Chief Development Officer

Campaign Legal Center | Washington, DC


The Campaign Legal Center (CLC), a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization based in Washington, DC. Through litigation, policy analysis and public education, CLC works to protect and strengthen the U.S. democratic process across all levels of government. CLC is adamantly nonpartisan, holding candidates and government officials accountable regardless of political affiliation.

CLC was founded in 2002 and is a recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Our work today is more critical than ever as we fight the current threats to our democracy in the areas of campaign finance, voting rights, redistricting, and ethics. Most recently, CLC argued Gill v. Whitford, the groundbreaking Supreme Court case seeking to end extreme partisan gerrymandering. In addition, CLC plays a leading watchdog role on ethics issues, providing expert analysis and helping journalists uncover ethical violations. CLC participates in legal proceedings across the country to defend the right to vote. See our latest impact report.

CLC grown significantly in the last three years and has an annual budget of approximately $7 million. Approximately 90% of revenues are derived from foundations. The Chief Development Officer (CDO) will play an instrumental role and provide valuable non-profit and development-related expertise to help manage where the organization is today, visualize what can be accomplished tomorrow and help CLC evolve into the strongest possible organization to advance CLC’s critical mission. 

Job Summary

The Chief Development Officer will be instrumental in leading the Campaign Legal Center to meet its current annual fundraising goals, while continuing to grow and diversify its funding base. This individual will be responsible for formulating and implementing an overall development strategy that includes a robust foundation portfolio (representing 90% of CLC’s annual revenues), a growing major donor program and online fundraising presence, and enhancing an organizational culture of philanthropy. The Chief Development Officer will supervise two Development staff, oversee and manage day-to-day development operations, and engage staff and board in expanding revenue streams to support current and new initiatives. 

Reports To

The CDO is part of the senior management team and will report to the President and the Vice President of Litigation & Strategy.


General Development Strategy and Implementation:

  1. Develop a comprehensive development strategy, including annual and longer-term revenue goals and plans to diversify and increase organizational budget from foundation and individual donors (major donor, smaller-level donors, online, etc.), as well as other appropriate sources.
  2. With Communications, lead and engage senior management team in developing effective, coordinated development messages and campaigns for new and broader donor audiences.
  3. Support and mentor Board, leadership, and staff in their development efforts.
  4. Foster a culture of philanthropy throughout the organization that educates and effectively engages staff and board members in the development process.
  5. Serve as a member of the senior management team and provide key development insights as CLC’s programmatic goals are crafted.


  1. Work with Foundations Manager and senior team to craft annual foundation philanthropic goals and implementation strategies.
  2. Manage key foundation relationships as appropriate, including outreach and substantive presentations to prospective funders about CLC’s current programs and future projects.
  3. Oversee the Foundations Manager’s work in stewarding current foundation funders and identifying and securing new foundation support.
  4. Coordinate, develop and track budgets and budget narratives with relevant CLC staff and Foundations Manager for existing and proposed grant projects.  

Individual and Major Donors:

  1. Work with CLC senior leadership team to formulate yearly individual donor philanthropic goals and implementation strategies.
  2. Lead efforts to identify and secure new donors at all levels.
  3. With the President, Vice President, and other relevant staff, maintain and strengthen relationships with current donors to increase gift size, frequency and retention through individualized stewardship, donor events, social media, online and direct mail streams and informal communication.
  4. Support President, Vice President, other staff and board members in their efforts to build and strengthen donor and prospect relationships and soliciting gifts.
  5. Build and hold direct relationships with appropriate prospects and individual funders.

Board Relations:

  1. Prepare development reports including plans, accomplishments and challenges for the President in advance of board meetings.
  2. Coach, support and encourage the Board’s development efforts.

Management and Administration:

  1. Supervise and strengthen the capacity of the Development team.
  2. Coordinate all development activities with staff and track progress against annual development work plan and calendar.
  3. Manage and strengthen development processes, infrastructure and systems, including recordkeeping, database management, gift acknowledgments, renewals, mailings and calendar.
  4. Develop an annual budget for development department and work with the finance department to develop an annual organizational budget and track progress against revenue goals.


Qualifications & Experience 

  1. Bachelor’s degree or higher.
  2. A minimum of 7-10 years of senior development experience.
  3. Mission-driven, creative results-focused, with a deep commitment to a fair and just democracy.
  4. Demonstrated experience in managing and implementing a successful, comprehensive fund development program and preparing an annual development work plan and calendar to achieve goals for an actively evolving organization.
  5. Hands-on fundraising experience in the policy, research, legal and/or democracy building arena is preferred. 
  6. Experience with coordination and preparation of organizational and project budgets.
  7. Demonstrated success in identifying and securing new foundation grants of five-figures and up. 
  8. Demonstrated success with generating increased funds from individual donors, both major donors ($10,000 and higher) and annual appeals, through a coordinated, strategic approach. Knowledge of planned giving and experience with online fundraising preferred. 
  9. Hands-on experience with one or more donor databases/software, such as DonorPerfect, Raiser’s Edge, etc., as well as with Microsoft Office suite and QuickBooks. Experience with wealth screening software preferred.
  10. Understanding of and experience with digital fundraising landscape and approaches.
  11. Demonstrated success in arranging for organizational leadership to meet with prospective donors, successfully preparing them for those meetings and determining follow-up steps.   
  12. Demonstrated success in developing and implementing strategies to engage prospective donors and audiences, retain current donors and move them to increased giving levels.
  13. Exceptional writing skills, especially for grant proposals, reports and related fundraising materials.
  14. Strong oral communication, relationship building and “people” skills.
  15. Honed organizational skills, ability to manage multiple deadlines simultaneously and work independently.
  16. Direct experience working with nonprofit boards is preferred.
  17. Ability and availability to travel. 


CLC provides a comprehensive benefits package, including medical, prescription, dental, vision, short- and long-term disability, and life insurance, as well as flexible spending account and retirement programs.


This description is intended to provide an overview of this position and is not all-inclusive. The incumbent in this position will be expected to perform other duties as required. Responsibilities may change over time. This description is provided for informational purposes only and does not form the basis of a contract.

How to Apply

In one document (PDF preferred), please send to a cover letter that includes how you heard about the position and provides your salary requirements, along with your resume. Please use the following subject line: CLC-CDO-[insert your last name].

No phone calls please. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Only qualified candidates will be contacted after submitting a full application. 

Campaign Legal Center


Organization: Nonprofit Organizations