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Chief Development Officer

The Chief Development Officer will work collaboratively with the Executive Director and Board, and in concert with external park, conservation, and education constituencies. Particular emphasis will be placed on expansion of current fundraising strategies and programs including the comprehensive annual fund, major gifts program (corporate, foundation and individuals), and estate gifts. Primary responsibilities will include prospect research, cultivation including events, grant proposals, stewardship, management, record keeping, and overall development of the programs.

For 35 years, the National Park Trust (NPT), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, has been working with the National Park Service (NPS) and other agencies to address needs related to maintaining the integrity of our nation’s parks. This work has included 60 land acquisition and park preservation projects in national parks and other public lands. NPT’s mission “Preserving parks today; creating park stewards for tomorrow” is based on the vision that everyone should have the opportunity to have an American park experience.

To address the growing disconnect between children and the outdoors, in 2009 NPT launched a nationally recognized youth program, the Buddy Bison School Program, to engage Title I school children with local, state, and national parks to teach environmental education and the benefits of outdoor recreation. If parks are to survive, the face of those parks must change and under-served communities must have access to these cultural and environmental resources. This program has benefited children in 65 schools across the country in grades pre-K through 8th. This hands-on program enhances existing school curricula with an emphasis on science, technology, engineering, and math as well as history, language arts, reading, geography, the arts, and outdoor recreation. Students learn about the careers of professionals who support parks and the importance of stewarding our public lands by arranging school visits from our many conservation partners. The Chief Development Officer reports to the Executive Director.

Primary Responsibilities:

The Chief Development Officer will direct and manage all aspects of NPT’s fundraising programs including:

  • Growing the comprehensive annual fund.
  • Cultivating corporate and foundation sponsors for NPT core mission as well as for specific land and youth education projects.
  • Identifying and preparing grant proposals for foundations, both new and renewed.
  • Expanding the fundraising potential of NPT’s annual award event. 
  • Developing a significantly expanded individual major donor pool.
  • Overseeing special fundraising initiatives that are program specific.
  • Expanding participation in a deferred planned giving program.
  • Supporting the board’s and executive director’s outreach to prospects by providing research, developing strategic talking points, drafting emails, and providing supporting documents.
  • Taking a lead role in scheduling and coordinating board development committee meetings.
  •  Overseeing or supervising any and all fundraising/cultivation events, including printed materials, venue logistics, and volunteers.
  • Initiating and creating content for four in-house direct mail fundraisers;
  •  Maintaining the fundraising/constituent database.
  •  Designing accurate and useful reporting methods to track fundraising progress. 
  • Drafting all thank you notes and acknowledgments for donors.
  •  Drafting content for Annual Report.
  • Coordinating the assembly of all development materials for board meetings and committee meetings. 

Qualifications and Qualities:
The ideal candidate for the position of Chief Development Officer will be:

  • Strategic.
  • Passionate about parks and preservation and committed to advancing NPT’s mission.
  • Experienced with annual fund in nonprofit organizations.
  • Skilled at writing and communicating orally; a strong compelling writer and public speaker is a must.
  • Experienced in identifying and preparing grant proposals including strategy, narratives, budgets and supporting documents.
  • Skilled in Power Point presentation, excel, HTML, and Adobe Creative Suite.
  • Creative with strong organizational skills.
  • Excellent skills in stewarding relationships with corporate and foundation sponsors and major donors.
  • Detail oriented, a self-starter, pro-active and able to multi-task.
  • Able to work independently and adhere to deadlines.
  • Experienced in volunteer management.
  • Willing to travel to meet major donors and prospects.

A Bachelor’s Degree is required for this position as is a minimum of 5 years experience in nonprofit development.

Interested candidates should send a cover letter and resume to hr@parktrust.org.