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Staff Positions

Development Director – OPEN


Voices for Illinois Children has an immediate, full-time opening for a Development Director. The position requires a seasoned development professional who has the experience and vision to maximize both current funding relationships and new opportunities for support.

Voices is a highly respected nonprofit, nonpartisan, statewide policy and advocacy organization that works on behalf of Illinois children and their families to support their optimum learning and development. We work across all issue areas – education, health and human services, family economic security and state and federal fiscal integrity – to improve the lives of children of all ages. Voices embraces a “whole child” approach in policy and advocacy work, encompassing all of children’s needs – from cognitive and physical to social and emotional.

Major Responsibilities

Working with the President and Resource Development Committee, the Development Director plans and executes an annual strategy to achieve established fundraising goals and monitors the effectiveness of these efforts. The Development Director is responsible for all fundraising activities including corporate and foundation relations, special events, major / planned gifts, stewardship, direct marketing and other individual giving opportunities.

  • Maintains strong relationships with donors, prospects, the philanthropic community, and other relevant constituency groups.
  • Implements the grants program, major gifts and other special fundraising campaigns concurrent with raising the funds required to meet annual operating needs.
  • Creates, in collaboration with the Communications Team and other staff, an effective development communications program.
  • Oversees the maintenance of donor records, gift acknowledgements, and upkeep of donor information management systems as needed.
  • Plans and carries out the annual benefit.
  • Manages data entry for all revenues using the Raiser’s Edge system.
  • Maintains accurate financial records.
  • Serves as staff liaison to the Resource Development, Nominating and Board Governance and Finance Committees.
  • Serves as a member of the staff Finance Team. Prepares budgets for annual contributed income, regular income projection updates, and other revenue reports and analysis as needed.
  • Plays an integral role on the staff Management Team that guides the organization, continually advancing the role and importance of philanthropy within the organizational culture.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Preferred Education & Experience

The Development Director will have a proven and measurable history of fundraising success including strong board relations, leadership gifts from individuals, corporations and foundations as well as cost-effective and successful special events.

The qualified candidate will exhibit:

  • 7 or more years of progressively responsible and successful experience in fund development.
  • Undergraduate degree required; advanced degree and/or CFRE preferred.
  • Demonstrated passion for children’s issues and understanding of advocacy.
  • Previous service as Director strongly preferred; experience managing several development functions within a larger organization will be considered.
  • Excellent track record in getting work done through teams and volunteer committees.
  • Outstanding written and verbal communication skills.
  • Excellent organizational skills, including ability to identify and balance multiple priorities.
  • Demonstrated ability to work successfully with board members and other volunteers as well as civic and business leaders in a collaborative manner.
  • Ability to gather, analyze and effectively communicate data, including financial statements and budgets.  
  • Knowledge of Raiser’s Edge desirable.


Voices for Illinois Children offers a competitive salary and generous benefits package. Voices is an equal opportunity employer.

Application Process

Send resume, one-page letter summarizing your interests and qualifications, and salary history and expectations via email to:

Gaylord Gieseke, President
Voices for Illinois Children
208 S. LaSalle St., Suite 1490
Chicago, IL 60604

Please include “Development Director Position” in the email subject line.

Youth Development Associate – OPEN

Voices for Illinois Children is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, statewide advocacy organization that supports policies which foster children’s learning and development. We work across multiple issue areas – including education and out-of-school time opportunities, health and human services, and family economic security – to improve the lives of children of all ages.  Voices for Illinois Children has an immediate, full-time opening for a Youth Development Associate.

The Youth Development Associate will support Voices’ efforts to improve out-of-school time and youth development opportunities for children and youth in Illinois by helping staff and execute the work of the ACT Now Coalition, an Illinois afterschool coalition dedicated to policy change.  


Support the work of the ACT Now afterschool coalition by:

  • Developing and executing group work plans and initiatives 
  • Building relationships with existing Coalition members and engaging new stakeholders in the Coalition
  • Leading Coalition Committees, including facilitating meeting logistics and supporting implementation of work
  • Organizing and facilitating meetings across the state
  • Assisting with policy and field research as needed to support the development of initiatives
  • Assisting with communications efforts, including writing policy and position papers, fact sheets, newsletters and press materials 
  • Increasing visibility and representing the group publicly, including conducting presentations and other outreach programs to diverse audiences
  • Representing the Coalition on city- and state-level committees or working groups
  • Assisting with the advocacy network’s grassroots efforts in support of legislation and other policy initiatives, and
  • More broadly, helping develop positive youth development and education policies and initiatives and strategies for implementation as appropriate.


