Vice President, Philanthropic Services

The Santa Barbara Foundation has retained Blair Search Partners for the recruitment of candidates for Vice President, Philanthropic Services.

For more information or to apply, please contact:

Tia Anzellotti, Director
Blair Search Partners



Location: Santa Barbara, CA

Reports to: President & CEO

Direct reports: 3 Directors (Development, Donor Relations, and Communications: total team of 9).



The Santa Barbara Foundation (SBF) is a catalyst for community impact. Specifically, we:


Our Mission: to mobilize collective wisdom and philanthropic capital to build empathetic, inclusive and resilient communities. We accomplish this through investments in programs that support the County’s most vulnerable populations by addressing basic human needs, and driving systems change for those individuals and families at the verge of poverty. We exist because of our committed and passionate donors, and take very seriously our obligation to earn the public’s trust through service to our unique and diverse communities throughout Santa Barbara County.


SBF is at the forefront of innovation within the community foundation sector, going far beyond traditional grantmaking to engage deeply with our communities and the organizations and institutions that serve them. First and foremost, this means holding ourselves directly accountable to the community, and developing trust-based relationships with our funders, our program partners and most importantly, the people we serve. It is grounded in an unwavering commitment to equity and access to opportunity for the diverse communities that comprise Santa Barbara County. We embrace technology in all we do, moving with speed and flexibility to put funding to work as quickly as possible. Our ability to innovate is supported by the fact that, relative to other community foundations, a significant percentage of our funding is discretionary.  And with that comes a commitment to taking risks, sometimes failing, but always learning.


The past two years under the COVID pandemic have profoundly tested our organization, our culture and our capabilities…and we came out stronger than ever. Our Board of Trustees supported our efforts in responding to new and emergent needs, such as mobilizing resources to support the Latinx and Indigenous Migrant COVID-19 Response Task Force and quickly deploying targeted COVID-19 recovery grants and capacity development offerings throughout our community. At the same time, we continued delivering our regular grant programs without interruption, deploying $31 million in funding last year in partnership with our fundholders, and are on track to match that number again in 2021.



The Santa Barbara Foundation is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the United States, established in 1928. As we near our centennial and reflect on our decades of experience, our work continues moving towards a contemporary program model, while our legacy philanthropic work remains strong. With charitable assets of over $500 million, we are the County’s largest private source of funding for nonprofit agencies, and the backbone of a strong regional tradition of philanthropy. Our experienced and talented staff of approximately 30 team members reflects both the diversity and the future of our region. We are governed by a board of 19 committed and engaged trustees – a collection of diverse leaders, representing the various regions of the County and who serve as our ambassadors. Please visit to learn more about our organization.

With 2,014 nonprofit organizations, Santa Barbara County is an increasingly diverse region endowed with incredible resources and capabilities for impact. It is also a powerfully philanthropic community with the second highest amount of nonprofit revenue per capita in the entire state of CA. As such, we have created this new leadership position to further develop the region’s philanthropic resources, enabling SBF to drive meaningful impact for the people we serve.



Our communities throughout Santa Barbara County are as diverse in geography and demographics as they are in assets and needs. We are committed to being creative, flexible and adaptable in standing with the nonprofit sector and community partners to address the complex issues that are confronting our county, now and into the future. Over the next two years, our strategic priorities include a bold commitment to supporting our most vulnerable populations throughout Santa Barbara County by addressing basic human needs. We will also invest in components of broader systems change by supporting those individuals and families that are living paycheck to paycheck and are susceptible to becoming our most vulnerable residents with just one life event – an illness, car accident, change in relationship or employment.

Strategic Priorities & Objectives:

  1. Child Care – GOAL: Increase access to affordable and accessible quality childcare spaces.
  2. Workforce Development – GOAL: empower county residents to take advantage of quality employment opportunities within rising industries.
  3. Workforce Housing – GOAL: prevent loss of housing and maintain safe and adequate housing that supports economic mobility for our local workforce.
  4. Community Grant Programs – GOAL: protect our most vulnerable populations in Santa Barbara County by supporting safety net programs such as behavioral health, primary healthcare, food, shelter and safety.
  5. Collaboration for Social Impact – GOAL: informed by the social sector, advance the strength and capacity of Santa Barbara County’s nonprofits through resources, education, peer learning and advocacy.



This is an exceptional time to join SBF as we rewrite Philanthropy for the 21st century. The role of Vice President, Philanthropic Services will bring together our development and stewardship capabilities to ensure we remain at the forefront of innovation and impact in the community foundation world. They will provide strategic leadership in all areas of asset development and partnerships, working across our diverse portfolio of program areas. As a member of our senior leadership team, the VP will serve as a sounding board and strategic thought partner for our CEO in all areas of development and donor stewardship. They will inherit an incredibly strong team of development professionals and will be provided wide latitude to build out the position around their unique skills, capabilities and leadership style.


Current and mid-term priorities for this position include:





Resource Development


Donor Services


Marketing and Communications



SBF seeks a seasoned, hands-on leader who can engage with a wide variety of donors and stakeholders. The successful candidate will truly enjoy getting to know a wide variety of Santa Barbara County residents and will take great pleasure in serving the interests of the community. Specific leadership attributes required for the position include:





For more information or to apply, please contact:

Tia Anzellotti, Director
Blair Search Partners

Vice President, Philanthropic Services