Vice President of Development

POSITION:                       Vice President of Development (VPD)

REPORTS TO:                  CEO

STATUS:                            Exempt

Application Deadline:      Open until filled


LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, headquartered in downtown San Francisco, is looking for a full-time Vice President of Development to fill a key role in our  120-year-old organization. The  VP of Development has overall responsibility for agency fundraising from individuals, corporations, foundations, and government sources.

This role will provide resources for dozens of blindness programs spanning the life cycle from infants to seniors. The Development Department supports programs ranging from blindness skills training, youth mentorship, employment, information access, advocacy, adaptive products, social enterprises, and a renowned camp and retreat in Napa. Our current operating budget is in the range of $20 million.

The VP of Development will serve on the LightHouse’s Executive Leadership Team and report to the CEO. They will lead a seven-person Development department and work particularly closely with LightHouse’s Communications and outreach teams.

The VP of Development has overall responsibility for general agency fundraising, planned giving, and a new capital campaign for our Enchanted Hills camp. In conjunction with the Communications department, the VP of Development creates external marketing and jointly develops agency brand standards.


Education or equivalent

College graduate. (graduate degrees in communication, marketing, or fundraising a plus)


The LightHouse welcomes nontraditional applicants and applicants with diverse backgrounds and experience. 

The LightHouse values a workforce with experience working in environments with a disability-positive, anti-ableist, and anti-racist philosophy. Experience working with people who are blind or have other disabilities is a plus. 

This role requires a minimum of five years of  experience in comprehensive fundraising program execution, including:

  • Experience in developing and expanding agency fundraising plans;
  • Experience in developing and leading a significant capital campaign;
  • Stewardship of major donors;
  • Creation, execution, and expansion of planned giving programs;
  • Demonstrated experience in solicitation and management of significant institutional and corporate grants;
  • Supervision of multiple staff.

The VP must have compelling writing and editing skills and be able to write quickly and to multiple deadlines. We value demonstrated ability to write strong narratives that are affecting and engaging. Basic copyediting and production-ready proofing is a must.  

Demonstrated expertise in Microsoft Word, Outlook, fundraising databases, and multiple channels of social media.  Experience with WordPress and Raiser’s Edge a plus.

This position is best filled with a strong, internally motivated self-starter with a high degree of organization. The role will require a dedicated, diplomatic, strategic, and passionate individual. And one who sees the value of having fun along the way. 

The successful VP will have enthusiasm for LightHouse services and the transformative effect they have on the lives of  people who are blind or have low vision.


In conjunction with outside consultants and the Capital Campaign Director, lead the Development team in the implementation and completion of a $13 million capital campaign for the expansion and reimagination of Enchanted Hills Camp.

Initiate, continue, and deepen relationships with key donors as part of a structured moves management calendar, with contemporaneous donor data incorporated into Raiser’s Edge NXT. 

Overall responsibility to lead a team to develop a comprehensive plan to segment and maintain LightHouse donor and other databases by significant characteristics.

Responsible for developing and implementing systems which trap potential donor names and contact information from all facets of LightHouse operations and incorporate them into our central Raiser’s Edge NXT system.

Oversee writing of the agency Annual Report, seasonal fundraising appeals, special-purpose event communications and development content for LightHouse Weekly.

Participate in the Holman Prize team, providing corporate and individual support for an ongoing world prize for blind ambition.


  • Manage individual and corporate giving through on-line and traditional means, including appeals, sponsorships, moves management, stewardship, and reporting.
  • Develops warm, ongoing, and structured relationships with key donors and institutions including face-to-face meetings, small events, and repeated personal touches. Facilitates donor relationships with the CEO and key LightHouse executives.
  • Oversee grant management to maximize private and public (“contract”) grant funding, including development of proposals, timely and accurate narratives, pre-and post-surveys, and required financial reporting.
  • Manage LightHouse’s Legacy Society and publicize multiple tax-friendly ways to obtain planned giving donations, including CRT’s, donor-advised funds, gift annuities, in-kind donations, and more.
    • Manage development events hosted by LightHouse or third parties.
    • Develop innovative and compelling materials, both printed and electronic, and on social media.
  • Originate and implement a strategy of frequent donor touches to increase engagement through social media and storytelling.
  • Serve as primary staff coordinator of Board fundraising initiatives. Works with directors individually and as a group to stay active in agency fundraising.
  • Develop and oversee department budget. Communicate regularly with the finance department on budget issues, trends, and analyses.
  • As part of LightHouse’s Executive Leadership team, collaborates with all vice-presidents on agency goals, initiatives, and help guide long-term strategic priorities.

Other Duties: Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee as these may change at any time with or without notice.


  • Ability to safely and properly use common office equipment.
  • Ability to sit at a desk and perform computer-intensive work for long periods of time; operate standard office equipment and basic AV systems for screen and audio presentations.
  • The ability to work at offsite locations, including visits to key donors, foundations, corporate partners, and fundraising events, including occasional overnight stays at Enchanted Hills Camp.


LightHouse is an equal opportunity employer. LightHouse policy and the law prohibit discrimination and harassment based on an individual’s race, ancestry, religion or religious creed (including religious dress and grooming practices), color, age (40 and over), sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, national origin (including language use restrictions), marital status, medical condition (including cancer and genetic characteristics), physical or mental disability (including HIV and AIDS), military or veteran status, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions, denial of Family and Medical Care leave, height and weight, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local laws, regulations, or ordinances. Our policy and the law prohibit co-workers, third parties, supervisors, and managers from engaging in such conduct.

LightHouse personnel are employed on an at-will basis. Employment at-will means that the employment relationship may be terminated, with or without cause and with or without advance notice at any time by the employee or the Agency.

We strive to maintain a scent-free environment and a drug-free workplace. Employees are expected to behave in accordance with these objectives.

All employees at LightHouse are hired for an indefinite and unspecified duration and consequently, no employee is guaranteed employment for a specified length of time. Employment is at the mutual consent of the employee and LightHouse. Accordingly, either the employee or LightHouse can terminate the employment relationship at any time, with or without cause (“employment at will”).


After reviewing the complete Job Description located at our website at:, please complete an application as well as a cover letter and résumé as word processing document attachments, (no PDFs please).

Please submit  all materials to Mario Burton, LightHouse Director of People and Culture at . Please include the job title in the subject line. We will not consider videos or hyperlinks to online profiles. Due to time constraints we will only respond to complete submissions. Thanks for your understanding.