When Barbara Weisberger founded Pennsylvania Ballet in 1963, it was her dream, fostered and encouraged by the great George Balanchine, to not only bring the best in dance to Pennsylvania but to find local talent and develop those artists into world-class performers.
Today, Pennsylvania Ballet is poised to become one of the world's preeminent ballet companies. Under visionary Artistic Director Angel Corella, Pennsylvania Ballet has catapulted to international prominence, energizing audiences, driving increased ticket sales, drawing out-of-market patrons from New York City and elsewhere, and eliciting invitations for the Company to tour abroad. Mr. Corella’s experience and accomplishments, both as a dancer and director of his own company in Spain, have helped Pennsylvania Ballet embody the increasingly diverse and broadening landscape of dance. This evolution is best reflected in the extraordinary breadth of works being performed by the Company as well as the increased interest from dancers around the world seeking to join Pennsylvania Ballet’s ranks. Pennsylvania Ballet is renowned for its athleticism and grace, for innovative programming, for a School that nurtures and inspires hundreds of students each year, and for community engagement programs that reach thousands of Greater Philadelphians.
Executive Director Shelly Power's arrival in 2018 marked a new era for prudent and responsible Company management, with a bold determination to achieve unprecedented growth throughout the organization, and a strong set of values and strategic priorities that will secure a more sustainable future. To ensure that generations of Philadelphians and audiences from around the world continue to be inspired by the Company's extraordinary artistry, Pennsylvania Ballet has choreographed a strategy that features the following: building new state-of-the-art facilities for the Company’s world-class dancers, talented students, dedicated artistic and administrative staff, and the Greater Philadelphia community; investing in the artists and repertoire to build the Company's international reputation; expanding School offerings to train and empower the next generation of dancers; engaging more people of all backgrounds through enhanced education and community engagement programs, dedicated community spaces, and a renewed commitment to diversity; serving as a catalyst and cornerstone of the economic and cultural revitalization of Philadelphia’s North Broad arts corridor; and establishing long-term financial wellness. These plans are being advanced through a major fundraising campaign. Pennsylvania Ballet aims to define the landscape and what it means to be a world-class ballet company.
Pennsylvania Ballet is making significant investments in its development program to help ensure the organization’s finances are commensurate to its artistry and to engage the philanthropic support necessary to realize its vision for the future. Notably, the position of Chief Development Officer has been newly created, consistent with the critical strategic importance of philanthropy to the organization.
Pennsylvania Ballet seeks candidates for Chief Development Officer (CDO). The positioning of this new role and its responsibilities are elevating the prominence of development functions within the organization. The CDO is the lead executive responsible for maintaining and growing the Pennsylvania Ballet’s base of individual and institutional support, while building an organization-wide, major-gifts-focused fundraising culture. The CDO provides fully integrated leadership and direction to a development department that is evolving to match the rise of Pennsylvania Ballet, growth of its brand, and increased philanthropic needs. The CDO will work closely with the Executive Director to create development plans reflecting the larger strategic goals of Pennsylvania Ballet, expanding reach into major donor communities and driving continuous growth and improvement. The CDO serves as the Pennsylvania Ballet’s chief campaign officer. The CDO will oversee a team of approximately 10 individuals across the areas of individual giving, major and planned gifts, campaign, foundation and government relations, and corporate events. The CDO must champion strategic, data-informed decision-making, industry best practices, and an ethos of continuous improvement.
Required qualifications and experience:
- Dedication to the mission and goals of Pennsylvania Ballet. Enthusiasm for and knowledge of dance and/or other performing arts preferred.
- Bachelor’s degree required.
- Minimum of 10 years of experience in progressively responsible development leadership positions, including knowledge of all functional areas (individual giving, institutional giving, annual giving, planned giving, stewardship, board relations, operations), preferably within a major cultural institution or other environment of similar complexity. Strong candidates will have played a senior-level role in a high-impact fundraising campaign, from planning to implementation to management and successful conclusion.
- Demonstrated ability to provide management oversight, leadership, and direction with at least five years of significant supervisory experience, including experience creating and managing a budget.
- Steeped in modern philanthropy best practices and able to effectively integrate related external relations functions.
- Strength in developing the case for support and strategic fundraising plans, and in executing those plans to achieve goals and objectives. Experience working directly with the most senior levels of an organization and the ability to effectively engage various groups and constituents.
- Hands-on experience with six and seven-figure gifts and greater, including cultivation through solicitation and stewardship, as well as experience working with annual giving strategies for grooming the next generation of annual leadership and major gift donors. Success in securing gifts from both defined and undefined constituencies.
- Demonstrated ability in planning and executing strategic communications across various mediums and channels to complement philanthropic initiatives.
- Experience identifying, nurturing, and motivating volunteers, particularly board members, and an appreciation for their role in building an effective fundraising network.
- Skill at goal setting and measuring success, and agility in addressing alternate program directions to meet goals when necessary.
- The ability to extract and analyze data to make effective, efficient decisions about donor strategy and process. A working knowledge of modern data management practices, including data modeling, analysis, information systems, and other tools that can streamline the development process. Familiarity with Tessitura arts enterprise software and how to optimize its application in fundraising, with a preference for a strong technology orientation and the ability to quickly acclimate to new technological tools.
- Experience in high-level, Philadelphia-area philanthropy is preferred, including knowledge of region’s philanthropic players, strategies, and trends.
Pennsylvania Ballet has retained Diversified Search to assist in this confidential search process. Inquiries, nominations, and applications (current resumes and cover letters) should be directed electronically to:
Gerard F. Cattie, Jr.
Practice Leader – Development & Philanthropy
The Chrysler Building, 405 Lexington Avenue, 49th Floor, New York, NY 10174