Director of Development - Nashville

Nashville, TN /
Network Support – Development /
At Rocketship Public Schools, we believe in the infinite possibility of human potential. We believe that every student deserves the right to dream, to discover, and to develop their unique potential. And it is our responsibility and our privilege to unleash the potential inside every Rocketeer we serve. Our non-profit network of public elementary charter schools propels student achievement, develops exceptional educators, and partners with parents who enable high-quality public schools to thrive in their community. We are a collective of parents, teachers, leaders, and students working together to transform the future for underserved communities across our country. At Rocketship Public Schools, we are unleashing potential.

Rocketship is seeking a dynamic and experienced Nashville Director of Development to raise the philanthropic resources needed to support growth and innovation in Rocketship Nashville’s region of high-performing public charter schools. Reporting to the National Director of Development and working closely with Nasvhille’s Director of Schools and Board of Directors, the Director will steward existing supporters and develop new strategies and initiatives to significantly expand and diversify Rocketship’s Nasvhille’s donor base.  

This is an ideal opportunity for an individual who is energized by the opportunity to serve as an external leader for a mission-driven organization, is a savvy communicator and who thrives at building and sustaining meaningful relationships and campaign strategies. The ideal candidate has strong foundational knowledge across all aspects of Development, and localized knowledge of Nashville's key players and philanthropic culture. They will have a track record of creating and enacting effective fundraising strategies across funding streams; fostering successful long-term relationships with donors; and the ability to effectively coach and collaborate with staff in support of Development activities. They will be a strategic thinker who is customer service-oriented with the ability to understand the beliefs, context, motivations and barriers of donors; thrive in an entrepreneurial, fast-paced, results-oriented culture; and committed to developing and implementing systems to support growth. 

The Development Director is charged with building and strengthening Nashville’s philanthropic strategies, pipeline, and partnerships to raise its annual fundraising goals.  The Director will work alongside a talented team of change agents who are working to improve equity and excellence in public education.   While this position will have the support of the Nashville schools team and the National Director of Development, they will serve as more of a generalist who can create strategy and take meetings, but also not be above making copies for donor meetings.

Essential Functions

    • This position requires a high-energy, detail-oriented, hard-working leader who can set strategic direction, execute successfully and build deep and lasting relationships with both donors and team members. Responsibilities may include, but are not limited to:
    • Design, lead and execute Nashville’s development strategy in partnership with National Development Director and regional leaders. Set and achieve annual philanthropic revenue targets, donor quantity and retention goals.Identify and recruit major prospects (Institutional, Individual, Corporate).Oversee all grant management, including proposal development and reporting.Support Nashville Director of Schools and Board Chair in prioritizing, building and managing external donor relationships.Develop event strategies to engage current and future supporters in our work; working closely with national and regional leaders to ensure development activities accurately reflect regional priorities.Collaborate with colleagues across departments, including Schools, Communications and Finance to advance and enhance development efforts in Nashville.


    • Over 7 years of substantive work experience with increasing responsibility in non-profit development required; knowledge of Nashville’s philanthropic community highly preferred.Experience working with institutional funders and high net-worth individuals giving over $50K per year.Bachelor’s degree required.


    • Exceptional goal orientation, extensive experience and demonstrated success in development, fundraising, and major donor or grants management.
    • Advanced interpersonal and relationship-building skills with people at all levels, including staff, board members, external partners and donors.
    • Excellent organizational skills, detail orientation and demonstrated capacity to manage a high volume of work to achieve ambitious goals in a fast-paced setting, and to do so in collaboration with diverse stakeholders.
    • Demonstrated ability to produce and deliver clear, concise, formal and informal oral and written communications.Critical thinker who displays strong judgment in prioritizing problems to solve and opportunities to pursue.
    • An entrepreneurial spirit, strong appetite for handling a degree of ambiguity and ability to lead through change.
    • Mission driven with a passion to advance educational equity and excellence in underserved communities.
This position is based in Nashville, TN and will require regular occasional domestic travel.  

Physical Demands:
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the functions. While performing the duties of this position, the employee is regularly required to talk, hear, and communicate with both adults and children. The employee frequently is required to use hands or fingers, handle or feel objects, tools, or controls. The employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; and reach with hands and arms. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds and occasionally climb ladders. Specific vision abilities required by this position include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus. The noise level in the work environment is moderate to high.

Commensurate with qualifications and experience, plus excellent health and welfare benefits, 403b retirement plan, flexible spending account (FSA), and generous paid time off.

Rocketship Public Schools provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, amnesty, or status as a covered veteran in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. Rocketship Public Schools complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including, but not limited to, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

Rocketship Public Schools expressly prohibits any form of unlawful employee harassment based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. Improper interference with the ability of Rocketship Public Schools’ employees to perform their expected job duties is absolutely not tolerated. Click here for our Sexual Harassment Policy and here for our Title IX Policy.  For questions, concerns, or complaints, please contact Equity/Discrimination Title IX Compliance Officer,  Address: 350 Twin Dolphin Drive, Suite 109, Redwood City, CA 94065. Phone: 877-806-0920 ext. 115.