Director of Individual Giving & Special Events
Brooklyn Botanic Garden - Brooklyn, NY

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Director of Individual Giving & Special Events Department: Development
Reports to: Vice President of Development

The Director of Individual Giving & Special Events is responsible for helping to fund the mission of Brooklyn Botanic Garden by generating approximately $2 million annually through membership revenue, individual contributions, and special event income. This senior level management position is part of a 14-member team that raises approximately $5 million in annual operating support and seeks to raise an additional $25 million in funding over the next 3 years to support the projects and goals of the Campaign for the Next Century.

Budgetary Scope: Responsible for approximately $2 million in income and $800,000 total expense budgets.

Primary Responsibilities: Membership & Individual Giving
  • Plan and oversee all initiatives, from conception of strategies through implementation, for the cultivation, acquisition, renewal, upgrade, and stewardship of the Garden's members (16,000 total) and individual donors (gift levels below $1,000).
  • Create materials that deliver a compelling message about BBG’s mission and goals to members, donors, and prospects; including direct mail solicitations, newsletters, promotional mailings, event invitations and programs, website/email content, and special premiums, among others. Conceive and oversee the implementation of member and donor events.
  • Expand and diversify BBG’s member/donor base overall through targeted outreach and special programs and promotions, such as initiatives with academic institutions, real estate partners, and special benefits or premiums, etc. Plan and oversee on-site membership sales activities.
Special Events
  • Conceive and execute income generating strategies in partnership with Vice President of Development and other senior department staff for fundraising events, including reaching existing and new donor bases, peer-to-peer solicitations, ticket sale strategies, sponsorship and underwriting solicitation, and ancillary fundraising activities.
  • Manage the production of all BBG fundraising events, including theme selection, catering, data management and gift processing, list selection, mailings, response tracking, production of printed materials, volunteer coordination, and event logistics. Ensure that events and related materials deliver a compelling message about BBG’s mission and goals. The current primary event is the Spring Gala; previous events have also included a Family Party and Young Donors event but an aim will be to develop new or reimagined approaches.
  • Manage committee activities, including identification, stewardship and cultivation of members, and oversight and administration of fundraising activities undertaken by the committee(s). Ensure committee members and volunteers are actively and constructively engaged and maintain a positive experience in working with the Garden. Encourage opportunities for them to learn more about BBG’s mission and related programs.
  • Set annual membership, individual giving, and special event goals with the Vice President of Development. Identify opportunities and strategies for achieving an increased base of support. Develop cost-efficient, creative, and effective ways to raise increased net revenue.
  • Develop the annual budgets and planning documents, monthly income and expense reports, and long-term expansion strategies. Monitor progress toward projected goals, provide regular assessment/analysis and trouble-shooting as needed. Ensure high degree of accuracy and accountability.
  • Use personal communications with members and donors to provide leads for Major Donor and Campaign cultivation, with a goal of building BBG’s major donor base.
  • Serve as Department’s lead staff person overseeing Raiser’s Edge data management and reporting with a focus on core areas of responsibility. Act as a data management and skills resource to other areas of the department, providing assistance and basic training as needed and appropriate to skill level. Seek to build personal and departmental capacity for accurate, effective use of Raiser’s Edge and other related data or list management programs. Serve as liaison to Blackbaud and other service providers related to departmental data management.
  • Attract, hire, and manage staff and interns to support membership, individual giving, special events, and data management/data entry work. Set goals and review results for direct reports. Continue and mentor professional development.
  • Ensure the successful selection and oversight of project-based consultants and volunteers.
  • Create a strong connection with departments institution-wide to ensure the success of shared projects and goals, in particular: communications, marketing, design, and publications; finance; horticulture, and operations; visitor services, volunteers, and security.
  • Maintain exemplary relationships with vendors, corporate and local business partners, the Garden’s on-site caterer, CharlesSallyCharles, or any other outside caterers, and in-kind donors for fundraising events.
Secondary Responsibilities/Activities:
  • Participate, as appropriate, in meetings with the President, senior management team, Board of Trustees and consultants, and special project planning, etc.
  • Participate in donor cultivation events and other special events.
  • Work with overall Development & Membership team on project development and long-range planning.
  • Provide materials and project management support, as necessary, for institutional collaborations and partnerships.
  • Sustain a team-oriented, supportive environment that maintains high standards, and encourages creativity, collaboration, and professional growth.
  • Supervises three full-time staff members.
  • Perform other related duties or special projects as required.
Qualifications: Development professional with 7+ years broad-based experience, including management of major projects, and proven track record of success in membership/development, special event fundraising, and furthering institutional goals. College degree required. Candidate must be highly motivated, detail-oriented, able to juggle multiple projects, set priorities, trouble-shoot, and meet deadlines. Raiser’s Edge competency required. Crystal Reports knowledge a plus. Skills in thinking strategically and creatively about ways of building relationships with new and existing donors. A strong marketing and mission-oriented sense to present the institution in print and other mediums and through events in inspiring and engaging ways. Exemplary writing, communication, budgeting/fiscal management and computer/data management skills. A roll-up-the-sleeves, can-do approach to tasks both large and small. A creative team player with the ability to inspire, motivate and work collaboratively; flexibility and a positive attitude required. Background or strong interest in cultural institutions, environment, education, and science desired.