Founded in 1916, the Grammy Award-winning Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) is internationally recognized as having achieved a preeminent place among the world’s most important orchestras. Acclaimed for its enduring pursuit of artistic excellence, the BSO has attracted a devoted national and international following while maintaining deep bonds throughout Maryland with innovative education and community outreach initiatives.

The BSO made musical history in September 2007, when Maestra Marin Alsop led her inaugural concerts as the Orchestra’s 12th music director, making her the first woman to head a major American orchestra. The BSO recently announced that the 2020-21 season will mark Maestra Alsop’s final season as the BSO’s Music Director; and, that Marin Alsop will assume a new role as Music Director Laureate and OrchKids Founder, complete with a consistent, multi-week presence on the BSO’s podium per year for the next five years, beginning in the 2021-22 season.

In addition to the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, the BSO’s status as a founding partner and the resident orchestra at the state-of-the-art Music Center at Strathmore, just outside of Washington, D.C., makes it the only major American orchestra to perform full seasons in two venues.


As Maryland’s largest arts organization and recognizing the critical role that the BSO plays in Maryland’s culture, economy, civic pride and narrative, extraordinary efforts to build relationships and consensus behind a sustainable plan for the BSO’s future have taken place since the Fall of 2019. Equally important, the BSO has experienced a burgeoning groundswell of community support in response to its robust and collaborative work, including but not limited to extraordinary philanthropy, that has ensured the Orchestra is poised to implement its new, five-year strategic plan from a position of strength. Grounded in the four tenants of Culture, Capacity, Capital and Community, this plan is designed to energize the institution; grow its audiences and impact; and in turn, build revenues as well as increase efficiencies and effectiveness. For more information, visit www.bsomusic.org/updates.

Building on this inspirational momentum, the BSO is actively developing an expanded development team and program that prioritizes cultivation, prospecting, stewardship and systems. As part of these efforts, and at such an exciting time of institutional transformation and advancement, the BSO seeks a dynamic Director of Institutional Relations to serve as a thought leader, front-line fundraiser and advocate.


The Director of Institutional Relations serves as a senior staff person responsible for stewarding relationships, advocating and ultimately raising philanthropic support for the BSO through the identification, engagement, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of institutional partners, including foundations and corporations but also with a specific attention paid to government agencies and public partners in both the Baltimore and greater Washington, D.C. markets. Requiring solid local connections, this position is a trusted face of the BSO team.

This position leads the Institutional Giving team’s implementation of a comprehensive campaign presently comprised of a baseline portfolio of 125+ entities, which generate more than $5M in annual grants and sponsorships in support of the BSO’s musical presentations, education, and outreach programs as well as special initiatives.

In addition to annual funding goals, the Director will play a key role in supporting the BSO’s long-range goals including planning and securing support for projects of national distinction and innovation in the areas of artistic excellence, education, outreach, and audience development. The Director works closely with executive leadership, the Development team, BSO program staff, corporate leaders, program officers, board members, and donors to devise and execute new strategies to enhance philanthropic support.


• Work closely with the Vice President of Development, Vice President at Strathmore, President & CEO, Music Director, and Board, to identify and develop new sources of corporate, foundation, and government funding

• Design and implement creative, long-term strategies for achieving fundraising goals, expanding the donor base, and developing new funding sources, such as affinity groups and multi-year gifts opportunities for a wide range of institutional priorities

• Supporting the Vice President of Development to activate and deploy a new Corporate Council and expanded corporate relations program.

• With the Vice President of Development, establish the department’s fundraising goals, monitor overall budgets, and aid in preparation of analytical reports to measure progress toward fundraising goals for BSO leadership.

Oversee and provide leadership direction to the Institutional Giving Program, including but not limited to:

• Reviewing sponsorship proposals, grant requests and reports for consistency of institutional voice, a compelling narrative and impact analysis.

• Devising and monitoring a strategy for regular meetings and report-outs with key funders, deploying the Intuitional Giving team, senior leadership and volunteers as needed.

• Working closely with the Institutional Giving and marketing teams, review and identify opportunities for enhanced sponsor benefits and promotion of the BSO’s programming.

• Support best practice crediting and recognition policies and procedures for all institutional donations, including but not limited to print (Overture Magazine, brochures) and digital (website, concert emails, advertising) vehicles, as well as ensuring funder and prospect database records are up-to-date.

• In collaboration with a Corporate & Foundation Relations Manager, Director of Principal Gifts, Vice President at Strathmore and the Vice President for Development, coordinate collaborative strategies for blended gifts inclusive of special BSO programs including the Gala and OrchKids.

• Personally manage a portfolio of 75-125+ institutional funders with a capacity to give $25,000+, including the BSO’s government (local, state and federal) portfolio:

• Identify and cultivate potential funders; develop and submit timely proposals; steward donors and oversee grant compliance; and renew gifts for general operations, education and community engagement programs, and special projects including capital and technological enhancements, marketing, and other opportunities as needed.

• For Montgomery County, work closely with the VP of the BSO at Strathmore in application, reporting and stewarding.

• Supervise, mentor, and train Institutional Giving Department staff of 2 full-time professionals to create and implement effective cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies for donors in each of their portfolios

• Support the creation of an Annual Report for efficient use in the Institutional campaign, and to enhance transparency, reporting and showcasing across all donor and audience categories.

• Represent the BSO and interact with all levels of the organization and donors.

• Work concerts and special events as needed to entertain existing partners and prospects.

• Other duties as assigned.


• Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree strongly preferred

• Minimum of five to seven years of experience in institutional fundraising in the non-profit field, preferably in the arts, or equivalent experience (e.g. corporate and business relations, grant management, etc.)

• Knowledge of either the Baltimore and/or Montgomery County markets is required, while both is preferred

• Proven ability to personally cultivate, solicit, and steward gifts from foundations, corporations, and government agencies

• Exceptional communication, interpersonal, and negotiation skills with the ability to edit others work and to develop clear and compelling written and verbal case statements, proposals, reports, etc.

• Project management and budget development experience

• Expert organizational skills and ability to meet deadlines

• Comprehensive knowledge of fundraising practices

• Proficiency in Tessitura or other development technology for constituent management

• Ability to work flexible hours including evenings and weekends on occasion


• Salary negotiable, commensurate with qualifications and experience. The BSO offers a competitive salary and provides excellent benefits to all full-time employees including:

• Health insurance – two options to choose from (HMO or PPO High Deductible); all at low cost to the employee

• Dental, Life, and Long-Term Disability Insurance, paid 100% by the BSO

• Generous paid time off, including annual, personal, and sick leave

• A 403(b)plan

• Health Savings Account and Flexible Spending Accounts, including Medical and Dependent Care

• EmployeeAssistanceProgram

• Free and / or discounted tickets to BSO concerts


The Catherine French Group is assisting with this recruitment and search. Please submit your resume and letter of interest to the Catherine French Group:
Adobe PDF format is preferred.

To apply for this job email your details to applications@catherinefrenchgroup.com