Senior Director of Development, Grants Strategy & Foundation Investor Relations

Senior Director of Development, Grants Strategy & Foundation Investor Relations

Hiring Organization Information

Organization Name: 
The Commit Partnership
United States

Position Information

Employment Type: 
Full time
Experience Level: 
Professional (individual contributor)
Job Category: 
Development | Fundraising
Job Description: 

Job Summary:

The Commit Partnership (“Commit” or the “Partnership”) seeks a passionate, experienced, solutions-based leader who is strongly committed to the Partnership’s mission to increase the regional living wage attainment rate for young adults in Dallas County to 50% by 2040 irrespective of race, to serve as the organization’s Senior Director of Development, Grants Strategy & Foundation Investor Relations. This person will report directly to the Partnership’s Managing Director leading its Philanthropy efforts. The Partnership’s Philanthropic Investments team plays a critical role in ensuring adequate funding resources are available for the organization to execute initiatives and make progress towards our North Star goal.

Since the Partnership's founding in 2011, the Philanthropy team has secured over $200 million represented by a 40/60 split in local versus national funder investments. Efforts made possible by philanthropic investment in Commit have helped yield transformative outcomes, including informing four state legislative sessions across the years 2017-2023 that collectively created over $7.0 billion of new and potential annual funding for a state that educates 10% of the nation’s PK-12 students. The work has also accelerated the adoption of numerous impactful practices enabled by the Partnership’s leading of two statewide learning communities reaching over 48% of Texas students including the formation of the Texas Impact Network (TIN) in partnership with Educate Texas which supports numerous “educational backbone” entities similar to Commit across the state. Best practices implemented have included: full-day PreK; extending the elementary school year to reduce summer learning loss; creating pathways to a B.A. in Early Childhood Education for less than $10,000 in total tuition over four years; and compensating educators higher and sooner in their career based on their classroom effectiveness and where they teach (vs. solely based on their seniority).

To accelerate progress towards our North Star goal, the Partnership recently launched Opportunity 2040, a new, innovative collaboration with the Child Poverty Action Lab (CPAL), to significantly improve economic mobility in Dallas County. The full cost of Opportunity 2040 is $13.4 billion of which $347 million is projected to be raised over the next 17 years, from private, philanthropic investments from local, statewide, and national investors. Anchored by an initial $50 million anchor investment from Blue Meridian Partners, a national philanthropic fund, Opportunity 2040 strives to aggregate the first $125 million of flexible philanthropic capital in the first five years, to be deployed against a set of data-backed initiatives focused on living wage attainment and reducing child poverty. This role will have a unique opportunity to work closely with CPAL, Blue Meridian Partners, and a growing pool of investors to build an innovative philanthropic model, leveraging private investments to help access, unlock, and influence significant and sustainable public funds.

While we face complex problems and a stark divide within our region, there exists a tremendous opportunity in Dallas to accelerate substantial change for our students and our region at scale fueled by philanthropic capital.

The Challenges we are working to address:

• Dallas is the 7th largest county in the US in number of residents living in poverty
• 3 out of 4 students in Dallas County qualify for free or reduced lunch
• Dallas has the 3rd highest rate of child poverty in the nation
• There is a 20-year difference in life expectancy between Dallas zip codes located 15 miles apart
• Dallas recently ranked last, out of 274 US cities, in economic inclusiveness

The Opportunities that exist:

• Dallas leads the nation in job growth (≈3600k new jobs in past 5 years)
• There is over $13.6 Billion of existing annual public funding that can be invested more effectively
• Over $1 Billion of available, yet unclaimed public funding is available for community partners and families to access
• Tremendous local philanthropic capacity with a strong commitment to solving complex problems
• Growing investments from Nation investors who see the opportunity to create change at scale in Dallas

About the Role

We are seeking a driven, self-starter who is undaunted by the challenges our region faces, energized by the opportunities that exist to secure philanthropic capital, works with a sense of urgency for our students and has a mix of executing, influencing, and leadership strengths.
Reporting to the Managing Director of Philanthropic Investments, this role’s primary purpose is to develop and execute a comprehensive, strategic plan to consistently raise, steward, and grow private and corporate foundation investments totaling $35M+ annually. In addition to managing their portfolio of investors, the Senior Director will lead, manage, and provide strategic direction to the grants team to meet individual and collective revenue goals. This role will also be responsible for continuously building stronger relationships with foundation investors engaging them in the work and communicating their impact. As a key lever to meet this goal, the Senior Director will work with team members across Commit to translate the work and impact of Commit into compelling and customized fundraising narratives and secure meaningful investments from local, state, and national investors. Once hired, this role, working closely with the Managing Director, will build out and develop the right-sized team to manage the existing grants portfolio while also growing the team to prospect and secure new investments as needed.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities of the role include:
Fundraising and Strategy

