Vice President of Development

Position Description
The Music Institute of Chicago seeks a Vice President of Development who will support the organization’s comprehensive efforts to widen its base of contributed support from individuals as well as corporate, foundation, and government entities. This position is charged with developing and overseeing advancement strategy and establishing fundraising targets that yield upwards of $3 million annually.                    

Reporting to the President and CEO, the Vice President of Development is a member of the Senior Management Team, and will provide direction for all fundraising areas, inclusive of annual fund, leadership annual giving, donor engagement, special events, corporate sponsorship, and a robust grants calendar.  A particular focus will be building a strong pipeline for multi-year major gifts that will support growth in the endowment, address capital needs, and advance strategic priorities or special projects.                     

In addition to supervising a staff of four, the Vice President of Development will serve as a primary liaison to the Board of Trustees. This person will be responsible for facilitating the dynamic engagement of the Board and various volunteer groups and committees.

Essential duties and responsibilities

  • Develop strategy and lead a balanced, multi-channel fundraising program that includes an annual fund campaign, individual giving and leadership annual giving programs, major gifts, sponsorship, institutional giving, and special events.
  • Manage a portfolio of major donor and sponsorship prospects capable of making gifts of $50,000 or more annually. Develop customized moves management strategies aligned with long-term institutional priorities, and initiate, maintain, and lead all aspects of the fundraising cycle.
  • Supervise a team of four (Assistant Director of Development, Annual Fund and Database Manager, Donor Engagement Manager, Development Coordinator) to execute annual strategies, providing coaching and mentoring on best practices in donor recruitment and stewardship.
  • Spearhead large-scale fundraising initiatives, such as the annual gala benefit, which raises more than $750,000 to support programs and financial aid offerings that provide equitable access to music education.
  •  Work collaboratively across the organization to build on MIC’s current successes and create compelling cases for support for programs aligned with MIC’s commitment to excellence, accessibility, and diversity.
  • Maintain positive Board relations and work in partnership with the President and CEO and Executive Committee members on Board development activities. Prepare KPI reports for and attend all Executive Committee and full Board meetings.
  • Spearhead the External Affairs Committee, encouraging active volunteer engagement and creating bi-monthly agendas.
  • Serve as a department representative at sponsored concerts and special events, including the Annual Gala and Families in Concert, and maintain a positive presence at external meetings and events. Work may include some evenings and weekends.
  • Manage departmental expense and revenue budgets

    Ideal Candidate Profile
    The successful candidate will be self-motivated, entrepreneurial, and an excellent verbal communicator with strengths in non-profit fundraising, building donor relationships and knowledge of Chicago’s philanthropic community. They will have a positive spirit and energy, a good sense of humor, and a flexible/adaptable working style.

    Required Qualifications
  • Bachelor’s degree; Master’s degree in nonprofit/arts administration or related field desirable
  • Minimum of 7 years’ progressive fundraising experience, including direct experience managing major, individual, and/or corporate giving initiatives and donor societies
  • Demonstrated track record of achieving financial goals and building donor relationships
  • Experience managing teams and large projects
  • Knowledge of Chicago’s philanthropic community a plus
  • Experience with Raiser’s Edge NXT or similar CRM software


Core Competencies and Other Desirable Traits

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with the ability to present information clearly and attractively
  • Strong capacity for listening and extracting information from others
  • Customer service mindset with an ability to foster positive constituent relationships
  • Solid work ethic, with a high level of integrity
  • Exceptional prioritization skills, with the ability to multi-task, a keen eye for detail, and demonstrated ability to meet deadlines and goals


COVID-19 Vaccination Notice
All in-person employees of the Music Institute of Chicago must show proof of Covid-19 vaccination, including a booster shot.

To Apply
Applicants should submit a cover letter including salary requirements, resume, and a writing sample.

Please send all correspondence to MIC welcomes candidate inquiries and referrals.

The Music Institute of Chicago has a casual yet professional work environment and is conveniently headquartered in downtown Evanston, close to public transportation – CTA, Metra, and PACE. Salary and benefits are offered commensurate with experience.


About the Music Institute of Chicago
For 90 years, the Music Institute of Chicago (MIC) has been transforming lives through quality, accessible music education. As one of the largest and most respected community music schools in the nation, we are dedicated to sharing our love of music with the next generation and to cultivating musical ability and appreciation in people of all levels, backgrounds, and interests.

MIC harnesses the power of music to educate and inspire through its Community Music School, which provides comprehensive private and group music education to 2,000+ children and adults annually; the Academy, a nationally recognized training center for pre-college pianists and string players; Nichols Concert Hall, a state-of-the-art 550-seat performance space hosting 15,000 individuals annually for workshops and master classes, and performances; and community engagement programs and Music as Service, which create equitable access to music education for under-resourced communities.

Statement of Non-Discrimination
The Music Institute of Chicago is an equal opportunity employer, committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We adopt employment policies that advance our vision of a workplace culture where employees are valued for their unique perspectives and participation in the activities and operations of the institution.

The Music Institute of Chicago makes hiring decisions based solely on qualifications, merit, and business, artistic, and pedagogical needs at the time, and prohibits discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religious creed, gender, sexual orientation, parental status, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, marital status, military discharge status, source of income, housing status, age, or disability. This policy applies to all employment practices within our organization, including hiring, recruiting, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, leave of absence, compensation, benefits, training, transfer, and other privileges of employment.