Posted On: 2019-09-03
Closing On: 2019-10-04
Location: Toronto, ON
Effective: November 2019
Employment Type: Full-Time
Level: Management
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Job Description

Position Overview

Organization: Canadian Red Cross

Title: Director of Major Gifts, Ontario

Reports to: Vice President of Philanthropy, Janet Johnson

Team: 5

Location: 21 Randolph Avenue, Toronto, Ontario

Is this you?

Do you want to join forces with a group of people that are passionate about improving the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada and around the world?

Are you a seasoned and savvy Major Gifts fundraiser who has a proven track record in securing gifts in the five to seven figure range? Have you been part of a team who has been responsible for building a Major Giving program and would you be excited about bringing the best practices you have learned to the Canadian Red Cross?

Are you a respected and mature team leader, with experience mentoring, growing and managing a high performing team? Are you comfortable operating within a complex organizational structure and working cross-functionally with peers and direct reports across Canada?

Are you a proven relationship builder with exceptional communication skills both written and verbal? Would former managers describe you as a self starter, who is highly resilient, creative and FUN!

You are results driven, so working with colleagues who share your values is key. You like working with professionals who are both collegial and have high expectations while sharing your passion for the cause, intellect and professionalism.

If this sounds like you then please read on …

The Organization

The Canadian Red Cross Society is part of the largest humanitarian network in the world: The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. This network includes the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (Federation) and 190 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies dedicated to improving the situation of the most vulnerable throughout the world.

The Canadian Red Cross is the leading humanitarian organization through which people voluntarily demonstrate their caring for others in need. Their actions and decisions are based upon:

  • Humanitarian values, as expressed in their Fundamental Principles
  • Respect, dignity and inclusiveness
  • Integrity, accountability, effectiveness, transparency, and adaptability
  • Quality and safety

In 1965, the seven Fundamental Principles were adopted by the 20th International Conference. They were developed to link together the International Committee, Federation and National Societies. The Red Cross’ network is vast, but their approach is simple. All Red Cross programs and activities are guided by the Fundamental Principles of Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary Service, Unity and Universality. These principles allow them to provide help immediately to whoever needs it, wherever they are, whatever their race, political beliefs, religion, social status, or culture.

The Opportunity

Reporting to the Vice President, Philanthropy, our successful candidate will be responsible for the development and management of the Major Giving Program in Ontario and Eastern Canada. They will oversee a team of 5; 3 in Toronto and 2 remote (1 in Manitoba, 1 in Nova Scotia).

The Major Giving program at the Canadian Red Cross is in a build phase, ideally our candidate will have been part of building a successful major giving program. Our successful candidate will be a strong relationship builder, both within the organization and with current and future donors. They will be responsible for securing philanthropic commitments from a personal portfolio of major donors at the $10,000 and greater gift level with a focus on Leadership and pacesetting gifts. They’ll be responsible for $8 million in Major Giving revenue; divided between regions.

Our candidate will bring Major Giving best practices to the organization. Ideally our successful candidate will have campaign experience and will lend their expertise where appropriate. As a senior member of the Philanthropy team, the Director will work collaboratively with peers within channels to achieve the Society’s goals in support of the mission.

Key Responsibilities and Accountabilities

Strategic Planning and Execution

  • Develops, implements and evaluates short- and long-term business plans for the Major Giving team in Eastern Canada within the framework of a nationwide philanthropy strategy
  • Provides strategic leadership and support to organizational leadership (CMDO, VP Philanthropy, Geographic VPs, Senior Director) and leadership volunteers for high-level donors
  • Oversees major giving and capital campaign priorities and planning including the Tier 1 Major Giving Direct Mail program
  • Ensures that objectives, projects and critical paths for major gift fundraising initiatives are being met and adjusts as needed
  • Develops annual revenue and expense budgets for Major Giving channel and provides analysis and forecasts on channel trends and KPI’s; maintains close control of expenditures throughout the year
  • Provides strategic leadership to identify, develop and articulate program and funding needs
  • Ensures the delivery of an exemplary, donor-centric Major Giving Program in collaboration with the other Directors

Major Gifts Fundraising

  • Develops, cultivates, and stewards a portfolio of individual and family foundation donors and personally conducts cultivation visits, solicitation calls and stewardship activities
  • Develops detailed cultivation, solicitation and stewardship strategies and executes plans for each major donor prospect
  • Strategically involves and supports senior leadership as well as senior volunteer solicitors in the cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of major donors
  • Plays a key role in working with colleagues, program staff and volunteers to identify major donor prospects
  • Provides leadership to the Major Giving team in the recruitment of volunteer champions to support major gift fundraising initiatives and campaigns
  • In collaboration with the Prospect Research team, oversees Major Giving team prospect review/clearance and pipeline strategy meetings
  • In consultation with the CMDO, Senior Director Transformational Giving, and VP Philanthropy, oversees the preparation of customized funding proposals and gift agreements to meet the donor’s wishes in alignment with the Society’s mission and Areas of Excellence
  • Organizes and participates in domestic and international donor visits to the Society’s programming as required
  • Provide fundraising support to emergency appeals

Support the execution of Transformational Giving Campaigns

  • Contributes to Major Giving and multi-channel campaign strategy(s)
  • Executes comprehensive campaign strategic plans with annual, measurable goals in collaboration with the Philanthropy leadership team
  • Provides strategic input into cases for support and other campaign materials
  • Monitors and reports on campaign progress within the Major Giving team

People Oversight & Operational Expertise

  • Provides leadership to direct reports through:
    • goal setting
    • providing coaching, mentoring, and training and development opportunities,
    • joint donor calls, and
    • performance management.
  • Facilitates and enhances a high-functioning professional team
  • Plays an active role in preparing the Society for fundraising during emergencies in Canada and around the world
  • As a senior leader of the Philanthropy team, contributes to a One Red Cross approach to fundraising
  • Contributes to a healthy and safe working environment
  • Integrates volunteer resources within scope of responsibilities
  • Participates in disaster planning, preparation and response as needed

 The Ideal Candidate

  • The minimum qualifications are a university degree in Marketing, Communications or Business Administration and between six to ten years of fund development related work experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Exceptional strengths in major gift solicitation and demonstrated success in closing major gifts
  • Experience in volunteer management is a definite asset
  • Strong understanding of the nuance and collaboration required to thrive in a complex, matrixed national (and international) service-delivery and fundraising organization
  • Ability to build strong relationships with prospective and current donors from across Canada, board members and other senior volunteers as well as senior leadership team members
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills including proficiency in public speaking and presentations
  • Strong analytical skills, with proven experience in developing and analyzing business cases and opportunities
  • Strong business acumen, with experience in statistical and performance analysis
  • Proactive approach with strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work effectively in a fast-paced global environment with multiple conflicting demands, ambiguity and changing circumstances, and demonstrated positive experience working in a cross-cultural environment
  • Comfortable in a volunteer-led organization and delivering to a volunteer-led accountability structure with a willingness to commit to the Principles of the Red Cross Movement

Travel within the community and across the country is required.

If you are someone who is looking for an outstanding challenge, working with a great team for a very important, uniquely focused organization then what are you waiting for?  Apply now! Please send an up to date cover letter and CV to Hilary Fisher at Please note only qualified respondents will be contacted.