Assistant Director, Strategic Donor Communications, Donor Relations

Job Details

Job ID:

10 Brookline Place West, Brookline, MA 02445


Employment Type:
Full time

Work Location:
Remote: occasional time on campus


This position is considered remote, 0-1 days onsite at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week. DFCI guidelines state that employees must reside in New England: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island or Vermont.



The Assistant Director is a collaborative member of the Division of Philanthropy team, drafting compelling and meaningful communications to convey impact, inspire action, and relay gratitude on behalf of individuals across the Institute. The core responsibilities of the role focus on supporting Office of the Senior Vice President and Transformational Gifts & Strategic Initiatives teams in their writing needs, including proposals and pre-proposals, stewardship reports, summaries, PowerPoint decks, and all content related to transformational giving ($10M+) donors. Responsible for assisting the entire Division with reaching financial goals.

Embody Dana-Farber’s Core Values: Impact; Excellence; Compassion & Respect; and Discovery every day. Add value to the Dana-Farber community by seeking opportunities to collaborate across the Institute. Foster an ethical, positive, results-oriented culture founded on open communication. 

Dana-Farber is currently undertaking an ambitious fundraising effort to change the future of cancer research and care: The Dana-Farber Campaign. This multibillion-dollar campaign is the largest in the Institute’s history and one of the largest ever in the U.S. focused solely on cancer. Philanthropy raised through The Dana-Farber Campaign is focused on accelerating the Institute’s strategic priorities by supporting revolutionary science, extraordinary care, exceptional expertise, and essential opportunities—helping us prevent, treat, and Defy Cancer.


Resume and cover letter required with application submission. If you wish to disclose your personal pronouns, please include them within your resume and cover letter submission.

Located in Boston and the surrounding communities, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a leader in life changing breakthroughs in cancer research and patient care. We are united in our mission of conquering cancer, HIV/AIDS and related diseases. We strive to create an inclusive, diverse, and equitable environment where we provide compassionate and comprehensive care to patients of all backgrounds, and design programs to promote public health particularly among high-risk and underserved populations. We conduct groundbreaking research that advances treatment, we educate tomorrow's physician/researchers, and we work with amazing partners, including other Harvard Medical School-affiliated hospitals.



  • Serve as a strategic partner with the Director and VP of Transformational Gifts & Strategic Initiatives, with an emphasis on strategic planning, developing a suite of comprehensive stewardship materials,
  • Thoroughly research and understand all aspects pertaining to a specific portfolio of reports, which includes reading, analyzing, and interpreting press releases, scientific papers, results from clinical trials, and content from technical lectures;
  • Draft high-quality proposals to raise critical funds for priority areas; as with report writing, this work involves a high degree of independent project management, critical thinking skills, and the ability to work hand-in-hand with frontline fundraisers, faculty, and members of the executive leadership team to create a strategic vision and tone for the overall piece;
  • Work closely with colleagues to craft, edit, and review a range of materials—from talking points and email communications to reports, proposals, and more—that provide a big-picture view of the importance of philanthropy, Dana-Farber’s leadership in the field both nationally and globally, as well as other materials as needed for VIP donors and prospects;
  • Proactively facilitate and participate in meetings with faculty to strategize on content for reports, proposals, and other materials is essential
  • Juggle multiple urgent, competing priorities and collaborate closely with senior leaders across a highly matrixed environment to meet yearly key performance indicators;
  • Assume other duties as necessary.


Reports to the Director of Donor Relations with a dotted line to the Vice President of Transformational Gifts & Strategic Initiatives. Works independently and as part of a team. 



Bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years of Philanthropy and writing experience required.



  • Superb written and verbal communication skills, ability to conduct situational donor research and extract meaningful content.
  • Ability to understand oncology research, and then translate that knowledge accurately into a form that is both interesting and intelligible to the donor.
  • Experience in conducting interviews or comfort in engaging with faculty and researchers.
  • Strong organizational and time management abilities.
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple tasks.
  • Must be successful in adapting to various writing styles.
  • Strong computer skills, including proficiency in Microsoft Word and PowerPoint required, SharePoint experience preferred.





This position is considered remote, 0-1 days onsite at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week.


We’re stronger together. In the Division of Philanthropy, we believe in the power of different voices. We encourage authenticity and diversity of every individual within our community. Our collective voices – donors, volunteers, staff, and patients alike – allow us to work together towards a world without cancer. Committed to being a place of inclusivity, belonging, and change, these are our core values. 

Inclusive interview practices are a priority in the Division of Philanthropy. We incorporate an Inclusion, Diversity & Equity (ID&E) Interview Panel in all searches. In this 30-minute interview, we connect with candidates on four main ID&E competencies: empathy, collaboration, inclusivity, and compassion.

The above information on this description has been designed to indicate the general nature and level of work performed by employees within this classification.  It is not designed to contain or be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications required of employees assigned to this job.  Requirements are subject to possible modification to reasonably accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities.  This document does not create an employment contract, implied or otherwise, other than an “at will” employment relationship.


External and internal applicants, as well as position incumbents who become disabled as defined under the Americans With Disabilities Act, must be able to perform the essential job functions (as listed) either unaided or with the assistance of a reasonable accommodation to be determined by management on a case-by-case basis.


DFCI offers a competitive benefits package including generous healthcare and retirement plans, at minimum 3-weeks’ vacation time in addition to 10 paid holidays, a flexible work environment, and work/life balance.  Dana-Farber offers a variety of personal, professional, and leadership development opportunities to all members of its workforce through Institutional programming. Division of Philanthropy offers 75+ specialized professional development sessions designed for staff each year through its in-house learning program, the Center for Advancement Training.*

*All benefits subject to Institute changes


We’re hiring! Learn more about working in the Division of Philanthropy and view all open positions.


Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is an equal opportunity employer and affirms the right of every qualified applicant to receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, disability, age, ancestry, military service, protected veteran status, or other characteristics protected by law.

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