Employment Opportunities

Development Director
Chicago, IL

Advance Illinois is a not-for-profit policy and advocacy organization that works toward a healthy public education system that prepares students to achieve success in college, career and civic life. We are committed to an aligned education system that strives for equity, stresses college and career readiness and completion, and supports the whole child from the earliest years through adulthood. We believe every child should have access to a high-quality education regardless of geography, income or race.

Since its founding in 2008, Advance Illinois has become a nationally-recognized actor and thought leader in education policy and advocacy. The Development Director will have an exciting opportunity to help set the direction of the organization as it embarks on its next decade of impact and ensure it has the resources needed to tackle an ambitious agenda.

Along with some corporate and individual giving, Advance Illinois currently depends primarily on foundation grants for financial support. We are looking for a strategic leader who can develop and execute on a strategy to diversify our funding mix over the next 3 – 5 years, while reaching annual fundraising goals and supporting our mission.

PRIMARY DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

The Development Director reports directly to the President and interacts regularly with a high-powered Board. The Directors responsibilities include the following:

  • Lead work with the Board, Board Development Committee, and the President to shape and implement development strategy;
  • Manage the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship efforts of the organization in partnership with the Board and President;
  • Take responsibility for helping set and meet annual revenue and fundraising goals;
  • Build fundraising capacity throughout the organization, helping grow the skills of all staff in the organization and making development an organization-wide effort;
  • Oversee grant proposal and report writing for national and local foundation partners, coordinating with part-time grant-writing support and relevant program and finance staff;
  • As a member of the senior staff, provide input on Advance Illinois’ strategy, annual planning/budgeting and goal setting.


QUALIFICATIONS:

The idea candidate will be:

  • passionate about improving public education in Illinois through policy change and state-level impact, and recognize and be able to articulate why it matters to have a strong state policy infrastructure that serves the needs of students and families in school districts throughout the state;
  • committed to educational equity and to partnering with communities;
  • ambitious and bold, yet practical and able to execute strategies successfully;
  • hands-on and willing to engage in all aspects of the work;
  • able to build and maintain relationships at all levels and with multiple constituencies;
  • intellectually curious, committed to learning, energetic, and strong, yet bring a collaborative approach to the organization and to the work;
  • ethical and committed to a high level of professionalism and confidentiality;
  • have strong fundraising expertise and be excellent at building relationships;
  • have demonstrated and successful experience in fundraising, with an emphasis on individual and corporate giving, but also able to sustain and grow foundation giving.

EXPERIENCE:

At least 5 years of relevant experience is expected, as is a proven ability to effectively develop and execute a multi-pronged fundraising strategy for a multi-million dollar organization.

COMPENSATION
:

Competitive salary, commensurate with experience.  Excellent benefits.

To apply: Submit a resume and cover letter to: development@advanceillinois.org. All submissions will be acknowledged and you will be contacted if you are selected for an interview. No phone calls please.

Advance Illinois is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to engaging the skills and leadership of people of color, low-income persons, LGBTQ+ persons, differently-abled people, and other people from diverse backgrounds. People from these and other historically marginalized backgrounds and communities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Communications Associate
Chicago, IL

Advance Illinois is a not-for-profit policy and advocacy organization that works toward a healthy public education system that prepares students to achieve success in college, career and civic life. We are committed to an aligned education system that strives for equity, stresses college and career readiness and completion, and supports the whole child from the earliest years through adulthood. We believe every child should have access to a high-quality education regardless of geography, income or race.

Advance Illinois’ Communications team works to create a cohesive strategy to raise the visibility of key education issues and the organization as a whole.  We maximize e-mail, social media and web assets. We develop timely, compelling materials for multiple audiences, while emphasizing storytelling and inspiring action from public and education stakeholders. We are seeking a passionate individual who is committed to public education, looking to grow in the not-for-profit sector and able to thrive in a fast-paced and high-energy workplace.

The Communications Associate will partner with the Communications Director to develop and implement marketing/communications strategies for the organization across earned media, paid media, social media, print design, website and e-mail marketing. The ideal candidate will have outstanding writing skills, including the ability to generate content on short deadlines and experience coordinating digital and print functions while adhering to a communications content calendar.

Past experience with e-mail marketing services, constituent databases, content management systems and Google Analytics—or back-end social media functions—is preferred.

PRIMARY DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Develops content for use across Advance Illinois media channels.
  • Writes press releases and fact sheets and contributes to white papers, policy briefs and related presentations.
  • Drafts talking points for staff and coalition partners; develops presentations for multiple audiences.
  • Interacts with reporters, coalition members, educators and other community stakeholders.
  • Updates Advance Illinois’ website, Funding Illinois’ Future website and Illinois 60 by 25 Network website.
  • Updates and sends email campaigns associated with Advance Illinois initiatives, including “Week in Review” news roundup.
  • Monitors online metrics and analyzes results on audience demographic trends, optimizing content and identifying opportunities for targeted engagement and continued list growth.
  • Supports marketing, public relations and media relations efforts related to Advance Illinois’ special events.

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Commitment to public education
  • Bachelor’s degree with 3-5 years of progressively increasing responsibility in communications, public relations or related experience
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and prioritize tasks
  • Strong writing and content development skills
  • Enthusiasm for emerging technologies as tools for social change
  • Understanding of email and social media marketing best practices
  • Track record of developing engaging social media copy and content
  • Ability to analyze response data and make recommendations to improve results
  • Proficiency in Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Fluency in Spanish (verbal and written) a plus
  • Experience with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator a plus
  • Experience with WordPress and MailChimp a plus

Compensation: Competitive salary, commensurate with experience.  Excellent benefits.

To apply: Submit a resume and cover letter to communications@advanceillinois.org. All submissions will be acknowledged and you will be contacted if you are selected for an interview. No phone calls please.


Advance Illinois is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to engaging the skills and leadership of people of color, low-income persons, LGBTQ+ persons, differently-abled people, and other people from diverse backgrounds. People from these and other historically marginalized backgrounds and communities are strongly encouraged to apply.