New Opportunity: Gantt Center VP for Philanthropy

June 2021


Organizational Overview

The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture ('Gantt Center' or 'Center') has celebrated the contributions of Africans and African-Americans to American culture for more than 47 years. The Gantt Center, located in the heart of Uptown Charlotte, serves as a community source for music, dance, theater, visual art, film, arts education, literature, and community outreach.  October 2009 marked the opening of the current 46,500-square-foot building as part of what is now called Levine Center for the Arts. The Center was named in honor of Harvey Gantt, the city's first African-American mayor and the first African-American student at Clemson University. Year-round, the Gantt Center invites members, Charlotte residents, and visitors to experience fine art exhibitions, lectures by leading scholars, educational programs for children and adults, and much more. Building spaces are also utilized for weddings, receptions, meetings, field trips, and other community gatherings.

Position Overview

The Gantt Center seeks an experienced and visionary "Vice President of Philanthropy & External Engagement" ("VP of Philanthropy") who will be responsible for developing and implementing the development strategy for the Gantt Center. Reporting to the President & CEO, s/he will be responsible for achieving the organization's fundraising goals in pursuit of the Center's mission to celebrate the contributions of Africans and African-Americans to American culture and ignite engagement and conversations that inspire, empower, and enlighten all. The VP of Philanthropy will oversee all efforts related, but not limited, to the Center's major gifts, planned giving, future capital campaigns, endowment strategy, membership program, and the annual fund. The individual will serve as a key leader in the Center's diverse, inclusive workplace, representing the unique culture and values of the organization to the community; broadening the Center's donor base; expanding the community's understanding and support of the Gantt Center; and building a comprehensive, best-practice development function. 

Essential Responsibilities and Duties

Fundraising and Development

  • Strengthen and diversify the fundraising program by expanding the Center's donor base (corporate, individual, congregations, associations, grant funders)  

  • Build and oversee the implementation of an aspirational, achievable annual development plan

  • Meet and exceed fundraising goals, as determined annually during the organizational budgeting process

  • Use innovative strategies and creative ideas to identify and cultivate new prospects with a focus on expanding the Harper-Roddey Society 

  • Craft strategies to leverage the Center's current programs, activities, and events to promote greater donor/sponsor and volunteer participation

  • Manage public and private grant initiatives

  • Oversee effective strategies for the annual fund: direct mail, online giving, events, and new initiatives

  • Contribute to planning and execution of the Center's annual fundraising events (including the Center's signature fundraiser, The Jazzy Holiday Gala), solicit and steward new and past funding partners for events

Operations and Communications

  • Maintain effective development systems and record-keeping procedures to track current and prospective donors and accurately report all fundraising income

  • Prepare, monitor, and manage the annual development budget

  • Align development-related communications with the organizational brand and provide ongoing evaluation of key messaging as it relates to development activity

Leadership and Outreach

  • Expand the Gantt Center's community presence through aggressive and innovative media, social media, online, print, and outreach activities

  • Represent the organization externally in partnership with the President & CEO and board of directors

  • Advise and guide the President & CEO on his roles and responsibilities as they relate to the development plan and its key strategies and tactics

  • Facilitate, engage, and support the Development Committee of the Board of Directors to meet fundraising goals

  • Lead and oversee the performance of direct reports as needed

  • Provide relevant feedback regarding programmatic enhancements and contribute to the organization's planning processes

Other Responsibilities and Duties 

  • Assist in the completion of special projects and assume other appropriate duties at the request of the President & CEO

Physical Demands

The work is primarily administrative in nature. Ability to communicate with small and large groups, light travel including driving, and basic office functions. Additional physical demands include event set-up and clean-up (e.g., moving tables, carrying boxes, hanging signs, etc.)  

Working Conditions

Work is primarily performed in an office setting that is adequate for performing the above job duties. Event duties are often off-site and require working outdoors in varying weather conditions. 


$100,000 - $110,000 annually, commensurate with experience. Also includes a competitive benefit package.


  • Understanding and passion for the Gantt Center's mission, programs, culture, and values

  • Minimum of a bachelor's degree; Master's Degree and relevant fundraising certifications (e.g., CFRE) are a plus

  • 7-10 years of relevant professional experience; nonprofit management, fundraising, and/or business development experience preferred

  • Knowledge of the Charlotte philanthropic landscape and experience with museums, academic, or cultural arts organizations are a plus

  • Astute at establishing effective relationships, credibility, and rapport with diverse audiences, including community leaders, opinion-makers, and sources of influence

  • Experience in key funder relationships identifying, cultivating, stewarding, and growing

  • Proficiency with fund development databases 

  • Ability to manage and supervise a small team of employees 

  • Exceptional energy, relational, and interpersonal skills

  • Demonstrated ability to conceptualize and describe funding needs in a way that is compelling and comprehensive to a wide variety of internal and external stakeholders

  • Results-oriented and predisposed to measurable outcomes

  • Knowledge of marketing strategies, including social media platforms, preferred 

Applicant Instructions

  • All inquiries and applications are to be directed to PMA Consulting: 

  • Applications should include a cover letter, resume, and three professional references. The cover letter should not be the body of the email. All files should be saved with the applicant's first and last name and document type (e.g., Jane Smith cover letter; Jane Smith resume, etc.)

  • Please indicate in the subject line the position and organization to which you are applying (i.e., Vice President, Philanthropy & External Engagement, Harvey B. Gantt)

  • No phone calls or in-person visits, please

  • Note that only those candidates invited to screening will be contacted