Since 1991, the Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC) has worked around the world to help communities, cities, industry, and NGOs accomplish their environmental, economic, and social goals.

WHY this role is world-changing…

At the Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC), we believe that climate change and social inequity are the greatest threats facing our world. If we fail to address both – and urgently – we will never realize our vision of a peaceful and healthy planet for humanity. The impacts of climate change are disproportionately harming people of color, marginalized groups, and low-wealth communities by every measure from loss of life to loss of property, jobs, and health. In many of the hardest hit areas, these impacts are already eroding communities, propelling mass migrations, and inflaming conflicts. Effective solutions must center around these communities or risk causing more harm than good. Your leadership and expertise will be essential to successfully addressing these interwoven crises.

For ISC, strong communities are the key to a better future. Across the world, there are businesses, government agencies, nonprofits, advocacy groups, factory managers, and individuals who are intent on changing things for the better. ISC’s role is to amplify these voices and equip them with the tools, networks, influence, and resources they need to succeed. We match local knowledge with international best practices to accelerate implementation and create locally-driven, lasting, and equitable solutions. Our partners are then better prepared to confront challenges and advance their resilience and sustainability goals.

We currently work in the United States and Asia, focusing on transforming the places with the biggest contributions to – and impacts from – climate change. ISC uses training, technical assistance, peer-to-peer learning, and demonstration projects to help local people and institutions address immediate challenges and leverage opportunities – and then build those pragmatic solutions into replicable, scalable national and international models. At the heart of the organization’s approach is authentic engagement with all stakeholders to facilitate equitable community transformation.

We are seeking a Vice President of Development and Communications who shares this vision and can help ISC unleash the power of people around the world to create resilient, sustainable communities.

 HOW you can shape a better future…

The Vice President of Development and Communications (the VP) will play a key strategic role, guiding the organization as we tackle the climate and inequity crises head-on. As a vital leader in advancing ISC’s mission and strategic direction, the VP will report directly to the President, serve on ISC’s management team, and coordinate closely with the International and U.S. Program teams.

The VP’s primary responsibility will be to enhance current and generate new programmatic and unrestricted funding. You will oversee and support the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individual, government, corporate, and foundation donors, and drive efforts to broaden the donor base and revenue streams. You will have the opportunity to help design programming, craft campaigns, forge meaningful alliances, and interact with major influencers in the field.

You will be the primary architect of ISC’s growth strategy. Given the increasing urgency of the climate crisis, the Board of Directors has decided to double the size of the organization to increase its impact. The VP will shepherd this bold vision in partnership with the President, Board, and senior staff. You will be responsible for ensuring that the organization is well positioned in a rapidly evolving and competitive environment, building staff and strategies rooted in a knowledge of fundraising and business development best practices as well as best-in-class systems and processes.

As a member of ISC’s Management Team, the VP will have overall responsibility for leading and supporting ISC’s development and communications strategy, operations, and staff. In addition to crafting and implementing a bold development plan, you will also work closely with the Communications Director to implement ISC’s external branding, communications, messaging, and outreach strategies to help increase our profile and connect with donors. Further, the VP will set goals, monitor work, and evaluate results to ensure that departmental and organizational objectives are met and are in line with the needs and mission of the organization.

As a chief fundraiser for the organization, you may have times of rigorous travel, meeting with highly dispersed funders, both current and prospective. At the same time, you will maintain the role of coach, mentor, and leader of the development and communications staff. Even with this demanding schedule, the VP, like all ISC employees, is encouraged to practice a healthy work-life balance. We strive to give you – like our community partners – the tools you need to be resilient and achieve lasting change in the world.

 WHO we’re looking for…

In this search for a visionary leader, ISC has chosen to prioritize skills over exact credentials. We are also inviting applicants with unconventional backgrounds to apply if you sense that there is a fit. You might be our next VP of Development and Communications if: 

  • You share our passion for addressing both climate change and social injustice.
  • You have executive-level experience.
  • You have a proven track record working in fundraising and/or in sales and marketing and have extensive experience selling to a variety of customers: private foundations, corporations, governments, and major donors, preferably on a national or international scale.
  • Preferably you have work experience and donor contacts in several of the following sectors: clean energy, climate adaptation & resilience, equity & inclusion, environmental health, sustainable manufacturing, community development, and climate justice.
  • You are a dynamic individual with excellent written and oral communication and influencing skills, and considerable experience in writing and presenting information to a variety of audiences.
  • You have a demonstrated ability to use data to set fundraising strategy and priorities, measure outcomes, and drive exceptional performance.

ISC is committed to fostering equity and inclusion in both our workplace and the communities we serve, so it is essential that

  • You are skilled at building relationships among and working effectively with diverse groups, and preferably have demonstrated experience serving historically marginalized communities, neighborhoods, and populations.

So please join us and help more communities around the world address their environmental, economic, and social challenges and build a better future shaped and shared by all.

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For consideration, interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume or CV. Your cover letter should address your experience and qualifications for the position. Please send materials to: execsearch@nonprofithr.com ATTN: “ISC VP of Development and Communications Search” in the subject line. Electronic submissions are highly preferred. Interested individuals are encouraged to apply immediately. Please visit: www.sustain.org for more information about the organization. To obtain further details about this opportunity, contact Myra T. Briggs, Executive Search Practice Leader at Nonprofit HR at mbriggs@nonprofithr.com.