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Senior Associate Director of Development

The Nature Conservancy
Virginia, United States
Competitive Salary
Closing date
Oct 21, 2021

View more

Position Type
Fundraising, Donor Relations, Major Gifts
Employment Type
Full Time
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About Us

Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. As a science-based organization, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that we can create a world in which people and nature thrive.

We’re rooted in our Mission and guided by our Values, which includes a Commitment to Diversity and Respect for People, Communities, and Cultures. We know we’ll only achieve our Mission by hiring and engaging a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we work. Whether it’s career development, work/life balance, or a rewarding mission, there’s lots of reasons to love life #insideTNC. Our goal is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that all of our colleagues around the globe feel a sense of belonging, and that their unique contributions to our mission are valued.

Although you’ll see requirements in our postings, we recognize that people come with talent and experiences outside of a job. Passion, innovation, and diversity are all key components to advancing our Mission and we encourage you to apply.


Position Summary

The Senior Associate Director of Development is an experienced “out the door” fundraiser and self-starter with excellent writing skills who excels as a team member and leader. They will develop, implement, and manage effective multi-year fundraising strategies and plans for relationships with individuals, businesses and foundations with the ability to give six and seven-figure gifts. They will join The Nature Conservancy in Wisconsin during the final months of a four-year, $48 million comprehensive campaign, nurture giving relationships and continue fundraising momentum post-campaign.

The Senior Associate Director of Development is responsible for managing a portfolio of qualified donors and for building strong relationships.  They promote a culture of philanthropy among their peers and volunteers and work closely with the development team, Board of Trustees, natural partners, and other Conservancy staff to determine and implement effective strategies for engaging identified donors and prospects and deepening their relationships with The Nature Conservancy. These strategies may include planning and hosting in-person and virtual meetings and highly personalized events and field trips. They will work to identify and engage new individual prospective donors who are currently affiliated and unaffiliated with TNC and seek to create transformational giving opportunities to invest in TNC’s conservation mission. The Senior Associate Director of Development is a leader on the development team and will be competent in a highly participatory and interactive team setting, helping others learn from their expertise and experience and sharing responsibility for all Conservancy giving relationships.

This person inspires by telling stories about the Conservancy’s work.. They discuss assets proficiently and listen for opportunities for gifts of securities or other non-cash gifts, such as planned gifts and trade lands. The Senior Associate Director of Development involves and engages appropriate partners in the field and staff at the Worldwide Office, keeping colleagues apprised of interactions, issues or concerns in order to create the best possible experience for each giver. They should expect to spend about 20% of their time out-the-door meeting with donors around the state.


Responsibilities and Scope

  • Manage a portfolio of 60 – 100 donors, including donors with the capacity to give over $250,000 once the portfolio is developed. Responsible for 60 visits and 180 moves annually. Annual fundraising goal of $1,000,000 or more, along with a goal for bequest notifications.
  • Develop qualification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship strategies for a portfolio of high-net-worth Individuals interested in supporting TNC’s conservation efforts in Wisconsin and around the globe.
  • Identify potential prospects, research and build a pipeline of new TNC donors.
  • Facilitate and coordinate all communication with prospective donors, developing positive relationships between TNC, the prospective donors and related organizations and individuals.
  • Evaluate various gift opportunities and giving vehicles and recommend the most suitable approach for a particular donor at a particular point in time.
  • Direct negotiations for complex, high profile or sensitive agreements and demonstrate sensitivity in handling confidential information.
  • Develop and maintain positive working relationships with internal contacts such as conservation staff, senior leaders, and other fundraising professionals, to consult on organizational needs, to formulate strategies to promote engagement as part of the process of qualifying and cultivating, soliciting and stewarding prospective donors.
  • Conceive, organize, manage and often participate in events and field trips for prospective and current donors.
  • Convey persuasively the mission of TNC to diverse groups including major donors, corporate executives, board members and others who are important to the organization’s overall prosperity.
  • Decisions may have program-wide impact and bind the organization financially or legally.
  • Ensure compliance with TNC policies and procedures and external (donor/legal/IRS) requirements; be alert to ethical compliance issues.
  • Financial responsibility for setting and meeting fundraising objectives, evaluating results, and developing corrective strategies.
  • Implement and lead multiple collaborative and complex projects, directing work of staff, managing budget, setting deadlines, and ensuring accountability.
  • May supervise support or administrative staff.
  • Act independently and in supervisor’s stead as needed, exercise independent judgment to identify and solve problems.
  • Travel frequently and on short notice, work long and flexible hours as needed.
  • Work environment involves only infrequent exposure to disagreeable elements and minor physical exertion and/or strain.


Skills and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree and 6 years related experience or an equivalent combination.
  • Experience in cultivating and ultimately stewarding the development of a pipeline of new donors. 
  • Experience building and maintaining long-term relationships with constituents such as major donors and corporations.
  • Experience in asking for and closing gifts of $50,000 or more.
  • Experience in managing and tracking multiple prospects and donors.
  • Experience working with cross-functional teams, preferably in a large non-profit.
  • Experience working with fundraising principles and practices.
  • Experience, coursework, or other training in current trends in charitable giving in the areas of capital campaigns, major gifts or planned giving.


How to Apply

To apply for job ID 50368, submit your materials online by using the Apply Now button at by 11:59 PM EST on Monday, October 18th, 2021. Need help applying? Visit our recruitment page or contact

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

Do you have military experience? Visit our U.S. Military Skills Translator to match your military experience with our current job openings!

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to with Request for Accommodation in the subject line.


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