Director of Major Gifts

People For the American Way and People For the American Way Foundation are national organizations dedicated to defending constitutional and civil rights and promoting the democratic values of citizen participation, freedom of expression, freedom of religion and respect for diversity.

The Director of Major Gifts will be responsible for managing the organization’s major donor fundraising program. This position is located in Washington, D.C. and requires frequent travel.


  • Plan and manage all aspects of the major donor (gifts ranging from $1,000 to $1,000,000) fundraising program, including personal solicitations by Board members, President, program staff and senior staff, major donor mail appeals, prospect research and tracking, and solicitation materials.
  • Develop and propose strategies for solicitation of major gifts, including: track and manage ongoing relationships with prospects/donors; recommend specific purpose and level of gift; identify those to be involved in cultivation and subsequent solicitation; assure that solicitations are carried out.
  • Cultivate and solicit portfolio of major donors, make direct solicitations when appropriate and complete collection of outstanding pledges.

Work closely with the President, Vice President and Board Development Committee, and consultants to encourage Board participation in fundraising.

  • Assist with organizing small events to introduce People For to new audiences and to raise money, develop strategies, cultivation techniques, and materials to support an expanded major donor program.
  • Assist in development of annual revenue budget and monitoring of budget to actual revenue.
  • Work with other senior development staff to foster collaboration in all department efforts.
  • Plan President’s fundraising trips, including oversight of scheduling, planning donor events, and follow up.
  • Ensure that major donors are acknowledged in a timely and appropriate manner
  • Supervise major gifts staff team


  • 3-5 years professional development experience with special emphasis on prospect research, donor cultivation and major gift solicitation, including demonstrated success in direct solicitation of major donors.
  • Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written; strong analytic and interpersonal skills; ability to work closely with the President, Vice President, and COO in developing strong relationships with Board members and major donors.
  • Strong strategic skills and proven ability to expand major gift program including materials, tracking, stewardship, solicitation and closing.
  • Understanding of other development and fundraising activities.
  • Staff management experience, including ability to supervise, motivate and evaluate staff.
  • Previous budgeting experience.
  • Ability to manage multiple priorities effectively; ability to work both independently and in a collaborative environment.
  • Computer literacy including proficiency in Word, Excel and donor databases.
  • Ability and willingness to travel.
  • Experience in a public interest organization desirable.

To Apply:

Submit a cover letter and resume online at Only applications submitted through this website will be considered. Deadline for applications is May 5, 2017.

People For the American Way is an Equal Opportunity Employer.