Major Gifts Officer

January 13th, 2020
Major Gifts Officer

Major Gifts Officer

  • Mid-Level
  • Applications have closed
Job Category: Development
Location: Brooklyn
Job Sectors: Environmental


Rainforest Foundation US is hiring a Major Gifts Officer to be based in the organization’s headquarters in Brooklyn, New York. Rainforest Foundation aims to fill the position immediately.

The Major Gifts Officer position is a unique and exciting opportunity for a early- to mid-career professional with a passion to safeguard the world’s forests from destruction, especially in Central and South America. Rainforest Foundation works closely with Indigenous partners on the ground and supports their efforts to protect and restore their ancestral territories across the world’s tropical belt. Find out more on our website: (



Protecting tropical rainforests is critical to the planet’s ability to fight the Climate Crisis and protect the diversity of life on Earth. Science shows that forests protected by Indigenous Peoples are healthier, trap more carbon, and have a greater diversity of plants and animals than even national protected areas.

The Rainforest Foundation helps protect tropical rainforests by promoting the rights of Indigenous Peoples that manage and depend on these forests for their survival. 

This position is central to Rainforest Foundation’s strategies for expansion and even greater impact.


The Position

The Major Gifts Officer manages Rainforest Foundation’s relationship with an active portfolio of major donors and prospects to facilitate and deepen their involvement with Rainforest Foundation, contribute to the organization’s annual fundraising goals, and expand Rainforest Foundation’s pipeline of major gifts donors. The ideal candidate will be a proactive frontline fundraiser and an enthusiastic and persuasive advocate for the Rainforest Foundation’s mission and programs in the field.

This newly created position offers a perfect opportunity for an ambitious early- to mid-career fundraiser to join a dynamic development team at an established, yet rapidly growing, environmental and human rights organization. There is tremendous potential to take on new projects and grow in this role. The position reports directly to the Executive Director.


Specific Duties and Responsibilities

  • Together with the Executive Director and the Development team, the Major Gifts Officer will identify funding needs and targets; design and oversee development strategies that lead to a successful multi-year major gifts campaign
  • Set the strategy for a major gifts program that includes measurable goals related to research and identification, communication, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship initiatives
  • Manage and oversee all aspects of a multi-year campaign: strategy, solicitations, operations, prospecting research, moves management tracking, etc.
  • Plan and execute an ambitious and strategic schedule of individualized correspondence, meetings, and site visits that deepen donors’ relationships with Rainforest Foundation
  • Personally manage a portfolio of major donors cultivating, soliciting and stewarding each as appropriate
  • Advance donor relationships through in-person visits, organizing small donor gatherings, and organizing occasional site visits
  • Systematically identify and qualify new major donor prospects
  • Work with leadership team to identify and craft funding opportunities that align with the interests of donors in the portfolio and the organization’s strategic priorities
  • Knowledge and willingness to explore and develop the potential of new technologies and platforms to support fundraising goals.
  • Work with colleagues to develop briefing materials, presentations, proposals, gift agreements, acknowledgments, and reports needed to secure and steward major gifts.
  • Regularly report on progress to the Board and leadership.



  • A minimum of a bachelor’s degree; 
  • A minimum of four years of professional experience in major gifts and/or transferrable experience in development
  • Proven success in identifying and personally securing major gifts and the capability to systematize the building of a menu of options at the four- to six-figure levels
  • Experience with and knowledge of traditional, new and emerging fundraising strategies
  • Demonstrated experience identifying and securing short-lead gifts in addition to the usual major gift lead time
  • Strong ability to motivate, inspire, and organize
  • Creative and entrepreneurial mindset
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the proven ability to form strategic relationships with high net worth individuals
  • Superior organizational skills with proven ability to focus, prioritize and implement
  • Excellent written and verbal communication, as well as listening skills
  • Comfort with technology essential for a distributed team (e.g. cloud-based CRM (Salesforce), project management, document sharing, etc.)

Desirable skills

  • Knowledge of Spanish language and experience traveling in Latin America a plus
  • Experience with environmental NGOs or foundations
  • Drivers license


Additional Information

This is a full-time, exempt position based in Rainforest Foundation’s Brooklyn offices, with occasional travel to our program sites. Occasional weekend and evening work required in connection with specific campaigns or activities. 

Annual salary is competitive and based upon experience. 

Benefits: Health, Dental, Vision, 403b.

Interested individuals must submit via e-mail a cover letter and resume to [email protected], including “Major Gifts Officer” in the subject field.

Essential functions are performed in a general office setting with low noise. Job demands may require long periods of sitting; telephone work and/or computer work, as well as interactions with other team members and external stakeholders. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Occasional domestic and international travel.

All qualified applicants will be afforded equal employment opportunities without discrimination because of race, creed (religion), color, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, age, disability, predisposing genetic characteristic, marital status or domestic violence victim status, and Rainforest Foundation shall also follow the requirements of the Human Rights Law with regard to non-discrimination on the basis of prior criminal conviction and prior arrest.

Rainforest Foundation US

We protect tropical rainforests by supporting Indigenous People.

  • 1000 Dean Street, Suite 430
  • Brooklyn, NY 11238
  • United States
  • Phone: 212-431-9098 x6