Director of Development (hybrid) - ARVO Foundation for Eye Research #2023-2768

Location US-MD-Rockville
Job ID


Director of Development (hybrid)


The ARVO Foundation for Eye Research is a global catalyst for innovation, workforce development, and collaboration, supporting scientists worldwide engaged in sight-saving research across all aspects of vision and conditions of the eye. The Foundation funds the novel research, education, and outreach initiatives of ARVO (the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology). Of the $1.3 million we cultivated last year, unrestricted individual giving accounted for about one-tenth of our portfolio and another third was made from larger gifts that were partly dedicated to awards. We will look to you to increase annual giving year after year while maintaining and developing strong relationships with corporate and industry partners, which account for about half of annual contributions. Funds raised through the Foundation illustrate ARVO’s commitment to supporting early-career researchers advancing the future of eye and vision research worldwide. In 2022 we awarded $437K in research grants and fellowships, $77K to recognize and encourage innovative research, and invested $53K in career development programs to support junior researchers.


As Director of Development, you will own the strategy and execution of our US and international fundraising initiatives, including corporate and industry partnerships, individual funders, grants, events, and annual campaigns. This is a highly-visible position working across ARVO to leverage the support of several teams, including meeting and logistics, marketing and communications, finance, and awards and grants to ensure fundraising efforts are successful. As the main point of contact for donors, you will create all donor communications, from outreach and recognition to developing recipient stories for the Foundation’s website and refining our case for support. Reporting to and working in coordination with the Chief Operating and Financial Officer, you will develop and implement a comprehensive fundraising program to expand, strengthen, and diversify our donor portfolio, allowing us to amplify ARVO’s impact on the future of eye and vision research.


How You’ll Make an Impact


  • Within the first year, you will increase the individual donor pipeline by 10%, driving member participation and philanthropy at every giving level. Additionally, you will engage our Board of Governors and senior leadership to identify and connect with new prospects building an organization-wide culture of philanthropy.
  • Design and implement a comprehensive fundraising program to increase participation across every segment of our donor portfolio. You will research and connect with new prospects to diversify our portfolio to support researchers across a broad range of issues in eye research and establish reporting workflows and systems to monitor and evaluate levels of engagement.
  • By building our core asset, you will increase our ability to support researchers needing longer-term support with larger award payouts and expand the reach of our award programs to provide much-needed funding for mid-career researchers and potentially develop a translational award opportunity.


Work Environment, Salary, and Benefits


  • You’ll enjoy a flexible hybrid work environment, including two days collaborating with colleagues in our Rockville, MD, office and three days of your choice working remotely. Some domestic travel is required, including a week at the ARVO Annual Meeting, a few days at other industry meetings, and limited travel to visit donors as needed.
  • The budgeted salary range for this position is $110K-$140K.
  • We offer with an outstanding benefits package including:
    • Comprehensive medical insurance through Carefirst BlueCross BlueShield
    • Employer paid vision, dental, life, and disability insurance
    • Flexible Spending Accounts for medical and childcare expenses
    • Matching retirement savings
    • Employer paid parking or monthly contribution for public transportation
    • 12 paid holidays, 12 days of vacation (increasing to 18 during 2nd year), and 10 days of sick leave
  • Your colleagues are collegial, collaborative, and eager to help each other succeed. The Foundation invests time and resources in developing a positive and supportive work culture, including social events and professional development opportunities.





  • Contribute to Foundation Board and committee governance content, including developing support materials and maintaining key governance documents.
  • Assist Board and committee in exploring new Foundation funding opportunities.
  • Manage and implement Foundation fundraising plans.
  • Provide Foundation communications to internal and external stakeholders on fundraising targets and opportunities aligned with ARVO needs.
  • Work with awards & grants staff to ensure all awards and grants meet donors' intentions; ensure all awards are recognized appropriately.

Fundraising/Donor Relations

  • Identify and cultivate prospective donors. Develop a balanced funding mix of donor sources and solicitation programs tailored to the needs of the Foundation that will attract, retain, and motivate donors.
  • Manage all existing donor relationships by tracking funding status, interests, communications, and opportunities.
  • Serve as primary contact to manage donors, including the Dowling Society, Legacy Society, and other giving groups/levels.
  • Manage all aspects of fundraising campaigns and grant-seeking processes.
  • Research potential individual donors and corporate/industry partnerships.
  • Serve on the team leading annual fundraising event preparation and logistics.


  • Partner with mar/comm staff to implement year-round marketing and communications plans, including special campaigns and initiatives, and update website content.

Foundation Administration/Operations

  • Maintain the infrastructure and support functions, including overseeing the donor database and recognition process, establishing fundraising targets, monitoring and evaluating results, and providing regular revenue and cash flow updates on projections versus results.
  • Work with other staff to ensure proper gift processing, data entry, and reconciliation administration.
  • Write and maintain up-to-date standard operating procedures (SOPs).




  • 7+ years of successful nonprofit fundraising experience, including donor prospecting, cultivation, and stewardship for corporate, foundation, and individual relationships, with a proven track record in conceptualizing, designing, and implementing a variety of fundraising initiatives.
  • Experience supporting a Board of Governors and senior leadership to maintain and establish new donors.
  • Comfortable working within a small team environment, you will have the support of ARVO resources, but this position does not have back-office support.
  • Familiarity with the academic research environment and working with international customers are a plus.


About Us


The ARVO Foundation for Eye Research, established in 2001, funds novel research, education and outreach initiatives of ARVO. Our mission is to serve as a global catalyst for innovation, workforce development and collaboration in the field of vision research. We raise funds through corporate grants, fundraising events and the generosity of ARVO members who are eager to support the next generation of eye and vision researchers.


To Apply


We encourage you to apply even if your experience is not a 100% match with the position description; we will consider people from a variety of backgrounds and career experiences.


Use the "Apply" button on this page or simply email your resume to Lilly Khan at with “ARVO – Director of Development #2023-2768 SA” as the subject of the email.


Job responsibilities are similar to the following positions: Director of Philanthropy.


Staffing Advisors is committed to reducing bias in every aspect of the hiring process. We have long recommended a competency-driven approach to hiring. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law.





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