualified individuals to apply. The TSO is committed to providing accommodations for persons with disabilities. If you require accommodation, the TSO will work with you to meet your needs.

Application Process:

Please email your resume, cover letter, and salary expectations in confidence by November 20, 2017 to

Angela Nelson-Heesch
Acting Vice-President, Development
Toronto Symphony Orchestra

No Phone calls please.  We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those applicants considered for this position will be contacted.