Assistant, Foundation Relations

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Job ID:

10 Brookline Place West, Brookline, MA 02445


Employment Type:
Full time

Work Location:
Full Remote: 4-5 days remote/wk


Effective Monday, September 13th, this position is considered fully remote, up to 1 day in the office at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week. DFCI guidelines state that employees must reside in the Institute supported states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Rhode Island.


The Assistant provides administrative support to a Senior Director and Director of Foundation Relations (FR) including managing daily team operations, composing original written materials, undertaking special projects, and representing the department across the Division and the Institute. 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 in the largest and most ambitious fundraising effort in the Institute’s history – The Dana-Farber Campaign | Defy Cancer. Launched publicly in May 2021, the goal of the $2 billion campaign is to defy cancer at every turn and harness new techniques and technologies to prevent, treat, and defy cancer, resulting in more lives saved, more families intact, more dreams realized. The comprehensive campaign is coordinated around four pillars that build on our strengths and will accelerate our progress – Revolutionary Science, Extraordinary Care, and Exceptional Expertise – as well as the mission critical flexible funds that will allow us to change the face of cancer forever.



Resume and cover letter required with application 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.



  • Compose original internal and external correspondence including briefings, call reports, cover letters, acknowledgments, communication about publications, and other correspondence; type, format, proofread/edit, and email/fax/mail correspondence;
  • Assist in design and production of written material such as proposals and brochures;
  • Work with FR staff, Institute staff, physicians, and fellows for collection and preparation of proposal components (e.g., budgets, attachments, supporting documents);
  • Steward FR proposals and correspondence through approval and signature process, including travel to and from Institute for signature pick-up and delivery, and act as liaison to office of President and CEO and principal investigators;
  • Update and maintain acknowledgment log to ensure timely recognition of gifts/grants;
  • Perform data entry in client management software, including donor contacts and information about gifts/pledges, visits, and communication; maintain central files;
  • Utilize prospect management tracking system and reports due database to manage team interactions with faculty and donors on a regular basis to offer opportunity to connect and build relationships;
  • Maintain accurate metrics for the Senior Director and Director to easily incorporate into team-wide goals and the greater goals of the Division;
  • Identify and track funding opportunities and prepare written summaries for circulation; compile appropriate opportunities as requested into spreadsheets for meetings with faculty and fellows;
  • Research pledge histories and grant requirements for donor correspondence as assigned;
  • Schedule meetings and donor visits, including reserving space and parking, ordering food, overseeing set-up and operation of audio/visual equipment, and staffing meetings;
  • Copy and scan materials, email/fax, answer phones, facilitate expense reimbursements, etc.;
  • Interact with Institute senior staff, physicians, volunteers, sponsors, donors, and prospects on highly confidential matters;
  • Respond to calls and visits from donors, prospective donors, volunteers, and sponsors; determine priority of the situation; suggest response and refer to/inform supervisor(s) as appropriate;
  • Assist with or manage special projects, such as the coordination of FR donor stories in the Impact donor newsletter, as assigned;
  • Coordinate across all teams to advance Division-wide financial and administrative goals.


Reports to a Senior Director and Director of Foundation Relations. This position does not have any supervisory responsibility and will seek major decision-making authority from direct supervisors. However, independent decision-making on day-to-day tasks, initiative, and good judgment are required for dealing with Institute donors, trustees, and senior staff involving confidential information.



Associate’s degree and/or administrative training degree required. A minimum of 0-2 years of administrative experience is necessary and previous Philanthropy experience is preferred.



Excellent written and verbal communications skills are necessary with a strong orientation to customer service. Superior organizational skills and ability to manage a variety of projects at once are key. Directed and self-starting attitude with the ability to work independently as well as part of a team and work with a variety of personalities. Solid computer skills and competency in Microsoft Office Suite products is absolutely necessary. High degree of discretion must always be exercised.

This position will evaluate current programs and create and execute approved plans to expand and diversify the donors and participants for the events assigned in order to broaden our donor base and create even more inclusive events. Experience with diverse donors is a plus.




Remote work (up to one day in the office at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline MA each week). Some overtime may be required.


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. 

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 9 paid holidays, a flexible work environment, and work/life balance. We also provide an array of professional development opportunities.*

*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 groups as protected by law.

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