American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science,
Executive Director of Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic States Region

Rockville, MD


The American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science (ACWIS) is one of the leading not-for-profit organizations in the United States raising funds for an Israeli scientific institution. ACWIS develops philanthropic support in the United States for the Weizmann Institute of Science (WIS), one of the world's premier scientific research institutions based in Rehovot, Israel. This is an excellent opportunity for a talented fundraiser to join an organization that has grown tremendously over the past 10 years and has the potential to grow even further.

The leadership of The American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science (ACWIS) views the appointment of its next Executive Director for Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic States as a compelling opportunity for an entrepreneurial and energetic development professional to advance this geographic area, as the organization prepares to celebrate its 75th Anniversary.
Noted for its wide-ranging exploration of the natural and exact sciences, the Institute is home to 3,800 scientists, students, technicians, and supporting staff. Institute research efforts include the search for new ways of fighting disease and hunger, examining leading questions in mathematics and computer science, probing the physics of matter and the universe, creating novel materials, and developing new strategies for protecting the environment.

Weizmann is proud that Professor Ada Yonath was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2009. Professor Yonath is the first Israeli woman to receive a Nobel, and the fourth woman to ever win the Nobel Chemistry prize. Additionally, there have been 33 Israel Prize recipients from the Weizmann Institute, largely regarded as the states highest honor.

The American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science was founded in 1944 by a group of American visionaries inspired by the dreams of Dr. Chaim Weizmann, the eminent chemist and Zionist leader who later became the first President of the State of Israel. Outstanding business, intellectual and opinion leaders soon joined the Committee to participate in exciting projects of support. Supporters of ACWIS have been, and are today, partners with Weizmann Institute scientists in the search for answers to the most difficult challenges facing humanity.

Over the years, ACWIS has grown into a prominent national organization with a staff of about 60. ACWIS is a national network of dedicated volunteers and professional staff who share a common vision with the Institute in advancing science for the benefit of humanity, and strengthening Israel through science and technology. ACWIS develops philanthropic support for research at Weizmann; educates the American public about the Institute's research; and represents the Institute's interests in the United States.

In its 73-year history, ACWIS has raised more than $2 billion, averaging more than $60 million a year over the past decade.
Improving upon traditional fundraising strategies, ACWIS has created the Center for Personalized Philanthropy to provide customized giving opportunities for its donors. And, ACWIS employs a total financial resource development model that focuses on a donors overall and lifetime support of Weizmann. This approach looks at a donors lifetime goals for making an impact, and offers a menu of opportunities to fulfill their philanthropic passions.

Headquartered in New York, ACWIS has six regional offices including San Francisco and Los Angeles, CA; Fort Lauderdale; FL; Bloomfield Hills, MI; Chicago, IL; and New York, NY. In addition ACWIS employs four National Executive Directors of Leadership Giving who cover a regional base of donors outside of the regional offices reach. Each office employs fundraising strategies that suit the market; gifts are given predominantly from individuals, through successful fundraising dinners and estates in most regions. Additional information on ACWIS can be found at:


Reporting to the Senior Vice President, Financial Resource Development, the Executive Director, Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic States will be an integral part of a national team focusing on generating revenues on behalf of the Weizmann Institute of Science.

The ideal candidate must be familiar with the Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic States area. In addition, the Executive Director should have a basic knowledge of planned giving. It is expected that within two to three years the Executive Director will be able to broaden the donor base, and perhaps double the amount of funds raised. The regions volunteer leadership, with whom this individual will work, is a dedicated group of individuals, encompassing all generations, who share the Institutes vision and values.

Weizmann donors and prospects are driven by the excitement of the science and what new discoveries will contribute to benefit humanity in the future. The Executive Director must keep up to date on the latest Weizmann research and Institute discoveries. Although deep knowledge of science is not required, this position calls for someone with immense curiosity and the ability to translate complex scientific research being conducted at the Institute, into terms that the layman will grasp.

Among other responsibilities, the Executive Director will:
Design and implement major gift fundraising and leadership development strategies and programs;

Enhance existing relationships between donors and regional, national, and international leaders of ACWIS and WIS;

Secure major gifts from individual donors;

Plan and oversee a variety of events and programs related to three core American Committee initiatives: NextGen, Vera and Chaim Weizmann Honor Society and Women for Science;

Be a spokesperson for ACWIS and the Institute.



