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Vice President, Brand & Storytelling

The Center for Disaster Philanthropy
District of Columbia, United States
$203,500.00 - $242,000.00
Closing date
May 23, 2024

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Position Type
Other Fields
Employment Type
Full Time
VP, Brand & Storytelling 

Position Type: Full-time, Salaried, Exempt 

Location: Flexible (Remote); Must be eligible to work in the U.S. 

Salary:  Starting at $203,500 - $242,000 

Closing Date: May 31, 2024

Candidates will be reviewed on a rolling basis. The position will remain open until we have a sufficient pool of diverse candidates who meet the job requirements, at which point we may pause the review of new applications before the stated deadline. Please understand you may not be contacted for several weeks after you apply.

Ideal Start Date: 4-6 weeks after offer 

About the Center for Disaster Philanthropy

CDP began in 2010 with the goal of pioneering the practice of strategic disaster philanthropy. Since then, it has grown in its ambition, envisioning a world where the impact of disasters is minimized through thoughtful, equitable and responsive recovery for all. CDP has a $33 million budget and a team of more than 20 staff members working remotely across the U.S.  

CDP is a trusted partner, expert and authoritative resource helping hundreds of individuals, foundations and corporations boost the impact of philanthropic giving in response to disaster and humanitarian crises by supporting equitable recovery and addressing root causes of vulnerabilities worldwide.

In 2022, CDP awarded $28.2 million through 117 grants to 99 grantee partners worldwide; demonstrated thought leadership through 15 webinars, 21 external commentaries, 113 blog posts, 43 featured speaking engagements and other events; and served 40 philanthropic partners through consulting efforts. 

  • In 2020, CDP was a featured nonprofit for the 14th Annual CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute.
  • CDP has earned Charity Navigator’s Four-Star Charity rating, Candid’s Platinum Transparency seal and is fully accredited by the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance

 As an organization grounded in racial and intersectional equity, our team members are deeply committed to strengthening communities most vulnerable to disasters because of systemic inequities. We are guided by our values of integrity, boldness and innovation, humility, and empathy in pursuit of our mission. 

Bottom line: We aspire to walk the talk of anti-racism and to treat each other and our partners in ways that inspire trust, creativity, learning and care. 

Be a part of our fast-growing team that offers countless ways to help communities thrive. Join us!  

Responsibilities & Duties

Over the last few years of CDP’s 13-year history, growth has been exponential. CDP has granted over $123 million to more than 676 nonprofits. CDP’s positioning and increased visibility bring a need for an enterprise leader to further amplify CDP’s impact by increasing our visibility, reputation and excellence as a trusted expert in philanthropy. 

The VP of brand & storytelling (VP) will lead a team responsible for developing and executing CDP’s marketing, brand positioning and impact storytelling strategies, which are pivotal components of CDP’s goals and growth, as outlined in its current five-year strategic plan.  

Reporting to the CEO and serving as an integral member of the executive team, the new VP will play a critical role in positioning CDP as an authoritative expert among individual, institutional and corporate donors, philanthropy-serving organizations, and those working within the disaster response and humanitarian sectors.

The successful candidate will display the following traits:

You will thrive in a creative environment, providing vision and thinking strategically to achieve the overarching organizational goals around brand and storytelling. You can make sense of complex issues, synthesize material and focus on the story behind our efforts to advance CDP’s mission and strategic goals.

You are a servant leader who fosters an open, collaborative and highly equitable environment for team leadership and decision-making. You allow diverse opinions and staff from diverse backgrounds and roles to be heard and included. 

As an executive team member, you communicate effectively with other team members and stakeholders, conveying your ideas and proposals in a way that is easy to understand and inspires action. You also need to be able to listen to others and respond to their questions and concerns.

 Primary responsibilities include:

The VP will lead CDP’s efforts to craft and deliver a narrative that promotes our values, mission and vision and is harmonized internally and externally across stakeholders and partners. You will be key in building CDP’s brand and increasing our visibility, influence and recognition as best in class. 

Working closely with the CEO, the VP will engage with the other teams to ensure alignment of efforts across all aspects of the organization, nimbly meeting stakeholder/client needs and maximizing CDP’s positioning and impact. 

Influence amplification

  • Elevate CDP’s influence, brand positioning and thought leadership among existing and new target audiences on issues that advance our mission through well-developed and executed marketing and communications efforts grounded in CDP and our partners’ expertise, experiences and impact.
  • Explore external engagement efforts across the organization, including new opportunities and leading strategies to maximize the visibility of CDP’s messaging in our key influence areas across mediums and fora.
  • Further leverage CDP leadership’s voice and expertise to amplify the organization, positioning it as a thought leader in the industry that serves a niche need for philanthropy.
  • Work collaboratively with the executive team to build and execute a medium-term strategy to advance key areas of influence and positioning in the sector.
  • Recognize opportunities and oversee resource allocation.
  • Identify challenges, risks, and emerging issues the organization faces in advancing the narrative of our mission and proposing mitigation measures.
  • Use data-driven insights to identify untapped markets and opportunities and tailor marketing campaigns and messaging to attract and engage new supporters, clients and partners. 

