Director, Institutional Giving
New York, NY /
Development – Development & Communications /
Position: Director of Institutional Giving
Reports to: Vice President of Development and External Affairs
Status: Full-Time Exempt
Start Date: Spring 2020
Location: New York City preferred, but Blue Engine is open to remote work arrangements
Who We Are
Since our founding in 2010, Blue Engine’s (BE) work has focused on testing a fundamental question: What would it take for classrooms to become more engaging and rigorous places for all students to learn? Our mission has always been predicated on creating classrooms where all students thrive.
Classrooms are filled with students who have varied strengths, needs, backgrounds, and interests. For a solo teacher, meeting the needs of every child is a daunting challenge. Blue Engine partners with schools to create inclusive, rigorous classrooms where multiple teachers build relationships and differentiate instruction to ensure every student is known and reaches their full potential. In Blue Engine classrooms, students experience dramatic gains in academic achievement and a positive learning environment.
Over the last 10 years, BE has expanded from serving 186 students at one school ($218K budget) to serving 2,000 students ($3.2M budget) in 2020-21. During this time, BE has demonstrated that its programming helps students achieve meaningful gains in a given year and that this impact compounds over time with increased high school graduation, college readiness, and college persistence rates. BE has impacted more than 15,000 students in New York City.
Blue Engine has always focused on students who have typically been marginalized and left behind. This focus has become even more relevant in light of the global pandemic that has exacerbated and disproportionately impacted students from historically oppressed communities, essentially perpetuating and compounding the structural effects of racism on the educational opportunities of students of color. As the country is reckoning with a historical, ongoing and violent legacy of anti-blackness, Blue Engine remains committed to ensuring black and brown students show up to classrooms led by teachers who let them know they matter.
The Director of Institutional Giving is a key member of Blue Engine’s Development team. The Director of Institutional Giving is responsible for managing and expanding a portfolio of institutional funders (foundation and corporate) with a focus on deepening and growing institutional partnerships.
To help drive Blue Engine toward its current $2.8MM revenue goal, and its $2.1MM institutional giving goal, this person applies their curiosity, adaptability and relationship building skills to ensure consistent, clear and customized communication with each funder across multiple touch points, including but not limited to proposals, reports and email updates. The ideal candidate is a consummate storyteller who is excited to work with people and use information to tell Blue Engine’s story in a way that is authentic and compelling.
To be successful, the Director of Institutional Giving must be a strong grant writer and adaptive thinker with a high-level of attention to detail. In addition to writing all funder communications, this person will also oversee the process to identify and qualify prospective funders.
Who You Are
The ideal candidate will personally connect with Blue Engine’s mission and our commitment to assembling diverse, inclusive, and actively anti-racist teams to disrupt and dismantle systems of oppression at their root. This includes, but is not limited to, participating in org-wide learning around DEI and ongoing self-reflection. The candidate should be team-oriented along with a strong sense of personal accountability, approach their work with humility and self-assurance, and employ creativity and resourcefulness to reach goals.
BE’s belief in teams extends beyond the classrooms; we fundamentally believe that we are better together than we are as individuals. Our team supports one another to reflect, improve, and push our individual and collective practice to new levels. We are looking for someone who is eager to contribute their ideas and perspective to a learning organization and understands that teams enable outcomes that individuals alone cannot achieve. This person is driven by a personal standard of high-quality, equity-informed work and is excited to play a role - as an individual and as part of a team - in creating the learning environments the students affected by educational inequity deserve.
- Oversee BE’s portfolio of 40+ institutional relationships throughout entire cycle of identification, research, qualification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of all prospects and donors
- Write high-quality written communications for funders at all stages of the development process including letters of intent, proposals, and reports Liaise with program and other staff to collect and synthesize the most up to date information about Blue Engine’s strategic priorities and program and ensure timely and accurate updates to funding partners
- Work with organizational leadership, the development team, finance, and program staff to develop and refine compelling cases for support that are aligned to BE’s vision, programming, and impact goals and supported by program data, financial budgets, and landscape analysis
- Collaborate with program and other staff to collect and synthesize funder-related communications with quality, accuracy, and timeliness
- Convey a clear sense of deadlines and deliverables for CEO and VP of Development and External Affairs support and input
- Create conditions for CEO and VP of Development and External Affairs to thrive by proactively anticipating their needs
- Oversee strategy and preparation for all site visits and meetings
- Stay abreast of trends in New York City philanthropy and monitor giving to like-minded organizations
- Oversee research and profile development process with the Operations Manager
- Leverage research to develop a strategic POV on prospective donors, alignment with BE and next steps
As a member of the Blue Engine team, staff members are expected to champion Blue Engine’s mission and demonstrate strong alignment with organizational culture and values that allow our organization to make an impact on student outcomes, do our work, make decisions, grow as professionals, and strengthen our team culture. This includes but is not limited to:
- Be a champion of BE’s mission and operate with a “students first” mentality
- Proactively give constructive feedback to help Blue Engine continuously improve
- Upholding and living out our Core Values and commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness
- Participate in collective organization-wide responsibilities
- Five+ years successful experience in fundraising, grant writing experience essential
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills, with an ability to adapt messages to various stakeholders, including foundation, corporate and Board members
- Comfortable synthesizing large amounts of information, including quantitative and qualitative data, to develop concise, compelling narratives
- Personal qualities of integrity and a standard of excellence that translates to high-quality and timely outputs
- Experience operating autonomously with the ability to take initiative, recognize opportunities and develop and implement focused plans with input from staff and other key stakeholders
- Ability to work in a fast-paced, constantly changing environment with precision, accuracy, and flexibility
- Passion for BE’s mission, and commitment to helping to operationalize equity and inclusion across our work
- Microsoft Office, PowerPoint and Excel are preferred
- Familiarity with Salesforce, or a similar database system is a plus
Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience. Blue Engine employees are provided comprehensive benefits, including six weeks paid time off.
OUR APPROACH TO DIVERSITY, EQUITY AND INCLUSIVITY
Blue Engine is more than an “equal opportunity employer.” We acknowledge the roles we play as educators and leaders in the systems of oppression and racism that exist in our city, our communities, and our classrooms, and strive to become an actively anti-racist organization. We do this first by articulating the value of diversity, inclusivity, and equity as separate yet interwoven concepts; we evaluate decisions and policies through the lens of diversity, inclusivity, and equity; we pursue opportunities for continued learning about how historic and current systems of oppression manifest in individuals and organizations; we strive to increase our collective awareness of the cultural values, biases, and differences in self and others; we utilize skills of interruption to bring to bear cultural breaches along the lines of diversity, inclusivity, and anti-racism and combine these approaches to embrace and resolve conflict while fostering growth. We make this commitment because we know it enables us to more meaningfully connect with each other, our students, and the communities in which we work.
Applicants should submit a cover letter, existing writing sample (preferably longer form; such as a report or proposal) and their resume via the link below.