Director of Philanthropy job with Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

Director of Philanthropy job with Lewa Wildlife Conservancy


Job Title: Director of Philanthropy

Department: Development

Location: New York/ Washington/ Boston
(other east coast locations considered)

Salary: $140,000–155,000 USD dependent on

Position Reports to: Chief Development

Position Supervises: Major gift



About the organisation:

The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy (LWC), based at the foothills of
Mount Kenya, works as a model and catalyst for the conservation of
wildlife and its habitat. We do this through the protection and
management of species, the initiation and support of community
conservation and development programmes, and the education of
neighbouring areas in the value of wildlife.

For the last three decades, our practices have resulted in
thriving black rhino habitat and population, which in turn has
created a robust ecosystem for a multitude of species including the
endangered Grevy’s zebra, elephant, lion, cheetah, giraffe and
more. We envision a future where people across Kenya value, protect
and benefit from wildlife. This future depends on communities being
able to derive their day-to-day livelihoods in ways that are
compatible with thriving wildlife habitat. As a result, we invest
heavily in the livelihoods of our neighbours through programmes in
education, healthcare, water, micro-enterprise, youth empowerment
and more.

As a catalyst and champion of this model that puts people at the
centre of conservation, Lewa has influenced and supported the
conservancy management for both private and community lands across
northern Kenya.


Purpose of the job:

The Director of Philanthropy role is a key leadership role in
the Development and Communications team and is integral to the
delivery of the fundraising strategy, growing income and engagement
from High-net-worth individuals. The Director of Philanthropy will
have a portfolio of high-level individual donors and supervise the
USA Major gift team. The Director of Philanthropy is responsible to
exponentially grow our income and support from high-net-worth
individuals and family trusts.

The Director of Philanthropy will set target forecasts and goals
(and manage) for the philanthropic team. They will: communicate
effectively with donors, conduct face-to-face visits, solicit
gifts, steward those gifts, track progress, and evaluate
performance. Responsible for the development and implementation of
a strategy to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward and grow a
portfolio of major donors, the incumbent will bring successful
stewarding and relationship cultivation experience to the role
being comfortable asking for five and six-figure gifts. The
Director of Philanthropy must be able to prioritize major donor
relationships and collaborate in the identification of potential
HNWI and development of those relationships with the Chief
Development Officer and development team colleagues.



The job holder will have the following key responsibilities:

Strategy development and

  • Work in collaboration with the Chief Development Officer to
    deliver an ambitious fundraising strategy that will enable Lewa to
    secure its long-term financial future and maximise its impact.
  • Set multi-year fundraising plans and goals for the
    philanthropic team.
  • Focus on securing unrestricted support, as well as six-figure
    commitments that will fund priorities outlined in our strategic
  • Actively manage the major donor pipeline to advance donors
    towards making major gifts or increasing their gift level of
  • Lead and drive philanthropic strategy and activity across the
    organisation to achieve transformational gifts.
  • Monitor and report on performance through rigorous use of
    targets and KPIs.


  • Manage and motivate major gifts relationship managers, ensuring
    that they are accountable for meeting their fundraising goals and
    are committed to best practice fundraising.
  • Develop and embed an effective donor recognition framework to
    include outstanding donor engagement and stewardship that moves
    donors along a journey with Lewa and enables fundraisers to grow
    the volume and value of prospects and donors in the portfolio.

Prospecting and

  • Research and prospect potential high-value donors and compile,
    with the support of the wider team, the corresponding documentation
    and funding proposals required to secure gifts.
  • Proactively manage, add to and review the prospect pipeline and
    ensure records are accurate.


  • Develop and deliver bespoke cultivation strategies for donors
    and prospects to maximize their giving.
  • Undertake outreach visits to high-capacity individuals, family
    offices, donor advised funds, and priority prospects,
    comprehensively following up all opportunities.
  • Understand the giving cycle, develop authentic personal
    relationships with donors, and know when to ask. Solicit gifts
    personally and, when appropriate, in tandem with the Chief
    Development Officer, CEO, Board members and other related
  • Identify areas of Lewa’s work most likely to engage donors and
    prospects according to their areas of interest or motivations.
    Balance demand for restricted and unrestricted donations according
    to the needs of the organization and the donor.

Thanking and

  • Create personalized thank-you, acknowledgement and stewardship
    plan for major donor gifts, including directing communications from
    the Chief Development Officer or other people in the organization
    where required.
  • Ensure that all gifts from major donors are properly
    acknowledged in a timely manner.
  • Ensure that reports are produced and sent to relevant donors on

Budgets and

  • Work with the rest of the team to set and monitor annual
    budgets for major gifts. Be responsible for delivering against
    targets for the donor portfolio.


  • Maintain the integrity of the CRM system (Salesforce).
  • Contribute to the overall strategy of the Development


Experience & Skills

  • Experience in major donor fundraising with a proven track
    record of soliciting, stewarding and closing 5-6 figure gifts from
  • Experience leading and managing and growing fundraising
  • Skilled communicator and storyteller.
  • Significant experience collaborating with trustees and/or
    volunteer committees to drive philanthropic income.
  • Sound strategic thinking and planning skills.
  • Ability to work under pressure and with multiple competing


Job-specific competencies

  • A proven record of fundraising, target forecasting, and target
  • Evidence of excellent interpersonal and negotiation
  • Ability to communicate effectively and appropriately to
    different audiences.
  • Proven ability to process and communicate detailed information
    and present the key data, both verbally and in writing.
  • Strong ability to build robust interpersonal
  • Experience in Salesforce or similar CRM.


Personal competencies

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to build strong relationships with a wide range of
  • Team building and strong organizational and project management
  • The ability to manage systems, set priorities, and work within
    deadlines is essential.
  • Flexibility to work outside of office hours when



  • Minimum of 10 years of professional work experience including a
    track record for prospecting and stewarding a portfolio of Major
    Donors and family trusts at the very highest levels.



  • Ability and willingness to travel as required. 

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