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AVP, Principal and Major Gifts

Job Details

Overall Function


The Associate Vice President, Principal & Major Gifts provides strategic guidance and leadership for EDF’s individual fundraising program, including oversight and direction on major funder strategies, proposals, and reports, internal and external relationships and communications, and operational processes. This role reports to the Vice President, Principal & Major Gifts.
Key Responsibilities

  • Serve as a senior leader on the Principal & Major Gifts team (MG), partnering closely with the VP on all aspects of team management; thought partnership on strategic relationship management for top donors; and interfacing with EDF programs and departments to ensure smooth and timely information flow and working relationships.

  • Provide leadership to MG team, including but not limited to principal and senior principal gifts officers; mentor staff and help build senior staff leadership skills.

  • Plan, design, and execute strategies for maintaining and ultimately increasing the revenue generated from donors in a portfolio with a concentration on seven and eight figure gifts.

  • Evaluate MG team strategies, processes, output, communication, and performance on an ongoing basis, and identify and implement improvements as needed.

  • Provide overall quality assurance across top solicitations, $1M+ proposals, reports, and strategy documents, ensuring that deliverables are donor focused with compelling program strategy.

  • Carry out special strategic projects that add value for the department or the organization.

  • Participate in advancing EDF’s diversity, equity, and inclusion goals, in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected, included, and empowered to address environmental and organizational challenges in alignment with EDF values.



  • 15+ years of relevant development experience in one or more of the following areas: individual giving, major gifts, or operational/business planning and a Bachelor's degree required. A Master's degree may substitute for up to 2 years of experience.

  • Experience managing individuals and teams while inspiring strong performance and professional growth.

  • Strong leadership, interpersonal, analytical, people and project management skills. 

  • Ability to oversee and execute a complex set of projects with time-sensitive deliverables.

  • Works well independently and collaboratively as a part of multidisciplinary teams across multiple time zones.

  • Superb written and verbal communication skills. 

  • Demonstrated commitment to a high level of confidentiality.

  • Excellent attention to detail, thoroughness, and accuracy.

  • Strong computer skills, particularly with Word, Excel and donor database software packages. 

  • Demonstrated self-awareness, cultural competency and inclusivity, and ability to work with colleagues and stakeholders across diverse cultures and backgrounds.

  • Knowledge of environmental issues a plus.

  • Ability and willingness to travel for donor and team meetings as needed and to work across time zones effectively.



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