Director of Corporate and Foundation Partnerships

Chicago, IL
Full Time



Navy Pier is the People’s Pier, Chicago’s lakefront treasure, welcoming all and offering dynamic and eclectic experiences through partnerships and programs that inspire discovery and wonder. Since reopening in 1995, more than 200 million guests have visited the Pier’s fifty-five acres of unparalleled attractions and experiences. In that time, Navy Pier has become a top cultural attraction and destination in the Midwest, and since 2011, has operated as an independent, nonprofit organization. Navy Pier values diversity and racial equity and expects every role to uphold a high standard of inclusion, justice, and fairness.


The Director of Corporate and Foundation Partnerships is a full-time position, reporting to the Vice President of Resource Development to lead Navy Pier’s corporate and foundation philanthropic partnership strategy. The Director of Corporate and Foundation Partnerships produces the Pier’s institutional fundraising strategy and develops framework for success by engaging with active and prospective corporate and foundation donors in authentic ways and meeting the department’s corporate and foundation revenue and stewardship goals.

Working closely with the Vice President of Development, the Director guides fundraising and cultivation efforts for a dedicated portfolio of active and prospective funders to achieve fundraising goals by nurturing and maximizing relationships with existing funders, cultivating, and soliciting new funders, and delivering best practices in nonprofit philanthropy. The Director will be a thought partner in establishing and executing a plan for growing corporate and foundation funding across both general operating and capital support.

As a key member of the Resource Development team, the Director collaborates in setting annual and long-term revenue and organizational goals, enthusiastically represents the Pier in the community, and advocates for an optimistic and creative team culture. This individual will share Navy Pier’s core values of excellence, inclusion, integrity, and authentic stewardship.


Key duties and responsibilities listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills and/or abilities required to successfully perform this job. Duties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Advances corporate sponsorship and foundation philanthropic strategy for the Pier through a robust annual fundraising plan.
  • Works closely with the Vice President of Development to develop and implement effective corporate and foundation engagement and solicitation strategies.
  • Supports Navy Pier’s Executive Leadership Team and Board of Directors in their engagement of corporate and foundation leaders with the goal to secure partnerships and grants on behalf of the Pier.
  • Works with the Vice President of Development to set and monitor annual and multi-year corporate and foundation revenue goals.
  • Prepares and executes tailored giving opportunities that directly underwrite Navy Pier’s accessible, free public programs.
  • Works closely with colleagues across the Pier to plan and activate corporate sponsor and donor recognition that reflect the mission and values of the Pier and steward partners’ investments.
  • Manages a portfolio of 100+ corporate and foundation prospects and regularly refreshes a pipeline of additional prospects to engage.
  • Manages solicitations, publications, and institutional donor recognition strategies and prepares letters, proposals, and presentations for active and prospective institutional donors.
  • Develops giving communication strategies with compelling and relevant messages that promote the tangible benefits of donating to Navy Pier.
  • Serves as the main point of contact for all corporate and foundation partners and utilizes a portfolio management approach designed to maximize relationships.
  • Manages corporate and foundation prospect research, prospect and donor engagement, and sponsorship and donor recognition.
  • Administers corporate partner contract fulfillment and servicing, maintains accurate and up-to-date development records, donor recognition preferences, manages correspondence for current and prospective institutional donors and complies with reporting requirements based on relationship and grant parameters.
  • In close partnership with the Grants Associate, assists with drafting, reviewing, and disseminating funding proposals, reports, and other communications.
  • Prepares and presents data-driven reports on institutional fundraising efforts and results, and monitors progress against revenue goals.
  • Builds and maintains strong relationships within the funding community through networking activities and participation in professional development opportunities. Stays informed about new trends and techniques in philanthropy.
  • Represents Navy Pier to outside constituent groups such as business leagues, industry associations and related organizations and maintain professional affiliations.
  • Supports the mission of Navy Pier and upholds organizational priorities as stated. Performs other duties as assigned.


The minimum level of knowledge, skills, and/or abilities required for this role include:


  • Requires a Bachelor’s Degree with an emphasis in business administration, marketing, or industry-related field.


  • Requires a minimum of five years of years of experience in philanthropy, corporate relations, or related field.

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