Head of Development and Partnerships

Iridescent - San Francisco, CA - Full time


Reporting to the CEO and founder, the Head of Development serves as a key leadership team member and an active participant in making strategic and tactical decisions affecting Iridescent. In partnership with the CEO, this position is responsible for all fundraising, development activities and collaborative partnerships (as it relates to fundraising or scaling growth for impact) and sales related to the earned income model. The successful candidate will help forge new relationships to build Iridescent’s visibility, impact, and financial resources. The Head of Development also will design and implement a comprehensive plan for developing key external alliances by cultivating corporate, foundation and individual philanthropic support as well as expanding the new earned income model with educators.

The Head of Development will have primary responsibility for establishing and implementing the infrastructure needed to grow revenue through earned income opportunities, in addition to continuing to the organization’s relationships with corporations and foundations.

S/he will expand and diversify Iridescent’s donor base/pipeline and work closely with the other senior leadership team members and development staff to secure funding for new initiatives related to Iridescent’s flagship programs Technovation and Curiosity Machine. In addition, the Head of Development will work closely with the board of directors to support them in a more active fundraising role.

It is expected that the amount raised by Iridescent will double over the next two years as the Head of Development systematically and effectively strengthens the organization's overall fundraising capacity.


●Support and partner with the CEO and senior leadership team on all major fundraising initiatives, with a focus on the earned income model of “Membership”

●Collaborate with the Chief Operating Officer (COO) and senior leaders of Curiosity Machine, Technovation and Marketing teams to develop and implement Iridescent’s revenue strategy

●Actively work with the CEO and senior staff to develop and implement a comprehensive development strategy to include corporate, foundation, government grants, etc.

●Have primary responsibility for development and execution of all proposals; write and archive all proposals with a long-term relationship-management approach

●Oversee research funding sources and trends, with foresight, to help position Iridescent ahead of major funding changes or trends

●Monitor all donor information; work with Assessment team to provide and present statistical analysis to board, senior leaders and partners

●Develop and implement a stewardship program aimed at cultivating deeper ties with sponsors, donors and partners

●Monitor and report regularly on the progress of the development program

●Identify, develop, and mentor the development team with positive leadership


●10-plus years of professional experience in a nonprofit organization, particularly in the education work with young people; demonstrated success in a development function (managing and forging relationships with multiple sponsor, foundation and donor sources)

●Excels in earned income sales, business development, goal-setting and achievement of those goals

●Demonstrated successful track record and experience of having expanded and cultivated existing funding relationships over time

●Excellent communication skills, both written and oral; ability to influence and engage a wide range of donors and build long-term relationships

●Strong organizational and time management skills

●Flexible and adaptable style in an entrepreneurial environment; a leader who can positively impact both strategic and tactical fundraising initiatives

●Ability to work both independently without close oversight, but also a collaborative team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels of seniority within and outside Iridescent

●High energy, passion and commitment for Iridescent’s mission to build self-efficacy of young people with positive societal impact. We are looking for a committed leader and team member for the organization.

●Ability to construct, articulate, and implement annual strategic development plan

●Inspires external and internal audiences and has a customer focus

●A professional and resourceful style; ability to take initiative, and to manage multiple tasks and projects at a time. Enjoys team success and knows how to make our important work fun for teammates.

●Bachelor's degree required, Master's preferred

●Must be legally able to work in the U.S.


Thank you for your genuine interest in Iridescent. We have a big vision for the impact we are making for young people in underserved communities. To apply, please:

●Send both your cover letter AND resume to recruiting@iridescentlearning.org.

●Describe in no more than 500 words, how you would approach a $1Million fundraising target over the next 12 months through selling Curiosity Machine memberships to school districts?

Apply Now

Experience Level

11 or more years


About Iridescent

Iridescent is a science, engineering and technology education nonprofit organization that empowers underrepresented children, especially girls, to become learners, innovators and leaders. Since 2006, more than 60,000 children, parents, mentors, and educators have participated in its two global programs - Technovation, the world’s largest global tech entrepreneurship competition, and Curiosity Machine, a unique, open-ended, project-based learning program that inspires students, families, and teachers to solve science and engineering problems together. Iridescent has proudly trained more than 3,500 engineers and scientists to develop design challenges and/or mentor students and families, and received the prestigious 2015 Excellence in Mentoring award, a US2020 White House Initiative. For more information, please visit www.iridescentlearning.org.

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