The Akilah Foundation, a US 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is committed to expanding access to high-quality education worldwide by supporting effective programs and learning environments. Since its inception, the Akilah Foundation has supported the Akilah Institute, a pioneer of innovative educational products for the African market.
The Akilah Institute prepares students to solve the world’s most pressing challenges through a lens of opportunity and sustainability. Since 2010, the Institute has built a reputation for delivering high-quality, market-relevant education for women at its campus in Rwanda. Akilah’s unique model leverages technology, competency-based education, and personalized learning to offer a radically different academic experience that puts graduates on the fast track to success. Ninety percent of Akilah alumnae are employed within six months of graduation, and they earn, on average, 12x Rwanda’s national median income.
Akilah opened its doors nearly a decade ago. Now the Institute is scaling its proven model globally by increasing enrollment and opening new campuses.
Akilah’s academic pillars (21st-century skills, personalized learning, innovation, ethical leadership, and sustainability) will serve as its guiding light during this phase of rapid expansion. They define all of the Institute's programs. Akilah is committed to delivering a transformative learning experience that equips students with the knowledge and tools to balance vibrant economies with a healthy environment to create a future of abundance for all.
The Akilah Foundation provides equal employment opportunities to all qualified individuals without regard to race, creed, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, non-disqualifying physical or mental handicap or disability, or any other class protected by law.
The Director of Major Gifts will lead our major giving efforts as we dramatically scale our education model throughout Africa and Asia. Our strategic goals call for aggressive growth while maintaining a deep focus on excellence. This includes expanding our impact, building a new campus in Rwanda, and developing a broader and stronger base of annual support as part of our upcoming decennial campaign.
As the Director of Major Gifts, you will collaborate with our Co-Founder and CEO, our President, and our development team to drive our major giving strategy and implement a successful program. You will leverage our existing donor base of influential individuals and family foundations, and you will identify and cultivate new funding relationships in order to meet our ambitious goals of enhanced visibility and financial stability.
Design and Direct the Major Gifts Strategy for the Akilah Foundation
Develop and implement a strategic and comprehensive major gifts plan with measurable goals that includes:
Metrics for analyzing and monitoring progress
Roles of the CEO, President, Board, and other volunteers in the implementation of the plan
Calendars for annual giving, special events, donor stewardship, and marketing collateral
A written plan for identifying, qualifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding donors capable of giving $10,000 and more over time
Set and achieve annual revenue goals, in close collaboration with the Chief Development Officer; monitor and report on progress against goals, and analyze trends in order to make adjustments throughout the year
Drive and Steward Major Gifts
Personally manage a portfolio of 50-100 donors, including individuals and/or foundations
Oversee the operations of our major gifts and individual giving strategy, including prospecting, solicitation, stewardship, and moves management
Identify new networks of supporters to expand and diversify our funding base
Engage with our Community
Network and enlist the support of individuals, foundations, and corporations, building relationships with current and future donors
Represent the organization at donor meetings, selected conferences, and networking events
As the incoming Director of Major Gifts, you will possess many, though perhaps not all, of the following characteristics and qualifications:
You bring at least seven years of professional experience with a strong track record of success in fundraising, preferably with experience in fundraising for international organizations and/or higher education. You have a demonstrated ability to raise a minimum of $1M annually.
You are skilled at moving quickly, prioritizing critical tasks with grace and tenacious follow-up in a fast-paced startup environment. You push to get access to the resources you need and are creative in finding ways to remove blocks.
You are exceptionally motivated by the idea of building a global community of lifelong learners, and you are ready to do whatever it takes to achieve ambitious goals.
You are an enthusiastic proponent and impeccable user of all systems available to you to continually drive improvements in operational efficiency.
You are skilled at cross-functional collaboration and execution and you work effectively with colleagues across different locations, cultures, and time zones.
You possess a high level of emotional intelligence and the ability to earn the trust of your team, peers, the board, donors, and other key partners, deepening the ties needed to accomplish fundraising goals.
You possess a talent for delivering persuasive and compelling presentations about our work and expansion.
You approach your work with a commitment to building a positive organizational culture that values continuous learning, excellence, transparency, honest feedback, perseverance, and sense of humor.
The Akilah Foundation offers a competitive salary and benefits, commensurate with experience and skills.
The Director of Major Gifts will be required to travel within the US and internationally (Africa and Asia) for business development and donor/investor prospecting. The expected travel commitment is five days/month on average, with some seasonal variations and longer trips when traveling internationally
The Akilah Foundation has engaged Koya Leadership Partners to help in this hire. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume, addressed to Pam Williams, here.
ABOUT KOYA LEADERSHIP PARTNERS
Koya Leadership Partners is a national retained executive search and human capital consulting firm that works exclusively with mission-driven organizations, institutions of higher education and social enterprises. We deliver measurable results, finding exceptionally talented people who truly fit the unique culture of our client organizations and ensuring that organizations have the resources and strategies to support them. For more information, visit www.koyapartners.com.