Director of Donor & Community Relations

San Diego, CA
Regional Support – Regional Leadership
Full-Time Immediate
The Mission

KIPP LA Public Schools and KIPP San Diego Public Schools are seeking to create one, united nonprofit organization to better meet the needs of our students. Together, we will operate tuition-free, open-enrollment public charter schools focused on preparing students in under-resourced communities in Southern California for choice-filled lives. Our elementary and middle schools are part of the national KIPP network of 224 schools in 20 states and Washington, DC.  

The Director of Donor and Community Relations is a critical leadership position that will be based in San Diego. The goal of this position is to develop and grow relationships with donors, families, and community leaders in the San Diego area.

Core Competencies and Qualifications

    • Reporting to the Chief External Impact Officer (CXO), the Director of Donor and Community Relations will provide leadership and guidance in Development, Advocacy and Community Engagement, and Communications efforts, in addition to being a key representative of the organization. The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be a mission-driven external relations leader with a strong background in strategic planning and data-driven decision-making.
    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be a proactive and tactical collaborator, in addition to having the ability to work independently and drive results. The Director of Donor and Community Relations will provide thoughtful direction and recommendations to the other members of the senior leadership team and key stakeholders.
    • This individual will have experience and comfort in cultivating and sustaining relationships with key supporters and stakeholders in San Diego, including the media, elected officials, peer and partner charter organizations, donors, and prominent community leaders. In addition, the Director of Donor and Community Relations will have experience engaging, developing coalitions, and mobilizing families.
    • The ideal candidate will have at least 8 years of progressive responsibility in similar or related roles, with at least 5 years managing a team to exemplary results, and the following competencies and personal characteristics:

Strategic & Visionary Leadership

    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be a visionary and strategic leader, with the knowledge, foresight, and clarity to inform decision-making around advocacy and community engagement, communications, and development.
    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be nimble in adjusting to shifting priorities and able to balance multiple tasks efficiently and effectively. This leader will anticipate, analyze and interpret complex problems, achieving sustainable, creative solutions.
    • This leader will flourish in a mission-oriented, data- and process-driven environment and be energized by the prospect of developing, prioritizing, and implementing new strategies and best practices.

Exceptional Collaborator

    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be an engaged, active listener, able to communicate effectively with a broad group of stakeholders. The Director of Donor and Community Relations will demonstrate honesty, fairness, humor, an ability to listen, and a keen mind, and will operate with humility and optimism.
    • A natural consensus-builder, the Director of Donor and Community Relations will be comfortable with ambiguity and have the persistence to drive the process forward through collaboration and dedication. The Director of Donor and Community Relations should be well versed in crisis management, including the quick assimilation of large volumes of complex material and speedy development and execution of plans in collaboration with others.

Relationship Builder & External Relations Experience

    • Critical to success in this role, the Director of Donor and Community Relations will be an individual with a strong relationship-building ability and the capacity to work effectively with San Diego’s political and community leaders, education institutions, and philanthropic community. This leader will be adept at building and sustaining excellent relationships with community leaders, and peer organizations in San Diego, and harnessing their professional networks in support of KIPP Adelante’s goals.
    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will be a passionate, proactive advocate for the organization and a key spokesperson with elected officials and other community leaders. The Director of Donor and Community Relations will also be a collaborator to develop strategic communications to demonstrate impact in the San Diego area. In addition, a key measure of success will depend on the ability to engage and mobilize families to advance advocacy efforts of the organization in the San Diego area.

Passion for the Mission & Vision

    • The Director of Donor and Community Relations will embrace and exemplify the values of KIPP LA Public Schools and KIPP Adelante, including curiosity and constant learning, grit, and social intelligence. The Director of Donor and Community Relations will have a true passion for the vision and mission of KIPP LA Public Schools and KIPP Adelante, with an understanding and appreciation of the many issues facing communities that we serve.
    • This individual will have a high degree of integrity, humility and gratitude and a personal commitment to the success of KIPP Adelante’s students in San Diego, with a clear understanding of the cultural landscape. The Director of Donor and Community Relations should possess a commitment to shared governance and cultural diversity, and enthusiasm for embracing families and the community. This individual will have a pulse on the needs of K-12 education and the opportunities and challenges before education reform.


    • Hold high standards for project management to proactively and creatively problem-solve.
    • With great empathy, is a consistent champion and proud member of the team. Encourages participation from members of the team and seeks feedback and ideas from team members at all levels in operating as a leader.
    • In addition to operating within a team environment, demonstrates the ability to operate independently and drive results.
    • In addition to being self-driven, must have the ability to work across different functional teams, and have the ability to manage up.
    • Diligently seeks opportunities for professional development, acting as a sounding board, and serves as an organizational role model in cultivating a culture of high expectations and support.
    • Thoughtfully considers the impact of decisions, and facilitates resolutions that protect the organization’s interests and prioritizes student needs when conflict or disagreements arise.


    • In collaboration with the CXO and Development team, responsible for stewarding current donors and foundation relations, leading events and event planning in the San Diego area.
    • In collaboration with the CXO and CEO, responsible for identifying, onboarding, organizing, supporting, and staffing the San Diego Community Advisory Council members.

Advocacy & Community Engagement

    • In partnership with the CXO and additional key stakeholders, provide input f efforts in San Diego.
    • Expand voice in San Diego, influence and impact on key issues facing the communities we serve, and partner with the CXO to amplify efforts in San Diego.
    • Lead and enthusiastically build relationships with San Diego's major stakeholders and constituencies, including the media, community groups, elected officials, community leaders, and other influencers.
    • Proactively engage and mobilize current and potential families and communities in the San Diego area, as critical advocates and ambassadors.
    • Create and oversee strategy, programs, and services aimed towards increased parent and community engagement; and strengthen the partnership among parents, community, and schools to improve student academic achievement and school success.
    • Identify opportunities and develop ways to strategically maximize collaboration and coordination with external partners.
    • Represent the community and the broader organization as an ambassador, advocate, and partner within public forums and events.

Marketing & Communications

    • Provide thought leadership and guidance to the CXO in cultivating a meaningful and productive media and external engagement strategy; In collaboration with the CXO, assess and strategize responses to all incoming media requests, and communicate with relevant media as a spokesperson when appropriate.
    • Provide guidance for tracking metrics and data to ensure alignment and effectiveness of overall marketing and communications efforts in San Diego, and offers insight and strategy regarding overall effectiveness.

The Perks

    • Very competitive compensation package inclusive of a generous benefits package
    • 100% of healthcare premium costs covered by employer, dependents added at 50% of cost
    • Employer-paid KIPP LA life insurance
    • 401(k) plan with up to 6% match by KIPP LA
    • Voluntary Benefits (Pet Insurance, Supplemental Life, Accident, Short Term Disability, etc.)
    • Generous time off program includes 22 holidays, sick leave and vacation
    • Other great benefits (Flexible spending account, EAP, tuition reimbursement for dependents, etc.)
KIPP LA Public Schools is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, disability, sexual orientation/gender identity, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.

KIPP LA strives to ensure that our careers website is accessible to all, including individuals with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process due to a disability, please contact us. You can find our contact information on our website, Information will be sent to a talent acquisition representative who will provide assistance to ensure appropriate consideration in the hiring process.