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Director of Advancement

The Girls' Middle School
California, United States
$150,000.00 - $170,000.00
Closing date
Apr 11, 2023


The Girls’ Middle School (GMS) is an inspiring, mission-driven, independent school serving 200 girls* in grades 6-8. Located in Palo Alto, GMS provides students with a robust curriculum and inclusive learning environment, designed to allow girls to explore a wide variety of interests and academic subjects. GMS helps to develop each girl’s self-confidence and ignite personal passions as students navigate the complex and fragile time of middle school.

GMS now seeks a director of advancement to help the school achieve an ambitious list of annual and long-term fundraising goals. Yearly targets include not just a traditional annual fund, but also a separate fund that supports 15% of families with full-ride scholarships, so that a diverse array of students can experience not just a transformative middle school education but also receive additional support during and after their tenure at GMS. The director of advancement will have the opportunity to build upon an existing culture of philanthropy at the school, and cultivate relationships within the GMS community as well with donors, benefactors, and foundations throughout the Bay Area. This position reports to the head of school and starts this summer. This is an on-site position requiring continued presence in both the school and donor communities to build relationships. However, in the spirit of wanting to find the best possible candidate the head of school is willing to explore the possibility of a hybrid or flexible engagement with some amount of remote work.

12M Recruiting is running the search on behalf of GMS. Applications are due April 14. For application instructions and the full job opportunity statement, please visit:

*At GMS, “girls” refers to cis girls, trans girls, non-binary youth, gender non-conforming youth, gender queer youth, and any girl-identified youth.



Applications Accepted Starting: March 14, 2023

Priority Deadline: April 14, 2023

Remote Semifinal Round: Late April

On-Site Final Round: Early May

Decision Announced: May 15, 2023

Start Date: Summer 2023

Reports To: Head of School

Salary Range: $150,000 to $170,000



Community-Driven Philanthropy for Annual Needs

  • Serving as the director of the school’s $750K+ annual fund campaign, work with the board of trustees to develop and implement new strategies for donor cultivation and stewardship, oversee the fund’s marketing through various multi-media channels, and evaluate the fund’s sustainability in alignment with the school’s overall goals.
  • Oversee the strategy and fundraising for the Bennett Scholars Program (1.3M+ per year), identifying and building relationships with new prospects, strengthening relationships with existing donors, and effectively promoting the fund among community members to maximize major gifts and overall philanthropic support.
  • Promote the mission of GMS in the community through special events and partnerships, and work to build strong relationships with various donor constituencies including the Alum Association and Parents’ Association.

Advancement Strategy for Long-Term Sustainability

  • Strategically develop and grow the school’s endowment fund to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Bennett Scholars Program, and the school’s ongoing operational needs.
  • Collaborate with the head of school, board of trustees, and administrative leadership to develop a capital campaign strategy that will enable the school to find and secure a more permanent location for its campus.
  • Oversee and develop the school’s current planned giving program, and build additional streams of non-tuition revenue including soliciting additional foundation support.
  • Develop, coach, and mentor colleagues, key volunteers, and trustees to take an active role in building relationships and fundraising.

General Leadership and Departmental Oversight

  • Work closely and build relationships with the head of school, board of trustees, and the board development committee to promote the role of fundraising and philanthropy at GMS, and develop multi-year plans to ensure that GMS develops an ongoing culture of institutional advancement.
  • Offer outstanding mentorship, feedback, support, professional growth, and guidance to the advancement department, which, in 2023-2024 will include supervising an advancement associate and the communications manager as well as hiring for an open position within the department.
  • Provide ongoing assessment of roles and responsibilities for the purpose of ensuring the advancement department has proper staffing aligned with fundraising goals and needs of the school.
  • Implement best practices in data recording and management, gift acknowledgment and reporting, donor relations, giving policies and confidentiality of information.
  • Remain current with advancement trends and cultivate professional standards and development by participating in educational opportunities, reading professional publications, maintaining professional networks, and participating in local, regional, and national professional organizations.
  • Actively participate in the life of the school, and perform other duties as assigned.




  • Possession of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, graduate degree preferred
  • 5+ years of increasing responsibility in fundraising, scholarship, or annual giving campaigns, preferably in an educational or nonprofit setting
  • 3+ years of leadership team or supervisory experience, overseeing a team of 2+ employees
  • Proven track record of fundraising success, including an ability to cultivate, solicit, and secure major contributions through excellent relationship management skills
  • Experience with capital and endowment campaign planning, implementation and management
  • Comprehensive understanding of advancement best practices and demonstrated proficiency with leading-edge fundraising technology

Qualities and Competencies

  • Proclivity and enthusiasm for building authentic relationships across different constituencies, including alumni, trustees, parents and guardians, staff and faculty, and friends of the school
  • An excitement about both the mission of GMS and working specifically within a middle school community of passionate and engaged faculty and staff
  • Outstanding collaboration and team-building skills, including the ability to clearly communicate and prioritize team responsibilities and goals in alignment with big-picture objectives
  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and an understanding of the importance of reflecting these principles in all fundraising strategies
  • Ability to create, analyze, and leverage performance metrics, and communicate them to senior leadership and board members
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including strong attention to detail
  • Creative, flexible and strategic mindset willing to solve complex problems



For more information please visit the following link, which contains the job opportunity statement and complete application instructions.

The Girls’ Middle School is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity employer committed to a policy of equal treatment and opportunity in every aspect of its hiring and promotion process without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, partnership status, gender and/or gender identity or expression, marital, parental or familial status, national origin, ethnicity, veteran or military status, age, disability, or any other legally protected basis.

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