Vice President of Development

Please read on if you are someone who:

  • easily applies strategic concepts to actionable plans,
  • enjoys utilizing data to inform strategy and decisions,
  • has at least 7 years direct fundraising experience, especially with board engagement,
  • wants to contribute to an organization committed to anti-racism and racial equity-in-progress,
  • approaches their work with curiosity, courage, and self-awareness, and
  • believes we can make progress on social issues through music.

Full Job Description:

Job Title:                     Vice President of Development
Classification:             Exempt, full time
Reports to:                  President & CEO
Supervises:                 Development & Operations Associate, Consultants
Salary:                         $90-100,000 annually plus health/transit/retirement benefits
Location:                     Flexible; Travel to St. Paul, MN (if remote) required      

Overview of Responsibilities

  • Oversee development program with focus on annual and grassroots giving, foundation support, and board engagement
  • Develop and execute effective internal operations for optimal fundraising capacity
  • Staff the Board Development Committee
  • Support CEO’s fundraising priorities
  • Serve as a member of organization’s Senior Staff

ACF envisions a world where living music creators are celebrated as essential to human culture. We are leading catalysts in an ecosystem that invites generations of composers, artists, advocates, and audiences to pursue this vision with us.

Our commitment to being a racially equitable organization guides us and our work. The ACF Board and staff engage in continued intentional learning about / practicing principles of anti-racism, and we support an ecosystem that is equitable as well as inclusive. To this end, we strive to build a community with racial equity at the center. We seek to attract candidates with similar priorities and strongly encourage individuals who identify as BIPOC race/ethnicity and/or other underrepresented identities to apply. (Please click here to read our statement of commitment to racial equity.)

Currently raising $1.2 million from donations and grants, the organization is in its first year of an ambitious, five-year strategic plan to further develop the organization as a national go-to space and advocate for music creators. The success of the plan relies on expanding a portfolio of major donors and national foundations as well as significant grassroots support. The Vice President of Development will play a vital role by overseeing the following areas: cultivating supporters, establishing systems and communications for development and stewardship, engaging board and other stakeholders in fundraising, and utilizing data to analyze and inform development strategies. We are particularly interested in the growing movement of Community-Centric Fundraising and hope to incorporate their principles in our own work.

The Vice President of Development reports to the President & CEO, Vanessa Rose, is a member of the senior staff leadership, and supervises a full-time Development and Operations Associate. An additional staff or outsourced position is under consideration and would be hired by, and report to, this position. The VP of Development will work closely with the Executive Assistant as well as the Director of Community & Belonging, Director of Operations & Special Projects, and VP of Artist Services in addition to the Board of Directors. This position is the staff liaison to the board’s Development Committee and is closely involved with strategic planning, branding/messaging, and board engagement.

Candidate Profile
An ideal candidate is enthusiastic about ACF’s mission and supporting music creators. They are committed to racial equity and share the organization’s values of leadership, anti-racism, courage, support, and curiosity. The successful candidate must be highly organized, proactive, and able to reprioritize when needed. They have led annual fund and/or membership campaigns and have experience working with board members and other stakeholders. Strong writing skills and knowledge of MS Office applications are necessary. Experience with database systems is required (experience with Salesforce is a plus). This role accesses confidential and sensitive information and must be comfortable with holding those details in confidence and with discretion.

The ability to work with a diverse group of individuals – whether artists, board members, or supporters – is essential. We recognize that often the most exciting candidates do not apply for various reasons and strongly encourage applications from individuals who may be unsure if this role is for them. (We may have other openings down the road too, and either way want to meet you!) The successful VP of Development is skilled at designing and implementing systems and communications that link to the organization’s strategic priorities and organizing staff, board members, and other stakeholders as participants. The VP of Development isolates and manages fundraising priorities for the President & CEO and Board leadership.

A national organization, we value the opportunity to be based in Minnesota, where most of the staff lives, so we invite applicants outside the area to only apply if they are willing to travel 8-10 times a year to St. Paul, Minnesota (when it is safe to do so). ACF is able to offer a modest moving package for those who wish to relocate. (Read more about the beautiful landscape and offerings of Minnesota – it’s more than snow!) For those who seek to work from a remote location, ongoing travel costs will be considered as part of the final offer package. Additional travel related to board or program events (est. 4 times a year) is expected as well.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

Oversee development program

  • Plan, organize, and direct a comprehensive development program that utilizes the strengths and networks of the staff, board, and volunteers, and includes major and institutional gifts, planned gifts, grassroots fundraising, and special project campaigns
  • Develop and execute effective internal operations, including donor portfolios, gift processing, data reporting, and tracking ‘moves management’
  • Work in partnership with Development Committee Chair to orchestrate committee and board activities and follow through; serve as staff liaison to committee
  • Support CEO’s fundraising priorities, including the cultivation of existing and prospective individuals, foundations, and government agencies
  • Increase contributed income through organization and management of the annual fund and special campaigns as needed
  • Manage research and prepare grant proposals and reports

Promote fundraising opportunities

  • Foster an understanding of philanthropy within the organization
  • Identify and cultivate opportunities to recognize donors and attract new funding
  • Contribute to publication of materials that maximize public interest in supporting the organization


  • Serve as member of the Senior Staff
  • Supervise work of staff and contractors assigned to development tasks
  • Prepare budget forecasts and financial reports relating to development activities
  • Coordinate restricted funding expectations with VP of Finance and Administration

Salary and Benefits
The salary for this full-time, exempt position is $90-100,000/year (depending on experience) plus a competitive benefits package including health insurance, dental insurance, FSA, vacation, 403(b) retirement matching plan and pre-tax transportation program. We value the artistic and other life activities of our staff and welcome flexible remote and work hours.

About American Composers Forum
ACF supports and advocates for individuals and groups creating music today by demonstrating the vitality and relevance of their art. We connect artists with collaborators, organizations, audiences, and resources. Through storytelling, publications, recordings, hosted gatherings, and industry leadership, we activate equitable opportunities for artists. We provide direct funding and mentorship to a broad and diverse field of music creators, highlighting those who have been historically excluded from participation. Visit for more information.

How to Apply
Please upload a resume and a letter describing how you will contribute to ACF’s stated mission through this position in PDF form through this link: Contact Laura Krider, Director of Operations and Special Projects at or 612.314.9228 with any questions.

Position is open until filled. Applications received by April 1, 2021 will be reviewed first. Three references will be requested from those invited to interview. Interviews will include members of the board, staff, ACF’s Equity Committee, and HR firm. All inquiries will be held in confidence.