Assistant Director, Major Gifts [DEVF-79]

  • American Civil Liberties Union
  • 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10004
  • Jun 12, 2018
Full time Financial

Job Description

Assistant Director, Major Gifts [DEVF-79], Development Department, NY

Office:  National Offices, New York, NY

Location:  New York


JUNE 11, 2018

Assistant Director, Major Gifts [DEVF-79]

American Civil Liberties Union Foundation

Development Department, NY


For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States. Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, or preserving the right to vote or the right to have an abortion, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. With more than a million members, activists, and supporters, the ACLU is a nationwide organization that fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, national origin, record of arrest or conviction.

The Development Department of the ACLU’s National Office in New York City is seeking applicants for a full-time Assistant Director, Major Gifts.



Building a strong donor pipeline is a top priority for the ACLU.  With an incredible surge in support following the election, we have an unprecedented opportunity to build a robust major gifts effort, focusing on donors giving up to $100,000. Through smart strategies and strong collaborations with affiliate partners, our goal is to increase retention within these programs as well as create a clear and aggressive upgrade path for prospects for our Leadership and Planned Gifts programs.  We aim to make these programs industry leaders, as we use high levels of donor enthusiasm, opportunities for genuine engagement, and a compelling case for support to drive these programs to the next level. 

The Assistant Director, Major Gifts will report to the Director, Mid and Major Gifts and will develop fundraising strategies targeted towards maintaining and increasing the support of the ACLU’s $10K-$100K donors. The Assistant Director will manage a portfolio of $10K+ donors and prospects.



  • Actively solicit and close gifts of $25,000 to $100,000 from donors and family foundations through a strategic nationwide program of face-to-face discovery, cultivation, and solicitation visits.
  • Strategically manage a portfolio of approximately 125 donors and family foundations; provide donors with personally tailored updates and solicitations.
  • Effectively partner with staff in the national office and assigned affiliates to advance the organization’s major gifts efforts.
  • Secure, plan, and lead face-to-face donor visits to encourage and assist donors and prospects in making annual and special gifts.
  • In collaboration with the Major Gifts team, execute solicitation follow-up materials, including but not limited to customized proposals and reports.  
  • Provide executive-level support to senior staff, including insightful and concise briefing materials in advance of meeting with donors and prospects.
  • Organize and participate in small donor gatherings and strategic donor events.
  • Ensure that all information related to portfolio donors is properly recorded in the shared nationwide database.
  • Maintain working knowledge of nationwide programmatic priorities and issues.
  • Work effectively with and quickly gain the respect and support of various and diverse constituencies, including affiliate and national staff members, affiliate board members and other lay leaders, and high net worth donors and prospects.
  • Commit to work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to diversity within the office; use a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regards to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstance.
  • Assist the Mid and Major Gifts department with other duties as assigned.



  • Experience working in major gifts fundraising in a non-profit environment, ideally at an organization with comparable complexity and scale of the ACLU.
  • Successful track record of direct solicitation of gifts of $10,000+ preferred
  • Ability to represent the organization to donors and to interface with all levels of staff at the national office and affiliates while maintaining, confidentiality, tact and diplomacy. 
  • Excellent organizational skills and the ability to manage multiple projects; superior attention to detail with strong follow through.
  • Initiative, self-motivation and the ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Computer proficiency, including experience with donor databases
  • Willingness and desire to travel frequently to solicit donors and prospects.
  • Valid driver’s license and willingness to drive to donor meetings as necessary.
  • Commitment to the mission and goals of the ACLU.



The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.



Please send a cover letter and resume to   Reference [DEVF-79] in subject line. Please note that this is not the general ACLU email address.  This email address is specific to the department. In order to ensure your application is received please make certain it is sent to the correct e-mail address. You can expect to receive an automatic response that acknowledges the submission of application materials.


Please indicate in your cover letter where you learned of this career opportunity.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.


This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required. It does not represent a contract of employment. The ACLU reserves the right to change the job description and/or posting at any time without advance notice.

The ACLU is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status and record of arrest or conviction. 

The ACLU undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that persons with disabilities have full opportunities for employment in all positions.

We encourage applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations in the application process to contact: Correspondence sent to this email address that is not related to requests for accommodations will not be reviewed. Applicants should follow the instructions above regarding how to apply.

The ACLU comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation. Both the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation are national organizations with the same overall mission, and share office space and employees. The ACLU has two separate corporate entities in order to do a broad range of work to protect civil liberties. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “ACLU.”





COMPENSATION The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.