Founded in 1921, Amara is a not-for-profit focused on the well-being of children as they enter, experience, and transition out of foster care. Amara puts kids first. Amara believes that every child needs the love and support of a family to realize their full potential. Each year Amara serves more than 1,500 children and adults through three core programs: Children’s Services, Foster and Adoption, and Post-Adoption. When a child enters foster care, Amara provides them with a safe place to land at their Emergency Sanctuaries in King and Pierce Counties. If a child cannot return to their family, Amara recruits families on their behalf and then prepares foster and adoptive families through individualized coaching and support. Amara recognizes that adoption is a lifetime commitment and continues to be a resource post-adoption for adoptees and those who love them.
With support from volunteers, partners, and the philanthropic community, Amara is devoted to serving children in foster care and the families who care for them. Amara plays a strong role in developing a community-wide effort to improve outcomes for children in foster care, and to increase support for children and their caregivers. Amara is proud to work with all families, regardless of marital status, race, religion, political beliefs, gender identity, or sexual orientation. Amara was one of the first agencies in the country to facilitate transracial adoptions and adoptions by single and LGBTQ parents. Amara is committed to being an active voice for permanence for children in foster care, and directs its communication efforts there. Project Gratitude, a $1 million investment, seeks to extend tangible community support to foster parents while raising awareness of their invaluable work.
Along with a 17-member Board of Directors and two county-wide Advisory Councils, a dedicated staff of 63 at their Seattle and Tacoma offices and two Emergency Sanctuaries that help children just removed from their families experience a “soft landing” into foster care, Amara programs serve children and families across 12 counties in most of Western Washington. Recognized for its effective services, particularly its use of metrics for clear outcomes to evaluate program success, Amara has grown its budget by over $4.5 million since 2013, principally through charitable support. Nearly 85% of its overall revenues come directly from philanthropic contributions deriving from individuals, foundations, corporations, and three signature events.
Amara is currently engaged in a five-year, $26.5 million Comprehensive Campaign. This transformative campaign will fund a permanent headquarters for the agency, its Emergency Sanctuaries, a strategic effort to recruit more foster and adopt families and provide resources, and an expansion of foster and adopt and post-adoption services. So far, the Amara Comprehensive Campaign has raised $15 million, and remains on track to end successfully by 2019. For 2017- 2019, Amara established a strategic plan focusing on five pivotal areas: elevate the interests of the child; build and strengthen partnerships; recruit ambitiously; ease and minimize transitions; and confront social justice issues.
A seasoned, energetic, and self-motivated fundraising leader, the Chief Philanthropy Officer provides overall vision, leadership, and strategic direction for Amara’s development programs. This position reports directly to the Executive Director and oversees a team of six development professionals. The Chief Philanthropy Officer serves as an essential member of the senior leadership team. Peer relationships include the Chief Operating Officer, Director of Children’s Services, Director of Finance and Administration, Director of Outreach and Communications, Pierce County Director, and Director of Social Services. The Chief Philanthropy Officer will be responsible for building a comprehensive fundraising platform, including cultivating and securing a mix of annual, major, and planned gifts along with corporate, foundation, and events gifts. The Chief Philanthropy Officer will work collaboratively with staff and board to develop a strategic development plan that aligns with Amara’s three-year strategic plan and provides organizational growth and long-term sustainability. In order to be successful, the Chief Philanthropy Officer will need to focus on building a strong, diversified base of individual giving while continuing to grow Amara’s corporate and institutional partnerships.
- Lead, manage and motivate the development team to meet and exceed all goals.
- Build a robust fundraising platform with clearly defined revenue goals and a diverse mix of giving that advances the strategic objectives of the organization.
- Provide direction and oversight to the Amara Comprehensive Campaign:
- Serve as primary campaign manager by facilitating the work of volunteers, providing support for campaign assignments, and working with the Board of Directors, Advisory Councils, Campaign Steering Committee, and Resource Development Committee to set priorities and meeting agendas.
- Managing a portfolio of campaign gift prospects, including maintaining regular contact with volunteer solicitors to assist with moving prospects toward solicitation.
- Identifying, cultivating and soliciting prospects, as well as stewarding those who have already made commitments.
- Manage portfolio of 150 top prospects and develop strategies for the Executive Director’s portfolio.
- Manage the department’s budget for strong return on investment.
- Design, produce and manage the fundraising and stewardship efforts for Amara’s annual gala and signature luncheon.
- Continue to engage program staff in donor cultivation and stewardship to bring the experiences of Amara’s work to donors.
- Provide leadership and appropriate staffing to the board, councils, and committees, and any other assigned groups, and task forces as needed.
- Establish, assess, and clear policies and procedures to support donor-centric, relationship-based fundraising.
- Create regular reports that reflect the status of giving activities, trends, and opportunities.
- Develop and maintain positive, collaborative working relationships with Amara’s staff, board, and volunteers.
Within the first 12 to 18 months, the Chief Philanthropy Officer will achieve the following major objectives:
- Lead, build, and mentor a development team that inspires trust and confidence with the Executive Director, staff, board, advisory councils, volunteers, and external stakeholders.
- Develop and implement a strategic, comprehensive philanthropy plan that prioritizes Amara’s funding and campaign goals and increases annual, major, and planned giving significantly.
- Identify and cultivate an increasing base of leadership and major gift prospects and donors.
- Continue to build on the successes of the Amara Comprehensive Campaign.
The ideal candidate will possess most of the following qualifications:
- A deep, passionate, and enthusiastic commitment to the vision, mission, and values of Amara.
- A minimum of five to seven years of experience building successful fundraising programs that includes managing high performing teams. Prior experience in campaigns would be an advantage.
- Proven drive and achievement in the successful solicitation of six- or seven-figure major gifts.
- An independent, energetic, self-starter with a proven ability to hire, supervise, motivate and retain a development team that strives to achieve and exceed goals.
- Visionary, innovative thinker, with a track record for translating strategic thinking into concrete action plans and results.
- Results oriented, metrics focused, and team oriented.
- Exceptional written and verbal communication skills with strong interpersonal, active-listening and relationship-building competencies.
- A sense of humor.
This national search is being led by Dan Nevez, Senior Consultant, and Joey Scheiber, Associate Consultant. Amara offers a highly competitive salary and benefits package. Relocation assistance will be available for the successful candidate. To be considered for this opportunity, please send a letter of interest and resume to Joey Scheiber, Associate Consultant at Executive Search, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amara believes that a diverse workforce and inclusive workplace culture enhances their ability to fulfill their mission. Amara strongly encourage candidates from diverse backgrounds (including communities of color, the LGBT community, veterans, and people with disabilities) to apply and join them in their work.