Director of Advancement

Website Keys School

Keys School is an independent coeducational K-8 school across two campuses in the heart of Silicon Valley. Founded in 1973, the school is a pioneer in the field of social and emotional learning and fundamentally believes that growing emotional intelligence is integral to academic success, peak performance, and leading a fulfilling life. The school’s mission echoes this charge: “Keys School challenges students to develop a keen intellect and a generous spirit, to advocate for themselves and others, and to honor curiosity and reflection in an increasing hurried world.” The pursuit of academic excellence—including the risks students must take to achieve such excellence—is possible only with the intentional development of trusting relationships between students and teachers, and between students and peers. As such, the environment at Keys is a remarkably supportive one, in which each child’s strengths, needs, and interests are known and appreciated. Teachers forge strong bonds with their students and work together to foster an atmosphere that feels safe for all.

Keys understands that a diverse community is the cornerstone of a strong education, and valuing relationships and growing an inclusive community are two core elements of the school’s mission.  As Keys, School enjoys a strong, vibrant, generous community, with nearly 100% of families contributing to the annual fund each year since 2009. Because of the generosity of the community, Keys was able to double its endowment last year, with strong support for innovative curriculum, financial assistance, and faculty health and well-being.


The Director of Advancement

Keys School seeks a dynamic, ambitious, motivated, and inspired Director of Advancement to join our inclusive school community. The Director is responsible for creating and implementing strategic philanthropic marketing and communication efforts at the school. The Director reports to the Head of School and is a member of the Senior Leadership Team. The Director partners with the Head of School and the Board of Trustees to ensure that all philanthropic efforts and priorities align with and champion the school’s mission. The Director manages a team of advancement professionals responsible for development, communications, and marketing. They will oversee all activities related to fund-raising, including, but not limited to the annual fund, capital campaigns, major gifts, institutional events, cultivation, stewardship, and emerging alumni initiatives. They will also oversee the team responsible for communications and marketing, including but not limited to, emails, social media, advertising, institutional brand and website development, and promoting Keys’ mission and values within the school and around the greater Peninsula.

The Director of Advancement serves as an integral member of the Board’s Development Committee and may also be asked to collaborate with the Finance and other board-level committees as necessary. The Director attends Board of Trustees meetings and provides guidance for the Keys Parent Association.


Primary Duties & Responsibilities

• Design and implement short-term and multi-year development plans to meet the school’s strategic goals and objectives;
• Ensure revenue goals for annual giving, through mechanisms such as the annual fund, annual “auction,” major/special gift, and 8th Grade Legacy Gift, are met each year;
• Cultivate relationships with key stakeholders across the school, parent and alumni communities, to establish and strengthen ties that will bring donations to the school;
• Oversee endowment fundraising by evaluating, planning, and implementing solicitation for endowments;
• Advance Capital Campaign objectives with the Head of School, Development Committee, Business Office, and the Board to support future school needs.

Communication and Brand Management
• Oversee communication and marketing strategies including website, annual report, social media, digital communications, photography/videography, weekly communications to parents, media relations, and more;
• Provide leadership to enhance relationships and communication with internal and external constituencies consistent with Keys mission;
• Ensure the intended audience can understand and be drawn to the visual identity of the school as well as the compelling messaging and content;
• Ensure that all marketing and communication materials reflect the values, vision, and strategic initiatives of the school;
• Collaborate with admissions on messaging/communication materials, outreach, and integration of new families into the Keys community.

Volunteer Management
• Manage and oversee parent volunteer involvement in the Keys School Association (KSA) and Development activities to ensure alignment and collaboration between KSA, Administration, and the Board.
• Direct activities of the KSA Executive Committee and provide strategic guidance to help them guide Room Parents, event Co-Chairs, and all community volunteers as lead community advocates.

• Hire, train, mentor, and evaluate a professional, dynamic Advancement team which may include the Director and Assistant Director of Development, the Director and Assistant Director of Communication, and the Assistant Director of Advancement.  Maintain communication and oversight of this team through regular meetings focusing on both strategic and logistics-level initiatives;
• Establish an excellent and collaborative working relationship with the Head of School.
• Serve on the senior Leadership Team that/which oversees all day-to-day operations and help set strategic goals for the school;
• Promote a culture of inclusion in philanthropy, marketing, and community-building programs and events;
• Maintain a collaborative relationship with peers outside of the School in order to be informed of advancement trends and best practices;
• Attend Keys events and activities to foster authentic relationships, pride, and excitement for a Keys education, community life, and values;
• Have experience living and leading diversity and inclusion initiatives, skill in building inclusive communities, and the ability to respectfully navigate diverse cultural and social situations;
• Present occasionally to trustees, parents, alumnae, and other large and small groups of school constituents.

Required Skills and Abilities:
• A passion for Keys School and its mission, its commitment to growing emotional intelligence, and a keen ability to convey the school’s program, opportunities, and vision to an array of constituencies.
• An impressive, proven track record in fundraising success, major gift solicitation, and capital campaign experience.
• An understanding of and commitment to building authentic relationships with faculty, staff, students, families, and the broader Peninsula community.
• A collaborative leadership style that projects openness and genuinely invites and respects the perspectives and views of others, yet is decisive when necessary.
• Superb writing and speaking skills with the ability to inspire others.
• Willingness to bring a sense of humor and fun to collaboration.
• Ability to manage complex, multi-pronged tasks, efficiently, accurately on or before deadlines.
• Excellent leadership skills and demonstration of experience successfully managing employees and building a highly functioning team.
• Ability to work effectively with volunteers and boards and other cross-functional partners.
• Internal motivation, initiative, and a willingness to take on responsibilities beyond those explicitly defined.
• Five to seven years of related professional experience.
• Occasional availability on nights and weekends.
• Bachelor’s degree.

Compensation and Benefits:    
This is a 12-month full-time exempt position beginning July 1, 2021. Compensation will be competitive and commensurate with experience. Comprehensive benefits are provided. More information can be found on the Keys School website at Keys School is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Interested Persons Contact:

Jonathan K. Ball
Managing Associate
Carney, Sandoe & Associates
617-933-3450 (dir)
All inquiries and nominations are kept confidential

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