San Diego, CA

Chief Philanthropy Officer, ACLUF of San Diego & Imperial Counties

The Organization

The ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLUF-SDIC) seeks a dynamic Chief Philanthropy Officer.

The ACLUF-SDIC is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 civil liberties and civil rights organization working to advance equality, freedom and justice through public education and litigation.  Together with the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLU-SDIC), the 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization that does our legislative lobbying work, we are a prominent force for the protection and expansion of fundamental rights in California’s second-most populous county (San Diego) and the county with the highest per capita Latina/o population (Imperial).

While there are more than 50 ACLU affiliates nationwide, our work covers the length of California’s border with Mexico. We work collaboratively with the National ACLU and with ACLU affiliates in California, on the U.S-Mexico border and throughout the United States. In addition, we value partnerships and collaboration with community organizations and groups across the state and throughout the border region.

The ACLU Foundation and ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties (known collectively as ACLU-SDIC) have a proven track record of success combining impact litigation, policy advocacy, legislation, research and analysis, public education, strategic communications and community organizing to achieve meaningful social change. We are dedicated to confronting issues that threaten our most cherished civil rights and freedoms and defending the progress the ACLU has made over its 100-year history.

 Position Overview

We are looking for an enthusiastic individual, eager to take on an unparalleled opportunity to grow our fundraising operation across San Diego and Imperial Counties. We need someone who is energized by meeting and talking to new people and knows how to make every supporter feel important. Our ideal Chief Philanthropy Officer sees an opportunity for connection everywhere and enjoys stretching the circle wider by figuring out the different ways that people can come together to support our fundraising goals. The successful applicant will understand how to build strong relationships with donors and help establish a vision for the department as well as goals and strategies.

Partnering with the Executive Team, the Chief Philanthropy Officer is a senior position that will plan, lead and execute the ACLU’s major gifts program ($10k+) and other fundraising initiatives. The Chief Philanthropy Officer will spend at least 50% of their time directly interacting with donors and helping them fulfill their philanthropic interests and passions.

Specific Responsibilities:

Lead our Major Gifts Program by:


•      developing and implementing strategies to attract prospective donors and secure major gifts of

$10,000+, planned gifts, and a pipeline of mid-level donors;

•      developing and coordinating annual and long-range development plans, including those for specific goals and audiences with the development department team;

•      maintaining a personal major gifts portfolio, managing the top-tier portfolio of the Executive Director, and helping oversee the portfolio for the Major Gifts Officer;

•      supervising development professionals, including a Major Gifts Officer;

Shape the ACLU’s Planned Giving Initiatives by:

•      working with the National ACLU’s Planned Giving team to develop, promote, and implement planned giving strategies

Provide Organizational Leadership in Collaborations, External Relations and Administrative Work by:

 •      teaming with the Executive Director and board members to strengthen ACLUF-SDIC’s culture of philanthropy;

•      serving as a member of ACLUF-SDIC’s executive team and supervising development staff

•      consulting with staff to develop and implement strategies to establish relationships with donors of color;

•      educating donors on issues of race equity and structural inequality;

•      coordinating development initiatives and reports with the National ACLU office; and

•      maintaining working knowledge of national, state, and regional programmatic priorities and issues, the racial impact of our programmatic work, major breaking news stories that are of interest to our supporters, and attending ACLU meetings and events, as appropriate.

How To Apply

Our “Must Have’s”

•      Passion and enthusiasm for building strong relationships with donors;

•      Collaborative management style that motivates, helps set objectives, and maintains an inclusive and equitable environment that promotes creativity and professional growth among staff;

•      Minimum 5 years of experience with progressive responsibility and a proven track record of soliciting, closing, and stewarding leadership gifts of $10,000 and above;

•      Ability to “make the ask” of donors, and enjoy coaching others to develop the same skill set;

•      A demonstrable commitment to civil liberties and civil rights;

•      Willingness to lead and work in partnership with Executive Director, board, staff and volunteers to accomplish the ACLUF-SDIC’s fundraising objectives; and

•      A demonstrated commitment to race equity, dismantling white supremacy and incorporating a structural power analysis into work, with knowledge and understanding of how power is manifested in matters of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstances.

What Else You Should Know:

The ACLU Foundation of San Diego and Imperial Counties is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to maximizing the diversity of our team and want to involve all those who can contribute to our inclusive culture. We encourage applications from women, people of color, persons with disabilities, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals, veterans, and people with arrest records and/or convictions.


Salary range: $120,000 – $140,000

Excellent benefits include four weeks paid vacation; 18 office holidays; medical and dental insurance for staff members, and their families; life and long-term disability insurance; and 401(k) plan with employer match.

 What Now?

 Please submit a cover letter explaining your interest in and qualifications for the position as detailed in this announcement, a current resume, names and contact information of three professional references (including at least one supervisor). Kindly put “ACLUF-SDIC Chief Philanthropy Officer – your name” in the subject line of your email. If possible, please combine all documents into one PDF file.

Electronic applications are preferred. To submit your application, please click here.

However, hard-copy applications can be mailed to:

Deputy Director
ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties
P.O. Box 87131
San Diego, CA 92137-7131

The ACLU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages applications from women, people of color, persons with disabilities, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals, veterans, and people with arrest records and/or convictions.

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