• Leads the execution and annual success of Commit’s collective portfolio of private and corporate grants totaling at least $35M annually
• Works with the Partnership’s Managing Director of Philanthropy, Executive Leadership Team, Board, and Development Committee to develop and execute a strategy to build Commit’s pipeline supporting our regional and statewide efforts with new, five-to-seven-figure prospects from outside the organization’s existing donor pool
• Pitches and closes new and renewed investment proposals
• Draft proposals, concept papers, pitch decks, reports, and other relevant materials to pitch, close, and steward fundraising opportunities
• Create strategic, meaningful investor relations plans for all private and corporate foundation investors
• Works with the Manager of Investor Engagement and Communication to create relevant collateral, events, and other messaging to steward, engage, and secure investors
• Works with the Philanthropy Operations and Finance teams to ensure best practices in record keeping in various systems including OneDrive, Salesforce, and Intacct

External and Internal Relationships and Presence:

• Serves as a leader across the organization by building strong internal relationships, understanding the work of each team and individual, and supporting peers to grow and develop
• Serves as a face of Commit in meetings, conferences, and other external convenings with investors
• Creates and facilitates investor calls, meetings, events, and experiences with great attention to detail, investor-targeted messaging, and highly professional execution
• Works closely with development peers at partner organizations to co-fundraise and steward joint investments
• Builds and maintains relationships with investors and other critical stakeholders
• Builds and co-facilitates Commit’s Investor Committee with Board members and Champions
• Works closely with program staff routinely to acquire knowledge needed to solicit investments and build investor relationships effectively

Team Leadership and Management:

• Oversees a team of at least 3, co-creating goals, coaching, completing annual performance reviews, and professional development to grow team members to continuously improve individual and overall team performance
• Serves as a strategic thought partner and leader on the Philanthropic Investments team supporting annual planning, performance management, and development of the full Philanthropy team
• Champions the Philanthropy Team Standards and serves as a role model exhibiting standards and coach for all team members to consistently exhibit standards
• Uses Commit’s investment and investor data to create annual goals and track progress toward goals
• Ensures best-in-class record-keeping via the Salesforce database
• Performs other duties as assigned

Qualifications and Skills Required (Minimum):

• Passionate about improving our public education systems, increasing economic mobility for Dallas and the state of Texas, and holds a deep belief that EVERY student deserves access to high-quality education and the opportunity to succeed
• Bachelors degree in business, non-profit management, communications, marketing, or other related field; Masters Degree preferred
• At least 5 years experience in leading a development team at a nonprofit with a budget of at least $10M; within an education-focused nonprofit preferred
• Demonstrated success in securing $1 million+ gifts
• At least 3 years experience managing a team of 3+ people that successfully met annual performance goals
• Strong management and leadership skills
• Demonstrated ability to work with a high degree of autonomy and accountability and to be a team player.
• Ability to develop and follow through on creative and effective solicitation strategies and to motivate and generate enthusiasm for them among team members.
• Ability to quickly build and continuously develop trusting relationships with funders and other stakeholders
• Ability to create and deliver highly professional, compelling presentations to investors and facilitate investor meetings
• Deep understanding of both the Dallas philanthropic landscape as well as National education and economic mobility-focused funders
• Deep understanding of grant budget management and ability to build and manage complex grant budgets
• Proficient with Microsoft Office and familiar with using donor management software; proficiency with Salesforce preferred

Philanthropy Team Standards - Who you are:

• Relationships drive your work, and you continuously focus on starting, building, and strengthening relationships both internally with team members and across the organization, and externally with investors and partners.
• You are driven by finding ways to sell, communicate, and collaborate with investors and other team members about challenges, solutions, insights, outcomes, and impact on students and systems.
• You operate with a customer service mindset to investors and team members.
• You are solutions-focused, proactive in addressing challenges, and constantly thinking one step- ahead.
• You are constantly learning, sharing, asking questions, and keeping up with your field.
• You are meticulous about systems, processes, data, and numbers, and how those pieces connect to a big-picture goal or idea.
• You lead with your strengths and skills and see success as a team effort.

Benefits Summary:

• Hybrid position
• Health insurance plans through BCBS (medical), Guardian (dental), and VSP (vision), including FSA and HSA plans.
• 401k plan (Roth and traditional)
• Professional Development stipend
• EAP access through BCBS
• 8 paid holidays, 16 hrs. volunteer hours, 2 hrs. voting leave
• Flexible PTO
• And more!

Salary Band: $110,000-$126,000

How to Apply

Application Contact:
Application Deadline: 
Open until filled
Application Instructions: 
Interested candidates should apply on the career website at
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