Strategic Partnerships Manager

The Wilderness Society
District of Columbia, United States
$75,000.00 - $80,000.00
Sep 23, 2020
Oct 22, 2020
Employment Type
Full Time

Please note: The preferred location for this position is washington, DC.  Remote work may be considered if located within a 4 hour drive of Washington, DC.


The Wilderness Society (TWS) is a national non-profit organization whose mission is uniting people to protect America’s wild places. We believe public lands should benefit all of us.  We strive to ensure our organization and work embodies the cultures and perspectives of people and communities across our nation, and connects and inspires people to care about the outdoors.

The Strategic Partnerships Manager joins a dynamic Philanthropy Department that is focused on growth. The Wilderness Society is implementing a new strategic vision focused on making U.S. public lands part of the solution to the climate and extinction crises, and transforming conservation policy and practice so all people benefit equitably from public lands. To meet this challenge, The Wilderness Society is working to grow our annual revenue from our current $35 million annually and form new strategic partnerships with funders outside the traditional conservation field.

The Strategic Partnerships Manager is part of a three-person team that oversees partnerships with the foundations who fund TWS’ work. Reporting to the Senior Director of Foundation and Corporate Relations, the incumbent’s key role is to establish strategic partnerships with foundations who have not previously supported TWS.

This person will identify new potential partners and establish relationships that lead to funding for TWS priorities. Their secondary responsibility is to steward existing funder relationships.

This position plays an important role in supporting an inclusive organizational culture that is grounded in trust and accountability to shared goals and outcomes.  TWS has made diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic priorities for the organization and the Strategic Partnerships Manager will integrate these priorities throughout their fundraising work.  Across our team, we aspire to be campaign oriented, nimble, collaborative, innovative, transparent, and supportive of staff – our greatest asset. 

Essential Duties & Responsibilities

  • Works with TWS Governing Council members, staff, and other members of TWS network to “get in the door” with foundation prospects and establish relationships that lead to funding.
  • Meets with foundation program officers both alone and with other TWS staff or key volunteers. Collaborates with staff, especially Executive Team members and senior Conservation staff, to prepare for face-to-face visits and calls with foundations. Prepares talking points, PowerPoint presentations, and other meeting materials.
  • Leads small, ad hoc teams of staff from across the organization, especially Conservation and Finance, to develop proposals and reports that advance funder relationships.
  • Steward relationships for portfolio of approximately 15 existing funder partnerships. Prepare reports and renewal proposals and execute strategies to increase financial support where possible.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.


Experience & Competencies

  • Minimum five years’ professional experience including three years in a fundraising setting and minimum two years working with foundation donors. Experience as a Major Gifts Officer is an asset, as is working on fundraising with board members and/or other high-level volunteers.
  • Proven ability to “open the door” with new donor prospects and manage the relationship development process, resulting in a gift.
  • Excellent writing and editorial skills. Ability to understand, interpret, and synthesize complex programmatic information. Ability to compose and edit a variety of correspondence, tailoring messages and communication style to the audience. 
  • Track record working successfully in teams representing a rich mix of talent, backgrounds, and perspectives—across race and gender. 
  • Excellent attention to detail and quality control on all documents produced and administrative work undertaken.
  • Excellent time management and organizational skills, with strong detail orientation and follow-through skills. Ability to manage multiple demands and deadlines from multiple sources.  Ability to multi-task, prioritize, and handle a large volume of work.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills required. Ability to communicate and work effectively with internal and external constituents at all levels of authority. 
  • Proficiency in MS Office Suite including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook.



Work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is not exposed to adverse weather conditions.

The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

This job description is intended to convey information essential to understanding the scope of this position and it is not intended to be an exhaustive list of experience, skills, efforts, duties, responsibilities or working conditions associated with the position.

The Wilderness Society offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including: health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance; sick and vacation leave; a sabbatical program; and a retirement plan.  TWS is an equal opportunity employer and actively works to ensure fair treatment of our employees and constituents across culture, socioeconomic status, race, marital or family situation, gender, age, ethnicity, religious beliefs, physical ability, veteran status or sexual orientation.

As an organization, we aspire to being inclusive in the work that we do, and in the kind of organization we are.  Internally this means working as a team that listens to different points of view, recognizes the contributions of every employee and empowers each employee to bring their whole selves to work every day.  Externally this means ensuring that public lands are inclusive and welcoming, so that our shared wildlands can help people and nature to thrive.  We are committed to equity throughout our work, which we define as our commitment to realizing the promise of our public lands and ensuring that all can share in their universal benefits.

To learn more about our commitment, please see

For consideration, please submit your resume through our online application system.

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