Director of Development – FIGHTING BLINDNESS CANADA

Reporting to the CEO and managing a team of 12, the Director will effectively lead diverse revenue streams including fundraising events, community giving, P2P, annual giving, major gifts, digital and direct marketing while also managing a portfolio of donors in the five to six figure range. Demonstrating an openness to new ideas along with an appreciation for the entrepreneurial spirit, the Director will also function as a gatekeeper who is able to navigate and prioritize multiple priorities to keep the team on track while also building rigor and efficiencies to help us reach our aspirational revenue goals.

Posted On: January 4, 2022
Closing On: January 26, 2022

Location: Canada

Employment Type: fulltime
Level: senior
Salary Range: $130,000 to $150,000

Fighting Blindness Canada (FBC) is seeking an experienced fundraising leader with a growth mindset as our new Director, Development. An innovative generalist who is a highly skilled team leader, the new Director will motivate, develop and mobilize our event, philanthropy, and corporate staff while also working in partnership with the CEO and senior leadership team to increase our current annual revenue of $6M by 50% in the next two years.

At FBC the word “Fighting” describes our collective passion for our mission to fund essential research to combat diseases of the eye that affect over 8 million Canadians and their families. We believe we are living in an “age of miracles” and as a result we’re driven by hope and our commitment to FBC’s mission as we come together as staff, volunteers, and community members to work hard, innovate and find new ways to exceed our goals so we can fund much needed vision research. We are pleased to share that our efforts have been successful as we have increased revenue by $2M over the last two years and are excited by our potential for further growth.

Reporting to the CEO and managing a team of 12, the Director will effectively lead diverse revenue streams including fundraising events, community giving, P2P, annual giving, major gifts, digital and direct marketing while also managing a portfolio of donors in the five to six figure range. Demonstrating an openness to new ideas along with an appreciation for the entrepreneurial spirit, the Director will also function as a gatekeeper who is able to navigate and prioritize multiple priorities to keep the team on track while also building rigor and efficiencies to help us reach our aspirational revenue goals.

This is an exciting opportunity for a dynamic fundraising professional to work with a highly committed senior leadership, staff and volunteers to take FBC towards exciting new challenges, and our next stage of growth.




Fighting Blindness Canada (FBC) has been leading the fight against blindness since 1974. Beginning as the Retinitis Pigmentosa Foundation of Canada, it was created in response to parents watching their children battle incurable eye disease and not being able to do anything about it. Witnessing them face considerable challenges in life, and as parents, feeling powerless, they just had to do something to find treatments to save their loved one’s sight. They created a more hopeful future by believing in the power of ground-breaking research.

Our long-term focus on funding vision research steadily demonstrated that a discovery about one disease often reveals important insights about another. Many of the most promising and exciting vision research projects are relevant to many different eye diseases. These meaningful interconnections inspired and informed the expansion of our mission to include all blinding eye diseases. To communicate this expansion, we became Fighting Blindness Canada on April 25, 2019— Canada’s leading charitable funder of vision research.


Fighting Blindness Canada offers hope to Canadians by identifying the best, most promising research that is driving treatments and cures for blinding eye diseases, and by raising and stewarding funds to support this essential, sight-saving research.

Strikingly over 8 million Canadians are living with one of the four major blinding eye diseases (age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and cataracts), and are at risk of vision loss – this is 1 out of 5 Canadians – where FBC is working to prevent blindness. 1.2 million Canadians are living with uncorrectable vision loss that FBC is focusing research to restore their sight.

The Cost of Vision Loss and Blindness in Canada Report co-authored by FBC reveals that vision loss in Canada costs almost $33 billion annually and impacts all Canadians, including individuals, families, and governments.

Since our inception, we have invested over $40 million to support vision research and education across Canada. Over 200 research grants that have led to over 600 new discoveries in areas such as stem cell research, neuroprotective therapies, technological developments, pharmaceuticals, and gene therapies.

All of the research and educational initiatives we fund supports our goals of understanding why vision loss occurs, how it can be slowed or stopped, and how sight can be restored.

Government leadership in this area is long overdue and despite four repeated commitments there is still no national Vision Health Plan for Canada. The federal and provincial governments must ensure that the health care system can meet the growing need for eye care services including comprehensive public coverage of eye examinations to ensure early diagnosis and treatment to prevent unnecessary vision loss. is FBC and its partners’ efforts to mobilize the community to achieve a national Vision Health Plan.

This year, we connected with over 30 million Canadians to raise awareness of the importance of regular eye exams to avoid blindness and the need for ongoing research funding to support the advancement of new treatments and cures for blinding eye diseases.

2021 At a Glance

  • 1,047 fundraising event participants; Cycle for Sight Virtual; Screens off for Sight; Ride for Sight; Comedy from the Couch; Eye on the Cure
  • 401 users received support from our Health Information Line. This line provides Canadians with vision loss a way to ask questions and receive support. It can be reached at or 1.888.626.2995
  • 530 participated in the FBC Young Leaders Program. This program provided opportunities through webinars and a virtual summit for young people with vision loss to network, learn, and gain new skills.
  • 9,533 View Point webinar views, which featured leading vision researchers, clinicians, and experts from across Canada! More webinars coming in 2022!
  • 71,229 accessed information on our website, exploring valuable vision health information and the latest in research and community news.




In 2021 we held four grant competitions to fund world-class sight-saving research. These awards support researchers who are asking bold questions to help us understand why vision loss occurs and to drive the development of new treatments.


