Development Officer – Major Gifts – Eastern Region

Website Animal Legal Defense Fund

Reports to:

Director of Development


Anywhere in the greater New York City Tri-State area

Position Objectives:

Responsible for developing and implementing strategies to identify prospective major gift donors to ALDF, and to cultivate, and solicit major donor level gifts from them, and from a portfolio of former and current donors to ALDF who are located in the eastern region of the United States.

Also, the Development Officer – Major Gifts is responsible for Planned Giving efforts in the eastern region of the United States to secure gifts from estates, trusts, charitable annuities, life insurance, and other financial planning and deferred giving methods.


Major Gifts :

  • Personally manage a portfolio of major gift donors, and prospective major gift level donors from within the region to deepen relationships with them, and to increase the amount of their financial support of ALDF.
  • Conduct research on the giving potential of current donors and to identify prospective new major gift level donors who live in the region.
  • Under the direction of the Director of Development, and in collaboration with other regional Development Officers, and other staff in accordance with the department’s development plan, devise, coordinate, and implement personalized short, intermediate, and long-term major donor cultivation, contact, and solicitation, strategies for prospective, and existing donors.
  • Craft effective proposals, reports, acknowledgements, and other related communications.
  • Plan and execute various donor cultivation and stewardship activities throughout the region, including:
  1. visits with individual donors,
  2. produce small gatherings and house parties,
  3. coordinate with other staff on development opportunities during other program activities, and events, such as inviting donors to attend a conference or symposium, and/or producing a donor brunch, dinner, or cocktail party, and
  4. other opportunities to engage major donors in ALDF activities.
  • Maintain current and accurate records in donor database.
  • Provide regular and consistent reports to Director of Development, CEO, COO and Board as needed.

Planned Giving :

  • Support the overall long-term financial strength of ALDF by serving as the primary contact for planned giving inquiries from within the region, and by identifying, cultivating, and soliciting planned giving prospects within the region; steward donors for deferred and complex gifts, and serve as an expert resource to close complicated planned gifts from supporters in the region.
  • Responsible for creating cultivation plans for donors and prospects in the region, along with the Director of Development, and in collaboration with other regional Development Officer, and implement marketing initiatives, and communications strategies, to identify, cultivate and secure planned gifts by ADLF donors throughout the region.
  • Enhance donor gift planning and giving by remaining current with regard to the variety of planned gift options available and to provide a high level of knowledge and expertise in areas of gift planning strategies and deferred giving vehicles, as well as major gifts, general fundraising, and estate and financial planning.
  • Communicate the status of current fundraising activities and stimulate interest in planned gift giving by preparing written materials, including; proposals, contact reports, gift acknowledgments, newsletter articles, and administrative reports.
  • Assure donor confidentiality, as well as the confidentiality of ALDF clients.
  • Contributes to the overall success of the Development Department by performing all other duties as assigned.

Key Qualifications:

  • Seven or more years of major gift and/or planned giving development experience, with excellent references, and with a BA/BS degree, or equivalent work experience. MA or JD a plus.
  • Demonstrated success in soliciting and closing gifts at the major gift level.
  • Have a definite interest in and experience with animal rights issues, and be committed to the mission of ALDF.
  • A self-starter with a sense of urgency, a clear set of priorities, and a strong work ethic; must have the ability to adapt quickly to, plan for, and manage multiple projects in a fast-paced setting, with the ability to think strategically, problem solve, and manage multiple tasks concurrently, and to work both independently, and in teams.
  • Have a high degree of computer literacy including experience with Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel, and Outlook in particular) and internet research skills.
  • Proficiency with donor database systems, maintaining and retrieving donor information, and for reporting on and tracking donor activity, with an ability to analyze donor records for giving trends and opportunities, and create and use metrics to develop contact and solicitation plans.
  • Experience with preparing and managing a budget.
  • Have excellent writing, and communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; able to effectively articulate ALDF’s mission and programs to key stakeholders, with the ability to build relationships with a broad range of constituents of varying cultural, political, and social backgrounds, including potential donors, funders, and sponsors.


The Development Officer – Major Gifts must be able to travel within the region to meet with donors, conduct events, throughout the region, including:

  • visits with individual donors,
  • produce small gatherings and house parties,
  • coordinate with other staff on development opportunities during other program activities, and events, such as inviting donors to attend a conference or symposium, and/or producing a donor brunch, dinner, or cocktail party, and
  • other opportunities to engage major and planned giving donors in ALDF activities,

to cultivate major donor and planned giving relationships, and solicit contributions, and as needed, to attend meetings, conferences, trainings, and other events in order to acquire and maintain proficiency in fulfilling the responsibilities of the position.

Work Environment:

This position will work from a home office.


Application Period: Applications from qualified candidates will be accepted until the position is filled.

How to Apply: To apply, applicants should email a cover letter, resume, and the names and contact information of three professional references (in PDF format only) to the attention of the Director of Development, Kevin Connelly. Please include “Development Officer” in your email subject header. No phone calls please.


Benefits, include: 100% employer paid comprehensive health care plan, including a flexible spending account, dental benefits, life insurance, generous Paid Time Off, a 401k retirement plan with employer match, up to 5% of annual salary. Maintaining a healthy work/life balance is a core value for ALDF.

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