Chief Development Officer (SMASH)


Established in 2004, SMASH (formerly the Level Playing Field Institute) is committed to eliminating the barriers faced by underrepresented people of color in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), and fostering their untapped talent. Its signature program, also known as SMASH, is a Summer Math and Science Honors Academy that provides incoming high school students with a rigorous, multi-year, campus-based STEM enrichment program, cost-free.  In addition to academic skills and credentials, SMASH students develop critical thinking, civic and social awareness, and leadership abilities. SMASH operates in partnership with a growing number of host universities, including UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Davis, Stanford University, Morehouse College, Wayne State University, and the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. SMASH is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization operating under the auspices of the Kapor Center for Social Impact.


The Chief Development Officer (CDO) is responsible for designing, leading, and implementing SMASH’s overall philanthropic development program; for meeting annual (2018) fundraising goal of $5M from all sources; and for setting and meeting appropriately ambitious targets for growth. The CDO manages and supports the professional development of a 4-person development team. The CDO reports to the Executive Director.


  • Serve as a member of the SMASH leadership team; participate in setting organizational goals and priorities
  • Design and lead implementation of a comprehensive, growth-oriented development strategy
  • Create and manage the execution of annual development operating plans; meet annual fundraising goals across all revenue streams
  • Develop and personally manage a high-value individual portfolio
  • Position, staff and support the Executive Director to be effective in his development role
  • Manage 4 direct reports: an institutional giving officer, an individual giving officer (position vacant), an annual giving manager and an operations manager; support their effective performance and professional growth
  • Develop and manage the annual development budget
  • Work collaboratively with the program team to gain a comprehensive understanding of SMASH’s work; build effective working relationships with program leaders
  • Represent SMASH at events and otherwise externally in order to expand the organization’s network and cultivate donors


  • 12+ years’ experience in highly responsible development positions, including in entrepreneurial and growth contexts
  • Skilled strategist and accomplished fundraiser with extensive working knowledge of corporate, foundation, and individual giving (including annual, major and planned giving); development operations and prospect research; and campaigns
  • Experience building and sustaining productive donor relationships, including with high and ultra-high net worth individuals
  • Experience managing, mentoring, and growing high-performing development teams
  • Experience managing and growing efficient and effective development operations
  • Outstanding communication skills across multiple platforms, contexts and communities
  • Highly credible professional representative of, and advocate for, SMASH and Kapor Center missions, as demonstrated by personal/professional background in one or more of the following areas: youth development, education, social justice advocacy.

Personal Attributes and Characteristics

  • Thrives in a dynamic, fast-paced environment and a highly entrepreneurial culture
  • Deep and authentic commitment to SMASH and Kapor Center organizational values:

- We extend trust and care from day one.
- We operate with personal integrity at every turn.
- Our diversity is critical to our success.
- We create and pursue opportunities that further our mission.
- We appreciate and uphold our unique organizational culture.
- We prioritize working with individuals and organizations that share values similar to ours.


SMASH provides competitive compensation commensurate with experience, and an excellent benefits package including medical, dental, vision, basic life and disability insurance, 401K, paid time off, and holiday benefits. This position will be located at the Oakland, California offices of the Kapor Center.


The Kapor Center is a family of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations founded by Mitch and Freada Kapor to advance innovation and economic progress of underrepresented communities in technology and entrepreneurship. The Kapor Center aspires to close opportunity gaps along the technology talent pipeline through initiatives in education, community engagement, diversity and inclusion, research, and venture capital. All of the Kapor Center’s efforts focus on building a technology ecosystem that is diverse, inclusive and ready to solve the complex problems of tomorrow.  The Kapor Center has a staff of 65 employees and is headquartered in Oakland, California.


To apply, please submit a thoughtful cover letter and résumé at this link. Contact [email protected] with any questions.

Please do not contact SMASH or the Kapor Center directly.  Schaffer&Combs is retained by SMASH to manage the search for a Chief Development Officer.

SMASH is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants and employees shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender (including pregnancy and gender expression) identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law or ordinance.

Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified disabled applicants may participate in the application process. Please advise in writing of special needs at the time of application.

Schaffer&Combs solves problems and provides growth solutions for mission­-driven organizations.

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