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Director Of Development

  • Full Time
  • Orlando, Florida
  • $110,000-120,000 USD / Year
  • Salary: $110,000-120,000

Website United Arts of Central Florida

Director of Development
Position Profile

About the Opportunity

United Arts of Central Florida, the leading resource for arts and culture in Central Florida, seeks an energetic, goal-driven fundraising professional to lead a well-supported and highly successful development team as the agency’s new Director of Development. This is a wonderful opportunity for a seasoned development professional who is eager to support the community’s broader arts and culture ecosystem by ensuring the institutional sustainability and effectiveness of an organization dedicated to the growth, vitality, and viability of the sector. United Arts of Central Florida was just named one of the Best Places to Work in Orlando in a 2023 staff-survey generated report by Orlando Business Journal.

The Director of Development is a new position that will develop and implement a comprehensive annual development plan that aligns internal and external fundraising goals with the agency’s overarching strategic goals. They will work in partnership with the Development Department team, the President & CEO, Jennifer Evins, and the Board of Directors’ Development Committee.

As the champion for and the largest funder of the arts in Central Florida, United Arts is one of the most successful United Arts Funds in the nation, raising more than $12 million annually to support programs and operating budgets in arts, science, history and cultural organizations throughout Lake, Orange, Osceola, and Seminole counties. United Arts’ support is a major contributor to Central Florida’s sound, resilient, and thriving cultural sector. A large-scale commitment to arts and culture comes with the recent announcement that Orange County and Orlando together are embarking on their first city/county cultural planning effort. This is an enormously exciting time for United Arts as well as for arts and culture in Central Florida as the region continues to undergo rapid growth and synergy in the public and private creative sectors and the organization experiences significant accomplishments in its fundraising efforts.

About United Arts of Central Florida

The mission of United Arts of Central Florida is to enrich communities by investing in art, science, and history.

United Arts is a 501c(3) nonprofit organization and one-stop-shop to support the arts, sciences, history, and cultural institutions in Lake, Orange, Osceola, and Seminole counties. United Arts is Central Florida’s only local arts agency that supports artists, creatives, and arts organizations across the region. Through their program, funding and resources, United Arts helps local organizations serve more and do more. Through a dynamic collaboration between individuals, businesses, local governments, foundations and more than 125 arts and cultural organizations, United Arts works to enhance the quality and variety of cultural experiences throughout Central Florida by spreading awareness, raising and distributing funds, providing management, administrative and advisory services to the field, and by being the ultimate cheerleader for the vibrant and diverse arts community. It is the designated local arts agency for the four-county region.

Since 1989, United Arts has invested more than $190 million in local arts and culture organizations. Last year alone, United Arts supported more than 2.7 million experiences, including over 910,000 engagement experiences for K-12 students. United Arts believes that visual and literary art, music, science, dance, history, and theater matter—for children, for the economy, and for the region at large. All these activities combine to support Central Florida’s diverse and thriving community.

United Arts is staffed with 15 full- and part-time employees and contractors throughout four departments (Administration, Marketing, Development, and Grants & Outreach). The Director of Development will work closely with the CEO and coordinate with the Finance Director.

The Development Department is charged with implementing two fundraising efforts – the Collaborative Campaign for the Arts (approximately $6M in FY24) and United Arts’ annual operating budget (approximately $6.3M in FY24). While the Director of Development manages and directs the entire department, they are specifically charged with fundraising for the organization’s annual operating budget, which includes a portfolio of public and private grants, corporate contributions, and individual giving. Further, they are responsible for creating an agency-wide culture of fundraising by coordinating their efforts with the work of their counterparts.

The Marketing Department supports sector wide audience development and cultural tourism strategies with an online comprehensive cultural calendar featuring over 600 arts and cultural destinations and produces Artistry, a bimonthly magazine covering area arts and cultural happenings. In its 25th anniversary, it is published both in print and distributed to various outlets as well as digitally. It is a donor benefit for those who contribute $50 or more annually. Additionally, the Marketing Department is tasked with increasing awareness and engagement through owned, earned and paid channels, multiple social media platforms, and a paid awareness strategy.

