Development Director

Wisconsin Conservation Voters

Wisconsin Conservation Voters is seeking to add to our team a passionate, energetic, and effective senior-level Development Director to be the backbone of our fundraising efforts to fight for climate justice and protect Wisconsin’s air, land, water, and democracy. This position will be full-time and permanent and based in Madison or Milwaukee.

Who We Are

Wisconsin Conservation Voters engages voters to protect Wisconsin’s environment. To achieve that, Wisconsin Conservation Voters advocates for sound environmental laws and policies, holds elected officials accountable for their votes and actions, and elects pro-conservation candidates who will champion our priority issues. Learn more about us at

Wisconsin Conservation Voters’ work has never been more urgent, with climate change impacting communities across the state, our democracy under attack, and thousands of Wisconsinites living without safe drinking water in their homes. To take on that challenge, we are in the first year of an ambitious, four-year strategic plan that meets the urgency of our time with growth and bold action. The success of the plan relies on expanding our portfolio of individual donors, grassroots supporters, and institutional donors.

What You’ll Do

The Development Director will play a vital role in developing and implementing the plan and strategies to raise an annual budget between $1.5 million and $3.5 million. The Development Director works with a strong team of the Executive Director, Deputy Director, two additional development staff, and other staff and board members to meet the annual budget. This position has direct management of the following areas: building relationships with and cultivating individual supporters; building a large and diverse membership base; developing written content that engages existing and new supporters; establishing systems and communications for stewardship of donors; engaging board, staff, and other stakeholders in fundraising; and utilizing data to analyze and inform development strategies.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  • Plan, organize, and direct a comprehensive development program that utilizes the strengths and networks of the staff, board, and volunteers, and includes major donors, significant institutional gifts (foundations, etc.), planned gifts, grassroots fundraising, events, and special project campaigns.
  • Develop and manage effective internal operations, including donor portfolios, gift processing, data reporting, and tracking.
  • Work in partnership with the Board Fund Development Committee Chair to orchestrate committee and board activities and follow through; serve as staff liaison to committee.
  • Support the Executive Director’s fundraising priorities, including the cultivation of existing and prospective individuals, foundations, and businesses.
  • Increase contributed income through organization and management of the annual fund and special campaigns as needed.
  • Develop and edit written content such as letters and emails to members, impact reports, newsletter content, and more.
  • Manage, research, and edit grant proposals and reports.
  • Foster an understanding and culture of philanthropy within the organization.
  • Enhance and improve current development program with new ideas and innovative strategies.
  • Expand and diversify our supporter base, and ensure the development program reflects the organization’s values of equity and justice.
  • Identify and cultivate opportunities to recognize donors and attract new funding.
  • Contribute to and oversee digital and print materials that maximize interest in supporting WCV’s mission and goals.
  • Serve as member of the staff Leadership Team and board Finance Committee.
  • Supervise work of two development staff and manage vendors assigned to development tasks.
  • Prepare fundraising and development campaign budgets.

Who You Are

  • You are enthusiastic about WCV’s mission of engaging voters to protect Wisconsin’s environment, committed to racial equity, and share the organization’s values of leadership, action and results, and building power and community with our partners and those most impacted by environmental injustice and voter suppression.
  • You are comfortable working with people of different racial identities, ages, and socio-economic differences.
  • You share our commitment to centering the voices and experiences of those most impacted by climate change and environmental degradation.
  • You approach your work with curiosity, courage, and self-awareness, and enjoy building relationships with diverse individuals – whether board members, environmental partners, supporters, or volunteers.
  • You are highly organized, proactive, and able to reprioritize when needed.
  • You have led annual fund and/or membership campaigns and have experience working with board members and other stakeholders.
  • You are comfortable with raising funds, including making direct asks.
  • You have strong writing and editing skills.
  • You are comfortable with holding sensitive information in confidence and with discretion.
  • We know there are great candidates who may not check all of these boxes, and we also know you might bring important skills that we haven’t considered. If that applies to you, don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself.

What You Should Know

  • Work experience: 5 to 7 years direct fundraising experience preferred. If you have fewer years of experience but a high level of comfort with fundraising and meet the skills needed, we encourage you to apply.
  • Skills: Demonstrated experience and success with fundraising and applying strategic concepts to actionable plans; ability to work well in a fast-paced environment; ability to handle multiple projects while supervising staff simultaneously; strong writing and verbal communication skills; understanding of, or ability to learn quickly about, environmental issues, politics, and their potential to engage the public; passion for Wisconsin Conservation Voters’ mission and work.
  • Technical skills: You have knowledge of Microsoft Office and Google Suite applications, and experience and proficiency working with online database systems. Experience with EveryAction and Moves Management is helpful but not required, as long as you are confident in learning how to use a new member database.
  • Conditions: Position is based in Milwaukee or Madison, Wisconsin, and is full-time, salaried, and classified as exempt. Due to COVID-19, the ability to work from home is required for the near future, although there is a possibility of working in our offices in Milwaukee or Madison. We will offer a stipend for cell phone. You will need a smartphone, and a computer will be provided. Most of our work will be remote until it is safe to return to doing in-person work in the community. Once it is safe to do so, this job will require a minimal amount of travel throughout Wisconsin. A valid driver’s license is required. Candidates must have the ability to periodically work hours exceeding regular office hours to get the job done.
  • Salary and benefits: The full-time salary range for this role is between $70,000 and $85,000 with a strong benefits package, including health and dental coverage, 401k retirement plan with organizational match, flexible spending account, and leave sharing plan. Exact salary depends on experience, and new staff rarely start at the top of the range. We offer generous paid time off, including a sabbatical for long term staff, flexibility in working hours, and professional development opportunities.
  • Reports to: Deputy Director

Our commitment to racial justice and equity

We recognize that historic and current systems and decisions – including within the conservation community – have created injustice. Through our work we confront these injustices and fight for an equitable balance of power. We hold ourselves accountable to being inclusive and equitable in our own actions and within our organization. Read more about our commitment in our Guiding Principles here.

To Apply

Email your resume, cover letter, and three references by Sunday, October 24th, 2021 to, with “Development Director” in the subject line. This position has a flexible start date in December 2021.

To apply for this job email your details to