  • Knowledge of and interest in after-school, out-of-school time, and youth development issues and public policy required
  • Experience and interest in building coalitions and facilitating group work required.  Strong interpersonal skills, enthusiasm for working with a broad cross-section of stakeholders, and ability to motivate coalitions while helping move their work forward are critical
  • Familiarity with statewide policy and budget development, after-school programs and practices, and grassroots organizing, preferred
  • Communications experience, and the ability to communicate effectively with diverse audiences about complex issues.  Two to three concise writing samples required
  • Undergraduate or graduate degree in child and youth development, education, communications, public policy, public administration, social work or a related field, or equivalent experience, required
  • Ability to travel across the state as needed

Application process

Please send cover letter, résumé, and 2-3 short writing samples, salary history and expectations to:

Yassi Baharloo
Voices for Illinois Children
E-mail: ybaharloo@voices4kids.org; please include “Youth Development Associate” in the e-mail subject line.



Internship Positions

The Voices Internship Program provides interns in communications, development, policy, and public awareness (see listings below) with valuable experience and networking opportunities with a leading advocacy organization in the state of Illinois. Voices for Illinois Children provides a flexible work schedule and a relaxed, friendly atmosphere for students to polish their skills and advance their career goals. 

Illinois Kids Count Internship – OPEN

We seek an energetic, thoughtful, and committed graduate student to help research and prepare a report on child poverty in Illinois. This work is part of the organization’s Illinois Kids Count project, which produces an annual report that is shared with a large audience of policymakers and community leaders and is widely covered by the media.

Illinois Kids Count 2015 will focus on trends in child poverty over the past 15 years. The report will include a wide range of indicators on statewide trends, as well as changes in the geography of poverty within metropolitan Chicago and the state as whole. The report will also present data on safety net programs and other policies designed to reduce or alleviate child poverty. Various essays will provide a broader context for understanding the key trends and issues and will discuss policy strategies for addressing child poverty at the federal, state, and local levels.

Responsibilities include conducting background research; compiling data from the American Community Survey and other federal and state sources; creating tables and graphs in Excel; drafting and copyediting sections of the report; and assisting with media outreach and other communications efforts.


  • Graduate work in public policy, sociology, political science, or related field.
  • Demonstrated interest in issues related to child poverty.
  • Experience with data analysis.
  • Strong communications skills.
  • Familiarity with Excel, Word, and PowerPoint.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.

Minimum requirement of 15 hours to a maximum of 24 hours on site, per week.

This internship is unpaid. Potential candidates for this internship should email a resume and cover letter to:

Madelyn James
Project Director
Voices for Illinois Children 


Policy Outreach / Communications Intern – OPEN

We seek an energetic, thoughtful, and committed graduate student to help strengthen Voices’ advocacy systems before and during the 2015 legislative session in Springfield.


  • Creating a story bank that highlights the positive impacts of public investments in children and families;
  • Managing Voices’ large e-advocacy lists to enable better targeting;
  • Tracking Google Analytics of voices4kids.org; and
  • Compiling daily clips on key issues such as state fiscal policy and family economic security.


  • Graduate work in public policy, political science, public service, or related field;
  • Experience with list management and Google Analytics;
  • Strong communications skills; and
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.

Familiarity with Salsa a plus. Minimum requirement of 15 hours per week for at least one semester. 

This internship is unpaid. Potential candidates for this internship should email a resume and cover letter to:

Emily Miller
Director of Policy Advocacy
Voices for Illinois Children


Development Internship – OPEN

We currently seek a motivated and entrepreneurial student for a development internship position. The internship will focus on supporting the development staff with fundraising activities including the annual Illinois Kids Count dinner. The intern will conduct research on funders, assist in managing data systems, conduct outreach to potential sponsors, and manage volunteers for various fundraising activities.


  • Upper-level undergraduate student and or graduate school student
  • Familiarity with or strong interest in fundraising
  • Strong written and oral skills including a background in research
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Excellent computers skills including Excel, Word, and PowerPoint

This internship is unpaid. Potential candidates for this internship should email a resume and cover letter to:

Madelyn James
Project Director
Voices for Illinois Children