About National Audubon Society The National Audubon Society is one of the oldest, largest, and most influential conservation organizations in the United States. Since 1905, passion for birds and nature has been the driving force behind Audubon’s conservation legacy and has inspired the organization’s important role in some of the most significant victories for birds and the environment. Audubon’s legacy of success is built upon the strength of its national network of more than one million members, 463 chapters, 23 state offices, 41 nature centers, 23 wildlife sanctuaries, and the four million people the organization reaches each year, both on the ground and online. Dozens of international partnerships extend Audubon’s reach and impact throughout the Western Hemisphere, supporting the protection of migratory birds both in the U.S. and on their wintering grounds in the Caribbean and Latin America.
Audubon’s blend of science, education, and policy expertise has enabled the organization to play a leading role in many of the last decade’s most important victories for birds and conservation, from Congressional passage of the RESTORE Act to new protections for Greater Sage Grouse on 67 million acres in the American West. A $120M+, 700+ employee, 1.4M member organization, the National Audubon Society works seamlessly across large geographical areas to protect birds and people and the places they need to thrive.
Position Summary Based in Chicago and reporting to Chief Development Officer, Sean O’Connor, the Vice President of Development, Upper Central & Mississippi Flyways, will be charged with increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of fundraising in the Upper Central & Mississippi Flyways, including the Rockies & Gillmor Sanctuary in Utah, Nebraska, the Dakotas, Great Lakes & Grange, Minnesota & Riverlands, and Arkansas, with a focus on managing a team of fundraisers who are responsible for securing funds for state programs, regional flyway initiatives and national programs aligned with the strategic plan. As a senior leader on the National Development team, s/he will carry a portfolio of qualified major donors and prospects in the region; will direct the strategy and fundraising staff within the Flyways; and will partner with state, regional, and national executives to maximize Audubon’s impact with existing and potential donors. The successful candidate will be an entrepreneurial, results-driven, senior development professional with success in leading development teams to success and closing six figure+ gifts.
Essential Functions •Develop, refine and implement the strategy for fundraising in the Upper Central & Mississippi Flyways that maximizes potential giving. •Partner with leaders across the organization in order to deliver effective strategies for donors, leveraging Audubon’s state/regional and national Development staff. •Direct the work of a small regional team of fundraisers in order to develop and implement local mid-level fundraising programs and donor cultivation opportunities that maximize giving; effectively manage and mentor these staff, providing guidance on best practices and strategy when needed. •Manage an active portfolio of major gift donors and prospects, create personalized cultivation/stewardship plans, and manage gift requests for each donor within the portfolio based on their philanthropic focus in order to maximize their giving to Audubon. Assign donors to other staff as appropriate. •Partner effectively with colleagues to ensure that every donor has an optimal level of interaction with Audubon volunteers, leadership and program staff. •Communicate and collaborate effectively with the National Development team, peer Flyway VPs, State Executive Directors and key state and center board members in the region and other key staff across the Audubon network. •Develop a strong knowledge of Audubon’s Strategic Plan, as well as local, regional, national and international conservation initiatives. •Participate in opportunities to engage with leaders and development colleagues across Audubon via in-person and virtual team meetings and training opportunities. •Analyze reports on donor interactions to make strategic decisions for the program to maximize giving opportunities. Prepare and present information and progress to Audubon’s senior management team and other stakeholders. •Adhere to the highest ethical standards and fundraising best practices, reflect an optimistic and positive attitude, and convey sensitivity to the needs of donors.
Qualifications and Experience •Senior-level development professional with 10+ years of experience in organizations that have a reputation for strategic thinking, organizational excellence and aggressive action, with at least four years of management experience developing strategy and overseeing a team of development professionals, preferably in a decentralized setting. Bachelor’s degree also required. •Proven track record of building donor relationships and closing gifts in the six-figure range. Experience with seven figure gifts a plus. •Excellent leadership skills; must be comfortable and experienced in managing a decentralized, regional team and mentoring staff. •A self-starter with a positive attitude and demonstrated capability to work independently in a fast-paced environment with changing priorities. •Keen attention to detail, with the ability to synthesize and carefully analyze information; follow best practices, trends, and make decisions for Audubon’s major gift program. •Skilled at working cross-functionally with leaders, as well as high-level volunteers and boards. •Ability to drive, manage and delegate project work. Establish and monitor priorities, and maintain flexibility while meeting deadlines. •Exceptionally strong communicator; superior interpersonal skills also a must. •Proficiency with Microsoft Office applications, as well as navigating, analyzing and reporting data from fundraising databases and other web-based tools. Knowledge of Salesforce a strong plus. •Interest in and commitment to the conservation of birds, other wildlife, and their habitat is preferred. The ability to communicate Audubon’s mission, goals, and programs effectively and with the highest professional standards is critical. •The Vice President will need to have a flexible approach to work, with some evenings and weekends being required, as well as a willingness to travel regionally and nationally up to 25% of the time.
Opportunity This is a new and exciting opportunity to help influence and create value for an organization-wide fundraising initiative and act as a major contributor to one of the nation’s oldest and well-known leaders in the conservation arena. At the midpoint in a five-year strategic plan, Audubon is now embarking on the most ambitious multi-year fundraising effort in its 100+ year history a nine-figure campaign that generates the resources needed to achieve the goals laid out in the strategic plan, recruits new volunteer leadership and major donors, and raises Audubon’s profile in the conservation sector and nonprofit space.
The ideal candidate for the role will be a hungry, driven and focused player/coach who will help increase individual giving significantly in the region. For the right candidate, this role will lead to the largest and most significant gifts ever sought and closed in their career.
Telecommuting is allowed.
Additional Salary Information: Compensation for the Vice President, Development, Upper Central and Mississippi Flyways includes a competitive base salary commensurate with experience and an excellent package of employee benefits.
About National Audubon Society
The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow, throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education, and on-the-ground conservation.