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Barbershop Harmony Society

Key Development Relationship Manager

Barbershop Harmony Society


Job Summary

Overview: The Barbershop Harmony Society (also known as “SPEBSQSA”, “the Society”, and “BHS”) is the largest singing organization in North America, and thought to be the largest in the world, with approximately 17,000 members and more than 87,000 identified enthusiasts, in nearly 2,500 active local singing communities and performing groups.

Founded in 1938 as the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, Inc., the Society preserves and extends the reach of barbershop music, a unique part of America’s cultural heritage. Barbershop is a close harmony choral singing form which has its roots in African-American communities.

The Society sprang up in the 1930s and expanded rapidly until the late 80s, as a hobbyist organization primarily of white middle class males who sang together for pure joy and fellowship. It then stagnated for two decades as modern times changed how people participated with music and in affinity groups. In the last decade, BHS has enjoyed a resurgence of energy and excitement and the professionalization of its leadership and governing structures.

Headquartered in Nashville, TN, with a staff of 44, thousands of volunteers, and a $7 million annual budget, we: publish thousands of barbershop arrangements; teach barbershop via our Harmony University schools and online courses; produce local, regional and international conventions and contests; conduct outreach into K-12 school programs; produce and post video content of barbershop performances captured in the digital age to a YouTube channel with 135,000 subscribers and 6 million annual views; and, energize a network now estimated at over 90,000 singers and enthusiasts, in thousands of singing communities. Barbershop has, indeed, been preserved as a living, thriving, ever-evolving music that influences many other musics.

The art form itself has advanced to a genre that is now widely recognized by the choral world for superb artistic quality and merit. This is evidenced, for example, by our partnership with the American Choral Directors Association, which regularly features our groups on its concert stages.

Our strategic vision — “Everyone In Harmony” — now points us to a future of exponential growth, radical inclusion and the use of singing as a powerful tool for social impact. In short, our world view has evolved from men singing for their own enjoyment, to everyone singing, because singing improves lives and communities.

For several decades, BHS’s individual philanthropy work was conducted by Harmony Foundation, International (HFI) a related organization tied to BHS through a trust agreement. HFI has raised approximately $2.5 to $3 million annually from a portfolio of several thousand BHS members who express their generosity towards BHS via gifts to HFI, which in turns grants a portion of funds raised to BHS programs, chapters and districts. In 2018, BHS began to directly pursue institutional funders (NEA, NEH, private foundations). In 2020, in consideration of long-held concerns about the efficiency of HFI and a divergence in the missions of the two related organizations, the Society Board of Directors made the decision to build an internal operation for individual philanthropy. This decision has been controversial within BHS and HFI communities. The BHS Development Team was launched on July 1, 2020.

BHS is now seeking staff to join the team in key leadership roles. This is a unique, and will be a very challenging, opportunity to build a first class development operation from the ground up.

Job Responsibilities

The Key Development Relationship Manager is responsible for qualifying, cultivating, soliciting and stewarding a portfolio of significant prospects and donors on behalf of the Barbershop Harmony Society. The Key Development Relationship Manager is the key point of contact for this portfolio, and is responsible for deploying BHS’s assets —including program leaders, impact reports, and marketing tools — in order to help donors meet their philanthropic goals while growing the net donated revenue from the portfolio.

Reports To: Chief Development Officer

Roles and Responsibilities

Discovery and Research

  • With support from the Development Operations Manager, determine the best prospects for major gift campaigns. In the early stages of the BHS development operation, this will include key prospects who may be cultivated to increase gift levels within the annual fund campaign, but eventually the scope of the major gift target will increase to five figure and eventually six figure gifts.
  • Develop key background information to profile major gift donors.

Portfolio Management

  • In collaboration with members of the advancement team, identify, develop, cultivate and solicit a pipeline of top prospects who will be solicited in the next 12-18 month period.
  • Create a contact, communications, marketing and feedback plan for each significant prospect in the pipeline.
  • Advise the ED/CEO on personal portfolio management.
  • Via the CDO and CEO, advise SBOD members on personal portfolio management.
  • Participate in the departmental portfolio review process and be a partner in maintaining an organized system for donor stewardship by updating constituent records, as appropriate.

