Partner with us to implement the EL Education K-8 Language Arts Curriculum
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Senior Director, Institutional Giving

  • Date Posted
    • 1.21.21
  • Organization
    • EL Education
  • Role
    • National HQ
  • Commitment
    • Full-Time
  • Location
    • New York City proximity is preferred; Remote is an option. Approximately 15% travel should be expected for this position.


EL Education is a national nonprofit focused on making lasting change in our K-12 public schools. We partner with schools and districts in urban and rural communities across America to provide a transformative educational experience—steeped in challenge, leadership, and contribution—that prepares students from every background for success in college, careers, and life. Our unique approach of joining character to scholarship, inspiring students to work together to make positive change, has yielded groundbreaking results. Our approach centers on an expanded view of student success—one that integrates growth in the mastery of knowledge and skills, character, and high-quality student work, and is informed by the latest science of how students learn and develop. It is the foundation of our highly rated K-8 Language Arts Curriculum and school design model, both of which have proven through rigorous external research to significantly improve teacher practice and student outcomes.

EL Education has developed a four-year strategic plan, Advancing Equity in K-12 Education, to guide our work over the next four years. We are setting our sights on disrupting education inequities by realizing the full potential of our approach across school systems. We aim to reach 2.5M students by 2025.

EL Education was born out of a collaboration between The Harvard Graduate School of Education and Outward Bound nearly thirty years ago: founded as a break-the-mold model of school design with character and academics at the pinnacle. Our mission is to create classrooms where teachers can fulfill their highest aspirations and students achieve more than they think possible, becoming active contributors to building a better world.


EL Education seeks an accomplished development professional to lead the organization’s institutional giving strategy as part of its strategic plan. EL Education aims to raise $50M in philanthropic support over four years to achieve its goals for impact. The Senior Director of Institutional Giving is a lead strategist responsible for managing and expanding a portfolio of institutional funders (foundations and government) and building strong partnerships with these funders. A focus is on securing transformative grants from foundations that are committed to educational equity.

A senior member of the Development Team, the Senior Director of Institutional Giving reports to the Managing Director of Development and works closely with the President & CEO. The Senior Director supervises one Manager, serves on the organization’s Leadership Team, and collaborates deeply with the Partnerships, Research, and Finance Teams. This leader must be passionate about improving K-12 public education for all children, and be a strong and effective grant writer, strategic thinker, and relationship builder.


  • Partner with the Managing Director of Development, President & CEO, and Board to develop a $50M comprehensive fundraising campaign in support of the organization’s strategic plan
  • Develop and execute an effective institutional giving strategy (prospecting, grant writing and reporting, and funder management)
  • Set and achieve ambitious annual and multiyear targets for support from foundations; lead the development of new proposals for unrestricted and project-based support, with a focus on advancing equity
  • Lead efforts to identify, evaluate, and cultivate high-potential prospective supporters; be proactive in matching funder priorities to strategic initiatives
  • Build positive and collaborative relationships with a diverse group of funders; engage them with our work through communications, school visits, and learning experiences
  • Develop and oversee a plan for securing federal funding, managing work with consultants
  • Lead grant writing for the organization, developing compelling proposals; design an efficient and effective way to leverage proposals
  • Oversee and lead the continuous improvement of a grants portfolio management system; ensure the submission of timely and well-executed programmatic and financial reporting
  • Partner with grant owners and the Finance Team to develop grant budgets and reports
  • Prepare the President & CEO for funder meetings
  • Prepare regular updates and presentations for funders and the Board of Directors
  • Build collaborative relationships across the organization and create strategic matches to funders
  • Keep abreast of education policy, foundation priorities and trends in the education sector



  • 10+ years of progressively responsible development experience, and demonstrated expertise in implementing an effective institutional fundraising strategy
  • Bachelor’s degree or advanced degree
  • Proven record securing and managing major, multiyear grants from national foundations, including seven-figure grants from major institutional funders
  • Proven record building strong relationships with a portfolio of funders
  • Deep knowledge of leading grantmakers in education; experience securing and managing grants in the education sector
  • Experience developing, or overseeing, a strategy for securing federal funding
  • Proven ability to manage multiple projects and meet deadlines, with attention to detail
  • Proven portfolio management skills and experience overseeing grants management across a complex organization
  • Experience with budgeting and forecasting
  • Experience with fundraising databases, preferably Raiser's Edge

Skills and competencies

  • Excellent grant writing skills; ability to translate complex ideas and strategies into clear and compelling proposals
  • Excellent research skills; ability to be proactive and creative in matching funder priorities to strategic initiatives
  • Ability to effectively navigate a complex organization and synthesize complex ideas
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively
  • Ability and willingness to manage, empower, develop and mentor staff and colleagues
  • Discretion, good judgment, integrity and a strong work ethic are essential,
  • A passion for advancing excellence and equity in K-12 education
  • Commitment to and knowledge of EL Education’s mission and work, preferred
  • Commitment to leveraging this role to disrupt patterns of inequity within educational systems


New York City proximity is preferred; Remote is an option. Approximately 15% travel should be expected for this position.


Competitive compensation and benefits package commensurate with experience.


Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Hiring

At EL Education, we welcome and value the inclusion of diverse perspectives of our staff in support of our work with students and partners. We are deeply committed to providing equitable access and lifting up different voices inside and outside of the organization. We enthusiastically invite individuals of all backgrounds to apply.

Applications will be reviewed until the position is filled.

Please submit your resume and one page cover letter online (link to EL’s Career Page) in MS Word or PDF format. In your cover letter, identify the position you are applying for and how you heard of the job opening and EL Education.

No phone calls please. EL will respond only to finalist candidates.


Candidates of color are encouraged to apply. EL Education is committed to equity across the organization: in services to our partners, in our workforce composition and practices, and in our organizational culture. EL Education provides equal employment opportunities for all applicants and employees and prohibits discrimination with respect to the hiring or promotion of individuals, conditions of employment, disciplinary and discharge practices, or any other aspect of employment on the basis of gender, race, color, ethnicity, disability, or any other factor which cannot lawfully be used as a basis for an employment decision. EOE

VEVRAA Federal Contractor