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Chief Advancement Officer

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Chief Advancement Officer in Orange County

  • Families Forward
  • Full time
  • Email
  • Orange County
  • 23/10/2019
  • Report




 Mission: Families Forward exists to help families in need achieve and maintain self-sufficiency though housing, food, counseling, education and other support services.

Starting with five rented apartments in 1984, Families Forward has expanded to work with hundreds of families to regain economic independence and find a stable home for parent(s) and their children.  Families Forward’s vision is to end homelessness for local families.  One of the fastest growing segments of the homeless population is working families with children struggling to make ends meet.  The high cost of basic living, including rent, transportation, healthcare and childcare, coupled with the significant lack of affordable housing puts many families at risk.

Families Forward works with homeless families to find realistic solutions for sustainable housing and build individualized plans to return each family to self-sufficiency.  By stabilizing these families and giving them tools to build a future, Families Forward creates a stronger community for everyone.  A key factor for success is Families Forward’s commitment to collaborate with many organizations to end family homelessness in Orange County, including Orange County United Way, the Commission to End Homelessness, the Children and Families Commission and many other partner agencies and foundations. 

Providing supportive services to improve lives, Families Forward also reaches out to low-income families to help reduce the pressures that can cause homelessness and help them maintain their stability.  Through various safety-net services, those at-risk are given access to assistance such as on-site food pantry, counseling, career coaching, financial and life skills education.  Families Forward helps families recover from a financial crisis so they can maintain their self-sufficiency.  

Families Forward holds strong to their commitment of five fundamental values:

Dignity: Honor each individual through an atmosphere of respect, trust and confidentiality.

Empowerment: Inspire self-sufficiency through the development of courage, confidence and pride.

Accountability: Accept responsibility for commitments and accomplishing our goals.

Community Spirit: Realize our vision through teamwork, cooperation and collaboration.

Hope: Share a belief in new beginnings and allow dreams of the future to emerge.

To learn more about Families Forward, please visit



The Chief Advancement Officer is responsible for developing effective partnerships, collaborations and strategic alliances with government agencies, corporations, foundations, Board members and other sources of funds and services within the nonprofit industry, as well as with individuals; represents Families Forward to prospective and current major funding sources.

 Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer as a member of the Executive Management Team, the Chief Advancement Officer is also responsible for communications and community relations activities to sustain and expand Families Forward’s programs and services. The Chief Advancement Officer manages a team of 6 staff members who support the agency’s $6 million annual operations through private philanthropic donors and private and government grants.  The CAO will manage the agency’s fiscal growth and expansion, ensuring stability over the long-term change and development.    The primary functions include cultivation of potential new donors to support the agency’s annual campaign and any future campaigns.  Increasing grant revenue from government, corporate, and private foundations. Promotion of Families Forward to the community at large in order to engage donors and volunteers to support Families Forward through contributions of financial and human resources.  This role will also be responsible for planning and implementing strategies to secure new and steward existing donors and contributions in support of the organization.  The CAO will provide oversight of the fund development program and monitor development activities.


  • Manage and lead the Development department, monitoring performance, performing annual reviews and building team cohesion
  • Ensure appropriate systems are in place surrounding Development management system, gift processing and acknowledgements
  • As a member of the Management team help strategize the overall organization’s vision and growth
  • Oversee Development Manager with Gala Committee to ensure success of event


  • Responsible for the coordination of the annual fund development plan to achieve budget revenue objectives focusing on major gift solicitation and planned gifts
  • Cultivate potential new donors to support the agency’s annual campaigns
  • Increase grant revenue from corporate and private foundations to augment the growth in government grants
  • Manage overall fundraising efforts by developing measurable goals and objectives to procure major gifts and donations to support Families Forward
  • Liaison to Board and Fund Development Committee to achieve funding for agency goals and objectives
  • Key liaison responsible for developing and stewarding major gifts of $5,000 and up
  • Work with Development Manager to develop and steward gifts up to $5,000
  • Identify potential major giving opportunities Manage relationships with potential and current major gift donors
  • Oversee overall stewardship and recognition for all donations
  • Provide direction and oversight of the Corporate Volunteer Program and Outreach Programs in the community
  • Establish a balanced mix of donor sources and fundraising programs to attract and retain donors


  • Develop and implement marketing campaign to promote Families Forward awareness and expand the face of the organization
  • Develop strategies around cultivating and stewarding relationships to build Families Forward visibility, impact and financial resources
  • Responsible for brand management through marketing materials and social media platforms


  • Attend Board and Executive Committee meetings
  • Coordinate and lead the Fund Development Committee
  • Oversee Development Manager with Gala Committee to ensure success of event


  • Preferred experience managing a robust corporate or foundation fundraising program
  • Prior experience with development and stewardship of Major Gifts
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office and experience with fund raising databases, preferred
  • Highly driven, results-oriented work ethic
  • Maintain valid California Driver’s License and state mandated vehicle insurance


 The successful candidate will be a strategic, highly motivated, hands-on professional with exceptional interpersonal and communication skills. The individual will be a compelling, charismatic leader with the ability to move a team forward by inspiring and motivating people with creativity, energy and a sense of humor. The Chief Advancement Officer should be highly collaborative, resourceful and results-oriented with the ability to think strategically, generate new ideas, prioritize, plan, and set goals and objectives, and support the team.


 Leading candidates will have a minimum of seven years of demonstrated high-level leadership success developing and implementing comprehensive development or external relations programs of comparable size. Team management experience is required, and the successful candidate will have a clearly articulated management philosophy which supports high performance and employee retention. The ideal candidate will have experience in all areas of fundraising including annual giving, major gifts, grants and events, as well as an understanding of volunteer-supported organizations, and a fluency in databases that support fundraising. Exceptional financial, organizational, project management and administrative skills are essential and expected. The Chief Advancement Officer should be comfortable working in and representing a homeless services agency and be a compelling spokesperson on its behalf.


 Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree preferred.


 $100,000-$150,000.  A comprehensive benefits package will be provided


 Please direct inquiries, nominations, and applications, including resume and a compelling letter of interest in confidence to:

 Elizabeth Childs – Director of Human Resources

Families Forward

8 Thomas

Irvine, CA. 92618


Electronic submission is encouraged.

Families Forward

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