Philanthropy Director

Posted Date: December 1, 2021
Position Closing Date: Open until filled
Location: Colorado Springs with WFH flexibility
Job Type: Full-time, exempt position
Salary Hiring Range: $65,000-$82,000

Position Summary

Join the dynamic, fun team at Palmer Land Conservancy and contribute to meaningful work including conserving the environment and building a stronger community through philanthropy. The Palmer work environment attracts independent, savvy individuals who enjoy its work flexibility including work from home arrangements, generous benefits including sabbatical leave, strong values, and inspiring culture.

Palmer Land Conservancy seeks a Philanthropy Director (PD) who is responsible for the strategic management and direct oversight of the organization’s fundraising activities with a focus on its membership and annual fund program. The position’s responsibilities fall into four functional areas: fundraising leadership, annual fund, major gifts, and events.

Conservation in Colorado cannot wait, and Palmer is very focused on growing its member base and increasing community engagement in order to achieve its bold conservation goals. A member of the staff leadership team, the PD will be responsible for building a strong fundraising department that engages the community, grows the membership, and expands the Palmer brand throughout southern Colorado.

The PD is a strong, strategic professional with fundraising experience who is motivated by a big vision. The PD is inspired to grow a fundraising team to achieve excellence in donor stewardship, fundraising outcomes, community engagement, and brand awareness. With a big heart for people, the PD exudes high emotional intelligence, a sense of hospitality, and recognizes that success hinges on a mindset of customer service for the organization’s donors, partners, board members, and fellow staff.

About Palmer Land Conservancy

Palmer Land Conservancy is one of the leading nonprofit land conservation organizations in Colorado. Since its incorporation in 1977, the organization has protected more than 136,000 acres including 20 public parks and open spaces, working farms and ranches, wildlife habitat, and scenic views. Palmer is one of the twenty largest local land trusts in the country based upon conserved acreage holdings (there are approximately 1,700 land trusts in the United States), and it is one of the country’s first 100 nationally accredited land trusts. Its main office is located in downtown Colorado Springs with a second office in Pueblo, and has staff located throughout its service area.

Core Duties and Responsibilities

Fundraising Leadership

  • Serve as chief champion and implementor of Palmer’s membership and donor stewardship programs
  • Work closely with the CEO on an annual fundraising strategy and plan rooted in the organizational strategic plan and identify annual key performance indicators and metrics that are aggressive, but not unrealistic
  • Provide strong and compassionate leadership, training and guidance to fundraising staff

Annual Fund

  • Oversee and manage the organization’s annual fund through its three membership programs – Land Lovers, Millennium Society, and Business Members
  • Strategize, plan, and implement YOY growth in order to achieve the organization’s goal of 40% of its operating budget coming from the annual fund over the next five years
  • Develop and manage annual donor engagement plan including donor meetings, property field visits, and events
  • Provide exemplary donor stewardship services, including managing Palmer’s donor stewardship process (thanking, outreach, tax acknowledgment, etc.)
  • Hire a part-time Membership Manager (budgeted)

Major Gifts

  • Work closely with the CEO to strategize, plan, and achieve fundraising goals as outlined in the strategic plan
  • Implement a major donor portfolio framework
  • Develop a robust planned giving program


  • Plan and manage an annual calendar of events that complement and achieve fundraising and donor engagement goals and build member loyalty and retention. Current events include: spring membership BBQ, summer benefit dinner, summer Bike the Bessemer event, fall awards banquet, fall Millennium Society thank you, and small group property tours.
  • Grow the department to hire a Community Engagement Manager in the near future


  • Oversee Palmer’s database (CiviCRM) for record management and data integrity with a focus on: 1) developing monthly, quarterly, and annual reports and dashboards for revenue and status review; 2) creating donor and membership lists for member acquisition and renewal; and 3) conducting regular and ongoing analysis of the data to determine membership acquisition, retention, and renewal strategies.
  • Provide philanthropic-focused administrative support to the CEO, including setting up donor meetings, managing a busy calendar, scheduling networking opportunities, etc.
  • Work closely with the communications team to develop printed and electronic communications related to membership activities, ensuring timely production and delivery.

Palmer Values

Palmer has an employee values document that can be shared with candidates during the interview process. Values include: passion, impact, courage, personal responsibility, resourcefulness, and commitment.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Five years of demonstrated professional, relevant experience
  • Ability to prioritize and manage a high volume of projects and tasks in a fast-paced environment
  • Strong computer skills, including Microsoft Office products and SAAS (software as a service) technology (e.g. email, Slack,, etc.); experience working in a nonprofit CRM database
  • Demonstrated success and credibility working with donors and achieving fundraising goals
  • Demonstrated mindset of hospitality and customer service
  • Highly organized and efficient; hard-working with superb attention to detail and nuance
  • A commitment to furthering Palmer Land Conservancy’s mission to protect southern Colorado’s lands for present and future generations
  • A demonstrated knowledge of and interest in the outdoors, natural resource conservation, and/or community development

Preferred Skills, Knowledge, & Experience

  • Completion of higher education or graduate degree in relevant field
  • Seven or more years of demonstrated professional, relevant experience

Other Requirements

  • Valid driver’s license
  • Physical demands may involve:
    • Lifting materials and equipment – including, but not limited to, office supplies, event supplies, and boxes of swag – up to 25 pounds.
    • Working in variable weather conditions at remote locations on difficult and hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances


Palmer offers full-time employees excellent benefits including: employer paid health and dental insurance, retirement contribution, short-term and long-term disability, life insurance, paid parental leave, generous paid time off, and flexible work arrangements. Benefits for director-level positions also include open (“unlimited”) paid time off and sabbatical leave.

How to Apply

The position is open until filled. Early applications are strongly recommended. Applicants should submit 1) a cover letter, 2) resume, and 3) answers to the questions below (all as a single pdf) by e-mail to: [email protected] with the subject line: Philanthropy Director.

Please limit responses to no more than 200 words per question:

  1. Why are you interested in working for Palmer Land Conservancy?
  2. Why does conserving land, water, and agriculture in southern Colorado matter to you?
  3. Please describe your experience relevant to the position’s core responsibilities.