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Director of Development


Philadelphia, PA, USA

Development Opportunity 

The Clay Studio seeks a results-oriented Director of Development to lead the organization’s next phase of growth. The Director will provide the leadership to leverage the organization’s regional and national reputation in the ceramic arts and focus on strategic approaches to expand TCS’s philanthropic base, empowering donors across all segmentations to engage deeply in the mission and vision of The Clay Studio. This includes the ability to design and launch a comprehensive multi-faceted development plan that includes strategies to optimize Board support, build an individual major gifts and stewardship program, grow the membership program and expand institutional support from foundations and corporations. Additional responsibilities include oversight of the Annual Fund and all annual appeals, sponsorships, special events and project – specific campaigns. 

The Director reports to the Executive Director, works closely with the leadership staff, Board of Directors and supervises a grants associate. S/he will join TCS at a pivotal moment in the organization’s history and will work closely with campaign counsel to coordinate and orchestrate solicitations to raise $5 million of a $13 million new facility in South Kensington. This is an opportunity for a rising professional in the development field eager to build upon foundational skills in direct donor fundraising and manage a multifaceted but small development shop. 

The Director of Development is a member of the Executive Management Team, reporting directly to the Executive Director, collaborating with the COO, Curator and board leaders to design and lead strategies calculated for revenue growth. 


Founded in 1974 by five artists, The Clay Studio in Philadelphia was initially envisioned as a stepping-stone for students fresh out of art school, offering affordable studio space, shared equipment, and a sense of community. Within a short time, Clay Studio artists consciously shifted the Studio's vision from an inward, artist focus to one that also embraces education and community engagement. In 1979, the Studio became a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational institution. Today, The Clay Studio is renowned as a model urban ceramic arts center, distinguished by its dedication to educating and inspiring the broadest range of students and enthusiasts while also occupying the forefront of contemporary ceramic art. 

LOOKING TO THE FUTURE—About the Building: 

This is an exciting time for The Clay Studio. We have embarked on an expansion of our programs and audiences and are building a permanent new facility in Philadelphia’s rising South Kensington neighborhood. Scheduled for completion in fall 2020, the new Clay Studio will be the first of its kind ceramic arts facility built from the ground up in the United States, designed to better serve our growing community and to meet the needs of today’s artists, designers, and entrepreneurs. The new center will have more classrooms, new spaces for youth education, larger studio spaces, state-of-the-art equipment, a more dynamic gallery space, larger, more flexible public spaces, and a reimagined retail space. Building our expanded facility on South Kensington’s American Street Corridor puts us at the epicenter of Philadelphia’s creative community, where dozens of new creative businesses, arts nonprofits, residences, have settled in. 

Duties and Responsibilities: 


In cooperation with the company’s senior leadership, craft a long-term vision to increase contributed income annually (current contributed revenues are $1 million) from multiple sources and execute a strategic and comprehensive development plan that will support the operating needs of TCS for the present and the long term. 

Source, cultivate and steward a portfolio of mid-to-major individual donors and board members (i.e., $1,000--$75,000+) by developing and executing tailored cultivation and engagement plans 

Develop relationships with current and prospective institutional grantmakers, corporate leaders and government agencies to retain and grow revenues 

In conjunction with the Executive Directorand COO, cultivate and steward the Board of Directors to strengthen and support their role in fundraising activities and board development. 

Manage annual giving campaign 

Build a robust membership program or develop new approaches to engage current and former students and new audiences in South Kensington 

Plan, budget, coordinate, execute and align the strategy and effectiveness of special events to raise funds and develop and attract donors. 

Create budgets for proposals and special events and be able to read and understand basic organizational financial reports (P&L, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow and Audited financial statements) and be able to utilize basic accounting software. 

Work closely with communications and marketing team to develop compelling messaging 

Actively advocate for The Clay Studio 

Management and Administration 

Develop and manage a team as the department grows, including staff, contract employees, interns and volunteers 

Develop and monitor department budget 

Compose tailored narratives and pitches for high-stakes individual donors, including proposals and all donor correspondence as needed 

Supervise and manage the research and preparation of all funding proposals and grant applications to obtain support for the Studio’s activities and programs and oversee administration, final reporting and relationship management with same 

Create fundraising materials 

Create and regularly update an annual fundraising calendar and related reports to record fundraising efforts, deadlines, and degree of success 

Maintain up-to-date donor database to ensure the accuracy of account information, interaction history, and proposal/report submissions 

Create and maintain development and acknowledgment policies and procedures for all funding sources 

As needed, conduct regular analysis of quantitative and qualitative data to inform ongoing priorities and adjusting course where needed in order to ultimately meet annual goals 


Work in tandem with the BOD to identify and cultivate ideal candidates for Board membership, focusing on the areas of need and capacity; attend Board and other meetings and board events as necessary (will require some evenings and weekends) 

Work across departments to identify potential opportunities for funding, donors, partnerships, and events. 

Strategically leverage the Executive Director,COO, Department heads and board members, to steward and engage donors, including preparing these individuals for successful donor interactions 

Operating Budget 

TCS has a current annual operating budget of approximately $2 million, of which ~$1 million is generated through philanthropic gifts. The balance is received through tuition, fees and sales. 


Express a passion for clay arts and have knowledge of the cultural life in the region. Have a genuine interest in becoming a driver of the Clay Studio’s mission and vision. 

At least 3-5 years’ experience in major donor development

  • A strong desire to forge and maintain long-term relationships with the organization, team members, BOD, supporters, and arts community

Demonstrated ability to be a strategic thinker and provide leadership in constituency-building 

Have a strong background in not-for-profit fundraising that includes solicitation and/or sales. 

Proven track record of consistent revenue growth from major donors, foundations, and/or corporate donations; preferably with those giving to the arts 

Articulate and persuasive and is a savvy relationship builder. Capable of establishing trust, respect and rapport. A sincere appreciation for people and how they are each uniquely motivated

  • Strong written and oral communication skills and superior attention to detail; demonstrated ability to relate well to individuals with a passion for the arts.
  • Experience in drafting formal proposals, grants, sponsorship packages, and presentations

Must possess initiative, leadership, and creative energy. 

Fast-paced and results oriented with the ability to work in a timely manner with multiple deadlines and competing requirements; solid work ethic 

Experience managing a small team is preferable but not required. 

Strong computer skills, including strong knowledge of MS Office, Excel, and databases. 

A Bachelor’s degree is required, and a Master’s degree a plus. A CFRE is preferred, but not required 

Organizational Structure

Reports to Executive Director 

Member of senior management team 

Works closely with BOD and Capital Campaign Committee 

Supervises development associate 

Compensation:The Clay Studio offers a competitive salary, commensurate with experience and a complete benefit package. The Clay Studio is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Candidates for employment are considered without regard to race, color, sex, creed, religion, national origin, sexual preference, age, non-job-related disability, or marital status. 


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