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Chief Development and Communications Officer

Job Title
Chief Development and Communications Officer
Job ID
Work Hybrid
Seattle,  WA 98118
Other Location

NextDeavor is partnering with Friends of the Children-Seattle!


Founded in Portland, Oregon in 1993, Friends of the Children uses a bold, proven, and replicable model to accelerate change and break the cycle of generational poverty. Friends of the Children–Seattle (Friends-Seattle) is a chapter of a national network of 26 sites throughout the United States, established in the local community in 2000. Friends-Seattle pairs youth ages 4-6 who are facing systemic barriers with a salaried, professional mentor. For 12+ consecutive years, the mentors assist the youth in developing and amplifying their power to achieve their personal, health, academic, and long-term goals. No matter what.
Friends–Seattle has grown to a staff of 45, a 14-person Board of Directors, a seven-person Ambassador Board, and an annual budget of $4.3 million. Learn more about the organization, its mission, and its model here.


Over the past few years, Friends-Seattle has prioritized anti-racism. In early 2020, Friends-Seattle staff and Board worked together to take the action steps starting with developing its 2022-25 strategic plan. In 2022 they have continued their equity journey as the organization goals from the strategic plan will guide teams' FY23 strategic plans. 


As Friends-Seattle moves into its next phase of growth, the organization is hiring a new Chief Development & Communications Officer (CDCO) to join the leadership team (LT) and play a crucial role in fulfilling the recently developed strategic plan. Reporting to the Executive Director (ED), the CDCO will act as a player/coach to a team of six professionals to execute fundraising and communications plans.

Essential Responsibilities:

Strategic Planning

  • Establish, communicate, and monitor long and short-term goals and priorities for all fundraising and communications initiatives.
  • Shift strategy and culture from leaning heavily on events and institutional donors to a diversified portfolio that includes more individual donors.

Team Leadership

  • Develop individual goals and KPI’s with each member of the team to reach the target of $4.3 M in annual fundraising.
  • Partner with the DevComm team to build individual professional development plans; create redundancies and cross-training; and encourage paid time off and self-care; providing support where needed.

Organizational Leadership

  • Support the ED, Board of Directors, and the board’s fund development committee in the solicitation process with reliable donor research, solicitation materials, coaching, and follow-up.
  • Participate in new board member onboarding, providing fundraising education at a level that is attainable and comfortable for each member.
  • Encourage a culture of philanthropy, where each team member in the organization is equipped to be an ambassador for our programs and can verbalize how each dollar is important to the youth.

Donor Cultivation

  • Manage a portfolio of major donors and actively manage the ED’s, Board’s, and Advisory Board’s donor interactions and engagements.
  • Identify and engage new major donors, presenting the Friends-Seattle story and investment opportunity to high-net-worth donors who aren’t well educated about the youth and our programs in a manner that is authentic and respectful.

Marketing and Communications

  • Seek new opportunities to raise the visibility and impact of Seattle Friend’s work, mission, and values with new audiences and potential donors.
  • Guide the DevComm team in their efforts to produce, distribute print and electronic communications, secure media exposure, and raise our profile.
  • Ensure that our CRM is optimized to foster efficient and effective donor communications and build upon existing impact reporting to better engage donors.


CDCO candidates will bring intimate knowledge and experience about some of the historical and current challenges youth face in the communities Friends-Seattle serve. They will have experience in a direct service nonprofit and will approach their work and team with self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and humility. 

Each CDCO candidate will be an innovative entrepreneur with a track record of leading diverse groups with differing levels of expertise through successful fundraising and communication plan execution with measurable results. All candidates must be fully vaccinated.

They will also bring the following skills and experiences:

  • A Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience; a CFRE or other fundraising certification is beneficial.
  • Three to five years leading development and communications teams.
  • Demonstrated success individually raising $500K or more annually.
  • Commitment to shared leadership and cultivating an atmosphere grounded in equity, inclusion, and anti-oppression.
  • A knowledge of all aspects of fundraising and experience with individual donors, corporations, foundations, government funders, and high net worth individuals.
  • A record of building trust and nurturing collaborative relationships with board members, teammates, community members, and partners.
  • Demonstrated ability to collect, analyze data and use it to tell a compelling story that is respectful of the youth and their achievements.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills and comfort as a spokesperson of an organization across a diverse audience.
  • Experience continually improving processes, systems, and using eTapestry or a similar CRM.


This is a full-time exempt position. The salary range is between $100,000-$115,000 plus a generous benefits package.

Friends-Seattle is located in Seattle, Washington and offers a hybrid work schedule. 

How to Apply
Friends-Seattle is an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to addressing discriminatory practices, and to working toward racial equity. The equal employment opportunity policy of Friends-Seattle provides fair and equal opportunities for all employees and job applicants regardless of race, color, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, gender identity, pregnancy, sexual orientation, marital status, familial status, disability, or genetic information, in compliance with applicable federal, state and local law. Friends-Seattle hires and promotes individuals solely based on their qualifications for the job to be filled.

To be considered, please submit your resume and cover letter in one pdf file. The role will remain open until filled and candidates are encouraged to submit materials before October 24th, 2022. 

The search for the Chief Development & Communications Officer is supported by a team at NextDeavor. Please do not reach out to Friends of the Children--Seattle. Questions and nominations of potential candidates should be directed to:

Chris Nguyen                 Mikkell Jackson Roeland      Essence Buckman-Lesane
Managing Partner            Managing Director                  Recruiting Coordinator
chris@nextdeavor.com    mikkell@nextdeavor.com        essence@nextdeavor.com

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