Posted On: 2019-07-25
Closing On: 2019-08-30
Location: Toronto, ON
Effective: October 2019
Employment Type: Full-Time
Level: Senior
Download File

Job Description

The Position

Organization: The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation

Title: Director of Major Gifts

Reports to: Vice President Major Gifts

Location: 700 University Avenue, Toronto

Do you want to make a difference?

As part of our incredible team of talented people, you’ll experience a sense of purpose that you won’t get anywhere else. You will be making a difference for literally millions of people.

Do you want to help Conquer Cancer in Your Lifetime? Do you want to significantly grow new revenue for Canada’s leading Cancer Centre and have a direct impact on saving lives? Do you have a proven track record closing $Million+ gifts?

To work for us in this high-profile position, you must be able to develop strategies to inspire individuals, who may never have been to Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, and show them that their gift can have the greatest impact with our researchers and clinicians. You must have the passion to make that happen, because our patients, researchers, doctors and nurses are depending on it. We are making a difference, and we only want people on our high-performing major gifts team who have the same goal. We are not looking for mediocre or even good—you need to be great, because lives are at stake and millions of people—people at our cancer centre, across Canada, and around the world—will be relying on your talent and passion. And we will accept nothing less, because we have made important promises and we intend to keep them.

You will participate in the design and execution of a pipeline for a $Billion+ campaign that will be unprecedented in Canadian healthcare history—a campaign that will capture the imagination, hearts and interest of all Canadians and beyond. We already have the foundation in place for this; now we need an experienced major gifts fundraiser to partner with us to bring it to fruition.

You are skilled at forming meaningful, lasting relationships, and take pride in owning accountability and achieving goals, challenging yourself with stretch revenue targets, and then exceeding them. You firmly believe that achieving your goals is critical, and how you achieve them, through strong partnerships, authenticity, and integrity, is of equal importance.

You are prepared to work harder than you have ever worked in your professional career to power the best cancer science and clinical support in the world. You are keenly aware that, for peak performance, you must spend 80% of your time out of the office conducting business in order to drive results.

You are at ease with diverse operational styles, and you excel at developing and leveraging strong, profitable relationships with Board members, committee members, local, national and global partners, donors, and volunteers. You enjoy working with senior volunteers, and encouraging creativity and tenacity as you work with a broad spectrum of donors across their philanthropic life-cycle.

But we're not just invested in curing cancer in our lifetime; we're also invested in our people. We know that our overall success is a combined effort, and therefore we provide opportunities for our employees to learn, grow and thrive. Organized extracurricular activities and social outings bring our team even closer together, making our work environment inviting and inspiring. Our mission is to have employees find a job they love. We are disrupting an industry by creating an environment and a community where you’ll be happy. Who says building a career can't be fun!?

This is an opportunity to expand the global network of impact of The Princess Margaret. A chance to become a key member of the leading cancer foundation in the world; to help expand the PMCF brand, donor base, corporate sponsorships, and partnerships in pursuit of our vision, which will be your vision: To Conquer Cancer in Our Lifetime.

If you want to make a difference, and if this sounds like you, then please read on…

About The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation

The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation (The PMCF) is one of the world’s leading cancer charities and ranks first nationally in the field of cancer research. Its vision is to Conquer Cancer In Our Lifetime.

The PMCF raises funds for Princess Margaret Cancer Centre—one of the top five cancer research centres in the world—to deliver future care now. For more than a decade, The PMCF has been on an aggressive growth trajectory. In F2017, they raised $112 million—their best year ever, and they are on track to raise even more in F2019 (year end 31 March 2019).

Setting daring and audacious goals is a mindset that is driven by PMCF’s culture and passion to perform.  They have pioneered many successful fundraising programs, including their world-leading Princess Margaret Home Lottery, and some of the world’s largest cancer fundraising events, including:

  • Rexall OneWalk to Conquer Cancer
  • Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer
  • Scotiabank Road Hockey to Conquer Cancer

The PMCF has a strong track record of securing and stewarding major and estate gifts primarily in the GTA. They engage supporters through annual campaigns, leadership and tribute giving, and more than 100 community events and ethno-cultural programs. Through a diverse and complementary portfolio of fundraising events, they attract over 300,000 gifts, 250,000 unique lottery purchasers, and 15,000 event participants and volunteers each year. And they engage with hundreds of corporate partners and their employees.

The PMCF’s distinguished Board engages in fundraising and provides governance and support through several very active committees. Princess Margaret is a proud member of University Health Network, Canada’s largest research hospital network (including Toronto General Hospital, Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto Rehab Institute, and The Michener Institute for Education). 

The PMCF is bold, ambitious, and relentless in its vision to Conquer Cancer In Our Lifetime.

