Chief Development Officer

YRF Darca | New York, New York


Opportunity for Impact

Israel currently faces one of the largest and fastest growing gaps in educational achievement between rich and poor. An under-educated population puts Israel’s predominantly knowledge-based economy at risk. Through Darca schools, Israeli children discover and harness the power of education to improve quality of life for themselves, their communities, and their country.

YRF Darca is the philanthropic funding partner for the Darca network of schools in Israel. Darca provides Israeli high school students in lower income communities—regardless of ability, religion, birthplace, geographic or socio-economic status—an excellent education designed to improve social mobility. The schools emphasize academic achievement and the values of tolerance, democracy, and active participation in national and community life.

The YRF Darca leadership views the appointment of its new Chief Development Officer (CDO) as a unique and compelling leadership opportunity to be a principle architect of a development program that strengthens Israel’s schools, communities, and educational landscape.

YRF Darca seeks a proven, dynamic, and inspiring strategic leader with superior relationship skills and demonstrated success in building capacity and increasing revenue to become its Chief Development Officer.  The successful candidate must have an authentic passion for the mission, demonstrated success as an engaging fundraiser and be a highly articulate communicator skilled at making a compelling case for support.

“Changing Israel's schools, communities and educational landscape is a solvable problem.”

Background and Mission

YRF Darca’s mission is to raise money to strengthen the under-served society in Israel's periphery, by creating a groundbreaking enriched and efficient educational system, through access to an educational experience comparable to that available to the wealthier communities.

The Darca network's educational vision states that every child in Israel's school system has the right to realize his potential for excellence regardless of his place of residence, parents' education, or any other environmental factor.

Darca schools serve over 15,000 students each day in the country’s peripheral communities. Like a charter school network in the United States, Darca improves schools not only by managing them more effectively, but also by creating excellence through innovation in curriculum and teaching methods. The network today includes 30 widely dispersed educational institutions, from Kiryat Shmona in the north all the way to the Arava in the far south. Among these institutions are religious and non-religious high schools, a Druze school, an Arab school and all-girl schools for religious young women who combine secular and religious studies. Darca also operates two innovative English learning centers serving students from different schools and ages, where Jewish and Arab students regularly meet and study English together.

Additional information on YRF Darca can be found on the web

Job Summary

The new Chief Development Officer will plan, coordinate, and ensure implementation of strategies to develop new donors and contributions to support the organization.  The successful candidate will create an organization-wide culture of philanthropy and a development structure that reflects the values of the organization, while positioning it for success. The CDO’s responsibilities will include development of new markets for the organization in the US, including but not limited to Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Detroit, Chicago etc. with a goal to engage, cultivate, and solicit new prospects.  Research, development of relationships and engagement will be done through face-to-face solicitations, organization of cultivation and fundraising events, educational projects, as well as stewardship of lay leadership.

The leadership seeks a candidate with an entrepreneurial approach who can thrive in a fast-paced environment creating both the development of a strategy and the execution of plans simultaneously. The CDO will report to, and work closely with, the CEO and serve on the senior management team.  


  • Work with the CEO, SVP, board, and other professionals to lead, develop and implement a North American development strategy to increase the depth and breadth of foundation, individual and institutional support; refine and implement a strategic development plan for major donor prospects and a pipeline of smaller and mid-level donors using effective prospect research;
  • Create and support a culture of philanthropy that engages the CEO, SVP, Board, and other professionals, and fosters a collaborative, organization-wide team approach to development;
  • Identify and promote YRF Darca to new audiences and prospects to generate interest and support for the organization at all levels within new and existing markets;
  • Develop new markets and areas where the organization is unknown, and create new arenas for fundraising for the organization; continue efforts and help markets grow in LA and Miami, cities where YRF Darca already has a presence;
  • Manage a personal portfolio of prospective major donors (individual and foundation); maintain and deepen existing donor relationships through regular cultivation, communication, stewardship, and solicitation;
  • Develop a balanced funding mix of donor sources and solicitation programs tailored to the needs of the organization that will enable it to attract, retain and motivate new donors;
  • Support CEO, SVP, board members, and other fundraising volunteers to cultivate and solicit charitable gifts;
  • Collaborate closely with the marketing team on all development-related marketing materials and communications;
  • Ensure the development and writing of foundation and corporate proposals and solicitation materials;
  • Ensure the design and maintenance of donor and prospect records, gift management systems, informational reports, and metrics and performance measures to guide development goals and efforts;
  • Design and implement cultivation, acknowledgment, and recognition programs;
  • Participate in identifying and recruiting new prospective lay leaders and committee members;
  • Maintain a flexible leadership style that empowers staff through active communication and teamwork;
  • Take on other assignments, as appropriate.


This position requires a talented, entrepreneurial advancement professional, preferably with a national reach, who will relish the opportunity to participate in a startup culture, shape and implement a new organization’s development strategy, and be part of a vibrant, collaborative leadership team.

The successful candidate for this position will bring:

  • 7-10 years of fundraising, or related work experience with demonstrated major gift solicitation results;
  • Demonstrated experience in implementing and managing a successful, comprehensive fund development program and infrastructure, and preparing an annual development work plan and calendar to achieve goals;
  • Demonstrated success in identifying and securing new foundation grants of five-figures and up;
  • Demonstrated success with generating increased funds from individual donors, both major donors and annual appeals, through a coordinated, strategic approach; knowledge of planned giving and experience with online fundraising preferred;
  • Demonstrated success in learning the details of an organization’s substantive work and applying that knowledge in drafting successful fundraising solicitations;
  • Demonstrated success in conducting initial outreach to prospective foundations/donors, arranging for organizational leadership to meet with prospective donors/foundations and successfully preparing them for those meetings;
  • Excellent interpersonal and relationship-building skills;
  • Strategic and nuanced thinking; creative, innovative, and strategic inclinations to effectively engage new donor audiences;
  • Well-honed oral and written communications as well as public presentation skills;
  • Strong collaborative nature and skills, and a commitment to team results; as well as a track record of taking initiative and working independently;
  • Ability to multi-task, and to be a quick learner;
  • Detail-oriented, organized, enthusiastic and energetic, with great judgement and a sense of humor;
  • Deep understanding of the North American Jewish philanthropic landscape and demonstrated commitment to advancing Israel and the Jewish community;
  • A strong work ethic, ability to maintain and model high personal, ethical, and professional standards, as well as an outgoing and positive personality;
  • Successful experience as the partner to a CEO, senior professionals and board;
  • Experience using and measuring best practices in major gift and pipeline development;
  • Ability to manage complex relationships and multiple priorities; outstanding diplomatic, negotiation and ambassadorial skills;
  • Commitment to organizational mission and desire to learn the field;
  • Ability to travel extensively;
  • A Bachelor’s degree is required; an advanced degree is desirable.

How to Apply

To Apply:

Please submit a resume and cover letter.


YRF Darca