Director for Strategic Advancement

Communities in Schools Pittsburgh Allegheny County (CISPAC)

Website Communities in Schools Pittsburgh Allegheny County (CISPAC)

About Communities In Schools Pittsburgh Allegheny County (CISPAC): Founded in 1985, CISPAC’s mission is to surround students with a community of supports empowering them to achieve in school and succeed in life. With annual revenue of just over $1.5 million, we offer a range of strategic solutions to harness the power of schools, students, families, and the greater community to align decision making with student success as the primary focus.  CISPAC deploys evidence-based interventions to help achieve school wide and student goals through expert consultation and on-site implementation. Our work is rooted in building strong relationships with all stakeholders and is deployed using trauma informed practices.  We meet people where they are and work collaboratively to bring about positive systemic change to enhance school capacity and ignite student success.


Reporting to the Executive Director, the Director for Strategic Advancement (DSA) is responsible for evaluating, developing, and implementing solutions that support CISPAC in setting and achieving strategic goals. Including but not limited to:

  • Designing and executing a development plan to raise needed resources;
  • Raising visibility of organization by working with our marketing and media team to craft and execute an elevated mission-focused communications and marketing plan.
  • Serving as development lead for fundraising, donor cultivation, and strategic financial planning is required.
  • Working closely with all funding sources to develop and strengthen relationships that will drive resource generation.
  • Developing and executing strategies, in coordination with Executive Director and communications & marketing staff, to increase CISPAC’s footprint by expanding into new school districts.
  • Monitoring and developing business model for efficacy and new opportunities.
  • Working in coordination with CISPAC program and operations team leaders to develop processes and procedures that help keep internal infrastructure aligned with mission.
  • Evaluating organization business model to maintain sustainability.
  • Supervisor for development, communications, marketing, and media staff.


Development Advancement

  • Actively work with the Executive Director and development staff to develop and execute a strategic funding plan for the organization.
  • Manage the identification, qualification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of all individual, corporate, and philanthropic donors and prospects through, but not limited to: appeals, grant proposals, events and in-person asks.
  • Primary grant and proposal writer.
  • Lead creation and oversight of all funding activities for donor cultivation, solicitation, and relations.
  • Seek, nurture, and grow corporate gift opportunities through the identification and cultivation of targeted prospects.
  • Work with Executive Director, board of directors, and development staff to create and execute annual giving plan.
  • Support the integration of giving records with internal accounting recordkeeping.
  • Supervise all development record and file keeping.
  • Manage all development research activities.
  • Oversee the management of databases, records, files, gift processing and the pledge reminders and acknowledgement processes.
  • Monitor major changes in the marketplace, both philanthropic and economic and provide strategic direction based on current and anticipated trends.
  • Develop and manage funding and resources metrics and goals.

Marketing and Mission Advancement

Oversee the creation, development, and implementation of:

  • Comprehensive marketing, communication, and public relations plan that aligns with resource advancement goals to enhance CISPAC’s image and, raises its visibility within its marketplace.
  • Articulation of CISPAC’s mission to target audiences to build and maintain both internal and external relationships.
  • All CISPAC’s external publications, including design, production, and distribution direction.
  • All CISPAC internal print and electronic materials such as letterhead, logo, brochures, etc.
  • Media opportunities to create awareness for CISPAC and its mission.
  • CISPAC’s media image and message, including but not limited to its website, social media presence, press releases and public documents.

Organizational Advancement (Internal)

  • Work with leadership team to evaluate and implement internal protocols and plans that maximize organizational efficiency.
  • Work with Executive Director to create and execute client promotion strategies for tracking, securing, and retaining school clients.
  • Work to align new programs and implementations to ensure mission integrity and sustainability.
  • Effective in developing and maintaining an effective grants management and fund development process that ensures grant requests, reports and follow up letters including thank you letters are submitted timely

Board of Directors

  • Work with the development and communications committee of the board of directors (or its successors), development staff, and the Executive Director to develop strategies to initiate and meet funds, friends and mission raising goals.
  • Develop fundraising, marketing, and communications training for board members and other leadership volunteers, as appropriate.
  • Assume responsibility for all development reports to the Board and attend all Board meetings.
  • Participates in meetings of the finance committee of the Board of Directors.
  • Assist the board with recommending and researching potential new members.

General CISPAC Responsibilities

  • Participates in leadership team and staff meetings.
  • Exercises culturally competent and trauma informed service when fulfilling responsibilities.
  • Supports Executive Director in vetting, onboarding, and managing staff with development, communications, and marketing responsibilities.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Bachelor’s Degree required
  • 4-6 years successful experience in fundraising
  • Ability to manage people, processes, deadlines, and budgets.
  • Ability to get along with peers, subordinates, and management and maintain a positive and constructive attitude while solving problems.
  • Ability to protect the mission, goals, and values of CISPAC.
  • Successful experience in qualifying prospects and developing cultivation and solicitation strategies.
  • Must have excellent interpersonal skills and a demonstrated record of self-motivation.
  • Exceptional project management skills, including designing, implementing, and managing campaigns.
  • Exceptional written and verbal skills are required
  • Effective in relationship building, building consensus for ideas and effective in navigating sensitive topics internally and externally
  • Proven track record engaging the boards of directors in fundraising efforts.
  • Experience in marketing, particularly to schools and school districts is a plus.
  • Benchmarking, funds, revenue, and mission raising analysis and expertise.
  • Experience developing a budget, tracking, and measuring results.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and fundraising/constituent management software.
  • Superior written and verbal communication.
  • Must be able to pass a background check and obtain PA Child Clearance.


The successful candidate will have a commitment to strengthening the sustainability of the organization.  A strong commitment to social change through community empowerment.  Demonstrates integrity, credibility, and a commitment to and passion for CISPAC’s mission.


Must have a valid PA driver’s license and reliable transportation.  Must be able to lift life 30 pounds.  Must be flexible working in a fast-paced, nonprofit environment.  Experience or interest in community building through education is a plus.  This position works primarily at the CISPAC administrative office, occasionally onsite at schools, and in the greater Pittsburgh community for public and private events. Must be willing to use personal cell phone when working remotely.


  • The Director of Strategic Advancement is an exempt position.
  • Employee health benefits, short and long-term disability and retirement savings plan available.
  • The position is expected to work at least 40 hours per week.
  • Candidate must be open to work a flexible schedule, including some evenings and weekends.


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