Position Description

Position Description

Jewish Family Service of San Diego

(San Diego, CA)

Title: Chief Development Officer

Jewish Family Service (JFS) of San Diego was established in 1918 by a group of sixteen women who were committed to making a difference in people’s lives. Early on, their efforts were dedicated to welcoming Jewish immigrants who were seeking refuge in the United States at the southern California border. Today, JFS helps people of all ages, faiths, and backgrounds build more stable, secure, and connected lives. With a diverse network of staff, volunteers, donors, funders, and community partners, the JFS team works to build a stronger, healthier, more resilient San Diego.

The JFS approach is rooted in supportive personal relationships and strong community partnerships, and delivers services that foster the health, skills, confidence, and resilience of every person it serves. JFS helps their clients build a foundation of economic stability, personal wellbeing, and community connection that empowers them to thrive.

Last year, JFS served more than 39,500 clients across the greater San Diego community through a variety of programs and services, including food assistance; services for older adults; Jewish connections; mental health services; positive parenting education; refugee and immigration services; and services for individuals and families experiencing homelessness. 

Where there is a need in the community, JFS responds quickly and nimbly. Just last year, JFS worked urgently with partner agencies across San Diego to start the JFS Migrant Family Shelter, which has served 17,000 asylum seekers released from detention at the border. As the homeless population in San Diego has grown, JFS has quickly grown its safe parking program for families and individuals sleeping in their cars and RV’s, expanding from a single parking lot to four within 18 months. 

In honor of the agency’s centennial, JFS launched a $50 million Centennial Countdown Campaign. The campaign includes a $26.5 million commitment from the Rady Family Foundation, including up to $23.5 million available in one-to-one matching funds. With roughly $8 million left to raise, the matching challenge will remain in effect until the goal is realized or the end of the campaign on November 19, 2023. JFS’s annual budget is approximately $23.4 million, which comes from institutional giving ($17.6 million), individual giving ($4.4 million), and special events ($1.4 million). 

For more information about Jewish Family Service of San Diego, please visit www.jfssd.org.  


As JFS continues to be a leading social impact agency, the Chief Development Officer will be responsible for managing the strategic direction and oversight of a comprehensive fund development program to ensure the agency’s ongoing success and sustainability. The successful candidate will be focused on building strategic alliances with diverse constituencies to drive major, annual, planned and institutional gifts, grants and contracts to achieve fundraising goals. Reporting to the CEO as a key member of the executive leadership team, the Chief Development Officer will provide leadership, motivation and support to a staff of 14 and directly supervise the Senior Director of Philanthropy, the Senior Director of Institutional Giving, the Donor Database Manager and an Administrative Assistant. 

Specific duties and responsibilities of the position include, but are not limited to:

Fundraising and Institutional Giving

  • Provide fundraising leadership, strategy and support to the CEO and Board of Directors.
  • Cultivate, grow and solicit a personal portfolio of donors and prospects with a focus on major gifts and planned giving.
  • Work closely with the development team to ensure all donor levels are strategically identified, cultivated, solicitated and stewarded.
  • Identify new opportunities for donor engagement.
  • Oversee the end-to-end grants approval and writing process, in partnership with the Senior Director of Institutional Giving and program leaders


  • Foster a culture which attracts, retains, mentors and motivates a diverse staff of top-quality professionals. 
  • Assess the team to ensure that the department is effectively structured and staffed.
  • Establish goals and metrics to evaluate implementation of strategy and tactics and evaluate the overall effectiveness of the development program.
  • Provide ongoing coaching to direct reports and development team and ensure staff is provided with ongoing training and professional development.
  • Work with the CEO and CFO to assure sound fiscal operation of the development function including timely, accurate budgets, reporting, monitoring and implementation.

Strategic Planning

  • Develop, lead and implement the agency’s annual and long-term development strategies, charting the future course in fund development while ensuring that efforts are carried out in keeping with the agency’s mission, vision, and plans.
  • Develop and implement a systematic approach to cultivation and stewardship.
  • Maintain a working knowledge of best practices and significant developments and trends in philanthropy relevant to the agency and adapt fundraising strategies as necessary.

Board Development/Relations

  • Provide the Board with information on the development and implementation of the fundraising strategic plan.
  • Staff Board Committees including the Development Committee.              

Communications and Database Management

  • Collaborate with the Marketing team to ensure consistent messaging and outreach strategies.
  • Increase the agency’s visible presence in the philanthropic community to establish and advance relationships in support of achieving the agency’s vision and mission.
  • Oversee the development database and ensure quality prospecting, segmenting, trend identification, and relationship and communication management.


The Chief Development Officer will be a charismatic and inspiring service-minded leader with a genuine passion for serving others. The successful candidate will have the proven ability to compellingly communicate JFS’s mission and build lasting relationships with a diversity of donors and community partners. The Chief Development Officer must embrace the vision and values of JFS and invest themselves in its mission and goals. 

Top candidates will be innovative development leaders with extensive experience creating and successfully executing forward-thinking development strategies that span major gifts, campaigns, annual giving, special events, foundation relations, and planned-giving. They will have considerable experience in designing, presenting, and negotiating high-level gift arrangements, including significant individual and institutional gifts from foundations, corporations and government funding. This role requires exceptional verbal and written communication skills and strong collaboration with the Marketing team to co-create fundraising and agency collateral that furthers the agency’s message and deepens the relationship with its supporters.

Successful candidates will have strong leadership experience and coaching skills and will lead the development team with authenticity and integrity. They will have the ability to inspire the team with creativity and energy, articulate a vision, set clear goals, and motivate individual and team success.

As the senior executive leader in development, candidates must be able to work collaboratively with other executives, senior leaders and staff. They will be able to cultivate an inclusive environment that encourages open and direct communication.


The Chief Development Officer should have a minimum of eight to ten years of progressively responsible and successful fundraising and management experience. Leading candidates will have a proven track record of raising significant support and proven success with major gifts, annual giving, planned giving, corporate giving, foundation grants, special events, capital campaigns and other campaigns. Candidates should have a proven record of success in leadership positions that plan and operate strategically, build public support, strengthen infrastructure, and inspire staff and board members.

Candidates with experience in social justice, healthcare, human service or other pertinent environments would be ideal. The Chief Development Officer will be culturally sensitive and passionate about JFS’s mission.


An undergraduate degree is required; an advanced degree is preferred.


Annual compensation will be competitive and relocation assistance, if needed, is negotiable. A comprehensive benefits package will be provided.

Jewish Family Service San Diego is an equal employment opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law.


To apply for this position, visit www.morrisberger.com/searches.php

Morris & Berger
500 North Brand Boulevard, Suite 2150
Glendale, CA 91203-1923

1 (818) 507-1234