Director, Institutional Giving

Job Locations
Regular, Full-Time
Job Category


Now in its second century, Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat that supports them. Audubon’s mission is engaging people in bird conservation on a hemispheric scale through science, policy, education and on-the-ground conservation action.  By mobilizing and aligning its network of Chapters, Centers, State and Important Bird Area programs in the four major migratory flyways in the Americas, the organization will bring the full power of Audubon to bear on protecting common and threatened bird species and the critical habitat they need to survive.  And as part of BirdLife International, Audubon will join people in over 100 in-country organizations all working to protect a network of Important Bird Areas around the world, leveraging the impact of actions they take at a local level.  What defines Audubon’s unique value is a powerful grassroots network of nearly 500 local chapters, 23 state offices, 41 Audubon Centers, Important Bird Area Programs in 50 states, and 700 staff across the country. The National Audubon Society is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). We are committed to a policy of nondiscrimination, inclusion, and equal opportunity and actively seek a diverse pool of candidates in this search.


Position Summary

Reporting to the Managing Director, Institutional Relations (in New York City), the Director, Institutional Giving will be a key member of Audubon’s development team.  This is an opportunity for a highly motivated development professional to build and manage a portfolio of institutional prospects and donors capable of making six and seven-figure investments in Audubon’s work.


This position is based in Chicago though strong candidates based elsewhere in the Midwest are encouraged to apply.

Essential Functions

  • Generate more than $3M a year in foundation and corporate support with a portfolio of donors and prospects capable of making six- and seven-figure investments.
  • Partner with conservation, policy, network and science teams to prioritize funding needs and identify new funding opportunities.
  • Tell the Audubon story in bold and compelling ways—develop big, visionary proposals that stitch together the organization’s work across the country.
  • Focus on new business to expand Audubon’s donor pipeline—identify untapped prospects, develop and implement cultivation plans.
  • Shepherd donors through the moves management process—and capitalize on the full range of Audubon assets to do so, involving (and overseeing) senior management, program staff, and volunteers.
  • Develop a strong knowledge of Audubon’s conservation priorities at local, regional, national, and international levels.
  • Stay up-to-date on current trends in corporate and foundation giving.
  • Assists with other departmental projects and related work as assigned by the Managing Director.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree required as well as at least ten years of progressive institutional fundraising experience and a track record of securing six- and seven-figure gifts.
  • Strong writer with proven ability to develop high-level, compelling proposals; ability to quickly synthesize complex ideas and align them with funder priorities.
  • Persuasive communicator with excellent presentation and listening skills and can effectively marshal support for ideas.
  • Entrepreneurial self-starter with strong organizational, team leadership, and time-management skills. Highly motivated, energetic, and enthusiastic.
  • Team player with natural affinity for building close, effective working relationships with a diverse group of stakeholders.
  • Must be good with numbers and comfortable with budgets and financials.
  • Outstanding stewardship and relationship management skills (not afraid to ask for money and undeterred from hearing “no”).
  • Experience and knowledge of the environmental landscape is a plus, but not required however interest in conservation and Audubon is a must.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office applications; knowledge of Salesforce is a plus.


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