Professional Resource

Chief Development and Strategy Officer

ZERO TO THREE can provide you with the opportunities and challenges you need to excel and advance your career.

Job Title: Chief Development and Strategy Officer

Department: Development

FLSA Category: Exempt

FTE: 1.0 (Full-time)

Reports To: Executive Director

Work Location: Flexible (DC preferred)

Posting Date: January 8, 2021

About the Organization

Founded in 1977, ZERO TO THREE works to ensure that babies and toddlers benefit from the early connections that are critical to their well-being and development. Our mission is to ensure that all babies and toddlers have a strong start in life. At ZERO TO THREE we envision a society that has the knowledge and will to support all infants and toddlers in reaching their full potential. Our approach to our work and relationships is reflected in a major tenet of our Core Values Statement: We believe that how we do our work is as important as what we do. To learn more about ZERO TO THREE, please visit our website at

Our Commitment to Diversity

ZERO TO THREE is proud to be an equal opportunity employer, committed to inclusive hiring, advancement, and professional development and is dedicated to diversity in its work, its staff and with community partners. This is an exceptional opportunity for a professional who shares our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and supports our mission to enhance outcomes for ALL children.


Reporting to the Executive Director, the Chief Development and Strategy Officer (CDSO) provides the strategic vision and collaborative leadership necessary to plan and execute an effective and comprehensive fund development program; sets and bears responsibility for meeting philanthropic and public revenue goals and creates sustainable and reliable development income that supports the entire organization.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

The CDO is an initiative-taking role involving a mix of strategic planning, managerial, and development activities. This role will be supported by a team, currently comprised of three experienced professionals with individual, foundation, and government portfolios across the breadth of ZTT programming, who execute various elements of the development plan and other staff with subject matter expertise as assigned. The CDSO also has the support of a highly engaged Board of Directors, a dedicated Development Committee of Board members, and a committed Executive Director and senior staff with strong development experience and relationships with core stakeholders.

Development Leadership and Strategy

  • Provide dynamic and innovative leadership around the mission of the organization and how to build a solid and sustainable future.
  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of all ZTT’s programs, identify the synergies between them, and help design new directions responsive to constituent needs and philanthropic interests.
  • Work closely with the Executive Director, senior staff leaders, Board, and private funding partners to set and achieve the organization’s philanthropic goals.
  • Build strong relationships with a diverse set of donors and potential donors.
  • Manage and support the Executive Director, Board and senior staff in fundraising events and other donor opportunities.
  • Serve as a member of the Executive Management Team with the Executive Director, Chief Program, Policy, Communications, Finance & Administration and Human Resources Officers in setting organization direction and policies.
  • Evaluate and manage development systems and processes to ensure efficiencies and maximize staff resources.
  • Convene regular meetings of the Board Development Committee and support individual committee and other Board members in cultivating donors.
  • Be aware of new technology and digital trends and work collaboratively with the Chief Technology Officer to oversee implementation and adherence to technology systems and processes that optimize development activities, enhance donor interactions, increase revenue and streamline tasks.
  • Use fundraising technology, including CRM platforms and donor database, to provide donor/business intel that drives fundraising strategy.
  • Work collaboratively with the Communications Department to develop and execute engaging and impactful development campaigns to increase public visibility, donor acquisition and retention, and organizational growth.
  • Work collaboratively with the Finance Department in the early identification of revenue needs and budget development.

Government Revenue

  • Play a leadership role in maintaining current and analyzing potential new sources of government revenues.
  • Lead the RFP response process, engage in proposal writing and implement strong quality control measures for proposal preparation.
  • Work closely with staff from the Policy and Program Divisions to identify opportunities which could lead to new funding sources at the federal, state, and local levels.

Foundation Revenue (Institutional and Family Foundations)

  • Support prospect research and cultivation to open doors for relationships and funding that will complement and expand the current investor base.
  • Work collaboratively with the Executive Director, program, policy, finance and development staff to create strong relationships with foundation program officers and/or principals to expand this important revenue stream for the organization.
  • Build the organization’s network among “mega” funders, aggregators, and family offices to expand the universe of potential donors when an area of common interest is identified.

Individual Revenue

  • Oversee and participate in the systematic identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of new individual and family donors capable of making significant contributions to ZTT.
  • Guide strategy, rhythm, mediums, and methods of communication to potential and current donors about ZTTs mission, programs and projects, and help develop specific strategies and tailored cases for support.
  • Serve as the chief liaison between the Board of Directors and the Board’s Development Committee, working with a mindset towards finding and creating new donors and revenue sources both from the Board and from their connections.
  • Ensure the good health and growth of the individual giving program, through both total number of donors and revenue, working with staff to measure and drive awareness of giving trends and new fundraising opportunities.
  • Oversee and participate in maintaining and deepening relationship and alliances through regular, relevant communications and stewardship.
  • Help design and oversee contribution opportunities including online, planned, and direct mail giving campaigns.

Corporate Partnerships

  • Design, with support from staff, a strategy to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward creative partnerships with corporate foundations and marketing departments designed to expand organizational revenue streams and communications reach.

