The Associate Director of Development – Columbia College Chicago

Columbia College Chicago is an acclaimed undergraduate and graduate institution that provides a comprehensive education in the arts, communications and public relations. We constantly aim to reach our full potential as an educational innovator, incubator of new creative practice and generator of real-world success for young creatives. We are located in the heart of Chicago, across the street from historic Grant Park, and housed in some of the most iconic buildings in the South Loop.

Columbia College Chicago a private urban institution of over 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students, four-year College offering a distinctive curriculum that blends liberal arts, creative and media arts and business is currently searching for an Associate Director of Development. 


The Associate Director of Development will be part of the dynamic and accomplished Development and Alumni Relations team at Columbia College Chicago. Reporting to the Senior Director of Development, and working in coordination with faculty and staff at the college, the Associate Director will be responsible for revenue strategy, gift solicitation, and donor relations – including individuals, foundations, government grants, and corporations. Additionally, the Associate Director will serve as a liaison to friends and members of assigned affiliate groups and event committees.

The Associate Director of Development is an experienced and effective fundraising professional able to cultivate and build strategic relationships and independently manage a robust fundraising portfolio. The role requires grant writing skills as well as the ability to cultivate individual and major gift donors. Ability to understand and communicate the mission of the college, to engage in meaningful conversations about contemporary art and photography, and to represent the college with a high level of integrity and professionalism is essential.


  • Serve as the primary gift officer for assigned donors and donor prospects, including annual fund and major gifts.
  • Serve as the primary liaison for assigned affiliate groups.
  • Manage the annual revenue budget for assigned units, develop annual fundraising strategies, which include annual fund, major gifts, foundation and government grants, corporations, and events.
  • Manage existing foundation and government grants, including application and reporting, while also broadening foundation outreach and increasing foundation revenue.
  • Cultivate individual donors and prospects in order to increase annual giving, and develop a pipeline of Major Gift donors.
  • Manage donor communications including appeals, solicitations, membership renewals, and stewardship.
  • Provide support and leadership for assigned campaigns.
  • Support fundraising efforts for signature events and programs.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned or required.


  • Bachelor’s Degree and 3-5 years of progressive development experience in a non-profit setting required. Demonstrated success in fundraising and donor relations preferred.
  • Exceptional interpersonal, communication, and organization skills.
  • Ability to self-direct while directing work of others, including volunteers, faculty and staff.
  • Knowledge of fundraising programs, particularly major gifts solicitation processes.
  • Knowledge of grant application and reporting processes.
  • Knowledge of relational databases, Raiser’s Edge experience preferred.
  • Ability to initiate and maintain strong working relationships including, board members, staff, artists, community partners, and funders.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Ability to prioritize and handle a number of projects simultaneously and complete work in a timely manner.
  • Ability to handle confidential matters with a high level of integrity.
  • Knowledge of Contemporary Art/Photography preferred.

This job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties, or responsibilities required of the employee and is subject to change based on the needs of the department and/or college.

At Columbia, we offer a rewarding work environment for our faculty and staff. We take pride in offering competitive benefits with affordable health, dental and vision coverage; flexible spending accounts; commuter benefit program, life and accidental, death & dismemberment coverage; paid and unpaid leave options; work/life benefits; educational assistance programs; and retirement and financial planning benefits.

We invite you to join our talented faculty and staff and become part of our collective aspiration to ensure Columbia prepares students for success in their creative fields through innovation, engagement and real-world experiences.

Additional Information

Position subject to a background screening.

This is a non-union position.

This position is not overtime eligible.

Qualified candidates of diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Columbia College Chicago is an equal opportunity employer and complies with all local, state, and federal laws and regulations concerning civil rights. The college does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law.

Categories: Job Postings