The RequirementsTo meet the basic qualification for this role, you will have legal authorization to work permanently in the United States for any employer without requiring a visa transfer or visa sponsorship. In addition, to be a good fit for the Associate Director of Philanthropy opportunity, you will have:
- 5+ years of fundraising experience, including making major gift (six figures or higher) solicitations.
- The ability to write and edit persuasive philanthropic materials including grant proposals, reports, letters of inquiry, interim reports, stewardship materials, and program/project summaries.
- Knowledge of and experience with the Greater Boston philanthropic community.
- Experience interacting with individual donors and managing fundraising volunteers.
- Computer proficiency with various Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint). Proficiency with complex databases or donor management software a plus.
- A bachelor’s degree.
- Experience with environmental or land conservation organizations is preferred, but at a minimum, you will need interest in and a commitment to The Trust for Public Land’s mission.
- Strong leadership skills, including the ability to influence and motivate others.
- A demonstrated ability to:
- Function effectively as a member of a team, ensuring close coordination and integration with other staff members.
- Accept and apply feedback, follow leadership and align with organizational decisions.
- Self-motivation and the ability to perform successfully without regular supervision.
- Strong organizational skills, excellent attention to detail, and the ability to multi-task and meet deadlines.
- Exceptional oral and written communication skills.
- High integrity and a commitment to personal and professional excellence. You'll need to understand The Trust for Public Land’s gift acceptance policies and ensure ethical compliance with fundraising best practices, as defined by the Association for Fundraising Professionals.
Pictured: The Trust for Public Land creates city playgrounds and protects open space in Commonwealth cities. Urban parks provide people with opportunities for exercise, recreation, community building, and spiritual renewal in nature. They also reduce crime, revitalize neighborhood economies, and create cool “islands” during hot summer days.
The RoleReporting to the New England Director of Philanthropy, you will contribute to The Trust for Public Land’s annual operating and programmatic needs organization-wide and particularly in Massachusetts. You'll have support from a Philanthropy Associate. Also in the office is an Institutional Giving Officer focusing on the New England Region, and a member of our national philanthropy team.
While you will carry a mixed portfolio of foundation, corporate and individual prospects, you'll focus on individual prospects and donors in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The portfolio contains both mid-level and major donors and prospects.
Your specific responsibilities will fall into four main areas. In the area of relationship management, you will realize annual fundraising metrics for the position, contributing to the annual revenue goal for Massachusetts, and supporting overall goals of the organization. This will include:
- Managing a portfolio of approximately 100 donors and prospects with an emphasis on mid to major gift individual donors and prospects in Massachusetts.
- Fostering a greater sense of engagement and a community of support among existing and new donors.
- Focusing on donor identification, strategy development, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship.
- Conducting donor visits regularly and often.
- Making direct solicitations and closing gifts.
- Writing solicitation letters and proposals.
- Tracking and meeting deadlines.
- Coordinating and implementing donor field trips, events, and recognition as needed.
- Identifying potential planned giving donors and developing cultivation and solicitation strategies.
- Informing Planned Giving department of activities and engaging Director of Planned Giving as needed.
- Maintaining donor records in database.
- Engaging other staff members and volunteers in fundraising efforts as appropriate and necessary.
- Articulating program goals and impacts.
- Identifying gift and campaign opportunities.
- Creating successful partnerships with program staff.
- Managing fundraising campaigns as needed.
- Keeping the Director of Philanthropy and philanthropy colleagues informed of key issues and opportunities.
With regard to communications and donor relations, you will: Plan and implement regular communications to donors, including stewardship reports and program updates. Provide relevant local content for use with the organization’s annual giving program, website, annual report, and other publications and collateral materials.
Note: this description is intended to give you a general overview of the position and is not an exhaustive listing of duties and responsibilities.
Pictured: The Trust for Public Land led fundraising, design and construction efforts of Elmhurst Street playground. This program transformed a trash-strewn vacant lot into a safe green space for local kids in the Codman Square neighborhood. As with all Parks for People programs, community residents played an important part.
More Good ReasonsHigh profile impact
In addition to helping build out our philanthropy approach, you will play a leadership role in the Boston office, promoting a positive culture and cross-functional collaboration.
