Chief Advancement Officer

The National Catholic Reporter (NCR) is the only significant alternative Catholic voice that provides avenues for expression of diverse perspectives. The NCR is an independent news source with global interests, and although a large amount of its reporting deals with issues of the Catholic Church, an equal amount of its coverage is a marriage of the religious, political and social forces shaping public policies and institutions. We are concerned for all people and we are committed to shaping a world that recognizes the dignity of every human being, regardless of religious belief, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or other characteristics. Throughout our history, we have been a voice for the disadvantaged and the marginalized, and we have told the stories of injustice that others simply will not print.

The chief advancement officer will be responsible for ensuring that the NCR can continue to be that voice for Catholics and non-Catholics who seek out that independent perspective.

The officer will report to the CEO, with a specific focus on developing and implementing a major gifts and planned giving program. The goal would be to establish a long-term process and culture that will contribute significantly to the sustainability of the organization in the years ahead.

The chief advancement officer would be expected to:

  • Design and set up a process for identification of individual prospects for a major gift and planned giving strategy. The officer would work with the development team to allocate research duties and to establish a set of criteria for identification that works with the current donor pool and the mission and realities of NCR.
  • Create a process for researching local, regional, national and international foundations whose giving interests match those of NCR and working to create an ongoing system based on timelines and priorities to submit proposals for their consideration.
  • Build an initial list of prospects and sort them in a way that allows the most effective cultivation.
  • Design a general cultivation process, with the goal of creating an ongoing and standard process that can be used effectively through the years.
  • Articulate NCR’s needs, values, and ambitions clearly through informal and formal communications, including written proposals and brochures.
  • Design cultivation and solicitation plans for specific individuals and groups of prospects. The plans should provide a role for the members of the advancement team, the CEO, board members and other key staff members.
  • Contact prospects – by mail, email, phone and in person – and establish major gifts relationships with them.
  • Solicit gifts from established prospects and be comfortable in that role.
  • Coordinate the CEO’s effort in relationship establishment, coordinating travel and appointments, setting goals for each meeting or trip, and when needed, accompanying the CEO to appointments. The logistics of such travel and appointments can be handled by NCR staff; the role of the major gifts officer will be to determine best use of the CEO’s time and travel.
  • Travel extensively across the country to build relationships and solicit significant donations.
  • Work with the two donor relations officers in the department to coordinate other fund-raising campaigns, including the annual gifts effort.
  • In concert with the CEO, provide staff leadership and strategic direction to the board of directors and its development committee.
  • Provide leadership—as institutional plans allow—to the creation, execution and management of a comprehensive development plan to guide NCR’s multi-year fundraising activities.
  • Manage a staff of two.

The suitable candidate will be expected to have:

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Minimum of five years’ of fundraising experience
  • Track record of success in securing major gifts and meeting fundraising goals
  • Minimum of three years’ experience working with donors with significant capacity
  • Experience supervising, coaching and mentoring a development team
  • Excellent presentation skills and ability to write a clear and compelling case statement
  • Excellent planning and organizational skills
  • Familiarity with private and public sector grant processes
  • Excellent research and analytical skills
  • Team-oriented, flexible, positive, personable outlook and willingness to learn
  • Proven ability to self-motivate and work both independently and as part of a team
  • Passion for social justice, human dignity and the common good – all core values of the National Catholic Reporter
  • Appreciation for and strong understanding of news organizations and journalism
  • Appreciation for and strong understanding of the history and mission of the National Catholic Reporter
  • Ability and willingness to travel at least once a month
  • Ability and willingness to live in the Kansas City area
  • Skills and aspirations to become a top leader in the organization.

To apply:
Send inquiries or cover letter and resume with "NCR, Chief Advancement Officer” in the subject line to Tammy Weinman, Director of Support Services, Hartsook Companies, Inc., at