Director of Strategic Operations

Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
California, United States
$115,000.00 - $115,000.00
Closing date
Oct 18, 2023

Organization Description:

Since 1981, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy (Parks Conservancy) has served as the nonprofit partner of the National Park Service, collaborating with the Presidio Trust, partners, donors, and the community to support the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA). The GGNRA stretches across three Bay Area counties, north and south of the Golden Gate Bridge, and includes iconic places such as Muir Woods National Monument, Fort Point National Historic Site, Alcatraz Island, Crissy Field, Mori Point, Lands End, and the Presidio of San Francisco.  

The Parks Conservancy engages at the intersection of national park sites, local communities, social justice, and climate resilience. Collaborating with partners, our staff are dedicated to enhancing public awareness and providing volunteer and educational opportunities in the parks. We are park builders, caretakers, ambassadors, and educators, all working to connect people to parks, in support of our vision Parks for All Forever. Join us.

Position Overview:

The Director of Strategic Operations provides vision, leadership, management, and oversight to the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy’s Development and Membership Branch. This role is responsible for three primary areas:

  1. Development and Membership Branch leadership and management;
  2. Administrative and operational services to members, donors, and frontline fundraisers; and
  3. Membership program direct fundraising through events, direct mail, and digital marketing. 

A successful Director of Strategic Operations is enthusiastic about the Parks Conservancy’s mission, has a strong belief in the importance of philanthropy, and can build strong relationships with members and donors that will be critical to the organization’s success. This position requires exceptional leadership skills and the ability to think strategically and operate independently. The Development & Membership Branch values professional entrepreneurship and a willingness to go above and beyond for our community.

This full-time position is based in the Parks Conservancy’s headquarters at Fort Mason. Work is performed in an office setting, including a mix of telework and onsite.  The Conservancy currently requires a minimum of 4 full days per month onsite; however, in many instances it would require more onsite days either in the office or visiting park sites in order to meet the essential requirements of the position. This role is expected to work onsite at Fort Mason for two days per week.   

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

Branch Leadership and Management

  • Budgeting: this position will serve as the Branch liaison with the Finance and Accounting Branch and will support the Chief Development Officer in budgeting, financial modeling, scenario projections, reforecasting, and reporting.
  • Project management (including strategic planning implementation) for special projects, such as research, evaluation, benchmarking, and strategy development.
  • Staff supervision of the Strategic Services team, including full-time professional staff and contractors, currently 6.0 FTE.
  • Administrative and operational leadership as assigned by the Chief Development Officer.

Strategic Services

  • Manage all fundraising systems (databases, dashboards, gift processing, reporting) for efficient and effective handling of sensitive donor information and privacy; ability to hold and handle confidential and sensitive information is required.
  • Oversee all donor and member communications projects, including written appeals, cases for support, acknowledgement letters, and organizational fundraising collateral materials.
  • Develop the Branch’s prospect research functions, with the goal of developing member and donor pipelines in alignment with all aspects of the donor lifecycle.
  • Provide support and supervise staff and contractors who bring administrative capacity to the Branch, frontline fundraisers, and Chief Development Officer.

Membership Program

  • Accountable for all aspects of the membership program, providing vision, leadership, management, and strategic oversight.
  • Direct all member acquisition and retention programs, raising additional operating and program gifts (up to $1,000), and providing excellent customer service to supporters and the public.
  • Oversee all member events, including member acquisition and stewardship gatherings.
  • Manage, with staff and contractors, the direct mail/direct response strategy.
  • Develop and execute a digital marketing strategy for fundraising, member acquisition, renewals, and monthly giving.
  • Bring an innovative approach to membership marketing strategies, testing, piloting, researching and testing experiences and premiums that reflect the values of the Conservancy.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • At least seven years of professional experience in fundraising operations, preferably at a membership-based nonprofit organization.
  • Abide by all Parks Conservancy employee and management policies, exemplify our values, and model behaviors consistent with our Community Agreements.
  • Demonstrated managerial talent in fundraising operations and administration.
  • Experience in recruiting, hiring, evaluating, mentoring, and developing staff.
  • Proven ability to confidently guide team members in meeting fundraising goals and in managing and balancing member and donor relationships.
  • Ability to lead and motivate others; be at ease with colleagues at all levels, executives, and community leaders, gaining their respect and confidence.
  • Experience in supervising direct reports with diverse functional roles, in areas such as communications, coding, digital marketing, events, and prospect research.
  • Ability to work well with staff members regardless of position in any office hierarchy; willingness to share credit.
  • Experience in crafting budgets and working closely with the finance and accounting teams to ensure that revenue is properly tracked and processes are coordinated.
  • Demonstrated effectiveness in prospect identification, relationship-building, and solicitation. Ability to prioritize cultivation and solicitation strategies focusing on donor-centered philanthropy to maximize potential gifts.
  • Ability to keep a sense of urgency in gift discussions; adaptable, achievement-oriented, and confident.
  • An aptitude for creativity, innovation, and flexibility, including the ability to adapt in a rapidly changing environment and a tolerance for ambiguity.
  • Ability to take information from many sources and distill it to core messages that are communicated succinctly to different audiences.
  • Ability to speak passionately and authentically about the history, achievements, and future direction of the Parks Conservancy; ability to effectively articulate that vision to a diverse audience.
  • A commitment to promoting and supporting an environment of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Demonstrated experience engaging and motivating groups of diverse individuals, including strong volunteer management skills.
  • Superior written and oral communication skills, with exceptional attention to detail and the ability to articulate a compelling case for philanthropic support programs.
  • Advanced ability with Microsoft Office suite.
  • Must be available to work on evenings and weekends; in-person work at Fort Mason two days per week.

Education and/or Experience:

  • Bachelor's degree and seven years of relevant fundraising and management experience, preferably in a place-based nonprofit, or a combination of education and relevant professional experience.

Certifications or Licenses:

  • California driver’s license.

Health and Safety:

It is the goal of the Parks Conservancy to create and maintain a safe and healthy workplace. We work to mitigate hazards and risks that may cause harm to employees, consistent with state and federal laws. Employees play an active role in creating a safe and healthy workplace and are expected to comply with all applicable health and safety rules.

Based on the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Parks Conservancy requires all employees to be vaccinated and to provide proof of such vaccination as a condition of employment.

Physical Requirements and Work Environments:

  • Work is performed in an office setting.
  • Work is primarily performed sitting, standing, and/or walking.
  • Must be able to sit at a desk 6-8 hours per day
  • Must be able to lift up to 20 pounds. 

Salary/Benefits:  The salary for the position is $115,000 (Grade 21). Benefits include a competitive suite of medical, dental, and vision plans, up to 3 weeks of paid vacation; holiday, personal, and sick days; a 403(b) retirement plan, Employee Assistance Program, employee discounts, and more.

Application Deadline Date:  Application reviews will begin immediately and end on October 15, 2023.

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 to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified. All employees may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed.

The Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Recruitment, placement and promotions are conducted without regard to an individual's race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, physical handicap, veteran status or sexual orientation, or any other classification protected by Federal, State, and local laws & ordinances.  We will consider qualified candidates with criminal history in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply.

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