Managing Director of Development

Network Team/Administrative Opportunities East Boston, Massachusetts


Organizational Overview

Founded in 2003 to provide a free, public, high-quality college preparatory education for the students of East Boston and Chelsea, Excel is proving that children’s ability to succeed in high school, college, and beyond is not determined by zip code. We have grown from one school serving approximately 200 students to a network of four schools serving more than 1,300 students, and our purpose and theory of change remains consistent: we believe that when a student has the support and tools to pursue a productive post-secondary pathway aligned with personal identity and values, it can fundamentally change his/her life trajectory.  As a true public school, Excel is defined not by whom we exclude but by whom we include in our community. We are proud of the fact that we serve many students with special needs.

After 8 years of operating a small single-site middle school in East Boston, Excel was designated a “Proven Provider” by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and granted two additional charters to serve middle school students. After four more successful years, Excel Academy Charter High School opened in 2015. In spring 2019, we are excited to cheer on our first senior class as they become the first cohort to receive high school diplomas from Excel.

About the Role

Excel Academy is seeking a strong Managing Director of Development to work closely with the CEO in continuing to build Excel’s donor base and public profile. Together, the Managing Director and the CEO will develop a vision and strategic plan for Excel’s approach to fundraising and external communication. The Managing Director will then play the lead role in coordinating and implementing these activities.

The Managing Director will be a thought partner to the Board and CEO in addressing strategic challenges the organization will face in improving the way it handles development and external relations. Over the past 5 years, Excel has raised over $18M through a growth capital campaign and annual fund supported by a wide range of individuals and foundations.

Along with the CEO, Board of Trustees, Foundation Board, Ambassador Council, MCPSA, and other key supporters in the sector, the Managing Director will work to continue building a public profile that reflects Excel’s values, ensure our current donors stay connected and engaged, and build strong, lasting donor relationships with new constituents.

Duties and Responsibilities

Specific job functions include, but are not limited to:

Fundraising: Designing and executing a strategic fundraising initiative that will meet our current operational needs.

  • Determine specific/annual fundraising targets/strategies
  • Coordinate CEO’s development agenda
  • Cultivate relationships with key donors and prospects
  • Develop all development related board/CEO level documents
  • Coordinate mailings; manage and track donations
  • Oversee and coordinate grant applications & writing
  • Maintain Little Green Light donor database management system to keep lists current and clean
  • Work with CEO and Marketing team to manage all events and messaging

Board Management: Coordinate and organize Board Meetings.

  • Manage and help prepare Board Meeting materials, location, agenda, and take minutes of each meeting
  • Work with governing and foundation board members to manage current donor prospects and pursue new prospects
  • Manage the Ambassador Council
  • Provide appropriate materials / information to all board members to help them steward their prospects

Donor and Foundation Visitor Management: Lead donor and prospective donor visits in coordination with applicable school staff and school leaders.

  • Prepare materials on each visitor, including biography and past charitable giving, in addition to providing any other relevant information

Marketing and Communications: Oversee production of high quality, effective messaging that reflects Excel's values and impact.

  • Collaborate with the CEO, marketing department, and key stakeholders
  • Serve as the liaison to the MCPSA on political advocacy issues, public relations, and social media strategy
  • Coordinate and work with Marketing to produce weekly content for our social media platforms and website
  • Coordinate and draft materials for Excel donors, including annual report, event materials, invites, and regular communication

Qualities & Qualifications

We are looking for someone sharp, driven, charismatic, and kind.
The ideal candidate will also possess the following qualifications:

  • At least 5 years of work experience including substantial experience in externally-oriented functions like development and PR
  • Experience in the private sector and/or in the education sector strongly preferred
  • Track record of delivering concrete results that exceed expectations
  • Extremely strong communications skills, including evidence of structured thinking and an ability to inspire confidence and enthusiasm in others
  • Strong systems-orientation, including building new systems that ensure consistent performance
  • Specific experience in fundraising preferred
  • Bachelor’s degree; advanced degree preferred but not required.

The following qualities are also must-haves: 

  • Alignment on Values and Philosophy: Passion for closing the achievement gap in public education and a belief that every student should be held to the highest academic and behavioral expectations
  • Entrepreneurial Spirit: A track record of being a resourceful and creative self-starter in tackling challenges, and of questioning conventional wisdom with a relentless ability to continue push through obstacles and exhibit positivity
  • Integrity: Embodying the honesty and trustworthiness that Excel expects of all its community members and particularly those serving as visible role models for others

Compensation: Excel provides a competitive compensation package that includes benefits and is commensurate with experience. Applications will be reviewed as they are received and candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

Excel Academy Charter Schools do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, creed, sex, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, ancestry, athletic performance, special need, proficiency in the English language or a foreign language or prior academic achievement.