Storytelling and brand enhancement

  • Strengthen brand awareness and ensure targeted, consistent messaging and voice across internal and external communications channels regarding CDP’s mission, values, positioning, services and related work.
  • Lead the development and implementation of a brand engagement strategy that guides CDP leadership and staff in cultivating meaningful relationships with external audiences, including media and other key influencers.
  • Lead top-of-funnel brand raising for funding opportunities in collaboration with other teams, specifically development.
  • Elevate CDP impact storytelling in creative, engaging and compelling ways across all content and communications platforms in ways that respect the communities and organizations that we support.
  • Train leadership and staff on the essential narratives and stories of CDP.
  • Ensure effective messaging and narratives tailored to target audiences to achieve strategic goals and boost engagement.
  • Develop crisis communication strategies and protocols to protect and enhance the CDP's reputation in times of crisis or controversy.
  • Monitor key metrics to measure brand perception and adjust strategies accordingly.

Marketing & communications

  • Provide high-level strategic support, thought partnership and counsel to team members on marketing and communications strategies
  • Represent CDP with key influencers and stakeholders in pursuit of its mission and positioning.
  • Leverage in-depth subject matter expertise, professional networks, data and thoughtful analyses to support the marketing and communications team in delivering a cohesive brand strategy.
  • Guide the team and other stakeholders in promising marketing, communication, and branding practices.
  • Support – from a MarComm perspective – all of CDP’s events portfolio, including webinars, convenings, speaking engagements and conference participation.

Revenue growth

  • Optimize fundraising efforts by effectively communicating our impact and value proposition to current and potential donors, clients and partners.
  • Drive revenue generation through market research and strategic marketing initiatives in collaboration with the senior director of development.
  • In collaboration with the development team, capitalize on communications synergies to support donor stewardship through message coordination across varied channels.

 Departmental and team leadership

  • Provide strategic leadership and collaborate with team members to foster a culture of learning, respect and trust, harnessing the group's diverse experience and collective wisdom.
  • Support the team through mentoring or coaching to ensure timely and successful completion of work plans and assist professional development.
  • Manage the departmental budget and ensure the team is adequately resourced to deliver against strategic and operational goals and operates within appropriate operational and financial boundaries.
  • Define KPIs to determine the effectiveness of marcomms campaigns and report the results to leadership, staff and board.
  • Cultivate and craft internal and employee culture through engagement in brand stories in collaboration with the executive team.

Supervisory and other duties

  • Supervise four department staff.
  • Participate on the executive team in service to the organization and as a representative of the work under your purview.
  • Regular travel to represent CDP at events, professional development and in-person team meetings.
  • Serve on committees and task forces at CDP as appropriate and as available.
  • Represent CDP in a positive, professional manner in meetings and other external engagements.
  • Perform other duties and job-related tasks that may be assigned. 

This position reports to the president & CEO but serves the whole organization. 

As this is a new position, prior experience navigating organizational structural change is welcome.

Required qualifications

  • ≥ 15 years of relevant, progressive professional experience in marketing and communications.
  • Proven ability to lead, inspire and mentor a team.
  • Masters in a related field or equivalent work experience.
  • Proven experience optimizing the different disciplines of marketing and communications to develop and execute strategies that boost brand awareness, grow influence, enhance reputation and support organizational growth strategies.
  • Outstanding analytical and problem-solving skills to drive data-informed decision-making.
  • Experience applying insights from changing market dynamics to organization-wide growth strategies.
  • Demonstrated skills in mentoring or coaching team members to support their professional development and the organization’s growth.
  • Excellent communication, presentation and writing skills.
  • Ability to effectively synthesize and distill complex information clearly and persuasively to multiple audiences.
  • Ability to think creatively and outside the box. 
Preferred skills and qualifications
  • Well-rounded marketing or business development experience in positions of increasing responsibility, focusing on market expansion.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and nurture a productive network of professional relationships with industry influencers, partners and stakeholders that can support brand objectives.
  • An ability to adapt branding strategies to resonate with different demographics and audiences.
  • Familiarity with, although not necessarily a professional background in, philanthropy, the humanitarian sector and/or disasters.
  • Experience working in a fast-paced, high-growth environment.
  • Experience helping groups integrate evidence and data into their decisions.
  • Experience designing and implementing learning practices, with strong facilitation skills.
  • An understanding of nonprofit fundraising and relationship cultivation.
  • Proven ability to independently manage various operational functions, stand-alone workstreams and/or supervise staff.
  • Ability to work remotely with minimal direct supervision and to multi-task, including managing multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Ability to build relationships with and motivate dispersed team members with diverse personalities and backgrounds. 
Personal characteristics
  • Commitment to the values intrinsic to CDP’s mission and strategy, including the centrality of local leadership, equity and service to marginalized and vulnerable communities.
  • A transparent, humble and empowering culture builder with demonstrated experience leading a diverse team of professional staff, inspiring trust and optimizing the team's potential.
  • An entrepreneurial spirit and innovative mindset able to adapt to evolving market trends and conditions and leverage financial and human capital to advance the organization's programmatic goals and overall mission.
  • Sense of humor.
  • Enterprise leader.

The Center for Disaster Philanthropy’s work environment is safe and open to all employees and partners, respecting the full spectrum of race, color, religious creed, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, ancestry, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status and all other classifications protected by law in the locality and/or state in which you are working. 

We welcome and encourage applicants with non-traditional career paths. If you don’t meet the qualifications outlined here, please apply and tell us how your experiences would equip you for the job.   

To Apply

Qualified candidates should submit their resume and a cover letter via this link. Applications must highlight competencies against requirements.

 All applicants must be able to provide documentation that they are legally eligible to work in the United States for an extended period. 

Due to the expected volume of applications, only finalists will be notified. No phone calls, please.  


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