Job Post: Director, Advocacy and Capacity Building - Fairfield County's Community Foundation

Thursday, July 11, 2019


NORWALK, CT - Fairfield County's Community Foundation is seeking a Director, Advocacy and Capacity Building to direct the Foundation’s advocacy, public policy and capacitybuilding initiatives, including the Center for Nonprofit Excellence.


Fairfield County’s Community Foundation (FCCF) promotes philanthropy as a means to create change in Fairfield County, focusing on innovative and collaborative solutions to critical issues impacting the community.

FCCF is the third largest community foundation in Connecticut with assets of approximately $224 million. FCCF manages 600 charitable funds and raises $20 million annually from diverse donors to support a variety of charitable interests. Contributions can be made for the general benefit of the community or designated to a specific purpose, cause or nonprofit organization.

The Position
The Director of Advocacy & Capacity Building will play a key role in our fast paced, dynamic organization. This position will direct the Foundation’s advocacy, public policy and capacitybuilding initiatives, including the Center for Nonprofit Excellence, one of the Foundation’s five strategic priorities. The Director will lead a staff of two in strengthening the capacity of nonprofits and communities to close the opportunity gap. The Director will manage his/her staff to address the advocacy and technical needs of the Foundation’s grantees and beneficiaries through collaboration with program officers in each of four key strategic areas: immigrant support, education and youth development, economic opportunity, and women & girls. The position reports to the VP of Community Impact.

Advocacy and Public Policy

  • Research, track and analyze local, state and federal policies that are relevant to the Foundation’s community impact work
  • Co-develop and maintain an explicit policy agenda for the Foundation in partnership with the VP of Community Impact, Community Impact staff and the Community ImpactCommittee, including articulating and drafting policy positions using objective data
  • Update organizational policies and procedures for advocacy in partnership with the VP of Community Impact, President & CEO and Board of Directors as necessary
  • Own the Foundation’s advocacy decision-making tool and lead staff in assessing the opportunities and risks of action or inaction on advocacy issues
  • Design and deploy new advocacy strategies and initiatives to advance the Foundation’s impact agenda
  • Make funding recommendations to program officers for organizations working to advance a shared policy agenda
  • Build and maintain relationships with local and state elected officials
  • Manage and co-design various civic engagement initiatives, including GOTV and community education efforts
  • Collaborate with funders, nonprofit partners and other stakeholders that share the Foundation’s advocacy agenda to influence policies affecting target populations (immigrants, youth and young adults, and women & girls), including supporting the
  • President & CEO and VP of Community Impact in advancing the CT Community Foundations’ Urban Opportunity Agenda
  • Develop metrics to evaluate the impact of the Foundation’s advocacy and community engagement work
  • Act as staff liaison to the Foundation’s Advocacy Task Force

Capacity Building

  • Develop and implement a research and analysis system for continuously surfacing the capacity-building needs of aligned grantees in partnership with the CNE Manager
  • Co-develop metrics to evaluate the impact of the Center for Nonprofit Excellence with the CNE Manager
  • Recommend and implement Community Impact Department best practices in conjunction with the VP of Community Impact
  • Act as a bridge-builder and team leader

Staff Management

  • Recruit, develop and retain a high-performing staff to meet the evolving advocacy and capacity-building needs of the Foundation
  • Supervise CNE Manager in providing technical assistance to nonprofits, providing direction on execution of the CNE Strategic Plan
  • Support the CNE Manager in serving as a liason to the CNE Advisory Council
  • Supervise Manager of Community Capacity Building in designing and executing a community outreach strategy to gather and disseminate community knowledge and amplify community members’ voices in the Foundation’s policy and program decisions
  • Champion excellence, collaboration and accountability
  • Prioritize projects, define metrics and measure results

External Relations

  • Represent FCCF at meetings of nonprofit organizations, other funders and community leaders
  • Build working knowledge and professional relationships to identify critical local and regional issues and trends in nonprofit advocacy and capacity building
  • Assist Marketing Team with preparation of Community Foundation communications materials, such as the Annual Report, newsletters, web site, and donor reports


  • Experience managing high-performing staff and teams, ideally in a cross-functional role and demonstrated ability to influence, inspire and motivate
  • Experience in advocacy and/or public policy, ideally in one or more of the following areas: education, economic opportunity, affordable housing, immigrant support, or women & girls issues
  • Experience working in or closely with local, state or federal government, particularly in the area of policy, strongly preferred
  • Established relationships with state elected officials and/or elected officials in Fairfield County’s largest cities strongly preferred
  • Excellent networking and relationship-management skills, including experience managing complex internal and external relationships with a variety of constituencies (e.g. Board of Directors, Advisory Boards, government representatives, project partners, donors, etc.)
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and lead initiatives, organize, prioritize and multitask
  • Excellent analytical, written and verbal communication skills
  • Creative, strategic mindset with the ability to implement tactically
  • Ability to be flexible and work comfortably in a fast-paced, changing and collaborative environment
  • Ability to attend frequent community and legislative events, including early morning, evening and occasional weekend events throughout Fairfield, Hartford and New Haven counties
  • Knowledge of methods of performance evaluation preferred
  • Knowledge of Fairfield County NPOs, regional issues and communities preferred
  • Commitment to the Foundation’s values of diversity, equity, inclusion, collaboration and integrity
  • Proficiency in MS Office – specifically Word, PowerPoint and Excel
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Master’s degree or equivalent work/life experience

To Apply

Please send your resume to

Fairfield County’s Community Foundation respects diversity and accordingly is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate against employees or applicants because of race, color, religious creed, national origin, citizenship status, ancestry, age, disability or handicap, present or past history of mental disorder, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, gender identity or expression, veteran status, genetic information, or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state or local laws. We are dedicated to ensuring the fulfillment of this policy with respect to the recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, and benefits of applicants and employees.

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