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Development Director

Company: St. Simons Land Trust
Date Posted: January 31, 2018

Development Director for the St. Simons Land Trust

Position Overview:

The St. Simons Land Trust (SSLT) seeks a dynamic fundraising professional with a proven track record of success to serve as the Development Director. SSLT is an accredited land trust and a leading nonprofit organization in the region. The Development Director serves in a primary role with major donors, Board members and volunteers, and various other constituencies. 

St. Simons Island is the last remaining accessible island off the Georgia coast that still has significant opportunity for large-scale land conservation.  This is an exciting time for SSLT as the staff and board work together to ensure the natural and scenic qualities of the island are preserved for future generations.

The Development Director is responsible for leading the planning, design, implementation and evaluation of all aspects of the organization’s fundraising; integrating membership, program and capital needs for the SSLT; with emphasis on relationship building that will sustain the organization in perpetuity. The Development Director reports to the Executive Director.


Primary Duties and Responsibilities

Team Management

  • Manage Development staff, employing teambuilding and performance evaluation practices that ensure a constructive and supportive environment. Encourage professional growth while maintaining an overall outcome focus.
  • Lead Membership Director in SSLT’s membership program
  • Ensure that donor software is being used by staff to its fullest capacity, including notes from briefings and contact management.
  • Conduct Development staff meetings at least twice monthly to assess progress towards goals and encourage teamwork.

Major Gifts Programs

  • Manage a portfolio of individuals, foundations and corporations capable of making a major gift
  • Direct the planning and implementation of capital campaigns
  • Responsible for setting strategies to identify, cultivate, solicit and steward all prospects in managed portfolio
  • Advise and assist Executive Director and Board of Directors and other volunteer leadership in carrying out major gift fundraising responsibilities.
  • Manage contract grant writer for all foundations who qualify as major gift prospects to develop and implement a planned approach to local and national foundations whose areas of interests coincide closely with the work of the SSLT.
  • Work to further a Bequest Program
  • Write strategy memos and talking points for all upcoming meetings with prospective donors
  • Manage $10,000 Live Oak Society Benefactor giving level for the Land Trust; including a cultivation and stewardship calendar.
  • Manage a Major Gifts Subcommittee


  • Work with outside public relations counsel
  • Oversee the preparation of written proposals, information materials, invitations, web content, online contribution content and all external information shared with donors via Development staff and with approval by Executive Director

Volunteer Management

  • Direct volunteers to assist in identifying, cultivation, solicitation of major gifts
  • Recruit, train and motivate volunteer leadership to further enhance and promote the organization’s fundraising objectives; including increasing membership in and participation and stewardship of the Advisory Council and Major Gifts Subcommittee.
  • Oversee Membership Director’s leadership of Development Committee meetings.
  • Work with ED to schedule and conduct Governance Committee meetings.

Senior Staff Participation

  • Attend all senior level staff meetings; Executive Committee and Finance Committee meetings
  • Assist with organization-level decisions and direction


Essential Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree with significant fundraising experience.
  • Strong communication and presentation skills.
  • Experience in cultivating and developing constructive and effective relationships.
  • Experience in independently managing people and projects, while also working within a collaborative environment.
  • Flexibility to work beyond the normal workday, on weekends and at other times, especially during deadline periods.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge of and experience working in Coastal Georgia’s philanthropic community.
  • Experience working with volunteer leadership and senior staff leadership in fundraising, including the ability to motivate, lead, and build the confidence of partners who may be less experienced in the fundraising.
  • Demonstrated experience in managing comprehensive or capital campaigns.
  • Knowledge of current and evolving trends in major gifts giving and solicitation, including social media platforms.
  • Knowledge of advanced gift planning concepts.


To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume and references to David H. Pope, by January 15, 2018. Please no phone calls. This is a full-time position eligible for benefits. Salary commensurate with experience.