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Chief Development Officer (CDO) Salary

Generous salaries abound for Chief Development Officers in the United States, with average pay above six figures ($103K) per year. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Men are slightly outnumbered by their female counterparts who answered the questionnaire, who make up a slight majority at 56 percent. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Chief Development Officers. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$62,307 - $184,620
MEDIAN: $101,990

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
$62,307 - $184,620  
$0.00 - $73,974  
Profit Sharing
$1,800 - $20,000  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
$60,979 - $199,688  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 199
United States (change)

Job Description for Chief Development Officer (CDO)

  • Recommend short- and long-range fund development plans and programs that support the organization’s values, mission and objectives.
  • Participate in short- and long-term strategic and operational planning for the organization.
  • Ensure that philanthropy and fund development are carried out in keeping with the organization’s values, mission, vision and plans.
  • Plan, coordinate and assure implementation of strategies to develop donors and contributions in support of the organization.
  • Maintain accountability and compliance standards for donors and funding sources.

Chief Development Officer (CDO) Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Chief Development Officer (CDO)

Typical Chief Development Officers report a focused set of job skills. Those who have experience with Marketing Communications, Fundraising, and Media / Public Relations can expect to be compensated well for these skills. Skills that pay less than market rate include Media / Public Relations. Those educated in Fundraising tend to be well versed in Media / Public Relations.

Pay by Experience Level for Chief Development Officer (CDO)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.

In general, experience and pay appear to be strongly linked; those with more experience usually bring in higher incomes. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $72K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $94K. After one to two decades on the job, professionals can reap plentiful salaries that average out to the six-figure sum of $108K. Chief Development Officers who have spent more than 20 years on the job report earning a significantly higher median of $134K.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Chief Development Officer (CDO) Salaries

up arrow 30%

up arrow 5%

National Average

up arrow 9%

up arrow 30%

Skills That Affect Chief Development Officer (CDO) Salaries

Marketing Communications
up arrow 18%

National Average

up arrow 2%

Media / Public Relations
up arrow 7%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 53 votes.


56 %
44 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 88% dental benefits Dental: 76%
vision benefits Vision: 53% employee benefits None: 6%