Director, Major Gifts
Chicago, IL 
Posted 25 days ago
Job Description
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is a community where people who care about global affairs can connect — in person or virtually — with each other and with global leaders, influencers, and experts to explore ideas that will shape our future.

If you are passionate about our work, bringing people together and our mission that drives our work, apply today.


The Chicago  Council on Global Affairs is an independent, nonpartisan  organization  that provides insight on crucial global issues, advances policy solutions, and fosters dialogue about what is happening in the world and why it matters to the people in Chicago, the United States and around the globe.


The Chicago Council on Global Affairs will celebrate the centennial anniversary of its founding in 2022. With political, cultural, and technological changes and disruptions driving historical shifts in the global order, the Council’s mission is as critical today as when it was founded nearly 100 years ago. In the next century of the Council’s expansion, we will invite new major donors to invest in the Council’s future.

To drive this effort, the Council is looking for an experienced Director, Major Gifts to create the strategy and oversee the implementation of plans for current and potential major donors. The Director, Major Gifts and is charged with developing and strengthening relationships with key stakeholders and donors as well as identifying new individuals, family foundations and new networks to support the Council. This role works closely with Vice President, Development to develop donor strategy and identify, cultivate and steward a portfolio high-potential prospective donors.

Specific responsibilities of the Director include:
  • Manage the individual giving team and oversee their donor portfolios in addition to managing the team’s overall fundraising budget, projections, and timelines.
  • Support the senior management team in major gifts fundraising activities.
  • Create and execute the major gifts fundraising strategy, using best practices and the full range of fundraising tools to raise hit annual goals and connect potential donors to long-term philanthropic investments that can be made at the Council.
  • Acquire new donors at five and six figure contribution levels, steward gift renewal of approximately 150+ major donors.
  • Directly solicit contributions, prepare members of the senior management team for their fundraising solicitations, and work with current major gifts donors and members of the board to identify prospective donors.
  • Identify international interests and expertise of current and potential donors, next generation donors, and family foundations in order to align their personal interests and philanthropic priorities with annual support and campaign support for the Council.
  • Work across the organization to leverage opportunities, build awareness, and facilitate meaningful engagement for donors.
  • Perform other projects as assigned

The Director will be strategic, highly organized, and results-oriented. The ideal candidate will enjoy introducing the Council’s work, what makes the organization unique and worthy of investment, and discussing a range of Council activities with a diverse community of current and potential donors. S/he/they will excel at building new relationships with top individual donors, family foundations, donor advisors and board members. Manage a high performing individual giving team. The Director will bring a strong command of fundraising best practices, fundraising tools, and enthusiasm for raising money.

The ideal candidate will have the following qualifications:
  • 8-10 years fundraising experience, preferably in major gifts or individual giving with a non-profit organization, including track record of securing five and six figure philanthropic gifts.
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience; demonstrated interest in international affairs and world events preferred
  • Ability to initiate and build relationships with philanthropic leaders, next generation donors, and family foundations
  • Experience managing staff, budgets, and fundraising plans/timelines
  • Excellent verbal, written, and listening communication skills
  • Self-starter, creative, and driven to achieve and exceed financial goals
  • Ability to work collaboratively as part of a team and maintain collegial working relationships with staff members at all levels
  • Ability and willingness to work evening and early morning events, and travel occasionally for donor meetings and events beyond downtown Chicago


The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight on crucial global issues, advances policy solutions, and fosters dialogue about what is happening in the world and why it matters to the people in Chicago, the United States and around the globe. As the premier, nonpartisan global affairs organization in America's heartland, we believe an informed, engaged public with access to fact-based and balanced views on global issues helps to ensure effective US engagement and supports a more inclusive, equitable, and secure world.

We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, handicap or disability, marital status, military service or veteran status, genetic information, or for any other reason prohibited by applicable law.


Job Summary
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Required Education
Bachelor's Degree
Required Experience
8 to 10 years
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