Assistant, Foundation Relations

Job Details

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Job ID:

10 Brookline Place West, Brookline, MA 02445


Employment Type:
Full time

Work Location:
Full Remote: Occasional time on campus


This position is considered remote, up to 1 day in the office at 10 Brookline Place, Brookline, MA each week. DFCI guidelines state that employees must reside in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Rhode Island.



The Assistant provides administrative support to one Senior Director and one Director II 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 pursuing an ambitious, multi-year fundraising effort to change the future of cancer research and care: The Dana-Farber Campaign. This $2 billion 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 will accelerate 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.

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, acknowledgment letters, communication about publications, and other correspondence; type, format, proofread/edit, and email /mail correspondence;
  • Assist in the production of written material, such as funding proposals and narrative reports;
  • Work with FR staff, Institute staff, physicians, and fellows for collection and preparation of proposal components, e.g. budgets, proposal attachments, supporting documents, etc.;
  • Steward FR proposals and correspondence through approval and signature process and sometimes act as liaison to office of President and CEO and principal investigators;
  • Upload and maintain digital copies of acknowledgement letters and gift processing materials (weekly mail scans, gift deposit transmittal forms, and pledge/grant transmittal forms).
  • Perform data entry in fundraising system, including donor contacts and information about gifts/pledges, visits and communication
  • Utilize prospect management tracking system and reports due database to manage team interactions with donors on a regular basis;
  • Identify and track funding opportunities and prepare written summaries for circulation; compile appropriate opportunities as requested into spreadsheets for meetings with faculty and postdoctoral fellows;
  • Research pledge histories and grant requirements for donor correspondence as assigned;
  • Schedule meetings, stewardship events, and donor visits and help to successfully execute these events by completing various tasks, including reserving space and parking, ordering food, overseeing set-up and operation of audio/visual equipment, and staffing the meetings/events;
  • Copy and scan materials, email, answer phones, facilitate 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 as appropriate;
  • Assist with or manage special projects, such as the proactive monitoring of FR Facebook page and the drafting of comments in response to FR donors’ social media posts, as assigned;
  • Coordinate across internal teams to advance Division-wide financial and administrative goals.


Reports to one Senior Director and one Director II of FR. 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. As this level position is often considered a “base” for someone pursuing a Philanthropy career, a Bachelor’s degree is preferred. A minimum of 0-2 years of administrative experience is necessary and previous Philanthropy experience is preferred.



Excellent written and verbal communication 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 confidentiality 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.





Up to 1 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 10 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.

At Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, we work every day to create an innovative, caring, and inclusive environment where every patient, family, and staff member feels they belong.  As relentless as we are in our mission to reduce the burden of cancer for all, we are equally committed to diversifying our faculty and staff.  Cancer knows no boundaries and when it comes to hiring the most dedicated and diverse professionals, neither do we. If working in this kind of organization inspires you, we encourage you to apply.

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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