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The Open Space Institute (OSI) is a national leader in land protection and creating connections to nature and the outdoors for all people. Over the past five decades, OSI has protected more than 2.3 million at risk, irreplaceable acres of forests, wetlands, and shorelines across the North American Eastern Seaboard.
Expanding in both scope and size, OSI employs entrepreneurial spirit, determination, and expertise to protect the land that matters most – to preserve clean drinking water; improve the public’s access to parks, public trails, and greenways; save at-risk wildlife habitat; strengthen communities; and to combat climate change and mitigate its effects. OSI has an operating budget of $45 million, of which $32 million is derived through philanthropy, and is engaged in several multi-year campaigns and initiatives to support its mission.
Due to rapid programmatic and geographic growth, OSI seeks a motivated and skilled development professional to support the expansion of our individual giving program. Reporting to the Senior Director of Individual Giving, the newly created Individual Giving Officer role will be responsible for the identification, qualification, cultivation, and stewardship of prospects to further develop the individual donor portfolio. This frontline fundraising position requires experience building an individual or major giving portfolio in partnership with development leadership and program staff. The Individual Giving Officer will support the Senior Director in implementing effective moves management and database best practices to sustain increasing donor engagement across the Eastern United States.
Within the first 12 months, the Individual Giving Officer will achieve the following major objectives:
- Cultivate and steward a portfolio of mid-level individual donors with the goal of increasing their giving over time.
- Begin to identify and qualify new donors with an affinity for the mission and work of OSI to continue building out the individual giving portfolio.
- Partner with the Senior Director of Individual Giving to implement effective moves management practices to support increased cultivation of major donors to the organization.
- Build familiarity with OSI programs and initiatives to be able to effectively convey the work to donors.
The Individual Giving Officer will have the following primary responsibilities:
- Working closely with the Senior Director of Individual Giving, implement annual development plans with the goal of increasing individual donor support of OSI.
- Partner with the Senior Director of Individual Giving, Senior Manager of Donor Relations, and Development Associates to identify and qualify individual donors with the capacity to become major donors over time.
- Implement moves management practices to build a portfolio of individual donors and prospects, securing annual and multi-year commitments:
- Successfully identify, qualify, and cultivate existing and new donors for both unrestricted and project-specific support.
- Implement efforts to raise the level of commitment among OSI’s existing donor base.
- Partner with others on the Development team to identify and cultivate new supporters for OSI.
- Actively engage in prospect research to identify and develop a larger pool of prospective donors; qualify and cultivate new prospects with the potential to become major donors.
- Support the Senior Director of Individual Giving in preparing the SVP of Philanthropy, executive leadership, and program colleagues for cultivation visits, briefings, and solicitations of high-level donors and prospects.
- With the support of Development Associates, create and oversee execution of year-round engagement and stewardship strategy for general level donor portfolio.
- Ensure the integrity of donor records in the database to allow for accurate and effective reporting on fundraising activity and revenue projections.
- Effectively convey OSI’s mission and programs and support the creation of written proposals, brochures, reports, letters, and other correspondence.
- Act as an OSI representative and spokesperson and effectively network in various venues and in front of a wide range of audiences.
- A bachelor’s degree or equivalent relevant experience and a minimum of five years of professional fundraising experience, with a focus on individual giving and moves management; a commitment to best fundraising practices.
- Enthusiastic passion for OSI’s mission, vision, and values; knowledge of conservation issues or experience fundraising in support of environmental issues is an advantage.
- Experience managing a portfolio of individual donors and/or supporting the cultivation and stewardship of a major gift-level portfolio.
- Track record of identifying, qualifying, and cultivating annual and mid-level individual donors with the goal of building or expanding a major gift portfolio.
- Prior experience soliciting individual gifts and implementing moves management to support increased giving from those donors.
- Familiarity and experience with donor prospect management methods and software; experience in managing and tracking multiple prospects and donors.
- Capacity to develop new and creative approaches to identify, qualify, and cultivate prospective donors with the potential to become major donors.
- Flexibility and an eagerness to listen, learn, be adaptable, and build healthy relationships with cross-functional teams.
- Strong interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills; ability to interact and relate well with donors and colleagues.
- Tenacious, creative, and entrepreneurial with the ability to quickly synthesize complex information.
- Commitment to ethical fundraising and handling confidential information with integrity and sensitivity.
- Self-motivated with strong work ethic and ability to work with minimal guidance within the context of a team environment and a network of relationships.
- Strong organizational skills, attention to detail, high level of creativity and initiative, results-oriented, and ability to handle deadlines and shifting priorities with good judgement.
- Excellent computer skills (MS Office programs) and comfort with donor databases (Raiser’s Edge a plus).
- This position requires a valid driver's license and may include a review of the prospective employee's motor vehicle record.
Please note: If you do not wholly meet the above qualifications but believe you are otherwise well-suited to meet the needs of this position, we encourage you to apply.
The position can be based in OSI’s New York City, Beacon, NY, or Albany, NY offices and will require travel or out of office work directly with donors as needed (around 40%) primarily in the Hudson Valley, NY-metro area, with occasional travel within the northeastern and southeastern United States.
- Hybrid work arrangement with four days in office expected weekly, when not on donor visits.
Compensation & Benefits:
The salary range for this position is $93,000-$103,000. OSI offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes generous paid time off (including PTO, holidays, sick time, and summer Fridays); medical, dental, and vision insurance; 403(b) retirement plan with employer match; long- and short-term disability and group life insurance; employee assistance program; health advocate; and commuter benefits.
OSI is an equal opportunity employer and is actively recruiting a diverse workforce. Land conservation benefits all people. Our mission is best advanced by the contributions and leadership of people across varying identities, including racial, gender, spiritual, and cultural. We are committed to cultivating an inclusive work environment that fosters belonging and we look for future team members who share that same value. We encourage applications from candidates whose identities have been historically under-represented in the environmental movement.
We do not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship, age, disability, height, weight, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. We will consider qualified applicants with arrest/conviction records for employment.