The Role

The PMCF is seeking an accomplished and ambitious major gift fundraiser to assume the role of Director of Major Gifts. Working under the direction of and reporting directly to the Vice President, Major Gifts, the Director of Major Gifts will be responsible for the qualification, cultivation, and solicitation of assigned $ 100K+ prospects, focussing especially on those prospects with seven- and eight- figure giving capacity.  Through strategic and proactive management of a portfolio of ca. 100 such prospects, the Director of Major Gifts will be responsible for closing at least $ 4 - $ 6M in new commitments annually (exact amount TBD upon construction of portfolio). The Director of Major Gifts will build trusted relationships and work closely with active volunteers and senior medical leaders in achieving these goals. In addition to building relationships and soliciting gifts, the incumbent will also ensure proper stewardship takes place following a gift commitment to maintain the donor’s involvement, interest and support.

The opportunity will appeal to an accomplished major gift fundraiser with values aligned with those of PMCF, someone with sophisticated relationship skills, experience working with a high-performing major gifts team with full accountability, and impressive campaign experience.


Reports to: Vice President Major Gifts

Key Stakeholders: Board of Directors; President & CEO; Chief Operating Officer; Vice President, Brand and Integrated Marketing; Vice President, Information Technology & Business Intelligence; Vice President, Corporate & Community Partnerships; Vice President, Lotteries; Vice President, Finance; Fellow Directors of Major Gifts; PMCC/UHN Partners

Direct/Indirect Reports: Development Associate; Other reports may develop as Major Gifts team is built out

The Ideal Candidate

The successful candidate will possess a passion for healthcare philanthropy and a strong understanding of donor relationship management, professionalism, excellent relationship-building and interpersonal skills, and a proven track-record of closing gifts of seven figures.


The successful candidate MUST have:

Authentic leadership capacity

  • Believes in the power and collective impact of exceptional teams and the importance of collaboration both within the Major Gifts team and across all key Foundation stakeholders—“we” is greater than “I”
  • Servant leadership
  • Not content with the status quo—has the grit and will roll up their sleeves to help achieve bold objectives

Personal characteristics:

  • Highly mission motivated
  • High emotional intelligence, including high levels of self-awareness, empathy, and motivation, and the ability to regulate emotions
  • Can read people and situations, understand body language, and ‘hear the unsaid’
  • An expert in reciprocity and appreciation
  • Sets an example through hard work and collegiality
  • Lack of ego, preferring to save the plaques for donors, not the asker


  • Must Have/Be: a self-starter with a can-do attitude and vision. This portfolio is scheduled for significant growth over the coming year, including internationally, and our successful candidate will need to  think beyond today and the status quo
  • Strongly Preferred: Someone positive in nature, ready for any opportunity; high standards (‘good enough’ is never enough); a team player (we can do it attitude); a big thinker—national/global



Must Have:

  • Propel people toward the mission—can challenge and inspire
  • Hold people accountable; team-builder
  • Encourages a positive culture of planning, implementation and review
  • Puts the interest of the business ahead of personal interests

Strongly Preferred:

  • A true role model, demonstrating honesty, openness, transparency
  • Admits mistakes easily with an eye to solving problems in the future

Operating & Technology Skills:

Must Have:

  • Strong experience in prospect qualification and cultivation—both individuals who have been grateful patients, and thinking more broadly – including globally - about other individuals who could be inspired to make their gift-of-a-lifetime to The Princess Margaret.
  • Adopts new technology and embraces data and advanced analytics to optimize targeting 
  • Possess excellent problem-solving skills around structuring/analysis/synthesis

Strongly Preferred:

  • An “Airline Captain” attitude that values data, specificity, and checklists
  • Understands the sector—products (case for support), donors, trends
  • Establishes new or improves existing processes, KPI and overall dashboard
  • Strong knowledge in the use of Raisers Edge


Must Have:

  • Financial numeracy
  • Previous financial accountability—both revenue and expense

Business Acumen

Must Have:

  • Significant Major Gift experience with a track record of success
  • Capitalizes on opportunity, but not afraid to create opportunities to build long-term, productive relations with donors
  • Experience working with an accomplished Board of Directors to understand goals and leverage Directors’ capacity and network

Strongly Preferred:

  • 10+ years of progressive experience in all aspects of healthcare philanthropy
  • A comprehensive understanding of the full range of giving options. Knowledge of bequests and other forms of estate giving, would be an asset.
  • Views the business from the “shoes of the customer”
  • Understands sales, sales process and forecasting
  • Experience working on landmark fundraising campaigns would be an asset


Must Have:

  • Bachelor’s Degree

Strongly Preferred:

  • Advanced Degree
  • Fundraising Certification from an accredited body (i.e.: CFRE, FAHP)

Please note there will be a significant amount of outside the office prospecting and working with volunteers.

If you are looking for an outstanding challenge and an opportunity to work with a great team for a very important, focused and successful organization that is about to go through bold and aspirational change, and you believe you fully meet or exceed the qualifications outlined above, then we want to hear from you. Please email and provide a copy of your current resume as well as a chart that summarizes key highlights of your Major Gift successes, including the amount of ask(s), the amount(s) received, and a brief description of the role you played in making them happen. In addition, please provide a covering letter explaining why you should be considered as a serious candidate for this mission-critical position.

Submissions must be received by August 30th, 2019. Please note that only qualified respondents will be contacted.