Community Engagement Coordinator at Severson Dells Nature Center

Illinois, United States
$41,600.00 - $54,080.00
Apr 08, 2021
Apr 30, 2021
Employment Type
Full Time

Job Title: Community Engagement Coordinator

Reports To: Director of Education

FLSA Status: Full-time/Non-exempt (Hourly) 

Location: Severson Dells Nature Center (8786 Montague Road, Rockford) 

Wage Range: $20-$26/hour, commensurate with experience


Employer pays 85% of medical/dental insurance premium

Participation in the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund 

10 vacation days at 1 year anniversary (may use 5 days after 6 months) 

12 sick days per year (2 of which may be used as personal days) 

8 holidays

5 floating holidays 

Amenities include free golf/cart rental, camping, shelterhouse rental and permits

WHO WE ARE.  Severson Dells Nature Center is a partnership between the Forest Preserves of Winnebago County and the Severson Dells Education Foundation. The mission of the Forest Preserves is to protect, conserve, enhance and promote Winnebago County’s natural heritage for the environmental, educational, and recreational benefit of present and future generations. The mission of Severson Dells Nature Center is to connect people to nature through education and research. We aspire to be the local leader in nature education and create meaningful experiences with and for all ages. We seek to create a diverse, inclusive culture focused on growth and outcomes to serve our community.

YOUR ROLE.  As the Community Engagement Coordinator, you will be responsible for the overall community outreach including marketing and communications and relationship and fund development for Severson Dells Nature Center. You will serve as a key representative of Severson Dells Nature Center, engaging a broad spectrum of funders and supporters as the organization continues to grow and diversify its revenue streams. The Community Engagement Coordinator will work with the Director of Education and other staff to develop a vision for community engagement, and will play a lead role in implementing this vision.

WHY YOU’LL LOVE IT.  Working at Severson Dells Nature Center is an opportunity to be a part of an innovative, agile and forward thinking team that thrives on collaboration, both internally and externally. The staff are a passionate, knowledgeable group that are dedicated to the missions of both Severson Dells and the Forest Preserves of Winnebago County. Severson Dells is a storied organization with deep roots in the Northern Illinois community. To top it off, you get to spend time in our lovely forest preserves!

ESSENTIAL DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES include the following. Other duties may be assigned.   

Community Outreach

  • Elevates the visibility of Severson Dells locally and regionally by pitching stories, drafting press releases and talking points and maintaining a list of media contacts
  • Creates engaging content, photography and videography for the organization’s social media channels, website, eblasts and more 
  • Leads the execution of an effective social media strategy and content calendar, with the goal of increased program participation and broadening our reach
  • Maintains the Severson Dells website as a valuable resource for clients, donors, and volunteers.
  • Manages the design and development of the print and email newsletters

 Relationship Development

  • Fosters positive and collaborative relationships with the community, local nonprofit organizations, foundations and businesses
  • Builds and develops strong relationships with local media to share the mission of Severson Dells and increase community awareness

Fund Development

  • Works with the Director to develop and implement annual development plans including donor appeals, membership program and fundraising events
  • Assists in recruiting new donors and deepening relationships with existing donors and supporters
  • Implements donor engagement programs with relationship and fundraising development at the forefront 
  • Maintains donor, press, and member records to enhance institutional resources
  • Ensures that all participants in SDNC development programs are thanked and recognized appropriately
  • Collaborates with the Director to ensure fundraising best practices are followed in all areas of development efforts, including preserving donor privacy, meeting goals to minimize the cost to raise funds in each campaign or event, and representing Severson Dells and the Forest Preserves of Winnebago County in a professional manner
  • Assists in grant writing and reporting
  • Assists/manages special projects, as necessary

Required Skills, Knowledge and Abilities.  To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed are representative of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions unless undue hardship and/or a direct threat to the health and/or safety of the individual or others would result.

 Excellent writing, editing and verbal communication skills

  • Comfortable with public speaking to groups of all sizes and demographics
  • Solid relationship management skills enhancing internal organizational relations and external community interactions
  • Project management skills: ability to multitask, problem-solve, prioritize, delegate, and to create systems and processes
  • Strong customer focus in all tasks and activities
  • Demonstrated comprehension of development and development communications best practices including experience writing for the web, and integrating social media
  • Experience supporting the development of diverse and inclusive environments, and demonstrated commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  • Demonstrated highly collaborative style, relationship-builder who can effectively work with all constituent groups including staff, board, volunteers, donors, vendors, and other supporters
  • Strong organizational skills, ability to prioritize and work under pressure
  • Ability to easily adapt to change
  • Ability to maintain the highest level of discretion and confidentiality
  • Ability to maintain regular attendance and punctuality
  • Adheres to all risk management and safety programs
  • Experience with: 
    • Microsoft Office 
    • CRM Systems 
    • Mail Chimp or other comparable communication system
    • Website management (preferably Squarespace)
  •  Willingness to learn new applications and identify innovative ways for technology to support organizational objectives

   A valid Driver’s License is required. 

 Preferred Skills and Experience

  • Experience with major campaigns and campaign communications
  • Familiarity with northern Illinois philanthropic community
  • Experience with graphic design, Adobe creative suite, Canva and PowerPoint.

 EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE.  Bachelor’s degree is required, preferably in communication, fundraising, or marketing, in addition to a minimum of three years relevant non-profit experience with proven success in the following areas:

  • fundraising development
  • media promotions and social media content management
  • fundraising event management;

or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Certified Fund Raising Executive certification preferred or ability to obtain within 18 months.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS. The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job (assuming that they do not result in an undue hardship to the Forest Preserves and/or create a direct threat of harm to the employee and/or to others).

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to walk, stand, sit, talk or hear.  The employee is frequently required to use hands to finger, handle, feel or operate objects such as a computer or controls, and includes repetitive motions of the wrists, hands and/or fingers; and is required to reach with hands and arms.  The employee is occasionally required to climb or balance; stoop, kneel crouch or drawl.  Sufficient vision, hearing and stamina to perform the above functions is required. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds occasionally and 10 pounds frequently.

 WORK ENVIRONMENT.  While performing the duties of this job, the employee works in an office environment, but is frequently exposed to outside weather conditions.  The noise level in the work environment is usually quiet while in the office or moderately noisy when in the field.

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