The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, Inc.
Connecticut, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Feb 16, 2023

View more

Position Type
Fundraising, Donor Relations, Special Events
Other Fields
Employment Type
Full Time
You need to sign in or create an account to save a job.

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, Inc. (TMA or the Aquarium) seeks a Senior Manager of Events and Community Engagement, responsible for conceiving, creating and executing compelling events at the Aquarium. This individual also generates community goodwill by representing the Aquarium at off-site events, trade shows, conventions, etc.



The mission of The Maritime Aquarium is to inspire people of all ages to appreciate and protect the Long Island Sound ecosystem and the global environment through living exhibits, marine science and environmental education. For more than 34 years, the Aquarium has played a significant role in shaping the landscape of Norwalk and the region. The second largest family attraction in Connecticut, and 50 miles from New York City, the Aquarium historically hosts nearly 400,000 guests annually. Its primary exhibits take guests on a voyage from the shallow salt marshes and estuaries to the depths of the Long Island Sound and the ocean beyond, culminating with habitats for sharks and harbor seals. Altogether, the Aquarium is home to nearly 7,000 animals and over 360 species in 75 exhibits. A new 4D Theater offers a unique sensory film experience for guests. Its education programs introduce approximately 80,000 students, campers and scouts to marine and STEM education. The Aquarium is recognized as a top aquarium in the nation, and is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. It is an active participant in the local and regional community. The strength of the Aquarium is its 60 full-time staff, and part-time and seasonal staff, in addition to nearly 300 volunteers, which contribute 28,000 hours annually. While the pandemic challenged the Aquarium in profound ways, the team’s resilience and creativity led to new ways to connect with the community, and renewed optimism for the future.  



Reporting to the Vice President of Philanthropy and Engagement, the Senior Manager of Events and Community Engagement, is responsible for working cross-functionally to conceive, create and execute compelling (cultivation and fundraising) events at the Aquarium. This individual also generates community goodwill by representing the Aquarium at off-site events, trade shows, conventions, etc. and establishes and/or co-manages corporate partners looking to engage in outreach activities.



 Fundraising and ‘Friend-raising’ Events

  • Establish fundraising and ‘friend-raising’ event manual(s), processes, etc. in line with agency processes.
  • In coordination with the development team and SSA catering, plan and execute all fundraising and ‘friend-raising’ events including, but not limited to, the annual gala, annual golf classic, and others TBD. Responsibilities include:
  • Serve as primary point of contact to internal and external stakeholders, including event permitting if/as needed.
  • Create and manage event project plan and timeline.
  • Develop event specific budgets—in line with revenue projections, manage to approved line items, track all revenue and expenses, and process associated invoices.
  • Coordinate the event run-of-show; lead on logistics, through event execution.
  • Partner with the development team on solicitations, gift processing and acknowledgements.
  • Conduct vendor research for all elements (design, AV, entertainment, etc.), make hiring recommendations and manage once on-board.
  • Ensure Aquarium staffing and assignments to relevant responsibilities before, during, and after event.
  • Plan and oversee event debrief sessions with outlook planning for following year.


  • Community Partnerships and Engagement Events
  • Establish guidelines for partnership and relevant event manuals, processes, etc. in line with agency processes.
  • In partnership with development, marketing, guest services and others, field inquiries from community partners and corporations seeking engagement activities; conduct due diligence.
  • Work with partners to create meaningful opportunities to connect the Aquarium:
  • In concert with development and marketing teams, create proposals (and agreements) with engagement opportunities and associated benefits.
  • Manage and expand relationships with community partners.
  • In coordination with membership, ensure partners are up-to-date on agreements by overseeing calendar of any corporate memberships/agreements.
  • Ensure partner relationship is sustained through ongoing communication and evaluation of needs and any possible reports/updates.
  • Attend community partner events as a representative of the Aquarium, both internally and externally.
  • Oversee and manage all Community Partnerships and Engagement Events in line with activities outlined in Point #1.
  • Partner internally to design and execute all Aquarium-sponsored events, in line with activities outlined in Point #1.


  • Other
  • Support logistics of press and staff events as requested.
  • Support/lead special projects as requested.




Work Experience

  • Minimum of 5 years relevant and progressive experience.
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in Marketing or related field.
  • Experience in a non-profit organization preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to conceive and manage event details.


Knowledge and Skills

  • Commitment to the Aquarium’s mission, with an appreciation for the important role that the Aquarium plays in conservation, education and the life of a vibrant community.
  • Commitment to equity and social justice, and strong alignment with our organizational values.
  • An attitude of creativity, innovation, confidence and entrepreneurship, with an ability to inspire and motivate audiences.
  • Strong interpersonal skills across stakeholders including: staff, volunteers, trustees, vendors, talent, donors and others; works well within teams, strong collaborator.
  • Ability to prioritize the needs of the business in tandem with the needs of the event and strong guest experiences.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Continuous improvement / problem solving mindset and way of working
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and experience with fundraising databases.
  • Excellent organizational, project management and negotiating skills.
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Willingness to work evenings, weekends and holidays as needed.




Please send a cover letter, CV and salary requirements to Rosemarie Lombardi at, with Senior Manager of Events and Community Engagement in the subject line of your email. 


The Maritime Aquarium is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity. All individuals, regardless of personal characteristics, are encouraged to apply.

You need to sign in or create an account to save a job.

Get job alerts

Create a job alert and receive personalized job recommendations straight to your inbox.

Create alert