Chicago Artists Coalition helps people connect with opportunities including calls for artists, jobs, grants, and art advising


Theater ,
submitted by
Scott Merchant

Development Manager

CircEsteem’s mission is to unite youth across all backgrounds and identities by fostering self-esteem and mutual respect through the practice and performance of circus arts. CircEsteem creates the social conditions for youth to find commonalities in their resilience and their commitment to reimagining the role youth play in shaping the future of Chicago.


This position reports to and is accountable to the Executive Director of CircEsteem and will be expected to work closely with the Community Outreach Director, the Program Director, and the Office Manager. The Development Manager must be able to work in a fast-paced and multi-tasked environment with confidence and efficiency.

This position will have a regular work week of Monday through Friday, approximately 9am – 5pm. Occasional weekend and evening special events occur throughout the year, which are also mandatory for all staff to support and attend.

Development Strategy

  • In coordination with the Executive Director, support the creation of a strategic plan to raise funds for the organization, including an annual development plan which increases brand awareness and revenue (Individual Donors, Grants, Fundraising Event Revenue, and Corporate Support).

Fundraising and Grants

  • Secure financial support from individuals, foundations and corporations through coordinated efforts involving the Executive Director and the Grant Writer
  • Support the cultivation of individual donors under the supervision of the Executive Director
  • Research and identify potential funding opportunities
  • Organize and play a lead role in all organization fundraising events with community partners, CE staff and Board of Directors

Donor Management and Administration

  • Manage the implementation of Neon CRM and oversee staff responsible for data entry and gift processing
  • Developing and tracking proposals and reports for all foundation and corporate fundraising
  • Develop print marketing collateral related to fundraising in collaboration with advertising department
  • Lead the implementation of donor recognition and stewardship activities.


  • Ability to organize, motivate and lead volunteers to success through ad hoc event committees.
  • Experience seeking out and cultivating relationships that lead to increased organizational funding.
  • Previous success meeting organizational fundraising goals, through diverse funding streams.
  • Grant writing experience is preferred.
  • Candidates should have experience securing large individual gifts (of at least $5,000) and donations/sponsorships via events.
  • Experience or willingness to learn about annual giving, planned giving.
  • Provide friendly, donor-centered customer service and represent the agency and our mission in a professional and positive manner.


  • Demonstrated excellence in organizational, managerial, and communication skills
  • Understanding programs and program delivery
  • Keeps up with trends and best practices in the field
  • Thorough understanding of Philanthropy in Chicago
  • Preferable: Existing relationships with foundations
  • Grant writing experience
  • Familiarity with Donor Management Software and Microsoft Office suite


The starting salary range for this position is $55,000 - $60,000 per year. CircEsteem offers a generous benefit allowance of 12% of each employee’s salary. Benefit allowance can be used for health insurance premiums (including dental) and/or 403b Retirement contributions.

CircEsteem offers 30 paid days off each year (15 PTO, 5 Sick, 10 Holidays). This position is eligible for Flex Leave.

Desired Start Date: January 1, 2022

To apply, please send a Letter of Interest and Resume (CV) to

Contact Info:
Jose Velarde
Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago