Fundraising and Advancement, Nonprofit and Social Impact, Social Services

Vice President of Development

  • Catholic Extension
  • Chicago, IL

Catholic Extension works in solidarity with people in America’s poorest regions to build up vibrant and transformative Catholic faith communities. With the generosity of individual donors and local and national foundations, Catholic Extension raises funds to help these poor, forgotten, and often isolated communities to flourish.

  • Catholic Extension invests in buildings by supporting the construction and renovation of churches and church facilities.
  • Catholic Extension invests in leaders for the Church by providing education, training and support to seminarians, priests, sisters, deacons, and lay leaders.
  • Catholic Extension invests in ministries by supporting pastoral, youth, young adult, campus and outreach ministries, Catholic schools, and religious education.

Established in 1905, Catholic Extension is a papal society that is answering Pope Francis’ call to go out to America’s “peripheries.” Since its founding, Catholic Extension has distributed more than $1.3 billion in today’s dollars to dioceses that cannot support themselves.

Catholic Extension has a full-time staff of 50 employees based at its headquarters in Chicago or in one of its regional offices in the following locations: Boston, Dallas, Monterey, Naples, Nashville, New York City, San Jose, St. Louis, and Richmond, Virginia. Its staff comprises talented and experienced professionals working in a dynamic, fast-paced work environment and team-focused culture.

Catholic Extension seeks candidates for the role of Vice President of Development (Vice President). Reporting to the Chief Operating Officer, the Vice President is responsible for conceptualizing, organizing, and implementing a comprehensive and strategic fundraising program to fund Catholic Extension’s mission activities in the United States and meet operating expense goals. The Vice President oversees an approximately 24-person Development Department, including but not limited to the following direct reports: the Assistant Vice President of Development, who manages the regional major gifts and planned giving programs; the Senior Director of Development, who manages annual and digital giving, and donor services; the Director of Development for Foundation Relations; the Director of Events and Special Projects; and the Senior Manager of Development for Parish Relations. The Vice President is responsible for evaluating the effectiveness of all fundraising activities and making strategic recommendations in partnership with the President, Chief Operating Officer, and Board of Governors.

The ideal candidate will have the following personal and professional skills, qualities, and competencies:

  • Commitment to and passion for the mission of Catholic Extension; ability to communicate and generate excitement about mission, history, vision, programs, and fundamental strengths. A commitment to and understanding of the mission and teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.
  • Ten or more years of experience in nonprofit fundraising roles with progressive levels of responsibility, including extensive experience managing all dimensions of a comprehensive fundraising program (individual and institutional giving, major and planned giving, annual giving, stewardship, board relations) and leadership in a major fundraising campaign. Experience working on a national scale is preferred.
  • Seven or more years of staff management experience, with a strong record of providing strategic and operational leadership, including creating and managing a budget. Demonstrated ability to recruit, coach, mentor, motivate, and ensure ongoing professional development of staff; foster a cohesive team and an environment of trust, collaboration, professionalism, and transparency; and increase effectiveness and accountability through established objectives, performance standards, and guidance.
  • Must be steeped in modern philanthropy best practices and able to effectively integrate external relations functions. In addition to possessing excellent fundraising abilities, must have the breadth of skills required to contribute to macro-level external relations strategies, including those related to organizational branding, marketing, and communications.
  • Particular strength in developing the case for support and strategic, complex, and innovative fundraising plans, and executing against those plans to achieve goals and objectives. Experience working directly with the most senior levels of an organization is very important, as is the ability to effectively strategize and engage various groups and constituents. Demonstrated ability to translate concepts into multi-stakeholder initiatives.
  • Successful track record of personally cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding major gifts from individual and institutional donors at the level of six to seven-figures or greater.
  • Experience identifying, nurturing, and motivating volunteers, particularly board members, as well as an appreciation for their role in building an effective fundraising network.
  • Demonstrated analytical and organizational skills in evaluating donor strategy and process, conceiving and implementing new programs or strategies, and resolving operational and interpersonal issues.
  • Working knowledge of modern data management practices and techniques, including database information systems, data modeling, and analysis.
  • A forward thinker with a track record of utilizing new methods of donor engagement and connectivity, who will be driven by innovation in developing philanthropic best practices in the current and post-COVID-19 world.
  • Ability to travel up to 25 percent of the time.
  • Bachelor’s degree.

Catholic Extension recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, national origin, disability status, age, socioeconomic status, and all the other facets of our humanity. Catholic Extension is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Applicants may request any reasonable accommodation that may be necessary to participate in the application process.

Catholic Extension has retained the Diversified Search Group for this engagement. Managing Director Gerard F. Cattie, Jr. is leading the search. Inquiries, nominations, and applications (current resumes and cover letters) should be directed electronically to

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