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Chief Development Officer at Growing Home


Growing Home, Chicago’s leading organic farms focused on empowering people and communities in the Englewood neighborhood, is seeking a Chief Development Officer (CDO) to lead the growth of its $1.8 million fundraising efforts in collaboration with our Executive Director, a highly committed Board of Directors, and development team.

Reporting to and in partnership with the Executive Director (ED) the Chief Development Officer will lead financial strategic planning, and oversee all fundraising activities and initiatives for Growing Home, including grants management, individual giving, events management, and corporate sponsorship.

The CDO will focus on strengthening Growing Home’s major gifts program in preparation for its upcoming capital campaign. The CDO will work closely with the COO and with all department directors to coordinate marketing and communications.

This position will work primarily out of our new office at 825 W. 69th, from 8am-4pm M-F. The CDO will be expected to work a minimum of 40 hours per week, and additional hours may be required at busy times of the year. 


Fundraising Planning and Implementation:

The CDO is responsible for preparing and implementing an annual fundraising plan that will clearly spell out how the organization will meet its philanthropic fundraising goals. This goal for 2019 is approximately $1.8 million. 

The CDO will manage and train the development team of 3 people which consists of a Grants and Communications Coordinator, an Individual Giving Associate, and a Development Assistant who runs social media, gives administrative support to the development department, and also spends about 50% of their time on administrative duties for the office and entire organization. The CDO will be responsible for overseeing: 

  • Grants: The CDO will manage and build Growing Home’s portfolio of family foundation, corporate, and government grants.
  • Individual Giving and Major Donor Program: The CDO will play a critical role in building Growing Home’s major donor program, while continuing to improve upon our current individual giving strategies that culminate in a year-end mailed campaign. The CDO will direct the Individual Giving Associate in supporting the program, while taking a lead role in relationship-building with the ED, COO, and Board.
  • Events Management: Growing Home has an Annual Benefit, which raises approximately $300,000. The CDO is responsible for overseeing the smooth operations of this crucial event and a few other small events throughout the year.
  • Communications and Marketing: Growing Home’s development department leads most external communications for the organization, including social media, the website, e-newsletters, print materials, and press outreach.
  • Board Management: The DoD will work closely with the Board of Directors to engage them in fundraising, and will supervise the Individual Giving Associate in leading the Associate Board.

Strategic Planning:

  • The DoD will participate in strategic plan assessment and revision at all levels; providing insight into funder and donor needs and expectations; and collaborating on any needed fundraising planning.
  • The DoD will work closely with ED and DO to develop plans for long-term financial sustainability.

Capital Campaign:

Growing Home is in the beginning stages of planning for a capital campaign in order to develop its newest farm and training facility, adjacent to its current farms. The CDO will be one of the key leaders of this campaign, where they will be expected to:

  • Play a lead role in developing the strategy and vision for the campaign.
  • Work closely with the ED to engage donors and cultivate gifts.
  • Work closely with the capital campaign committee.
  • Develop materials for the capital campaign.

Other duties as assigned by Executive Director 


  • Bachelor’s degree required, and 7-10 years progressive experience in development
  • Proven track record of fundraising for an organization with +$2mil budget
  • Proven success in bringing in new and increased sources of diverse funding
  • Proven track record of managing an annual campaign and a major giving portfolio; significantly growing organizational revenue and securing five, six, and seven figure gifts from high net worth donors and prospects
  • Experience working with boards
  • Strong relationship-building skills
  • Outstanding written and verbal skills
  • Experience in managing, training, and coaching a team
  • Knowledge of and curiosity of trends and best practices in resource development
  • Experience with capital campaigns preferred
  • Experience in or understanding of workforce development, urban agriculture, food access, or Englewood community development is preferred
  • A strong commitment to service
  • Ability to work some weekends and evenings

Growing Home offers competitive salary and benefits packages, based on experience (you may inquire when asked to interview), which includes health insurance at a small co-pay, with dental. Growing Home also offers generous paid time off, and option to enroll in the 401k program after 6 months on the job.


Please send your resume, cover letter, and a writing sample of no more than three pages to Danielle Perry, Executive Director at All three documents should be combined into a single .pdf, and should be titled accordingly: [first initial, last name, CDO.pdf]. Example: “ASmithCDO.pdf”. The subject line of your email should read, “Chief Development Officer application”. Applicants will be considered on a rolling basis, and the application process will remain open until the position is filled. Our target start date is May 20th, 2019.

Only emailed applications will be accepted. Please do not email or call to follow-up. If you have not heard from us by May 20th, you are welcome to inquire about the position via email and ask for feedback on your application.

All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military status, current employment status, or prior record of arrest or conviction.

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