The ACLU Foundation of Southern California (ACLU SoCal) seeks applicants for an Associate Director of Philanthropy.

Founded in 1923, the ACLU SoCal has been at the forefront of many major efforts to protect civil liberties, civil rights, and equal justice in California. Principled and nonpartisan, the ACLU SoCal has offices in Los Angeles, Orange County (Santa Ana), and the Inland Empire (San Bernardino). The ACLU SoCal tackles a vast array of issues, including criminal justice, police practices, First Amendment rights, gender equity and reproductive justice, LGBT rights, immigrants’ rights, education equity, and economic justice.

The ACLU SoCal is comprised of two organizations: the ACLU of Southern California and the ACLU Foundation of Southern California. These two entities have a combined annual budget of approximately $9.3 million and operate jointly as non-profit public interest organizations. The ACLU SoCal staff of more than 65 works in a fast-paced, friendly, and professional office environment.


The Associate Director of Philanthropy (A.D.) is responsible for managing a select portfolio of major and leadership donors and prospects with $10,000+ potential.

Responsibilities Include:

Portfolio Management and Administration

  • In consultation with other members of the leadership gifts team, development department, Executive Director, and development colleagues at the national ACLU, as well as with program staff and leadership volunteers, manage a select portfolio of major and leadership donors and prospects, including their cultivation, stewardship and solicitation.
  • Create individual goals and a comprehensive plan based on research for each person in the portfolio. Perform donor and prospect research.
  • Record all interactions and post-meeting reports promptly in database and communicate all aspects of meeting, from set-up to follow-up, to other team members as needed.
  • Maintain up-to-date and accurate database records for the Leadership and Major Gifts portfolio. Track portfolio activity and progress. Create reports as required by management that accurately reflect portfolio activity and performance.
  • Act as liaison with National ACLU leadership gift staff to provide input and guidance on appropriate communications and solicitation methods for donors in their portfolio.
  • Track portfolio activity and progress. Meet portfolio goals including number of donor meetings and meaningful, monthly personalized donor contacts.
  • Work with Strategic Partnerships and Marketing to explore, develop and implement plans to effectively raise outright major and leadership gifts at our annual events.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Donor Relations & Communications

  • Stay well-versed in the current work of the ACLU, locally and nationally, and be an effective representative of the organization.
  • Work with the appropriate staff to secure project information and use this information to develop materials directed at individual donors/prospects, such as highly personalized proposals or stewardship reports that detail progress resulting from a gift.
  • Produce cultivation events for major and leadership donors throughout the year, varying in topics/staff and location to match interests, and maximize outreach.
  • Assist the department in stewardship of major and leadership donors identify articles and other materials to send donors, reinforcing the importance of their support and our appreciation of their commitment to the ACLU, and share with other staff.


  • Participate in the Development team as a cooperative, positive team player.
  • Help maintain a positive, respectful, welcoming, and professional environment for employees and volunteers.
  • Develop a solid understanding of ACLU’s structure, programs, office protocols, and equipment.
  • Attend certain ACLU functions and assist in other ways as assigned.
  • Other duties as assigned.


Minimum of four years of experience in nonprofit fundraising, with progressive responsibility and a proven record of securing visits with prospective donors, and soliciting, closing, and stewarding major gifts. The most competitive candidates also will have proven experience converting new donors/prospects into major donors. Experience soliciting special, multi-year campaign commitments and planned gifts also preferred.

  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication and presentation skills. Ability to understand and follow many different areas of civil rights work, and to describe many different areas of work in a way that is concise, compelling, and easy to understand for donors and prospective donors.
  • Strong organizational skills. Ability to develop long-term plans, set objectives, and track progress towards achieving objectives. Familiarity with the concepts of moves management preferred.
  • Personal initiative, curiosity about people, and a sense of humor. Friendly, outgoing, and collaborative approach and a strong team-oriented style.
  • Proficiency with office technology and information systems (including Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint) and donor databases, preferably Salesforce.
  • Must be available for travel within Southern California and limited travel outside California.
  • Must be available for some weekend and evening responsibilities.
  • Passionate about civil liberties and civil rights. A professional approach and a commitment to a workplace that values and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstances.


Salary based on experience. Benefits include medical, vision, and dental insurance for staff members and their eligible dependents; life and long term disability insurance; 401(k) plan with employer match; ample vacation and sick leave and thirteen paid holidays.


Please submit resume, cover letter, and writing sample personally prepared by the applicant (NO Phone Calls PLEASE) to or mail to:

HR Department — Associate Director of Philanthropy
ACLU of Southern California
1313 W. 8th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Deadline: November 15, 2017 or until filled.

The ACLU SoCal is an equal opportunity employer and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of any status or condition protected by applicable federal or state law. We consider qualified applicants with criminal histories, consistent with applicable law.

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