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Vice-President, Philanthropy - The Canadian Women’s Foundation

Application Deadline : 2020-04-06
Description :


We are seeking a Vice-President, Philanthropy to provide strategic direction and leadership of fundraising activities to the Canadian Women’s Foundation. The Vice-President will serve as member of the senior leadership team, playing an integral role in the strategic growth and development of the Foundation.

Responsible for providing strategic direction and leadership of all fundraising and donor relations activities of the Foundation, the Vice-President, Philanthropy will manage and mentor a team of nine fundraising professionals. The Vice-President will provide vision, leadership, coaching, and support to Philanthropy staff, Board members, volunteers, and senior staff who are engaged in fundraising, and will encourage the development of a strong culture of philanthropy throughout the organization.


The Canadian Women’s Foundation is a national leader in the movement for gender equality in Canada. Through funding, research, advocacy, and knowledge sharing, the Foundation works to achieve systemic change that includes all women. By supporting community programs, the Foundation empowers women and girls to move themselves out of violence, out of poverty, and into confidence and leadership.

Launched in 1991 to address a critical need for philanthropy focused on women, the Canadian Women’s Foundation is one of the largest women’s foundations in the world. With the support of donors, the Foundation has raised more than $100 million and funded over 1,900 programs across the country. These programs focus on addressing the root causes of the most critical issues and helping women and girls who face the greatest barriers.

Last year alone, with the support of 2,436 donors and the help of 152 volunteers, we invested $4,585,174 to stop the violence, end poverty, and empower more than 30,000 girls and women in every province and territory in Canada. We take a strengths-based approach to investing, and currently support 73 community programs across the country.

We believe that helping women creates safer families and communities, and a more prosperous society for all of us. As a leading voice for women and girls in Canada, we are committed to getting the issues facing women and girls front and centre in the hearts and minds of Canadians.

What we do

Canadian Women’s Foundation focuses on the most critical challenges facing women and girls, and invests in the most effective solutions for long-term change. Our Foundation’s approach of putting the voices and needs of diverse women, girls, and communities at the centre has enabled us to inform social policies, practices, and approaches. This is important because we help change structures and improve “the way things work” to get Canada closer to that goal of gender equality and social equity for everyone.

We take a deliberative, empowerment-based approach by addressing root causes of the most critical issues facing women and girls, and by investing in the most effective solutions for long-term change. We do this through our grant-making, through building and sharing knowledge, and by bringing grantees and other organizations together to strengthen their capacity, share best practices and learn from each other.

We fund programs across Canada, prioritizing communities where the need is greatest. These programs address four urgent issues: gender-based violence, economic security, girls’ empowerment, and inclusive leadership.

We also work to improve systems, policies, and practices to build equity. The Foundation believes in advancing gender equality across Canada through supporting the organizations working on the issues. We bring together community organizations across Canada to share knowledge and solutions, acting as a hub for grassroots leaders, issue experts, advocates, and donors working hard to keep the momentum for change. It takes strong community organizations and dedicated service providers to deliver programs that change lives.

In addition, the Foundation contributes to provincial and national strategies and policy-making on issues including: violence against women, anti-trafficking, teen healthy relationships, the leadership of girls and women, and economic development of women across the country.


Strategic Plan

Impact & Annual Reports

Volunteers & Donors Report

Join the Tireless

CWF Blog

Financial Statements


Volunteer Committees

Media Resources

Impact Stories

Programs CWF Funds

Annual Grants 2020

Investment Readiness Program Grants

Special Projects

Our Founding Mothers


Energetic, fearless, and goal-oriented, the ideal candidate will have a proven track-record in closing major gifts and partnerships. In addition to bringing an arsenal of fundraising best practices, the new incumbent will apply creativity and imagination to identifying new prospects and forging new partnerships.

The successful candidate will be an exceptional fundraising generalist with experience leading and growing a range of development programs including annual, mid-level, major, and planned giving, as well as corporate philanthropy and partnerships. A strong project planner and implementer who is both highly strategic and detail oriented, the Vice-President will bring a systematic, focused, and structured approach to our fundraising.

Proactive and engaging, the Vice-President, Philanthropy will support the CEO, Board, and others in growing their comfort, experience, and success in fundraising. The Vice-President will also provide guidance, assistance, encouragement, and direction to involve others in the donor cycle where appropriate. In partnership with the CEO and the Board, the new incumbent will ensure effective division of responsibilities, and together drive the success of the Foundation’s fundraising efforts.

A forthright and persuasive communicator, the ideal candidate will tailor communication style and content to a variety of audiences. The successful candidate will understand the important role that Board members play in prospect identification, cultivation, and stewardship. The Vice-President will demonstrate a path for Board members to be engaged as they are comfortable, facilitating and leveraging their involvement to benefit the Foundation and the women and girls we serve.

An active listener who is open to learning and dialogue, the successful candidate will bring proven experience working as an effective member of a management team. The ideal candidate will use authenticity and integrity to build trust and relationships. A respectful and transparent colleague, the Vice-President, Philanthropy will be highly collaborative and mutually supportive.

Strategic and resilient, the Vice-President will work in partnership with others to identify opportunities, issues, and solutions. The successful candidate will have a solid business aptitude, strong financial literacy, and an excellent understanding of budgeting, forecasting, and reporting.

