Posted On: 2018-07-11
Closing On: 2018-08-03
Location: Toronto
Employment Type: Full-Time
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Job Description


Frontier College is investing in individual giving and is seeking an entrepreneurial fundraising professional in the new position of Director, Major Gifts. The Director will play a key role in developing relationships and designing and implementing major gift strategies that will build and grow the base of individual donors.

This is an exciting time for fundraising at Frontier College. Building on its strong culture of loyal and significant corporate and institutional donors and partners, and its reputation as Canada’s leading and results driven literacy partner, this role provides an opportunity to further engage those within the organization’s network (i.e. alumni, volunteers, board members, etc.) as well as to expand the base for support. 

Reporting to the President & CEO and as part of a small and cohesive revenue generation team, the Director will work closely with Frontier College staff, regional offices, and the CEO to support the organization’s revenue generation plan.

This critical fundraising position will design and implement strategies to cultivate relationships at the $10,000+ level to support Frontier College’s high-quality; impactful programs that help vulnerable or at-risk children, youth and adults achieve important life milestones through literacy.



Frontier College is a national charitable literacy organization, established in 1899 on the belief that literacy is a right. We work collaboratively with nearly 500 community-based agencies across Canada to provide targeted, innovative literacy and numeracy support where it’s needed most. Each year, over 31,000 children, youth, and adults participate in our programs in more than 160 communities throughout the country with learner-centred programming in libraries, health centres, public housing sites, prisons, shelters, and schools.

In order to achieve our mission, we are committed to finding and using innovative ways to reach the people who need us most. Our activities, programs, and services are free and inclusive of any individual for whom our assistance is welcome and needed.

A person’s literacy skills can have an enormous impact on their quality of life. Low literacy skills are directly linked to poverty, poor health, and high unemployment – compared to people with a high level of literacy, someone with low literacy:

  • Is generally 1.5 to 3 times more likely to have adverse health outcomes. People with higher literacy skills are more likely to participate in disease screening and prevention practices, and are less likely to be hospitalized (DeWalt et al., 2004).
  • Have fewer choices when it comes to jobs, education, and housing. Household income for those with high literacy levels is 70% higher than for those at the lowest literacy levels (Statistics Canada, February 2016).
  • Is more likely to interact with the criminal justice system. Neighborhoods with lower literacy have higher crime rates. And people who commit crime – or are the victim of crime – are more likely to have lower levels of literacy (Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, 2008).

Every donation made to Frontier College helps to raise literacy levels in Canada, from cities to fly-in communities. In partnership with community-based organizations, Frontier College offers a variety of programs for children, youth, and adults. From one-to-one tutoring to reading tents where communities unite for the love of reading, our programs work to improve literacy in Canada.

Our approach is flexible and adaptable, and we encourage youth leadership and a learner-centered approach that creates autonomy, confidence, and a feeling of achievement.

Frontier College is accredited under the Imagine Canada Standards Program.





A mission-driven relationship builder, the ideal candidate is a self-starter with a passion for social causes and a desire to create and implement a vision for this growing major gifts program. A creative and savvy major gift strategist, the Director will balance planning with a commitment ‘to do’ and to execute. The new incumbent will have a track record of successfully closing five and six figure gifts. 

An authentic ‘people person’, the ideal candidate puts people and community first and values an environment that embraces diversity. The successful candidate is a builder with a desire to create and deliver success in a flexible, supportive setting. The Director will thrive in an unencumbered and nimble work environment with the right balance of strong collaboration and autonomous leadership. 

Having past experience engaging senior volunteers and community leaders in major gift prospect identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship, the ideal candidate will effectively work with and through others. The new incumbent will be comfortable navigating within large, complex organizations and working with volunteers and staff nationwide to inspire giving.

With a high degree of integrity and authentic commitment to our mandate, the Director will be aligned with our values, mission and vision around inclusivity, skill and confidence building and helping Canadians reach their potential and contribute to society.



  • Design and build a major gift program for Frontier College with a goal of doubling related revenue in the next three years.
  • Cultivate and manage a portfolio of major donors, defined as $1,000+. Conduct regular face to face meetings with donors, including solicitations.
  • Manage the major gift pipeline development to support annual revenue increases of at least 25%. This includes implementing strategies for identifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding prospects.
  • Develop and maintain a thorough understanding of Frontier College programs and create compelling opportunities for donors.
  • Personally manage a portfolio of 80-100 major gift prospects/donors.
  • Provide support for the CEO as it relates to his donor relationships.
  • Develop and implement strategy for board member involvement including recruiting, training, and motivating a board steering committee focused on major gifts.
  • Provide leadership to board members and senior staff on their involvement in supporting the major gift strategy (i.e. expanding the pipeline, donor stewardship, etc.).
  • Ensure appropriate donor recognition, stewardship plans and strategies are identified, negotiated and implemented effectively and consistently.
  • Work closely with others to create proposals, collateral, and cases for support, bringing the mission of Frontier College to life to encourage and inspire donor support.
  • Plan and implement strategies that promote Frontier College’s legacy giving program.
  • Participate in strategic and annual planning as part of the senior fundraising team.
  • Develop and monitor annual budgets, including revenue and expenses.
  • In collaboration with the organization’s senior leadership team, nurture a strong, values-based, high-performance culture.



  • Proven track record of developing and implementing successful strategies for the identification, cultivation, and solicitation of major gift donors at the five-figure level and above.
  • Exceptional networking and presentation skills.
  • Strategic planning experience and the ability to develop and implement strategies to support major gift fundraising growth.
  • A results-oriented focus and an entrepreneurial approach to fundraising.
  • Skilled at translating organizational priorities into inspiring, donor-centric cases for support.
  • Experience working with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders, including boards, volunteers, senior executives, and donors.
  • Strong client relations and customer service skills, and ability to work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Professional and compelling written and oral communication skills.
  • Superior organizational and time management skills to determine priorities and manage multiple projects in a fast-paced and resource-lean environment.
  • Strong computer skills including Microsoft Office and experience using a CRM database (ideally Donor Perfect).
  • Personal reputation for integrity and exercising diplomacy and good judgement.
  • Familiarity with the issues surrounding literacy is an asset.
  • Strong financial literacy with experience developing and managing annual budgets.
  • Capacity for occasional travel, and some evening and weekend work.
  • A University degree or equivalent combination of education and experience is required. CFRE is an asset.
  • Bilingualism would be an asset.



Frontier College has retained KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) to lead this search on their behalf. To learn more about this exciting opportunity, please contact Sylvia Kadlick, Senior Search Consultant or Ellie Rusonik, Senior Search Consultant at

To apply, please send resume and letter of interest to the email address above by August 3, 2018

To view the full Executive Brief, please visit: 

Frontier College encourages applications that reflect the diverse cultures and socio-economic backgrounds we serve. In keeping with our ongoing efforts to promote equity and reflect the diversity of our organization, we encourage applications from Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities. Furthermore, we welcome applications from individuals who self-identify on the basis of any of the protected grounds under the Human Rights Code.

We are committed to integration and maintaining the independence of individuals and removing barriers to accessibility in the workplace. We are committed to full compliance with the Human Rights Code, the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, and all other applicable legislation. We invite applicants to request accommodation, as required, throughout the application and hiring process.

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