In addition to managing its own grants program and individual artist granting cycles and contracts, the Grants & Outreach Department also administers Orange County Tourism Development Tax grants for cultural tourism. They also provide curriculum-based arts education programs and services via an annual contract for services with Orange County Public Schools and technical assistance to artists and arts and culture organizations that seek and/or receive funding.

About the Collaborative Campaign for the Arts
Fully managed by United Arts staff, the Collaborative Campaign for the Arts is an externally focused fundraising initiative in support of 38 arts and cultural organizations throughout the four-county region. In 2023, the Campaign had its most successful year ever, raising $6,071,759 and exceeding prior year total contributions by more than 10%. In addition, it garnered just over $1.6M in new and increased giving, while maintaining almost $5M in renewed contributions and leveraging $1.3M matching funds from United Arts and Orange County.

Each year United Arts joins forces with over 35 Operating Support grantees to raise funds and awareness collectively in support of art, science, and history. United Arts provides participating organizations with one unified pledge form listing all campaign partner’s names and kicks it off with a collaborative mailing, allowing donors to give to all their favorite arts and cultural organizations with one commitment. United Arts works closely with the participating cultural partner organizations to assist them in reaching their personal campaign fundraising goals. Most of the participating cultural partner organizations are based in Orange County. This program is managed by the Development Department’s Collaborative Campaign Manager and will be overseen by the new Director of Development.

About United Arts’ Commitment to DEI+A
United Arts’ vision is to increase access to the arts for all people of Central Florida by 2025. To achieve this vision, they have established a set of strategic goals that include a commitment to be more intentional about diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility in everything they do as well as support the same in the arts and culture community at-large. For example, they initiated the Diverse Leadership Pipeline to help diversify board leadership positions at local nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. Established in 2022, the program will connect individuals who may be a good match with arts and culture organizations based on their interests and skill sets as well as on their diverse perspectives. United Arts has dedicated grant funding for Diversity in the Arts and has policies and practices in place to include diverse experiences and decision makers on our Board and Staff.

United Arts’ Values Statement
As the leading resource for arts and culture in Central Florida, we’re the catalyst that makes the work of local artists and organizations more impactful in the communities served. At United Arts, we believe the arts are vital to our community. As leaders in this space, it’s our responsibility to strive for excellence — excellence in our impact, in our efforts towards inclusion, and in our commitment to transparency. Our team is built on people and community: two things we never lose sight of. Together, we make art thrive.

Job Description

The Director of Development is an entrepreneurial leader willing to pursue new and innovative strategies to ensure United Arts’ mission and vision are realized. They will partner with the President & CEO on all strategies related to fundraising. By strengthening United Arts’ own internal capacities for fundraising beyond the Collaborative Campaign, United Arts holds the potential to also build the fundraising capacities of its regional constituent organizations.

The successful candidate for this position will be able to authentically form deep relationships with individual donors as well as steward strategic alliances and engage publicly with a diverse array of stakeholders and perspectives. They will have a proven track record of identifying, cultivating, and closing major gifts, by communicating a clearly articulated case for support. The Director of Development should have the ability to think analytically and creatively, using strategic knowledge of best practices and significant trends in philanthropy to adapt fundraising strategies as needed. They will exercise independent judgment and discretion. They will be passionate about representing the organization and its mission internally and externally.

Orlando is a very young and diverse community, which will require a compelling and charismatic leader who can inspire donors and move team members forward with a keen sense of humor and joy in their interactions with people from all racial, political, socioeconomic, and cultural backgrounds.

Essential responsibilities include:
● Providing general oversight of all development activities and managing its daily departmental operations
● Growing, managing, and developing departmental staff
● Monitoring the progress of fundraising activities in coordination with the CEO, Development Committee of the Board, and appropriate Board members
● Engaging staff and board leadership along with other key stakeholders in developing a fundraising vision and strategy to meet revenue goals, ideally with the potential to produce continued growth results
● Partnering with the Finance Director to ensure sound fiscal operation of the development function, including timely, accurate and comprehensive budgeting monitoring, forecasting, and reporting donor contributions, grants, and department expenses
● Working closely with marketing and communications and understanding the importance of strategic collaborations
● Acting as a representative and ambassador to raise resources, promote positive relationships, and develop strong resource partnerships for the benefit of the organization