Multiple ways to engage donors
The story of The Trust for Public Land is one that showcases the integration of diverse activities into a strategically coherent impact. At the same time, that diversity means there are plenty of interesting and exciting projects to help engage the individual interests of different donors.
Even if you already have land conservation in your background, you'll gain broad exposure to new and innovative projects and fundraising strategies. Success in this role could set you up to take on additional responsibilities or even pursue advancement within the organization.
You'll have a good deal of autonomy in managing and growing your portfolio of donors, but you'll also work closely with seasoned professionals in this space. In addition, you'll have opportunities to share ideas and insights with a number of talented people nationwide. You'll find our leaders open to input and feedback around strategy and overall direction.
Top rated organization
Because we spend so little to gain so much, The Trust for Public Land is one of the country's top-rated nonprofit organizations. Our skill at pooling many funding sources allows us to conserve $4 worth of land for every $1 donated. A couple of examples:
- The American Institute of Philanthropy gives The Trust for Public Land an "A for efficiency" for putting 84% towards program costs while generally spending only $9 to raise $100.
- Forbes Magazine gives us high marks for fundraising efficiency and charitable commitment, in our entry on their list of "The 200 Largest U.S. Charities."
In addition to a competitive salary we offer comprehensive benefits, including health, dental, vision and prescription plans; generous paid time off; flexible spending accounts; retirement savings plan; a commuter benefits program; and more.
Video: To become more climate-resilient, cities must restore natural functions of the land by weaving green elements into the built environment. The Trust for Public Land helps cities meet the climate challenge through conservation and design incorporated into Parks for People projects.
Keys to SuccessWe'll look to you to leverage your familiarity with the Boston/Rhode Island philanthropic landscape to hit the ground running. You will need to be motivated and enjoy meeting with potential donors and soliciting gifts. This is a high potential market, but it also is very competitive. You'll need to be persistent, and also understand timing, including when to be aggressive and when to play it low-key.
Our organization is going through positive change and, while we're not talking about an extreme makeover, the transitions will require flexibility and adaptability. Change can be challenging, but if you're the person we're looking for, you understand that change also presents opportunities. The New England Regional Director of Philanthropy will visit the Boston office, but for the most part, you'll need to be resourceful about achieving goals independently. Collaboration with centralized services such as marketing, prospect research, donor relations will be key to securing the resources you need to be successful.
As we've said, there will be support from others in the office. In particular, you should partner with program leaders to ensure your efforts are aligned with their goals. That comes with the caveat that you'll need to focus on the philanthropy side, without getting sidetracked by programmatic details. As you interact with various stakeholders, you'll need the diplomacy and tact to steer their enthusiasm in appropriate directions. In some situations, you may need to help people understand why we can't pursue a particular tactic.
As much as anything else, you should be driven to get out into the field, day in and day out, bringing a strong work ethic to achieving goals. Perhaps most important of all, to excel in this role you will need to share enthusiastically in our mission of Creating Parks and Protecting Land for People.
Pictured: With support from the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund, The Trust for Public Land worked with Boston Natural Areas Fund and local advocates to help the city acquire and transform an abandoned rail corridor for use as a greenway and bike trail. Today the East Boston Greenway connects multiple open spaces in the area, from Piers Park and Memorial Stadium to Wood Island Bay Marsh and Bremen Street Park.
About UsAt the Trust for Public Land, we don't just save land -- we save land for people to enjoy, from neighborhood parks to national parks.
Spending time in nature -- days, hours, or just a few minutes -- enriches our lives. It makes us feel rejuvenated. Healthier. Happier.
Our mission is to create parks and protect land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come. Every park, playground, and public space we create is an open invitation to explore, wonder, discover, and play. We're proud to say that we've been connecting communities to the outdoors -- and to each other --since 1972. Today, millions of Americans live within a 10-minute walk of a park or natural area we helped create, and countless more visit every year.
Our core beliefs:
- A relationship between people and nature is critical for healthy people and a healthy landscape.
- Close-to-home parks and nature are essential.
- Conservation should encompass all landscapes, from city to wilderness.
- The more the whole community participates in the process, the better the results.
- Equity and fairness matter.