This competition provides researchers with funding of up to $200,000 to test innovative ideas and generate the data needed to apply for larger awards to expand the scope of their projects. 8 research projects are being funded from across Canada.


This new unconventional research competition raises funds for vision research and inspires Canadians by providing early career researchers the opportunity to compete head-to-head for research awards. Winners were selected by a panel of celebrity judges and an esteemed academy with an online event that took place in November 2021.


This $2.5 million program aims to develop therapeutic approaches for late-stage retinitis pigmentosa. Since 2018 we have awarded $1.75 million to four world-class researchers, Dr. Catherine Tsilfidis (Ottawa Hospital Research Institute), Dr. Philippe Monnier (Krembil Research Institute), Dr. David Gamm (University of Wisconsin, Madison) and Dr. Richard Kramer (University of California, Berkeley). In late 2021, FBC awarded $725,000 to Dr. Gamm’s innovative stem cell program that if the experiments are successful, the treatment has a pathway to over $100 million to bring the treatment to clinics.


Clinician-scientists have research training and play an essential role in developing new sight-saving treatments. FBC’s CSELA aims to strengthen the community of clinician-scientists by enabling the next generation of clinicians to incorporate research into their careers.




Strategy & Planning

  • Lead the development of the annual fundraising plan and ensure the delivery and monitoring of the plan is in alignment with strategic goals.
  • Deliver monthly and annual reporting of revenue activity and the creation of the annual revenue forecast for the budget.
  • Ensure fundraising initiatives support FBC priorities.
  • Monitor performance against approved objectives and metrics. Evaluate existing fundraising activities and develop strategies to improve revenue performance.
  • Function as a collaborative member of the senior leadership team contributing to growth across the organization.


  • Lead the development and growth of key revenue streams including annual giving, major gifts, corporate giving, events, P2P, foundation support, community giving, planned giving, e-philanthropy, door to door, telemarketing and direct mail.
  • Manage and solicit a personal portfolio of major gift prospects and donors at the five and six figure level.
  • Support the events team to deliver our signature events: Comic Vision, Eye on the Cure, Ride for Sight and Cycle for Sight.
  • Develop new programs and initiatives designed to grow and diversify revenue.
  • Work with the CEO to support Board involvement in fundraising activities and enhance engagement of other senior fundraising volunteers.
  • Develop, drive, and monitor strategies and processes to ensure effective donor cultivation and stewardship are delivered by the Development team and across the organization.
  • Identify, improve, and build infrastructure e.g., policies, processes, data management, metrics etc. to contribute to overall efficiency and to support revenue targets.
  • Provide leadership in prospect identification, assignment, and tracking and ensure best practices in moves management and prospect management are utilized by staff team.
  • Develop and manage timelines and tactics for all fundraising activities ensuring organization processes and practices are fully utilized.
  • Oversee and monitor donor communication, stewardship and recognition tactics in support of department fundraising activities.
  • Stay up to date on research and trends in fundraising and use this knowledge to enhance program development and results.

Team Leadership & Management

  • Lead, coach, and inspire a team of 12 committed fundraisers, including 4 direct reports through one-on-one supervision and overall team management
  • Develop individual and team goals and performance targets with measurable outcomes that are assessed on a regular basis.
  • Assess current workload, priorities, and resources on a going basis and establish a plan ensuring immediate priorities are addressed while longer-term strategies, plans, and actions are developed.



  • Passion for the mission of Fighting Blindness Canada.
  • Progressive leadership roles as a fundraising generalist with solid experience managing a variety of revenue streams including fundraising events, annual giving, corporate giving, grants, major gifts, planned giving, digital and direct marketing.
  • Demonstrated success leading, coaching, and motivating fundraising staff teams.
  • Proven abilities in creative pipeline development and proactive fundraising tactics.
  • Outcome-focused with an excellent ability to navigate and prioritize multiple projects and initiatives and meet deadlines.
  • Self-disciplined, and self-motivated with an entrepreneurial approach to work.
  • Excellent relationship building skills with a proven ability to build donor networks and communities of support.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced changing environment requiring flexibility and adaptability to meet deadlines and targets.
  • Proficiency with donor management systems. Experience with Raisers Edge preferred.
  • Excellent problem-solving and decision-making abilities.
  • Exceptional organizational skills with high attention to detail.
  • Excellent verbal, written, and presentation skills.
  • Strong understanding of CRA regulations.
  • CFRE designation is an asset.



KCI Search + Talent has been retained to conduct this search on behalf of Fighting Blindness Canada. For more information about this opportunity, please contact Samantha David, Associate Vice President, KCI Search + Talent by email at

All inquiries and applications will be held in strict confidence. Interested candidates should send resume and letter of interest to the email address listed above by January 26, 2022.

FBC is an equal opportunity employer and supports applicants with disabilities. Accommodations are available upon request throughout the recruitment process.

The salary range for this position is $130,000 to $150,000 including an excellent benefits package.

Please note: On-site attendance at the FBC office is guided by Toronto and Ontario Public Health recommendations. When appropriate, some level of in-office attendance will be required, but flexibility will be offered to staff on an ongoing basis.

As a national charity, FBC will consider remote work arrangements for candidates who are in major centres outside the GTA in Western and Central Canada. Candidates located outside the GTA will need to be available, when appropriate, to travel frequently to the Toronto office.

Evidence of up to date COVID-19 vaccination is a requirement of the position.