Chief Development Officer

Girl Rising
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Mar 03

Position description

Girl Rising (GR) is a global campaign for girls' education and empowerment. We use the power of storytelling, through film and other media, to change the way people think about and value girls and girls' education.

We launch high profile campaigns to shine a spotlight on the issues girls face and to catalyze change by inspiring people to do their part to dismantle the barriers holding girls back.

We collaborate with partners working across society to reach girls, boys, teachers, parents, and community, corporate and government leaders, providing them with customized media, education and advocacy tools to enhance the effectiveness of their efforts on behalf of girls.

The Girl Rising Model:

  1. We create and distribute powerful, catalytic content that raises the value of girls.
  2. We build diverse partnerships to increase the visibility and scale of our message, to engage girls and their "gatekeepers" at the grassroots level, and to influence community, corporate, and national leaders.
  3. We provide tangible ways for people to take action.

We are currently working in India, Nigeria, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the United States, and expanding to the Middle East and Latin America. Girl Rising's stories are reaching millions of people around the world, inspiring thousands to take action and lead change in their own communities. And we've only just begun!


From Academy Award-nominated director Richard E. Robbins, the original film Girl Rising journeys around the globe to witness the strength of the human spirit and the power of education to change the world. Viewers get to know nine unforgettable girls in Egypt, Afghanistan, Nepal, India, Sierra Leone, Haiti, Peru, Ethiopia and Cambodia. They are ordinary girls who confront tremendous challenges and overcome nearly impossible odds to pursue their dreams. Each story is written by an acclaimed female writer from that country and voiced by some of the world's leading actors including Meryl Streep, Liam Neeson, Cate Blanchett, Selena Gomez and Anne Hathaway.

The film served as the heart of the original Girl Rising campaign, which was focused on changing minds, changing lives, and changing policy. Since the film's premiere in 2013, Girl Rising has launched national campaigns in India, Nigeria and The Democratic Republic of the Congo, each one strategically architected around the distribution of adapted original content and new media content, on-the-ground interventions targeting specific audiences, and influencer engagement. Girl Rising is also working in the US through our schools campaign.

Girl Rising works strategically with both local and global partners to carry out our mission. We have partnered with Fortune 500 companies including Intel, Goldman Sachs and HP and work collaboratively with international governmental and non-governmental organizations including the Government of India, USAID, the State Department, Save the Children, CARE, Plan International, World Vision, and Partners in Health, among others.

Girl Rising also works with key celebrities and other influencers to raise the visibility of our messages. For example, in India, we remade the Girl Rising film in Hindi with ten of India's biggest stars. And in 2016, we produced We Will Rise: Michelle Obama's Mission to Educate Girls Around the World, a new CNN film about the power of girls' education. The film follows global leaders and activists, including First Lady Michelle Obama, Meryl Streep and Freida Pinto, and CNN journalist Isha Sesay, to meet a group of girls from Liberia and Morocco who have overcome immense barriers to education. This film represented for us another opportunity to share the voices of remarkable girls, which still too often go unheard, raise awareness and inspire people to get involved in this movement. We partnered closely with CNN, the White House, the Peace Corps and many other partners to amplify the reach of the broadcast.

For more information on Girl Rising, please visit


Reporting to the CEO, the Chief Development Officer will serve as a key member of the organization's leadership team, helping to shape our work and build capacity to expand our reach and impact. The CDO will create and execute a strategic fundraising and stewardship plan to support the organization's mission and programmatic endeavors.

The CDO will work collaboratively with the CEO, the Board of Directors, and senior leadership to nurture a culture of philanthropy and will be responsible for developing and executing all fundraising strategies. Building on the current platform of support, the CDO will build the development department and develop strong and effective programs for individual donors, foundation and government giving, corporate partnerships, and other fundraising events and activities.

The CDO will represent and advocate for Girl Rising in a diverse array of settings, engaging with potential donors, prospective partners, and other supporters to ensure opportunities for deep support are realized. Working in conjunction with the communications department, the CDO will be responsible for developing compelling communications, messaging and related materials to appropriately solicit support.


  • Develop an annual and long-term fundraising strategy that both builds upon Girl Rising's existing donor base and cultivates a robust pipeline of new donors.
  • Working collaboratively with CEO, Board of Directors and senior leadership, lead efforts to raise funds to support the annual operating budget of $5 million to $7.5 million.
  • Work collaboratively with the CEO and Board Chair to build capacity on the Board of Directors. Form and oversee the Development Committee of the Board.
  • Participate as a member of senior leadership in the strategic planning and capacity building for Girl Rising.
  • Build the Development Department and strengthen existing fundraising and stewardship processes and systems to increase the overall efficiency of the department; this will include establishing a donor database management system.
  • Oversee the one existing fundraising staff member and develop plans to build the department as appropriate.
  • Working with the communications department, develop key messages and solicitation materials.
  • Support the internal communication of strategy and progress against revenue goals through internal briefings, board reports, and other materials, as needed.


Girl Rising is seeking a seasoned, passionate development professional to bring their expertise to this organization. Girl Rising is in the midst of an exciting time of growth in scale and impact. This is a unique opportunity to build a department to provide the strategic resources necessary to support girls' education and empowerment around the globe.

The CDO must be able to thrive in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial and dynamic environment that values both innovation and resourcefulness. This position will be required to work with and across teams both internally and externally; a collaborative nature and ability to foster teamwork is essential. The ideal candidate will have a genuine connection to Girl Rising's mission and will have experience working within the international development and/or education arenas.

S/He will have strong leadership and management skills; superior critical thinking, communication, and relationship-building skills; and the ability to produce under pressure and tight deadlines.


  • A minimum of ten years of development experience, with three to five years of experience in a senior fundraising role, including experience with individual giving, corporate giving, foundation and government grants, and fundraising events.
  • Broad familiarity with poverty reduction and/or international development as it relates to key strategic partnerships and funding possibilities; direct experience in fundraising in international development, social impact and/or education preferred.
  • Strong connections to individual, corporate, foundation, and government donor prospects committed to gender equity, education and/or poverty elimination.
  • Outstanding communications skills, both verbal and written, as well as a high attention to detail.
  • A collaborative nature and proven track record of teamwork and generous leadership.
  • Bachelor's degree required.

This position can be located in the Girl Rising office in New York or Los Angeles; working remotely is also an option. Travel will be necessary.

Application instructions

To apply for this position, please send resume and cover letter.

Girl Rising is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We consider all applicants on the basis of merit regardless of their race, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, age, veteran status, and any other protected class under federal, state, and local law.

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