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Job Opening

Strategic Partnerships Director — Flexible Location (Oakland, San Jose, Fresno or Long Beach)

The Strategic Partnerships Director is responsible for all of CFJ’s fundraising activities, including foundation, corporate, and individual donors. They play a key role in building relationships and representing CFJ externally with funders and nonprofit allies. They also lead some director-level projects and areas of work at CFJ, based on their expertise and interests.

The Strategic Partnerships Director is an exciting opportunity for a professional who has experience in education, grassroots organizing, or advocacy, and wants to dive more deeply into fundraising. The ideal candidate enjoys building relationships and networking, and combining high-level strategy with hands-on implementation. They will also thrive in a diverse workplace, and be energized to join a team with a proven commitment to youth leadership and racial and educational justice. 

This position reports to the Executive Director and leads CFJ’s development team, directly supervising the Development Manager, whose focus is grant writing, and Development Associate, whose focus is individual giving. The position is full-time and exempt. In all duties and responsibilities, this position exercises discretion and independent judgment. 

Essential Responsibilities

Development & External Partnerships (75% time) 

  • Build external relationships and represent the organization: Develop and maintain close working relationships with the philanthropic community and institutional donors. Serve as a visible spokesperson and advocate for CFJ’s mission and programs around the state. Participate in external opportunities such as conferences and speaking engagements
  • Set development strategy: Partner with the Executive Director and the development team to create a strategic fund development plan to support annual revenue goals. Develop new strategies to advance CFJ’s fund development work.
  • Grow institutional support: Lead and partner with the Executive Director in the identification, cultivation, and solicitation of foundation and corporate contributions. Be the primary relationship holder with select foundations and corporations. Actively manage relationships with all funders, including processing requests, preparing staff for meetings, and following best practices.
  • Grow CFJ’s individual giving program: Set strategy for and oversee individual giving, including online, direct mail, and annual events and, in collaboration with the Executive Director, major gifts.
  • Materials and communications: Develop complex concept papers, grant proposals, and reports. Supervise all other grant writing and reporting to funders. Oversee design production and distribution of all development materials. 
  • Coordinate and strengthen a culture of philanthropy throughout the organization: Coordinate development activities with other facets of the organization, particularly communications and finance. Engage and inspire staff and board in their role in fund development.
  • Ensure effective data tracking and systems: Oversee the evaluation of systems to support development and inform data-driven planning. Ensure excellent donor and gift record-keeping, processing and acknowledgement.
  • Department and staff management: Manage the department, including hiring, supervising, coaching, and developing the staff; and preparing work plans, budgets, and evaluations.
  • Special projects: Implement projects to improve the development team’s work. 
  • Organizational leadership: Serve as a key member of the Leadership Team Team with shared responsibility for achieving the organization’s vision and goals.                                        

Special Projects (25% time) 

The Strategic Partnerships Director will own special projects and 1-2 area(s) of work that are directly or indirectly related to fundraising. These areas could include: communications, capacity building & earned revenue, program evaluation, and/or overseeing CFJ’s statewide policy work. These areas will be determined based on the Director’s expertise, interests, and CFJ’s needs. 

Organizational Responsibilities 

  • Model leadership and participation in all grassroots fundraising campaigns.
  • Participate in cross-department committees and teams.
  • Provide support and participation for organization-wide and some regional campaign events.

Essential Qualifications

Our ideal candidate for this senior position brings experience in two areas: education, grassroots organizing, or advocacy; and fundraising – but we are flexible in how you obtained that experience. You don’t have to have had a career path in nonprofit fundraising. It’s more important that you understand CFJ’s work, and can speak about it on the fly with foundations and nonprofit partners. For example, maybe you are a policy director who occasionally helps write grant proposals and meet with funders. Maybe you are a program officer in a foundation’s education department who understands the education landscape and how foundations work. Maybe you are an experienced grassroots organizer who can apply your skills at cultivating relationships to fundraising. Or maybe you are a seasoned development manager or director who already has an understanding of the education or organizing fields.

Candidates should bring:

  • Years of experience in the nonprofit sector overall.
  • 2-3 years of fundraising experience. Ideally, you would have experience personally cultivating and soliciting foundations or corporations. (Bonus: Experience with other fund development activities like individual giving and special events.) However, if you haven’t had direct fundraising experience, just share your applicable experience in your cover letter. 
  • Experience with and knowledge of the education, grassroots organizing, and/or policy fields. 
  • Demonstrated experience building external relationships, representing an organization publicly, and serving as a visible spokesperson.
  • Demonstrated experience setting strategy, managing goals, and developing and implementing plans for a team or department. 
  • Experience successfully managing people. Ability to work well with diverse individuals and support their growth and development.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills (Bonus: proven experience in crafting proposals and donor or funder correspondence).
  • Good judgment and decision-making, particularly in your interactions with foundations
  • Interpersonal skills to develop relationships with staff to foster collaboration and mutual accountability.
  • Proficiency in Word, Excel, and ability to effectively use data management systems.
  • Strong commitment to social justice, racial justice, and youth empowerment.
  • Ability to travel once to twice a month statewide or occasionally nationally. 

Work Environment

The position can be located in any of CFJ’s four regional offices in Fresno, Long Beach, Oakland, or San Jose.

Physical Demands

  • Able to work on a computer, including sitting at a desk, for extended periods of time. Able to read a computer screen. Manual dexterity to operate a keyboard.
  • Able to speak clearly in English on the phone and in person and be understood by others.
  • Able to occasionally lift objects weighing up to 10 pounds.


$68,000-$85,000, depending on experience and qualifications, as determined by CFJ’s salary scale. CFJ provides a generous benefits package, including fully paid health insurance (medical, dental, and vision) for employees and their dependents. We also offer substantial vacation days and time off. 

How to Apply:

Send your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and qualifications, and at least three references to with the subject line “Strategic Partnerships Director – Your Name.” 

CFJ is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. People of color, women, lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender/gender nonconforming, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

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