Chief Advancement Officer

Lenfest Institute Philadelphia, PA

American journalism is at an inflection point. The United States has lost at least a quarter of its newspaper journalists since 1978. In an increasingly digital age, high quality independent journalism remains vital to the civic health of cities and democracies. Quality journalism enriches public discourse, helps citizens learn about the needs of their community, and holds institutions accountable. The Institute for Journalism in New Media (the Institute) is designed to help secure the future for independent journalism throughout the United States.

Founded in 2016 by cable TV pioneer H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest, the Institute’s mission is to engage in programming and to make grants that point the way toward new business models for sustainable journalism in the digital age. The Institute will support innovative news initiatives nationwide, with a special emphasis on opportunities in major metropolitan areas.

The Institute seeks a dynamic and experienced chief advancement officer (CAO) to provide strategic vision, leadership, and direction for all fundraising, membership, and stewardship activities. Reporting directly to the Institute’s founding Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director (CEO), Jim Friedlich, a veteran journalism executive, the CAO will partner closely with its visionary founder, philanthropist, and communications leader, Gerry Lenfest. She or he will design, articulate, and implement a successful fundraising program and play a central role in enhancing the visibility and fundraising capabilities of the Institute during this exciting and historic moment in its inception.

The CAO will increase the organization’s revenue stream by strengthening ties with existing founding supporters, developing sophisticated efforts to identify new donors, and broadening the Institute’s overall outreach efforts. This person will develop and implement an overall fundraising strategy and engage the founder, CEO, and board of managers more broadly in fundraising efforts. The ideal candidate will be able to passionately articulate the Institute’s mission of supporting the future of independent journalism in the digital age and will be comfortable making solicitations at the six, seven, and eight-figure level. She or he will cultivate relationships with individual donors, private foundations, and corporations, as well as government entities, and have experience building affinity and support for an organization without an inherent base.

The CAO will also collaborate closely with the CEO, founder, and managers to assess and define the strategic direction of the development function and create a world-class comprehensive development and principal gifts program. Serving as a member of the CEO’s senior leadership team, this person will work closely with all Institute constituencies. The CAO will manage all aspects of the development operation to provide funding for grant-making, capital needs, educational programs, and general operations. She or he will launch systematic initiatives to identify and cultivate a generation of founding donors and work to enhance institutional image and public awareness, strengthening relationships and partnerships to benefit the Institute and its affiliates. The CAO will also serve as liaison to the Institute’s advancement committee, working closely with board leadership and recruiting and cultivating high-level external members.

The ideal candidate must possess proven leadership and organizational skills, a keen understanding of best practices in fundraising, a strong record of securing major and principal gifts on a national scale, and a demonstrated ability to build highly-efficient and effective development and communications programs. The ideal candidate must demonstrate a high level of integrity and trust, and must be a self-starter with a sense of urgency and a clear set of priorities, but with the ability to adapt to changing circumstances in a complex environment. The candidate must possess extraordinary communication skills and be an open, achievement-oriented professional. This individual should have a collegial, team-building style with a proven ability to lead and motivate staff and volunteers to keep them engaged, energized, and focused on results. At least ten years of major and principal gift experience in a successful multi-million dollar development program is required.

The Lenfest Institute is committed to providing equal employment opportunity without regard to age, ancestry, disability, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, sex or sexual orientation and additionally, does not support discrimination on the basis of marital status, political belief or activity or status as a veteran. This policy applies to all areas of employment, including recruitment, hiring, training and development, promotion, transfer, termination, layoff, compensation, benefits, social and recreational programs, all other conditions and privileges of employment in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws.

Jack Gorman is leading this search with Grace Rosenthal and Jun Choi.