Shedd Aquarium is seeking an innovative and experienced
fundraiser to join the Development Department as the Manager of
Institutional Giving. Working in a front-line capacity, the Manager
of Institutional Giving grows and oversees a portfolio of current
and potential funders. An accomplished and impactful writer, the
Manager develops and writes new grant requests, proposals, and
reports, focusing on foundational, state, and federal
opportunities. Must maintain current knowledge of aquarium programs
and operations, as well as a companion library of proposals.
In order to be successful in this role, the Manager must develop
innovative strategies for stewardship communications with funders,
manage current grant activity records and archives, and prospect
and achieve new funding from local and national foundations. As
needed, the Manager will coordinate and participate in site visits
and tours for donors and prospects. This is an exceptional
opportunity to join a strong, collaborative team and make an
indelible impact on Shedd Aquarium during its Centennial
Duties & Responsibilities:
- Demonstrate commitment to Shedd’s vision, mission and
- Support and grow portfolio of foundation funders that are new,
have increased capacity, or are already supporting Shedd at high
levels; work with and guide the coordinator to ensure the effective
utilization of the portfolio. This includes timely and well-written
submissions, creative stewardship strategies, and documenting grant
activities and archives.
- Prepare proposals and reports, annual solicitation letters,
briefing packets, stewardship reports, letters, research
backgrounds, and other written materials for foundations. Maintain
high standards of accuracy, quality, and writing style when
relaying aquarium information and statistics.
- Successfully find and secure new funding from foundation
sources that can help grow the overall portfolio of the grants
- Respond to compliance requests from funders including required
forms, statistics and/or additional requested information.
- Maintain an annual solicitation calendar for foundation and
government proposals in conjunction with the Director.
- As needed and requested, assist in staffing after hours special
events hosted by the Development Department, including the annual
Gala, BLU, holiday breakfast, member and donor events. Participate
in tours as requested.
- Assist with the planning for donor site visits including
working with the aquarium’s special events managers and booking
- Other duties as assigned.
The Manager, Institutional Giving will be an innovative
strategist and can support the vision of the organization, knowing
how to skillfully translate ideas into a concrete course of action.
The Manager will be an accomplished fundraiser and collaborator who
can deliver on both strategy and execution.
- Bachelor’s degree is preferred, but comparable experience would
be accepted in lieu of a degree.
- A minimum of 2 – 4 years’ experience in development with direct
focus on securing grants, managing partnerships, and funding with
- Experience securing and applying for large gifts with a focus
on foundation sources.
- Experience securing gifts >$10,000. However, working with
gifts >$25,000 is preferred.
- Experience as a grant writer with the ability to translate
complex issues into fundraising goals and objectives; must possess
the ability to articulate the organization’s mission to the funding
- Excellent interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to work
well in a team setting and collaborate across departments and
teams, as well as the ability to work independently with clear
roles and deliverables.
- Accomplished and versatile writing background, with ability to
prepare a variety of materials.
- Strong active listening skills, excellent oral and written
communication skills, with the ability to plan and facilitate
- Ability to successfully present projects and programs to
prospects, donors, and aquarium leadership.
- Ability to manage multiple demands and deadlines; must possess
excellent time management and organization skills, with strong
detail orientation and follow-through.
- Strong project management skills with the ability to multi-task
- Ability to work independently and under tight deadlines.
We strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQ+ community,
veterans and active duty military, parents, individuals with
disabilities, and individuals from all cultural backgrounds to
apply. Shedd Aquarium is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes
everyone to our team.
If you need a reasonable accommodation at any point in the
application or interview process, please let us know. In your
application, please feel free to select which pronouns you use (For
example – she/her/hers, he/him/his, they/them/theirs).