Financial Resource Development
- Design and implement strategies for the identification, cultivation and solicitation of individuals and corporations for major gifts at the six- and seven-figure levels;

- Develop and maintain a portfolio of prospects and donors;

- Coordinate with National staff the identification, cultivation and solicitation of foundations and planned gifts;

- Articulate, where appropriate, the various gift opportunities for our donors.


Donor Relations
- Maintain on-going contacts with donors and prospects through a variety of programs, forums, visits, written communications and face-to-face meetings; the expectation is that this position will make a minimum of 3-5 such meetings a week with donors, prospects, and leadership.


Communications, Public Relations and Community Awareness
- Serve as an enthusiastic and well-informed spokesperson for ACWIS and the Institute. Continually learn about Weizmann research and activities and share new developments with selected donors and prospects;

- Maintain a reliable knowledge of the community;

- Utilize memberships in professional organizations and participate in various local organizations to enhance community awareness of ACWIS and the Institute.


Event Planning and Implementation
- Design, plan and oversee events focusing on the science at the Institute in order to expose individual, corporate, and foundation prospects and donors to the Weizmann message;

- Develop events that are used to move people along the donor pyramid and recognize long-time donors and cultivate them towards a planned gift;

- Promote National and Regional programs, as well as Weizmann Israel experiences (missions) to the Institute.


Leadership Recruitment and Development
- Identify, recruit and nurture a regional board of donors who support ACWIS by: making gifts of substance; providing access to prospects; serving as spokespersons; and participating in regional, national and international activities.

- Coordination with National Office and Cooperation with other Regions

- Contribute to the mission of ACWIS and cooperate with National staff by accepting special assignments, offering constructive suggestions and providing consultation and support;

- Promote regional participation in national and international WIS Programs.


- Maintain professional knowledge by reading the literature, attending educational and professional seminars and establishing personal networks;

- Supervise Program Coordinator.


The ideal candidate will be a seasoned development professional capable of clearly articulating a case for giving, raising both private and institutional funds, and demonstrating an authentic commitment to the mission and goals of the Institute.

- At least 10 years of professional experience, with 5-7 years of successful major gifts fundraising experience.

- A proven track record of success in the cultivation, stewardship, and closing of gifts from individual major donors and foundations at and above the six-figure level. Prior experience in contemporary fund raising strategies such as Moves Management.

- Experience with all development vehicles, especially testamentary gifts, so as to comfortably engage potential donors in discussions about major and planned gifts to ACWIS.

- Success in increasing the effectiveness of development efforts through established objectives, performance standards and quantifiable benchmarks.

- Creative, innovative, and strategic inclinations; intellectual curiosity and emotional intelligence; confidence to express opinions, forge ahead when appropriate and hold back when necessary, with sensitivity to the feelings and opinions of others.

Entrepreneurial self-starter with a high energy level, accustomed to and comfortable within a lean work environment;
- Strong interpersonal skills with the intellectual and emotional depth, maturity and collaborative skills to work effectively across the entire organization and all levels.

Ability to work, and the potential to lead, in a highly collegial manner within a complex, national and international organizational culture.
- A strong work ethic, ability to maintain and model high personal, ethical and professional standards, as well as an outgoing and positive personality. A sense of humor and perspective are considered assets.

- A passion for the mission of ACWIS, a sharp mind, immense curiosity and the ability to translate complex scientific research into terms that the layman will grasp.

- A demonstrated understanding of, and experience with, the networks of the Jewish philanthropic community in the Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic States; a demonstrated ability to engage various groups within this community.

- Demonstrated integrity, a good listener and a proactive communicator, with a charismatic and energetic demeanor towards personal engagement.

- Effective and persuasive communicator with demonstrated excellence in written and verbal communication.

Strong organizational, planning, and priority-setting skills.
- High standard for quality and productivity, focusing on results.

- The ability to travel and work evenings and weekends, as necessary, including the biennial staff conference held at the Institute.

- Experience with office software and data management systems is required; knowledge of Raiser's Edge and DonorScape preferred.

- A bachelor's degree required; advanced degree and CFRE accreditation is preferred.


Steven J. Goldberg, Consultant
Tani Weissman, Junior Associate

Please submit a resume and cover letter
Fax: 212-983-1687

This search began in August 2017 and is currently active. This position description is based upon material provided by the American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science, an equal opportunity employer.