Donor Relations Manager (Central Illinois) (TNC)

Donor Relations Manager (Central Illinois) – Part Time
Peoria, IL

CLOSING DATE June 3 2016


The Donor Relations Manager II (DRM II) assists in the planning and implementation of tactics for the ongoing cultivation of donors capable of making major and/or planned gifts in Central Illinois. S/he conducts initial exploratory meetings with donors and prospects to determine capacity for giving, and provides ongoing opportunities for contact with past and current donors. S/he also builds awareness by engaging with members of the community through networking, community events and other opportunities as they arise. S/he positions conservation staff appropriately to raise funds and build awareness of the Conservancy in Central Illinois communities. S/he reports to the Director of Individual Giving.


The Donor Relations Manager II will support all fundraising and outreach activities in Central Illinois. S/he is responsible for the identification and qualification of major and planned gift prospects and assists in cultivating and soliciting donors through direct contact. The DRM II will manage a portfolio of major gift suspects and prospects and serve as the primary staff relationship manager for this portfolio with volunteer partners and staff leaders. S/he will assist in identifying new prospects and maintain an active pipeline for qualification. S/he may move prospects capable of gifts of higher amounts to the prospect pool managed by senior fundraising staff. S/he will coordinate work with the Chicago-based fundraising staff. The DRM II
will serve as the liaison to Central Illinois-based volunteer leaders, including providing support and engagement opportunities for members of the Campaign Steering Committee and Board of Trustees. S/he will work to build awareness of and confidence in The Nature Conservancy in priority communities throughout the Central Illinois region, including Peoria, Bloomington, Champaign and Springfield. S/he will engage with community members through networking, and position conservation staff appropriately for fundraising and awareness. S/he will work on a variety of activities including providing program information to donors and prospects, drafting routine correspondence and acknowledgments (for self and conservation staff), and utilize donor database to update donor information, produce reports, and track and cultivate donors. The DRM II identifies the appropriate contacts to go to for information on gifts of assets. S/he will effectively communicate or distribute information to assist staff in making decisions, solving problems, and improving workflow.


  • Serve as primary staff relationship manager for a portfolio of 50-75 individual donors with the capacity to make major and planned gifts once the portfolio is developed. Activity measures and fundraising goals are set according to portfolio strength and size. Responsible for building portfolio and advancing an active pipeline of discovery prospects.
  • Act independently on assigned tasks and exercise independent judgment based on analysis and experience.
  • Create major/planned/blended gift strategies; initiate proposals, presentations and other donor communications.
  • Steward Legacy Club members and assist in building membership.
  • Attend community events, connect conservation staff with donors and prospects and identify other appropriate opportunities for engagement.
  • Coordinate projects with several variables, work within a defined timeline and budget.
  • Ability and willingness to work with a Chicago-based team, with primarily virtual contact with supervisor and development colleagues.
  • Does not supervise any staff, but may supervise interns, volunteers and/or temporary staff.
  • Ensure compliance with TNC policies and procedures and external (donor/legal/IRS) requirements.
  • Financial responsibility includes working within a budget and assisting the development team in meeting fundraising goals for chapter and global conservation priorities.
  • Persuasively convey the mission of TNC to diverse groups who are important to the organization’s overall prosperity.
  • Refers difficult questions and unusual problems to supervisors.
  • Travel as necessary and be flexible on hours (job may require participation in activities outside of regular work day).
  • Work environment involves only infrequent exposure to disagreeable elements and minor physical exertion and/or strain.
  • Work is diversified and may not always fall under established practices and guidelines.
  • Work within scope of program’s strategic goals.


  • Bachelor’s degree and 3 years of experience or equivalent combination.
  • Experience building relationships with donors, volunteers, customers, or similar.
  • Ability to determine a donor’s/prospect’s interests, capacity and potential for helping the Conservancy meet its goals, and
  • act appropriately to tie those interests with the Conservancy’s work.
  • Ability to create and implement individualized cultivation , solicitation and stewardship plans.
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills.
  • Self-starter with strong organizational skills, ability to manage multiple tasks, accuracy and attention to detail.
  • Experience generating reports and interpreting the data.
  • Experience in business writing, editing, and proofreading.
  • Experience with database administration and spreadsheet software.
  • Experience working collaboratively across teams.
  • Experience, coursework, or other training in fundraising principles & practices.
  • Valid Driver’s License


  • Ability to use existing technology to achieve desired results.
  • Direct fundraising related experience.
  • Demonstrated experience using diplomacy and tact to build strong relationships and motivate staff and donors.
  • Experience in managing and tracking multiple prospects and donors.
  • Knowledge of current trends in the specific field.
  • Strong interest in the environment and conservation.


Communications — Effectively expresses messages verbally and in writing. Actively listens to others. Fosters open exchange of issues. Is timely with information.

Flexibility & Innovation — Flexible to changing circumstances. Takes innovative approaches towards work. Takes calculated risks and makes dependable decisions in the fact of uncertainty.

Interpersonal Savvy — Maintains positive working relationships. Contributes to productive partnerships inside and outside the organization. Understands team member roles and values the contributions of others. Effectively deals with conflict.

Open to Learning — Versatile learner and committed to self-improvement. Employs strengths effectively. Willingly shares knowledge with others. Seeks coaching on areas needing improvement. Adjusts behavior/performance as needed. Views mistakes as learning opportunities.

Organizational Awareness — Understands the basics of our business. Knows how local job relates to the big picture & contributes to the overall strategy. Knows how/why things work inside TNC. Easily moves through internal networks and channels for success.


Produces Results — Takes Initiative. Focuses on priorities. Strives for excellence. Is dependable and accountable for results. Persistent in the face of obstacles and meets deadlines.


To apply to position number 44212, submit resume and cover letter as one document. All applications must be submitted in the system at prior to 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on June 3, 2016.

This description is not designed to be a complete list of all duties and responsibilities required for this job.


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