Center for Biological Diversity
  • 19-Jul-2017 to 17-Jan-2018 (MST)
  • Oakland, CA, USA
  • Full Time

At the Center for Biological Diversity, we believe that the welfare of human beings is deeply linked to nature - to the existence in our world of a vast diversity of wild animals and plants. Because diversity has intrinsic value, and because its loss impoverishes society, we work to secure a future for all species, great and small, hovering on the brink of extinction. We do so through science, law and creative media, with a focus on protecting the lands, waters and climate that species need to survive.

We want those who come after us to inherit a world where the wild is still alive.


The Center is currently looking for a full-time Major Gifts Officer. This position is located in Oakland, California.


General position overview:

The Center for Biological Diversity has an outstanding career opportunity for a creative, savvy, driven, self-motivated, fearless, articulate, energetic and effective Major Gifts Officer (MGO). The ideal candidate will have 7-10 years of fundraising experience in the environmental movement and close ties to major donors and funders throughout Los Angeles and the rest of Southern California and even more of the surrounding region. The position will be based in the Center's new Los Angeles office and will report to the Chief Development Officer.  The MGO will be a key player on the Center's Development team and will significantly contribute to the organization's revenue goals by closing high five-, six- and seven-plus-figure gifts.

Primary duties:

  • Build up and maintain a portfolio of 150 - 175 donors and major-gift prospects.
  • Compile a prospect list of new potential major donors both individuals and foundations to support the Center's work. Manage necessary research, qualification and cultivation of prospective donors.
  • Plan and maintain a fast-paced schedule of face-to-face visits to steward current donors and to bring in new major funders.
  • Establish new relationships; draft individualized prospect strategies, letters and proposals leading to asks and closes for new gifts of $100K and above.
  • Develop philanthropic affinity groups and plans to steward donors by demographics, geographic locations and program interests.
  • Work with and leverage the Executive Director, Chief Development Officer, key program staff and select volunteers to develop solicitation strategies and include in direct solicitations, as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with donor-relations team to identify and upgrade high-capacity, recurring annual mid-level $1K - $25K donors to the major-gift level.
  • Work as part of team with senior leadership to plan, set and meet individual annual revenue targets as well as targets for entire the Major Gifts program, including both restricted and unrestricted annual, multi-year and integrated multi-tiered gifts.
  • Attend and with the support of the Development team organize occasional small "friendraiser/fundraiser" gatherings with donors and prospective donors.
  • Record and track progress in existing databases in a timely fashion.

Essential qualities, qualifications and skills:

  • Ideally 7-10 years successful fundraising and direct-solicitation experience.
  • A proven track record of personally closing high five-, six- and seven-plus-figure gifts utilizing moves management.
  • Familiarity with, ties to and contacts with California, national and international funders of the environmental movement.
  • Experience including working with foundations, philanthropic individuals, the local political scene, and peer organizations.
  • Knowledge of endangered species issues and top environmental threats (strongly preferred).
  • Planned giving/endowment experience (a plus, though not required).
  • Experience with, and ability to engage in, significant southwest coast travel.
  • Superior interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills.
  • Note: The Center is open to hiring a candidate with less than seven years of experience if the candidate possesses proven abilities as outlined above, as well as notable knowledge of the environmental movement and a track record as a rainmaker.

Benefits Package

  • Salary is commensurate with experience and comparable to that of other nonprofits
  • Paid generous medical, dental and vision plan.
  • Paid Short-term and Long-term Disability.
  • 403(b) plan with opportunity for match.
  • Generous time off policies.
  • Relaxed work atmosphere and dress code.

Application process:

Please apply by submitting a thoughtful cover letter and resume. The position will remain open until filled. No telephone calls, please. Only candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.

The Center for Biological Diversity deeply values, and is committed to sustaining and promoting, both biological and cultural diversity. We welcome, embrace and respect diversity of people, identities and cultures. We are committed to fostering an organizational culture of diversity and inclusion. The Center believes staff and board diversity is critical to saving life on Earth.

We are an equal opportunity employer.

Center for Biological Diversity
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