Founded in 1905, the National Audubon Society is one of the most venerable conservation organizations in the world. Audubon follows birds to ecosystems, conserving them for wildlife, for people, and for the earth’s biological diversity. Today, Audubon enjoys a widely respected centrist brand, a powerful legacy of conservation success, deep loyalty among its supporters, and the clarity that springs from working for the benefit of birds and the places they need to survive and thrive.
Audubon works to save birds through conservation and advocacy firmly grounded in science. As leaders in applied bird conservation science, Audubon engages in research and analysis to support the development of its programs, to build its authority as a science-led thought leader, and to inform and evaluate the work of Audubon and its partners.
With a membership base that spans the political spectrum – 52% are progressive, 48% moderate to conservative – Audubon is uniquely positioned to make progress in red, blue, and purple states and communities and with federal agencies looking for non-ideological partners at this unprecedented political moment.
Audubon’s powerful distributed network has an unparalleled reach. No other conservation organization matches the size, reach, scale, influence, diversity, and creative energy of its chapters, nature centers, staff, volunteer leaders, and US and international partners. The network has the knowledge and credibility to care for birds, and the places they need, in communities across the country – and it unites to tackle big challenges facing birds that cannot be solved by any single part of the network alone.
Seven years ago, Audubon’s Board charged their new CEO, David Yarnold, with a mission to dramatically change the organization’s approach to conservation, and the organization embarked on the kind of major turnaround that legacy nonprofits generally do not attempt. The first step was to change the way Audubon approached conservation, and the organization’s One Audubon strategy used the flyways traveled by migratory birds as the inspiration for its new organizational alignment. By connecting the work of the Audubon network – chapters, centers, national and state staff, volunteers, US and International partners, and other supporters – along each of the flyways of the Americas, Audubon weaved a seamless web of conservation for birds and other migratory and non-migratory species. By working toward common flyway conservation goals, Audubon can have greater impact, and by coordinating resources and expertise, it can dramatically increase its efficiency across the network.
Today Audubon has an all new executive leadership team in place – many from the for-profit sector – and is putting more than $100 million annually to work on conservation (compared with $73 million just five years ago). This new robust Audubon is a strategic, responsive, integrated organization that can tap people’s passion for bird-centered conservation and translate it into action.
2020 Strategic Plan
With a new shared vision in place, Audubon’s new strategic plan focuses on bringing America’s largest and most effective conservation network to bear on five highly scalable strategic priorities that can make the greatest difference for the future of birds: Coasts; Working Lands; Water; Climate; and Bird-Friendly Communities. These priorities cover the breadth of landscapes that birds need to thrive, including shorelines, lakes, bird-friendly cities, and habitat strongholds that will provide shelter to birds as the climate changes and their old homes disappear. In addition, Audubon is investing in innovative communication strategies to bring birds and nature to a new generation of diverse potential activists and supporters.
Governance and Staff
The National Audubon Society is a nonprofit organization based in New York City. Audubon has 23 state offices and 41 nature centers (the largest network of nature centers owned by a major conservation NGO), and a staff of 660, including 100 in New York and 25 in Washington, DC. Audubon’s network includes 463 affiliated Chapters, each an independent 501(c)(3) organization, aligned to Audubon’s 2020 strategy and engaged in driving Audubon’s community-based conservation work.
Over the past eight years, Audubon has diversified the composition of its Board to reflect the One Audubon vision, and has elevated the overall caliber of its Board members and their ability to contribute to the organization. Audubon’s Board seats are now some of the most coveted in US conservation and further development is anticipated as the organization continues to grow in scale and ambition. Since the onset of One Audubon, Board giving has increased five-fold and continues to increase.
Diversity and Inclusion
Achieving ambitious conservation goals requires authentic representation of all the communities in which Audubon works and, as such, diversity and inclusion are core values and key strategic imperatives for the organization. This is an essential part of Audubon’s culture and values, and to get there, Audubon will be intentional about becoming more diverse and implement an approach that will yield measurable results.
For more information on Audubon please refer to: www.audubon.org
For Audubon’s 2016-2020 Strategy: www.audubon.org/sites/default/files/strategic_plan_2016-2020_final.pdf
The Major Gifts Officer will play a key part in the creation and implementation of an effective major gift fundraising strategy, and will be a vital part of a Development team who are delivering the next quantum leap in fundraising at Audubon. It will be instrumental in delivering an order of magnitude increase in income from high net worth individuals and grant giving foundations.
Climate change and the environment are increasingly urgent philanthropic causes. Birding is second only to gardening as this country’s favorite pastime. There is an exceptional pool of wealthy individuals who have the capacity to make major and transformational gifts to Audubon. In this context, Audubon has the opportunity to develop a universe of support and influence, leveraging individuals’ personal, voluntary, professional, political and business networks in order to support Audubon and to make a positive impact on the quality of life on Earth.
This position is an opportunity for a highly motivated and experienced development professional to build and manage a portfolio of donors capable of making annual gifts of $50,000+. This individual will be responsible for conducting donor qualification visits with Audubon prospects and assume management of current major donors. He or she will be responsible for qualification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of individual major donors throughout the Audubon network. Key metrics for success include donor engagement (number of personal meetings with donors, prospects, and volunteers) and revenue (value of gifts; number of solicitations; and success rate of closing gifts).
The Major Gifts Officer is responsible for best practices of moves management and direct solicitation of supporters. The successful candidate will be an entrepreneurial, result-driven, development professional who has experience closing five and six figure gifts. This position requires up to 50% travel; evenings and weekends are also occasionally required.
After 12 months in post, the successful candidate will have:
- Helped to create case statements for priority fundraising projects.
- Successfully identified prospective donors and implemented a cultivation and contact strategy for new major gift prospects.
- Contributed to the development and implementation of a stewardship program to cultivate and develop donor relationships.
- Become competent in presenting a wide range of Audubon’s priority projects to prospective supporters.
- Successfully managed a portfolio of 100-125 prospects and donors.
- Demonstrated a flexible and ‘can-do’ approach in all elements of daily work.
- Become a strong, successful and respected member of the National Development Team and across the Audubon network.
- Kept accurate and up to date contact records in the database, and be able to demonstrated progress towards goals.
Note: Please submit a COVER LETTER along with your resume for consideration.
Prospect Identification and Solicitation
Income Generation and Reporting
Other duties as required
Experience and knowledge
Skills and abilities
Note: Please submit a COVER LETTER along with your resume for consideration.