Management and Supervision

  • Lead and mentor development staff to meet the ongoing challenges of maintaining and expanding revenue, ensuring the qualify of their work as well as their professional development.
  • Maintain a leadership style that is transparent, empowers staff through active communication and delegation, and promotes teamwork.
  • Advance diversity, equity and inclusion while demonstrating strong cultural competency.
  • Foster an environment of achievement and ensure staff accountability for excellence through clearly defined and measurable goals.
  • Celebrate current achievements and set clear expectations for future success.
  • Plan and carefully manage the development budget and resources, ensuring that they are allocated efficiently and effectively to maximize return on investment.
  • Model and foster excellent customer service standards for the development function.
  • Work effectively with outside consultants and service providers.
  • Perform other duties as assigned for the purpose of ensuring the efficient and effective functioning of the department.

Skills and Experience

  • A personal passion for, and commitment to, the mission and vision of ZERO TO THREE.
  • An energetic leader with 15+ years of experience in development, with demonstrable achievements in strategic thinking, proposal writing, management and personal fundraising, and broad knowledge of all relevant areas of fundraising.
  • Proven ability to personally analyze, organize and write winning government contracts and private proposals, and mentoring development and program/policy staff in enhancing and building skills to do the same.
  • Demonstrated experience in cultivating, solicitating, and stewarding individual donors across the spectrum from direct response and annual giving to major and planned giving.
  • Strong cultural competency with a high emotional quotient.
  • Strong management skills, both strategic and operational, and demonstrated success in recruiting, retaining, and increasing the effectiveness of development staff through established objectives, performance standards, and quantifiable benchmarks.
  • The intellectual depth, maturity, and collaborative skills to work effectively with ZTT’s Executive Director, Board members, and staff.
  • Open-minded, nimble, and creative professional who can remain cognizant and respectful of ZTT’s roots while encouraging growth and change. Strong interpersonal skills, a collaborative working style, and an enthusiasm for building bridges between and among key constituents.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, with careful attention to detail. Ability to translate ZTT’s mission and programs into fundraising initiatives that garner financial support.
  • A strong work ethic, reputation for integrity and high ethical standards, as well as an outgoing and positive personality. A sense of humor and perspective.
  • Demonstrated integrity and excellence in his/her work.

Other Essential Qualities

  • Evidence of a collaborative working style, the ability to share the spotlight.
  • A strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Encourages and practices critical thinking.
  • Is self-reflective and empathetic.
  • Recognizes the influence of workplace relationships on outcomes and results.
  • Maintains a respectful and accepting approach to others.
  • Awareness of the influence of the larger context on individual behavior.
  • Collaboratively and creatively supports the work efforts of colleagues at all levels and in all areas of the organization.


Bachelor’s degree is required. Advanced degree and CFRE is advantageous

Physical Requirements

While performing the responsibilities of the job, the employee is constantly required to use finger dexterity as well as sufficient hand dexterity to use a computer keyboard and be capable of reading a computer screen. Also many need to remain seated for long periods of time and have the ability to perform repetitive motions, push objects, reach for objects and grasp objects, including a writing instrument. Employee is frequently required to walk, communicate verbally and hear well enough to detect nuances and receive detailed information. The employee may be required to bend, stand, pull objects, squat or kneel. Vision abilities required for this job include close vision for data preparation and analysis and expansive reading. Must have the ability to lift up to 30 pounds.

Working Conditions

The work conditions described here is representative of those an employee encounters while performing this job. The incumbent typically work indoors in a heated and air-conditioned office, with a mixture of natural, incandescent and fluorescent light with low to moderate noise levels.

ZERO TO THREE is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer of Minorities, Females, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin.

Does this sound like an opportunity for you? You decide.

  • You understand social sector enterprises and the organizations and individuals who support their work. You speak the language. Your experience with funders of all types positions you to identify the right strategy for putting the organization in front of decision-makers.
  • You have a collaborative and inclusive approach to leadership. You naturally build strong relationships and establish credibility with a wide range of leaders, staff, and subject matter experts as trusted colleague.
  • You are an exceptional communicator. You know how to synthesize and translate complex information for a broad spectrum of audiences and can use language to influence and persuade.
  • You are adaptable, strategic, and agile. You naturally anticipate future consequences and trends, and incorporate them into the strategic plan, and when things don’t go according to plan you know how to roll with the punches.
  • You’re a master planner and capacity builder. You know how to operationalize program strategy and develop the plans, processes and people to execute, ensuring that goals are met and that all appropriate metrics are being tracked.
  • You are transparent and genuine. Your commitment to ZTT’s mission is what makes you a successful leader.

What’s attractive to the right candidate?

  • We are financially strong and stable with an established track record of successful fund development from diverse sources (FY21 Budget is over $50M).
  • You will have a broad portfolio of responsibility and will play a critical role in our organization.
  • You will join a high performing, committed and fun senior leadership team who will support you in your success.
  • You will work directly with a dedicated Board of Directors who care deeply about the organization’s mission and will look to you for help building the resources for the future.

How to Apply

Submit an updated resume and cover letter detailing relevant experience to:

ZERO TO THREE: National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer of Minorities, Females, Protected Veterans, and Individual with Disabilities