Cultivate, Steward and Ask

  • Help our donors accomplish their philanthropic goals and ambitions through a relationship with our organization.
  • Build personal relationships with key prospects and prospect families.
  • Team with internal Program Enthusiasts, ED/CEO, and SBOD to effectively cultivate and ask donors.
  • Prepare written proposals, gift agreements, funder pitches, and other materials needed to define, secure and document significant gifts.
  • Call, email and, as appropriate, visit major gift donors on a regular basis.

Donor Database Administration

  • Effectively utilize Salesforce as a primary vehicle for recording prospect/donor contact and continually deepening our understanding of the prospect’s background, interest, capacity and desired donation patterns.

Donor Relations

  • Find and execute opportunities to acknowledge major donors through public and private recognition


  • Advise Marketing Team on development tools needed to support key prospect development efforts.
  • Use marketing tools as provided by the Marketing Team.

IM Impact

  • Work with Impact Team to secure appropriate project information, including budgets, to create offers, proposals and asks for key development prospects.


  • Record contact reports in Salesforce after each visit, call, or personalized communication.
  • Track and report progress using specific metrics tied to BHS Scorecard.


  • Keep abreast of developments in philanthropy and fund development.
  • Track, evaluate and present relevant giving information.
  • Working collaboratively with CEO, CDO, board members and staff on fundraising.


The Key Development Relationship Manager will be an engaging, high energy individual with a passion for increasing opportunity for the growth of the Barbershop Harmony Society. (S)he will be a mid-to-senior level fundraiser with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years of experience in development, advancement, or fundraising. A background of passion for, engagement with, and/or success within the Barbershop Harmony Society community , whether as a singer, chapter-chorus-choir or district leader, volunteer, aficionado, or staff member, is required.

The ideal candidate for this position will possess the following qualities and attributes:

  • Culture- and mission-driven, with deep passion for BHS, and commitment to increasing opportunities for more barbershop singing;
  • Ability to establish, cultivate and steward strong professional relationships with stakeholders to build lifelong partnerships and trust while aligning their passions with the mission, priorities and goals of BHS;
  • Collaborative problem solver who brings an entrepreneurial approach to designing personal donor engagement strategies;
  • Innovative, self-motivated, able to manage multiple projects well, working both independently and as a team member;
  • Exceptional interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills;
  • Commitment to representing BHS with enthusiasm, warmth, and professionalism;
  • Strong organizational and time management skills;
  • The ability to thrive in a fast-paced, do-it-yourself, start-up environment and calmly switch gears when priorities/objectives change;
  • Ability to organize and complete multiple tasks simultaneously with close attention to detail and prioritization to meet deadlines;
  • High level of discretion and ethical approach to fundraising; and
  • Proficiency in database management, Google suite,, and other computer skills, as required.

Additional Information


What’s in it for you

  • Competitive compensation package
  • Up to 10 days of paid vacation
  • 14 paid holidays, including December 24 – January 1
  • Up to 8 days sick leave per year
  • Health, dental, and vision insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Long-term disability insurance
  • Optional short-term disability insurance
  • 401K plan with 3% safe harbor contribution and discretionary and company matches that could aggregate up to an additional 6% (9% total)
  • Work with one of Nashville’s Best Places to Work
  • High-engagement staff environment with regular team building and social activities throughout the year
  • A chance to make a difference in the lives of others

How to Apply

Interested Parties: Please submit your application, cover letter and resume here.

Application deadline: August 25, 2020
As a key component of our vision of Everyone in Harmony, the Barbershop Harmony Society is committed to building a team with a variety of backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, and skills. We believe that employees who feel valued and encouraged to share their ideas are empowered to foster innovation that leads to both personal and professional growth.

The Barbershop Harmony Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. This company does not and will not discriminate in employment and personnel practices on the basis of race, sex, age, handicap, religion, national origin or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.


  • Date Posted: July 27, 2020
  • Type: Full-Time
  • Job Function: Fundraising / Revenue Development
  • Service Area: Philanthropy / CSR
  • Working Hours: 40 hrs week/ Mon-Fri 8:00-5:00