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Development Officer

Chicago Botanic Garden
Illinois, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Oct 14, 2021

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Position Type
Fundraising, Alumni Affairs, Annual Fund, Capital Campaigns, Corporate and Foundation Relations, Direct Marketing, Donor Relations, Fundraising Administration, Grant Seeking, Major Gifts, Membership, Planned Giving, Prospect Research, Other Fundraising, Special Events
Employment Type
Full Time
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  • Requisition Number: 918
  • Department: Foundation and Government Relations
  • Job Status: Year-Round
  • Hours: Full-time
  • Reports to: AVP, Corporate and Foundation Relations
  • Overview: 
Raise general operating, program, and project grants from private foundations, corporate foundations, and government agencies through LOIs, proposals, reports, prospecting, tracking, and stewardship actions. This is a front-line fundraising position that involves managing a portfolio of current and prospective institutional funders. This is a year-round, full-time, salaried position working Monday through Friday. During this time of transition back to in-person office settings, remote work opportunities are being offered for two days of the regular work week for this position.      
  • Note: Cover letter required in addition to resume and online application form.
   Duties and Responsibilities: 

In this role you will be responsible for the following: 

  • Develop, research, and write letters, proposals, reports, and other institutional fundraising materials for corporate foundation, private foundation, and government agency prospects to support general operating funding as well as funding for programs and projects.
  • Manage and steward a portfolio of private and corporate foundations and government funders. This includes managing the full funder life cycle, including donor visits, solicitation, reporting, etc.
  • Implement communications and cultivation/stewardship strategies, including phone/email inquiries with program officers, donor visits, and reports to engage prospective and existing funders.
  • Research and identify new prospects and develop strategies to approach them.
  • Collaborate cross departmentally with education, community, science, visitor, and horticulture staff to develop proposals and budgets, evaluate programs, and report to donors.
  • Track progress through Raiser’s Edge and other reporting tools.
  • Assist with other aspects of fund raising as assigned by the AVP.

Key Garden competencies/behaviors desired:

  • Communicates in a manner that gains the trust and support of others at all levels.
  • Works effectively with others despite differences of opinion and style; builds alliances.
  • Has a tolerance for opposing points of view.
  • Strives for collaboration. Works cooperatively, as a positive contributor to the team.
  • Demonstrates a positive attitude and shows kindness in all workplace interactions.
  • Makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
  • Can effectively adapt to change; can shift gears comfortably; is flexible, and embraces change with a “can-do” attitude.
  • Is self-aware; knows personal strengths and weaknesses; seeks feedback and is open to negative feedback as an opportunity for improvement.
  • Is cool under pressure; can be counted on to hold things together during tough times; can handle stress; is not knocked off balance by the unexpected; is a settling influence during a crisis.
  • Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions.
  • Picks up garbage when it is seen regardless of position.
  • Follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe working environment and consistently demonstrates safe work behaviors.
  • Is welcoming of new hires.



Our ideal candidate will have the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree and minimum three years of experience in grant fundraising
  • Excellent communication and writing skills as well as strong organizational and analytical abilities
  • Comfort with Excel spreadsheets and Raiser’s Edge or similar database.
  • Ability to be pro-active, work independently, and also function as a member of a team

Note: Cover letter required in addition to resume and online application form.


*Chicago Botanic Garden requires all existing employees be fully COVID vaccinated by October 15, 2021; hires post this date must be fully vaccinated upon hire.*

Physical Demands:  Office setting. Frequent sitting, standing, walking, bending, listening, speaking, and keyboarding. Use of office equipment including computers, telephones, copiers, scanners, and fax machines. Some requirements for lifting, pushing, or pulling items less than 30 pounds.   Why Apply?: 

Come work in a setting that is like no other as you support our mission: We cultivate the power of plants to sustain and enrich life. Take the first step toward being one of the employees who make the Garden one of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. Apply today. Please note that applicants who do not meet the required qualifications will not be considered.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and qualifications required of personnel so classified.

The Chicago Botanic Garden is a M/F, Disabled, and Vet EEO/AA Employer.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, the Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions. 

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