Development Officer, Vancouver Public Library Foundation

About the Organization:

The Vancouver Public Library Foundation was established in 1997 to raise funds to enhance Vancouver Public Library programs and services.

The library system that we support is a destination, a community, a facilitator, a resource, an innovator and an enabler. And free – always free. A cornerstone of our community, VPL has 21 branches around the city, and enjoined a combined 6.9 million patron visits last year and, while the library’s website had 5.3 million visits. More than 8,000 programs – all of them free – entertained, engaged and informed more than 235,000 people.

The Foundation’s vision is to support and informed, engaged and connected city. Our work is vital to helping Vancouver Public Library have the most reach and impact as possible.

Purpose of the Job:

To support the growth of the Vancouver Public Library Foundation’s fundraising initiatives through the cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of major gifts from individuals, foundations, businesses, corporations and other granting organizations. The Development Officer secures support for the funding priorities of Vancouver Public Library.


The Development Officer will report directly to the Vancouver Public Library Foundation’s Executive Director.

Key Responsibilities:

Work collaboratively with and in support of the Executive Director, other Foundation staff and Library representatives to cultivate, solicit and steward donors for Library priorities.

Build and manage a portfolio of approximately 75-125 active major gift donors and prospects. Responsibilities will include:

Prospect research

  • Identify diverse foundations, individuals, businesses and organizations appropriate for targeted cultivation and addition to major gifts pipeline

Research, compile and interpret data on prospects and donors

  • Proposal and grant writing to support programming initiatives at VPL
  • Major gift prospect outreach and relationship management

Initiate contact with potential donors

  • Develop and implement appropriate cultivation strategies
  • Develop presentation and background information materials, scripts, and talking points for meetings with donors/prospects
  • Move potential donors in an appropriate and timely fashion toward solicitation and closure
  • Make solicitations where appropriate
  • Maintain stewardship contacts with donors

Volunteer guidance and management

  • Support and encourage volunteer leadership in their prospect engagement activities
  • Provide direct but appropriate coaching to volunteer leadership as they engage with donor prospects
  • Develop briefing notes, backgrounders, etc. to assist volunteers with their prospect engagement activities


  • Build and maintain relationships with Library staff and leadership
  • Understand and support the mission of Vancouver Public Library and the Vancouver Public Library Foundation
  • Participate in planning and support of the broader Foundation objectives as required


  • University or college degree in fundraising, sales and marketing, or a combination of experience and education through recognized courses/training in fundraising
  • 3-5 years experience previous experience working in fundraising
  • Demonstrated success in directly securing major gifts at the $10,000+ level
  • Previous experience working for large, institutional organizations will be considered an asset
  • Experience and comfort with making cold calls and promoting fundraising priorities and building relationships with high profile professionals for cultivation and gift solicitation
  • Ability to work in small, flexible team environment
  • Computer software proficiency in Microsoft Office and donor database software
  • Results oriented work ethic and ability to work independently and undertake tasks needed to accomplish work objectives and deliver quality, consistent and timely results
  • Demonstrated skill in training and supporting volunteers in gift solicitation
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively with a variety of individuals
  • Excellent organizational skills to prioritize work, meet deadline requirements and be adaptable
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills

Working Environment:

  • Creative and flexible work environment
  • Small, highly collaborative team
  • Onsite kitchen and gym
  • Beautiful new office space as of spring 2017
  • Central downtown location near transit, shopping and great lunch spots
  • Easy access to all Central Library has to offer, including free business/technology training, recording studios and much more!

To apply, please send your resume and cover letter to Jenny Marsh

Please mention that you saw this career opportunity on Phil’s Careers Blog!

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