Essential Job Functions

Organizational Leadership
● Drive United Arts’ resource development capacity to meet the growing needs of the cultural sector in the Central Florida region
● Serve as a strategic thought partner to the CEO on fundraising efforts
● Serve as a member of United Arts senior leadership team, collaborating on high-level planning and decision-making
● Create a development staffing model that advances United Arts’ mission and is designed to meet the needs of agency funding initiatives
● Provide supervision and mentorship of the development team and represent them to the leadership team, creating a positive workplace environment that promotes employee engagement and satisfaction that aligns with the culture of the organization
● Foster a culture of philanthropy and collaboration among the various departments of the organization and the Board of Directors
● Work in service of United Arts’ expansive vision to ensure all people of Central Florida have access to quality arts and cultural experiences
● Promote and represent United Arts’ core values of Excellence, Impact, Transparency, Fairness and Care

● Design and implement a comprehensive annual development plan (long-and short-term), in collaboration with the CEO and the Finance Director
● Set benchmarks and evaluation procedures for individual, foundation, corporate giving, and public funding goals
● Align all fundraising efforts with the agency’s strategic goals
● Establish and maintain a personal portfolio of current and prospective major donors
● Oversee federal, state, and local grant funding efforts
● As the staff liaison for the Board Development Committee and in collaboration with the CEO, encourage board member Individual Development Plans and leverage members’ networks and experience with a particular emphasis on major gifts
● Develop and oversee evaluation and reporting systems for fundraising so that leadership and the CEO have timely information and key metrics to measure progress
● Actively seek out and develop new opportunities for investment, revenue generation, and strategic partnerships
● Identify, develop, and maintain long-term relationships with major donors, foundations and corporate contributors, and other key stakeholders, including significant personal solicitations/asks
● Accurately forecast revenue and expenses from all fundraising activities
● Work with the CEO to utilize their and other key stakeholders’ time effectively and efficiently in meeting with donors

Team Management
● Attract and retain high-performing team members, while empowering them to continually elevate their level of responsibility, sense of agency, and performance
● Set development staff goals, monitor work, and evaluate results to ensure that the department meets organizational objectives and operating requirements and is in line with the needs and mission of the organization
● Develop a positive, healthy workplace culture for the department
● Oversee the development team and ensure that there is technical support within the department for using Blackbaud’s Raiser’s Edge and donor prospecting software
● Work with fundraising staff to develop systems to ensure consistent, high-quality project management

● Diversified fundraising experience in a nonprofit environment, including collaborative or federated campaigns, major gifts, annual gifts, and corporate and foundation philanthropy; as well as state and federal funding sources
● Proven knowledge of and track record for identifying, cultivating/stewarding, soliciting, and closing major gifts and corporate sponsorships
● Energetic and enthusiastic leadership style, strong management skills, and a collaborative spirit
● Ability to plan both short- and long-term strategically and aspirationally
● Experience working successfully and collaboratively with a Board of Directors, senior management, and professional colleagues
● Experience developing and executing a relationship-based fundraising program with an emphasis on gifts over $5K
● Demonstrated ability to collaborate with leadership around goal setting and the strategies to achieve those goals
● Ability to give and take advice and support to ensure the fulfillment of the organizational mission
● Adherence to deadlines, strong organizational and time management skills with attention to detail
● Ability to be flexible and adaptable to situational changes
● Experience working with CRM databases and Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge
● Ability to manage and build consensus across internal and external constituents
● Proven understanding of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility, the role that racial inequity plays in our society, and a demonstrated ability to effectively communicate and collaborate across differences
● Excellent interpersonal, verbal, and written communications skills

Not sure you meet 100% of our qualifications? Research shows that cis-men apply for jobs when they fulfill an average of 60% of the criteria. Yet, women and other people who are systematically marginalized tend only to apply if they meet every requirement. If you believe that you could excel in this role, we encourage you to apply.

We are dedicated to considering a broad array of candidates, including those with diverse workplace experiences and backgrounds. So, whether you’re returning to work after a gap in employment, simply looking to transition, or taking the next step in your career path, we will be glad to have you on our radar.