A positive leader with an attitude of optimism, the ideal candidate will bring previous success in directing, motivating, and supporting a small staff team. The Vice-President will focus on assessing the skills and gaps of the team, and on building capacity moving forward. The successful candidate will possess emotional maturity, balance, and a sense of humour to the workplace.

The Vice-President, Philanthropy will have a strong belief in and commitment to equity and social justice. Excited about the cause and mission of Canadian Women’s Foundation, the successful candidate will be passionate about gender equality, and about the opportunity to invest in the strength of women and the dreams of girls, and to empower women and girls in Canada to move out of violence, out of poverty, and into confidence and leadership.


Team Development and Supervision (25%)

  • Ensure capacity, structure and readiness is well-aligned to the Foundation’s development function to meet the ongoing revenue needs of the Foundation.
  • Coach and mentor the Philanthropy team to enhance their fundraising skills and their individual and collective capacity to meet the Foundation’s ambitious growth agenda.
  • Identify and implement policies, practices, and processes for resource development efficiency, clarity, and accountability, both within the Philanthropy team and organization-wide.

Fundraising and Donor Relations (50%)

  • Lead and oversee the design and implementation of corporate and individual giving programs and campaigns grounded in best practices.
  • Design and lead the implementation of multi-faceted fundraising goals and plans across the organization, including: major gifts; corporate grants and partnerships; corporate campaigns; annual gifts; special events; endowment; planned giving; online and direct mail; and other issue-specific campaigns.
  • Build and manage a growing portfolio of major donors at the five and six figure level. 
  • Work with the Foundation’s CEO, senior staff, and volunteers on major gifts by attending cultivation meetings and supporting effective cultivation, recognition, and stewardship.
  • Work with all team members to grow and strengthen stewardship, engagement, and loyalty of donors and corporate giving relationships throughout Canada, and evaluate effectiveness on an ongoing basis.
  • Strengthen the Foundation’s geographic scope of support and sustainably expand into under-accessed markets, including Western Canada, Atlantic Canada, and Quebec.
  • Develop value-added strategies to strengthen engagement and education for our individual and corporate partners.
  • Support and coach the Foundation’s Board of Directors and other senior volunteers, leveraging their contributions and networks in a fundraising capacity.

Public Relations, Marketing and Communications (10%)

  • Work closely with the Public Engagement team to strengthen partner and donor communications and increase return on investment.
  • Work across teams to integrate a strong understanding of the purpose, urgency, effectiveness, and impact of our granting programs for which funds are being raised.
  • Support and provide leadership to organization-wide campaigns that grow financial support for our granting areas.

Strategic and Budget Planning (15%)

  • Develop and implement annual and long-range business and operational Philanthropy plans that align with and support the organization’s strategic directions and revenue needs.
  • Develop, monitor, and report on the fundraising budgets that align with strategic priorities.
  • Participate in the development of strategic plans, budgets and business plans for long-term growth of the Foundation.



  • University degree or equivalent professional experience, plus a demonstrated ongoing commitment to professional development.


  • Significant and progressive professional fundraising experience, including a proven track record in major gift fundraising, donor stewardship, and donor and volunteer engagement.
  • Experience working with donors and volunteers on a national landscape is preferred.
  • Awareness of and experience with implementation of industry-specific best practices.
  • Experience working with board members, senior volunteers, and program experts to engage them effectively with identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of major donors.
  • Previous exposure to and involvement in a major campaign is a strong asset.
  • Strong experience leading, mentoring, and managing a team of fundraising professionals.
  • Previous experience as part of an organizational leadership team.

Skills and Abilities

  • Proven ability and passion in bringing individuals together to make a meaningful impact through their philanthropy, including a strong track record in initiating relationships with major donors and closing gifts at the 5-, 6-, and 7-figure level.
  • Excellent leadership and management skills, and experience setting goals and targets collaboratively with staff, with the ability to coach and manage staff to ensure they grow in their roles and achieve desired results.
  • Demonstrated experience working closely with and supporting key volunteers to help them confidently and successfully engage in major gift fundraising.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to motivate, challenge, and support volunteers and staff who are engaged in major gift fundraising.
  • Strong communication skills, including superior writing and oral presentation skills.
  • Knowledge of Non-Profit sector and CRA fundraising rules and guidelines.
  • Strong business acumen and financial literacy.
  • Knowledge and experience with database systems such as Raiser’s Edge.
  • A commitment to and passion for issues facing women and girls; experience with a women’s organization addressing issues with a deeply gendered lens would be an asset.
  • Fluency in French would be an asset.
  • CFRE designation is considered an asset.


KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) has been retained to conduct this search on behalf of the Canadian Women’s Foundation. For more information about this Foundation leadership opportunity, please contact Tara George or Ellie Rusonik at KCI via email at

All inquiries and applications will be held in strict confidence. Interested candidates should send resume and letter of interest to the email address listed above by April 6, 2020.

To view the full Executive Brief, please visit:

The Canadian Women’s Foundation is committed to equity in employment and seeks to attract, select, and hire a diverse team with a high level of professional skills and a passion for and belief in our vision and mission. We encourage candidates to share information about their identities, lived experiences, and the communities they are a part of in their covering letter.

Please note that the salary range for this position is $145,000 - $185,000, plus a competitive benefits and vacation package.