Cause Leadership Leading Development Officer Search for Wycliffe College

March 22, 2024 – Virtually every industry needs top-drawer chief development officers. CDOs play a key role in planning, coordinating, and administering capital campaigns, corporate giving, and galvanizing new donors while keeping previous funders content. Implementing funding strategies that “keep the lights on,” according to recruiters specializing in the function, is Job No. 1. Wycliffe College recently called in Cause Leadership to lead in its search for a development officer. Reporting to the director of development, and working collaboratively with the principal, the development officer demonstrates a respect and understanding for the structure and traditions within the church in Canada.

As a seasoned fundraiser, Wycliffe College explains that the development officer should be a driven self-starter, with a passion for equipping leaders to advance the gospel. “Motivated to see the kingdom of God grow, the development officer’s charisma and ability to connect well with people will aid them in fulfilling their mission to find new major donors (individuals, churches, and foundations) and nurture current ones into deeper financial engagement,” the job specification said.

As the college looks forward to a campaign in the future, the incumbent must have a solid understanding of fundraising best practices with a proven ability to initiate new relationships while soliciting major gifts with a Christian context.

Cause Leadership is looking for a seasoned fundraising professional with demonstrated major gift experience, including securing and closing major gifts from new donors. Demonstrated capital campaign experience is an asset. Candidates should have a solid understanding of fundraising best practices including CRA guidelines, and experience with major gift giving vehicles such as planned giving, gifts of securities and other gifts in kind. They must have a demonstrated understanding of the Christian culture in Canada.

This leader will provide a positive influence throughout the organization by fostering a commitment to teamwork and excellence, contributing to a climate of professionalism, openness, and respect, and exemplifying the Wycliffe College brand and values at all times.

Excellent time management and organizational skills with the ability to work well both independently and in a team, to achieve goals within prescribed timelines are desired. Candidates should also have the demonstrated ability to interact comfortably, tactfully, professionally, and effectively with a wide range of internal and external constituencies including volunteers, donors, faculty, and staff, and community members inside the Christian community.

Wycliffe College is a historic graduate theological school affiliated with the University of Toronto, and a founding member of the Toronto School of Theology. Wycliffe College faithfully serves the educational mission of the Christian Church by preparing men and women for vocational and lay ministry, through excellence in theological scholarship and spiritual formation.

Cause Leadership has 20 years of experience in recruiting non-profit and fundraising leaders. Founded in 1982, the firm is headquartered in Toronto. Dave Hutchinson is president and CEO of Cause Leadership. He entered the recruitment field in 1997 and has placed senior-level candidates with a wide variety of organizations across a broad spectrum of the not-for-profit sector. Leadership driven and impact focused, he is often sought out as a source of information for those interested in a career in the not-for-profit sector. With over a decade of experience in board governance roles, Mr. Hutchinson continues to serve as a volunteer board member and board chair in the sector.

Recent Searches for Development Officers

A number of search firms have been called in to lead development officer searches for various organizations in recent months, here is a sampling from the Hunt Scanlon Media newswire archives:

Greenbrae, CA-based Cook Silverman Search has been selected by Quantum Leap Healthcare Collaborative in San Francisco to lead its search for a chief development officer. The organization is seeking an experienced chief development officer, who will be responsible for planning, executing and evaluating all fundraising and development initiatives. The CDO will establish fundraising priorities and objectives; create fundraising strategies to meet specific program goals; identify and profile current and prospective individual, business, and foundation prospects; develop and cultivate positive relationships with donors and prospects; and solicit and steward major donors.

Boston-based Pearl Street Collective has assisted in the recruitment of Laura Perez Hamilton as chief development officer of Treehouse, a Seattle, WA-based non-profit focused on the specific educational needs of youth in foster care. Ms. Perez Hamilton brings over 20 years of advancement and development leadership including major gift fundraising experience to her new role. She most recently served as the chief advancement officer for Northwest Harvest where she led a 20+ person team focused on philanthropy, community engagement, communications, and volunteer management. In her new position with Treehouse, Ms. Perez Hamilton will primarily be responsible for directing a growing development program that ensures that the organization meets its strategic and financial goals through philanthropy and communications, and for working intentionally with the team to lead all engagement relationships through an equity lens, utilizing the principles of community-centric fundraising.

Following a national search Dallas-based executive search and talent development firm Bryant Group has assisted in the recruitment of Jessica Chapman as chief development officer at Target ALSSarah Hempen, vice president, led the assignment. “We are thrilled to welcome Jessica Chapman to Target ALS as our chief development officer,” said Manish Raisinghani, CEO of Target ALS. “Her distinguished expertise in leading development initiatives for research-focused missions along with her profound commitment to the ALS community make her an excellent addition to our team. Together, we will enable innovation in ALS research, advancing effective treatments to realize a world where everyone lives.” An experienced fundraiser in development and charitable gift-giving, Ms. Chapman brings a wealth of knowledge to the position. She spent seven years with The ALS Association, serving as their director of planned giving, senior director of individual giving, vice president of development and most recently as their vice president of mission equalities.

Related: BrainWorks Assists Visterra Landscape Group in the Recruitment of Chief Development Officer

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Executive Editor; Lily Fauver, Senior Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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