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Major Gifts Officer

Job Location

Portland, ME


Type of Job



$65,000 to $70,000, adjusted for experience over the minimum requirements.

Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Apr 18, 2022

About the job

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Help fuel the fight to protect the health of people and the planet, and achieve environmental justice. Join us to persuade industry and government policymakers to eliminate toxic chemicals, slash plastic pollution, and end environmental racism.


Defend Our Health works to create a world where all people thrive, with equal access to safe food and drinking water, healthy homes, and products that are toxic-free and climate-friendly. Working at the state and national levels, we harness science and people power in strategic campaigns that win meaningful progress toward systemic change.


The Major Gifts Officer will build relationships with major donors and prospects, directly solicit major gifts, and organize staff and board leaders to expand major donor development. The successful candidate will manage an effective prospect and donor management system that includes revenue forecasting, donor planning, tracking of results, and reporting on progress.


The focus of the Major Gifts Officer’s work will be to:



· Ensure that sufficient major gifts are raised to meet budget and campaign goals and support growth in overall individual giving with reduced reliance on grants.

· Manage and directly solicit your own portfolio of major donors and prospects.

· Grow our list of major donor prospects from our existing donor base, referrals from donors, and prospecting research tools.

· Organize and support the executive director in major donor development, with similar support provided to other relevant staff.

· Build and support a committee of board members and other volunteers to implement additional major donor plans, including solicitations.

· Create fundraising plans for each major donor and prospect, and track portfolio activity and progress in our donor database and with other team members.

· Ensure the development of appropriate materials to support the major gifts program, in coordination with communications and program staff.

· Develop and execute cultivation and stewardship opportunities for prospects and major donors, in coordination with the rest of the team.

· Contribute to the planning of donor-focused events that serve to cultivate major donor prospects and steward current major donors.

· Manage and maintain our donor relationship database, with regular reporting on donor engagement status, results, and next steps.

· Develop revenue projections and longer-term major donor development plans to support budget development and help meet growth expectations.


Minimum Qualifications:

The successful candidate will have:


· At least five years of professional experience with an established track record of identifying, cultivating, soliciting, closing, and maintaining major gifts from individuals.

· Demonstrated ability to build strong professional relationships with donors and their advisors, creating a climate of confidence and trust.

· Passion for regular and personal communications with prospects and donors.

· Excellent communication skills, especially in listening to others.

· Strong team-building skills, with a collaborative work style.

· Adeptness at using and managing CRM systems to support fundraising, including reporting and quantitative analysis of progress and results.

· Ability to translate complex issues into plain language that resonates.

· Well organized with excellent attention to detail and follow through.

· Solid commitment to our mission and to social justice.

· Must be current with vaccinations per public health advice during the pandemic.


The ideal candidate will also have experience working with nonprofit organizations that advocate for policy and/or marketplace change.


Defend Our Health works at the state and national level under a $2.1 million annual budget. We aim to significantly grow revenues from individual giving to provide more financial resilience with less dependence on grants. We have launched a capacity-building campaign that’s about one-third of the way toward meeting our goal of raising $1 million from major donors over three years. For us, major gifts range in amount from $1,000 to $50,000.


Location: You may work out of your home in Northern New England, expecting to host face-to-face virtual meetings with donors and colleagues, and, as pandemic conditions allow, also expecting to travel to meet with donors, board members, and staff in person. At this time, Maine is where the greatest percentage of our donors reside. You are also welcome to join us in our office in Portland, Maine, a New England gem. We will also consider a more distant remote location for a truly exceptional candidate who has highly relevant experience.


Salary: $65,000 to $70,000, adjusted for experience over the minimum requirements.


Benefits: Medical, disability, dental, and vision insurance; 401K; four weeks paid vacation, a generous number of paid holidays, as well as sick leave.


To Apply:Please submit a cover letter highlighting your interest in the position and how your skills and background align with the qualifications, a writing sample, and your resume using our online application:


Application Deadline: Application review will take place as applications are received and until a hire is made. Please see our website to confirm if we are still accepting applications.


Defend Our Health is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, protected veteran status, disability, or national origin.

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