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Development Director

Grace Farms Foundation
New Canaan, CT
  • Posted: over a month ago
  • Full-Time
Job Description

The Role

Grace Farms Foundation is looking for a team player and leader that can elevate the Foundation's unique mode of contributing to the world and garner sustainable support through multiple channels of giving programs and partnerships. We are looking for someone who can incubate and accelerate the Foundation's established fund-raising channels and create profound new fundraising paths drawing from their reservoir of professional development experiences and networks. This is an exciting opportunity to grow a department and to be at the forefront of philanthropic innovation.

The ideal candidate will have experience with non-profits and foundations particularly in the cultural institution or conservancy fields, understand the evolving world of philanthropy, and is eager to tell compelling stories of how Grace Farms Foundation is a unique model for accelerating good. They will know how to reach new audiences for purposes of development, while continuing to cultivate existing partners and supporters with care and excellence.

The Development Director will thrive in entrepreneurial environments that pursue more than funding targets- they will have a passion for capacity building and creating relationships, across sectors and among individuals. Grace Farms Foundation values creating new outcomes, and the Development Director will be a key partner in ensuring fiscal longevity, so the Foundation can continue this work for decades to come.

Location & Travel

While there is flexibility to accommodate some work from home, this position will be primarily located at 365 Lukes Wood Road in New Canaan, CT. The position includes travel in Connecticut and New York, for the purposes of relationship development. Some flexibility to work from home can be accommodated.

Your Day-to-Day Responsibilities

  • This working manager will collaborate regularly with Foundation Leadership, Initiative & Departmental Directors, Leadership Advisory Committee members, and other key Foundation colleagues and volunteers to understand, strategize, support, and execute overall Foundation goals for fundraising.
  • Provides day-to-day and strategic management, coaching and mentorship of the modestly sized Advancement and Strategic Partnership team, stepping in as necessary to assist in the execution of their tasks to bring goals and strategies to completion, assuring the timely flow of pertinent and relevant information internally and externally, when appropriate.
  • Lead the Planning, project management and implementation of special donor cultivation events, including annual benefit, signature development events, meetings, tours, and other special gatherings.
  • Facilitate, oversee, track and report on donor relationship and solicitation programs and approaches from all sources of giving including the Foundation's membership program, individuals, foundations, corporations, and other strategic partners.
  • Design and implement new channels of giving for the Foundation that is in keeping with its objectives and values.
  • Represent the Foundation in various front-facing capacities, including public presentations, with a focus on authentic engagement, connecting the Foundation's leadership to new networks, and stewardship. Identify, research, and develop corporate, community, and individual prospects for the organization's fundraising priorities.
  • Oversee development operations and fundraising reporting, which include our constituent database, compliance, reporting regulations, auditing, updated legal policies, and other standards and requirements for gifts solicited by and received by the Foundation.
  • Provide research as necessary on trends to position Grace Farms Foundation's work in a relevant context.
  • Liaise with Board members and Leadership
  • Explore and oversee strategic grant opportunities.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Ideally 10+ years of development and philanthropy experience, with 5 years in a leadership position
  • Completed Bachelor's degree. Higher level degrees preferred.
  • Strategic problem solver who relishes opportunities to bring people together to advance the mission of an organization.
  • Proven ability to craft and articulate a case for support for Foundation programs, both verbally and in writing.
  • Experienced manager who can lead and maximize team members towards common goals.
  • Interest in innovating within the department but also creating lasting and effective new structures and channels for giving.
  • Demonstrated experience creating and implementing successful comprehensive development plans.
  • The ideal candidate has a demonstrated track record in all aspects of fundraising, including membership programs, major gifts, online giving, foundation support, planned giving, special events, and development operations.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to sustain relationships and compel donors at various levels.
  • Works thoroughly and timely with excellent writing skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to maintain confidentiality of donors and Foundation leadership.
  • Demonstrated ability to build a culture of philanthropy within an organization and to enthusiastically and successfully engage in one-on-one solicitation and ongoing donor stewardship.
  • Track record of, and an interest in, learning and developing as a professional, staying on top of best practices and aligning donor stewardship strategies to those practices.
  • Personal qualities of integrity, credibility, and a commitment to the Foundation's mission.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office, CRM software/donor databases, web-based applications and use of the internet for research required.
  • We are a highly collaborative space so candidates must be flexible, and enjoy working with colleagues from diverse industry backgrounds.

Physical Requirements:

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to walk or stand, sit, see, read and speak English clearly, hear and use hands to reach, handle or feel.
  • The employee is occasionally required to climb, stoop, kneel or crouch.
  • The employee must occasionally lift, push and/ or move up to 25 pounds.


Grace Farms offers a competitive benefit package that includes a choice of medical plans, a dental and vision plan, 100% employer-paid basic life insurance and short-term disability. We encourage our staff to take time-off to rest and recharge and provide PTO including vacation, sick, and personal days as well as 10 paid holidays. All staff are welcome to explore the beautiful 80-acres of our preserved land and may take part in any of the numerous public events on-site.

Pay: $100,000 - $115,000 per year

Grace Farms is an equal opportunity employer. We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, and other legally protected characteristics.

Grace Farms Foundation


New Canaan, CT
06840 USA


Non Profit

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