Director, Individual Giving & Events

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Director, Individual Giving & Events

Job Category: Finance, Grants & Contracts

Rainforest Alliance

New York, NY

Organization Summary

The Rainforest Alliance is an international nonprofit organization that works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior. Based in New York City, with offices throughout the United States and worldwide, the Rainforest Alliance works with people whose livelihoods depend on the land, helping them transform the way they grow food, harvest wood and host travelers. For more information, please visit


The Director, Individual Giving & Events will be responsible for the management of Rainforest Alliance’s membership, individual philanthropy, and special events teams. S/he will be responsible for the regular implementation and monitoring of the team’s progress against annual goals, leading all identification, cultivation, stewardship, and solicitation strategies. S/he will be responsible for the operational effectiveness of these teams – ensuring the skills and leadership development of staff, managing revenue streams, and leading the teams through a successful execution of their strategies. This position requires a highly organized, passionate and creative individual to work directly with Rainforest Alliances’ leadership and board on fundraising strategies and efforts, developing relationships with individual minor and major donors and executing events to bring the development revenue stream to a new level of success.


Individual Philanthropy
• Play a leadership role in the strategic management of the Individual Philanthropy team, setting new priorities, developing and implementing projects, events, and activities, and supervising the Manager, Individual Philanthropy
• Manage a personal portfolio and act as a senior frontline fundraiser by initiating contacts with potential major donors, developing cultivation strategies, moving potential donors in an appropriate and timely fashion toward solicitation and closure, meeting with donors and making solicitations;
• Steward current donors, and represent Rainforest Alliance at donor meetings, as well as Rainforest Alliance cultivation and stewardship events throughout the year;
• Manage all aspects of key campaigns. Liaise with the development writing staff to create compelling proposals and reports; ensure pledges are fulfilled in a timely manner; a high volume of prospects are identified, and new relationships are developed;
• Play an integral role in setting Rainforest Alliance’s strategies for identification, cultivation and stewardship of donors and work with staff to determine ask strategies and amounts; making portfolio and engagement recommendations; and identifying and overseeing outreach to new donors;
• In collaboration with his/her supervisor and staff, lead development of strategic plans to increase revenue;
• Work with external relations leadership on overseeing board relations, including the identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of Board members and prospects; and
• Provide guidance and direction to all development team managers in the preparation of documents, annual plans, quarterly goals and reports to the Board.

Special Events
• Work closely with president and executive team to strategize, plan, execute and increase revenue, awareness and relationships from events for external relations divisions;
• Oversee research, strategy, cultivation and management of event honorees, co-chairs, sponsors, celebrities, VIPs and participants;
• Lead and manage all aspects of event production including venue contracts, materials design, décor, menu selection, solicitations, mailings, cultivation and stewardship of event participants, vendor relationships and contracts, staff, interns and volunteers, in-kind donations, auctions, gift bags, etc.;
• Conduct and manage in-person meetings, phone and written follow up as needed to develop and maintain relationships related to fundraising, stewardship, cultivation and awareness raising events;
• Lead process of events annual income and oversee expense budgets, monitor income and expenses, managing quarterly fiscal updates and adherence to established budget guidelines;
• Supervise Special Events team and ensure unity among all teams; and
• Other responsibilities as assigned.

• Play a leadership role in the strategic management of the Membership team, developing an annual fundraising plan and supervising the Senior Manager, Membership;
• Work with Membership team and other units within Rainforest Alliance to identify topics for fundraising appeals;
• Provide input and final sign-off on production of mail, email, website, social media, and PPC deliverables;
• Implement an upgrade strategy to move members into Individual Philanthropy, planned giving, and Special Events; and
• Other duties as assigned.

Supervisory Responsibilities:
This position will oversee two teams, with a total of 8-10 staff members.
Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization’s policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems.


• Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree a plus.
• A minimum of 8 years’ experience with at least 5 years of managerial development experience with a record of securing major gifts and increasing revenue;
• Must have exemplary communication skills, including the ability to eloquently speak and write about Rainforest Alliance programs;
• Demonstrated experience managing major fundraising and cultivation events, auctions, meetings, conferences; supervising staff; and understanding of non-profit and development operations required;
• Knowledge of Planned Giving preferred;
• Collaborative and energetic work style, superior people skills and the ability to motivate and delegate;
• Ability to develop budgets, analyze financial reports and create income projections;
• Written and verbal proficiency in Spanish a plus;
• Excellent computer skills; Proficiency in Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint required. Demonstrated experience with Microsoft Outlook, Desktop Publishing, Salesforce, Luminate;
• Dependability and outstanding organizational ability with focused attention to detail and follow through;
• Willingness and ability to travel up to 10% of time, nationally and internationally; and
• Some lifting and physical activity required for various events.

• Excellent writing, editing and verbal communication skills. Experienced, professional and comfortable with in-person, over the phone and electronic solicitations. Confident negotiation skills;
• Encouraging and guiding employees in order to make their performance more effective and to enhance their self-perception and problem-solving skills;
• Strong organizational skills to manage multiple priorities in a time sensitive manner. Excellent interpersonal skills with ability to interact culturally, linguistically, and diplomatically with diverse internal and external individuals. Dependable and strong attention to detail and deadlines. Ability to work independently and on a team, multi-task and work under pressure; and
• Knowledge of, and commitment to environmental issues

Application Instructions

Please apply online at Combine cover letter and resume as one single document and upload.