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Director of Major Giving

Wisconsin Watch
Wisconsin, United States
Competitive Salary
Closing date
Feb 17, 2024

Are you passionate about ensuring access to fair, nonpartisan news and information for everyone? Do you believe that citizens across our state deserve access to information about the issues that most affect their lives and the quality of life in their communities? 

Wisconsin Watch is an entrepreneurial team working to build the future of local news in our state. We’re passionate about trustworthy reporting that holds public representatives accountable and empowers the people of Wisconsin to solve problems, find pathways to success and guide our state forward. We believe this work is essential to keeping our communities and our democracy strong.

We are excited to announce a search for a Director of Major Giving who is committed to rebuilding our state’s ecosystem for independent, fact-based local journalism. As a vital member of our team, you will leverage your exceptional interpersonal skills to build relationships with individuals who believe in the importance of access to information and the power of accountability reporting. Your ability to connect with donors, understand their values and communicate our mission will enable you to cultivate a strong and engaged community of supporters. Through targeted campaigns, events and personalized outreach, you will inspire philanthropic contributions that directly impact our ability to deliver credible, thought-provoking news to the public. 

Join us as we work to seek the truth, expose wrongdoing, highlight solutions and improve lives. 


    Develop and execute a comprehensive individual fundraising strategy that aligns with Wisconsin Watch’s mission and fundraising objectives. Work with the development team to identify, research and qualify potential major donors. Cultivate and maintain strong relationships with current and prospective major donors through regular communications and meetings, donor-focused events, reports on the impact of our journalism and ongoing stewardship. Create compelling proposals and presentations that effectively communicate Wisconsin Watch’s impact and the value of major donor support. Collaborate with board members, staff and volunteers to engage major donors in fundraising efforts and develop stewardship plans. Work with the development team to maintain accurate and up-to-date donor records in the organization’s CRM database and provide regular reports on major donor fundraising activities. Represent Wisconsin Watch at fundraising events, community gatherings and activities that expand our network and visibility.


    A minimum of 5 years of experience in nonprofit fundraising, with a demonstrated track record of success in major gifts fundraising. Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to build relationships with high-net-worth individuals and foundations. Proven ability to develop and implement effective major gifts fundraising strategies. Experience working with CRM databases and fundraising tools for donor management and prospect research. In-depth knowledge of fundraising best practices and trends in major gifts fundraising within the nonprofit sector. Strong organizational and project management abilities, with the capacity to manage multiple priorities and meet deadlines. Self-motivated and able to work both independently and collaboratively as part of a team. Passion for supporting independent journalism and a deep commitment to the mission of Wisconsin Watch.

Location: The Director of Major Giving should be located in Wisconsin, preferably in the greater Madison or greater Milwaukee areas, and expect to travel to those cities at least twice a month and other Wisconsin locations as needed. 

Salary: Starts at $80,000

Benefits: Generous vacation plus holiday time, paid family and caregiver leave, subsidized medical and dental premiums, vision coverage, short-term & long-term disability, self-funded 403(b) retirement plan and more.

Deadline: Submissions will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Apply by Feb. 16, 2024, for best consideration. 

To apply: Please submit a PDF of your resume and answer some brief questions in this application form. If you’d like to chat about the job before applying, contact Lauren Fuhrmann, Chief Revenue Officer, via email:

Don’t check off every box in the requirements listed above? Wisconsin Watch is dedicated to building an inclusive, diverse, equitable, and accessible workplace – so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to still submit an application. Wisconsin Watch embraces anti-racism, diversity and inclusiveness in its journalism, training activities, hiring practices and workplace operations.

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