Please use your cover letter to tell us about what you hope to bring to this role.


The salary base is $110,000-120,000 with a bonus opportunity based on fundraising and management performance goals. United Arts offers hybrid work options as appropriate. A moving allowance is available. Benefits include paid time off (vacation, sick, personal time) including 13 paid holidays and summer hours, medical and vision (employer paid for the employee), life insurance, employee assistance plan, and 401(k) with employer match of up to 5% after the first year.

Application Instructions

The search for the Director of Development is being conducted on behalf of United Arts of Central Florida by Tom O’Connor Consulting Group, a New York-based executive search and consulting firm specializing in the arts and culture industries. The search is being led by Brenna Thomas, in consultation with TOCG VP of Organizational Planning Dr. Edie Demas.

To apply, visit the online application and submit your materials. Your cover letter should include relevant experience, including any direct experience you’ve had with similar roles and institutions. No phone calls, please.

The priority application deadline for this search is October 9, 2023. Applications received by this date will receive priority consideration. While we will still accept and consider applications after this date, we encourage you to apply as early as possible for the best chance at being considered for the position. Please note that meeting the priority deadline does not guarantee an interview.

More About this Opportunity

About Orange County and Central Florida
Central Florida is the state’s fastest growing community, with metro population growth rates expected to double from 2.5 million to 5.2 million people by 2030 leading the nation in racial and ethnic diversity. The population here is changing as rapidly as it is growing. Residents are younger, more diverse, and more educated than in previous years. Orlando has a large LGBTQ+ population and is recognized as one of the most accepting and tolerant cities in the Southeast. Orange County itself is more diverse than the entire nation with 63% representing BIPOC communities.

With significant implications for fundraising, the average age is 35 and advanced degrees are held by 33% of residents compared to the national average of 27%. Over 22% of the county’s population was born outside the United States. Technology, innovation, entertainment, and creativity are hallmarks of the many high-tech corporations headquartered in Orlando. These characteristics of the community and surrounding areas paint an alluring and vibrant picture of the region, its rapid growth, and the opportunities presented to the arts and culture sector as a result.

About the Region and the Arts
For a relatively young region, this area has quickly established a rich and vibrant arts ecology that enjoys collaboration and partnership as a central component of its success.

The Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts is among the nation’s leading performing arts centers, and the addition of Steinmetz Hall has given the region a truly world-class concert hall. The major institutions in Orange County bring important guest artists to the region and support a rapidly growing community of professional working artists and creatives. The Orlando Science Center, one of the largest cultural institutions in Orange County, celebrates its 70th anniversary in 2025. Though the larger more traditional art forms have a strong presence, smaller culturally specific arts groups and organizations that represent BIPOC populations are fewer in number relative to the local demographics that are rich with immigrants, new Americans, and international visitors year-round. This is an area of growth and opportunity that United Arts is committed to supporting now and in the future.

Arts and Education
All public schools in Orange County have full time teaching artists. A recent study by the DeVos Institute for Arts Management at the University of Maryland found that 61% of those surveyed believe that students in Orange County are receiving a strong arts education and many felt that United Arts contributed to its strength. Arts partnerships have been formed with the major arts institutions in support of increased access to the arts for students in Orange County Public Schools.

Arts and Economic Development
Every five years, United Arts partners with Americans for the Arts, providing local data for their Arts and Economic Prosperity Report (AEP) and its Creative Industries Report. While AEP6 data is still being gathered and analyzed, AEP5 demonstrated that nonprofit arts and culture is a $400 million industry in the Central Florida region that supports 13,764 full-time equivalent jobs. 9,630 of those jobs are in Orange County alone, generating $265 million in total industry spending and $9.9 million in local government revenue.

About the United Arts Board of Directors
The Director of Development will work closely with the CEO and administer the Board of Directors Development Committee to maximize the organization’s fundraising efforts. Currently there are 42 members on the Board of Directors, including two ex-officio members. Primarily C-suite executives or their representatives, these individuals reflect Central Florida’s diverse landscape of public and private sector stakeholders with 34% of Board reflecting the region’s BIPOC population.

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