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The McKenzie River Trust seeks candidates for a full-time Director of Development staff position. The Director of Development oversees a comprehensive fundraising program to secure the resources for annual operating, community engagement, land protection, and land stewardship goals. The Director will thrive by giving voice to the work of the Trust, securing major gifts, directing overall membership growth, and nurturing foundation support and planned giving relationships. The Director will help align the Board of Directors, the Executive Director, and other staff and volunteers in approaches to member and partner relations and gift solicitation. The Director will play an instrumental role in helping the Trust attend to its growing commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in its communications, fundraising, and other facets of the organization.

You can download the full position description by clicking the button below, or read further for full details. 

Application Instructions

To apply for this position please provide the following information in MS Word or PDF format via email to Please include Director of Development in the subject line.

  • A cover letter sharing your interest in this position
  • A resume that highlights learning, professional and other experience relevant to the position.

Position open until filled.

Position Title: Director of Development

Reports to: Executive Director

Status: Full-time, exempt

Compensation: Annual Salary $75,000 – $100,000 DOE

Benefits: Employer-paid medical and dental insurance, 3% employer-matched IRA, paid sick leave, and a generous vacation package.

Organizational Background:

Since 1989, the McKenzie River Trust (MRT) has helped people protect and care for the lands and rivers they cherish in western Oregon. From the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, MRT envisions a future in which conservation lands are at the core of community efforts to sustain clean water, abundant fish and wildlife, and diverse natural resource economies. We work at the intersection of ecological systems and human community needs to ensure the health of both in the face of changes in climate and land use. MRT protects over 7,000 acres of land through purchase and conservation easement. Grounded in science, we work collaboratively to heal, restore, and enhance regionally important natural systems, and connect people to places they care about. MRT is based in Eugene, and in 2021 we will open our first field office on the central Oregon coast.

Summary of Position:

As a member of the leadership team, the Director of Development plays a central role in assuring the long-term strength of the McKenzie River Trust. The Director oversees a comprehensive fundraising program to secure the resources for annual operating, community engagement, land protection and land stewardship goals. The Director will thrive by providing strong, supportive leadership for a staff Development team; directing overall membership growth; securing major gifts; nurturing foundation and agency grant support; and giving voice to the work of the Trust in the community. The Director will help align the Board of Directors, the Executive Director, and other staff and volunteers in approaches to member and partner relations and gift solicitation. The Director will play an instrumental role in helping the Trust attend to its growing commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in its communications, fundraising and other facets of the organization.

Key Responsibilities:

  1. Leads the staff in the creation and implementation of an annual fundraising plan. Supervises Development staff, (currently Associate Director of Philanthropy, Events and Outreach Manager, Data Systems Manager, and Philanthropy and Communications Specialist) providing support, facilitating professional development, establishing clear program direction, setting objectives and monitoring performance to ensure that fundraising strategies are implemented successfully.
  2. Serves as primary staff liaison with the Board of Directors’ Development Committee, including working closely with the Committee Chair on the management and follow-up from Committee meetings; advising and tracking annual committee work plans; and fostering Committee and Board member engagement in donor cultivation.
  3. Identifies, cultivates, and solicits annual and major gifts from individuals, businesses and foundation prospects based on in-person presentations, tours and events, written proposals, and effective follow-up.
  4. Provides vision and leadership for organizational outreach and communications, working with staff, consultants, and volunteers to implement strategies across all media and direct contacts including events.
  5. Directs foundation and agency grants management, including developing and submitting proposals, the establishment and stewardship of relationships with grants administrators, and the maintenance of a tracking system for grant-related activities.
  6. Represents the Trust in regional collaborative efforts including the Coalition of Oregon Land Trusts (COLT) and the Upper Willamette Stewardship Network (UWSN).

Essential Strengths and Commitments:

The successful candidate for this position will be one who brings a deep commitment to land and water conservation, a supportive approach to team leadership, a strategic mind for wealth management, and a passion for raising money and other resources on behalf of public good. These strengths will be evident in the following core competencies:

  • Mission Alignment: Committed to achieving goals outlined in MRT’s strategic framework.
  • Outgoing Nature: Equally comfortable interacting with individuals as well as with small and large groups of people.
  • Ease in Collaboration: Thrives working with others on joint projects in a manner that engages and encourages individual contributions to overall goals.
  • Inclusive Mindset: Naturally incorporates multiple communities and perspectives, including DEIJ, in land and water conservation projects.
  • Centered Presence: Navigates multiple priorities while practicing good time management and demonstrating commitment to personal well-being.
  • Integrity: Assumes personal responsibility to ensure successes and prevent mistakes, is direct in communications to partners and fellow staff members, and is able to have difficult conversations.

Skills, Knowledge, and Experience Needed:

  • Minimum 5 years’ work in non-profit fundraising or equivalent experience. 
  • Solid working knowledge of non-profit budget development. 
  • Experience in the development and implementation of diverse fundraising strategies and actions, including general membership promotion, individual donor cultivation, major gifts solicitation, events management, and grant seeking from both government and private foundations. 
  • Experience using complex relational databases such as Salesforce. 
  • Working knowledge of communications strategies, tactics, and tools. 
  • Direct supervisory experience and team management. 

Working Conditions and Physical Effort:

The Director of Development will work from the McKenzie River Trust office in Eugene, Oregon. Few tasks will require significant physical exertion, but there may be situations that demand being outdoors in all weather conditions and on difficult and sometimes hazardous terrain.  A valid driver’s license, proof of insurance and good driving record is expected.  Some weekend and/or evening work will be necessary.  Work is often fast-paced, demanding of time, and requiring attention to multiple projects with deadlines. 

We have a commitment to cultivating an inclusive work environment and provide equal opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, age, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic disposition, neurodiversity, disability, veteran status or any other protected category under federal, state and local law. In accordance with the American with Disabilities Act, it is possible that requirements may be modified to reasonably accommodate disabled individuals. However, no accommodations will be made which may pose serious health or safety risks to the employee or others or which impose undue hardships on the organization. The McKenzie Trust maintains its status as an at-will employer.  

On Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice:

For over 30 years, the McKenzie River Trust (MRT) has pursued our mission by focusing on habitat diversity and health, river dynamism, and wild landscapes. But we need to more explicitly acknowledge that people and communities have been and continue to be part of these ecosystems, and that the helping people part of our mission compels us to ensure that our work benefits and engages all people, not just some. Bringing DEIJ values to bear in our work will support us in maintaining the landscape-scale vision required to address climate resilience and community resilience as we work to maintain the ecological integrity of western Oregon’s landscapes. In March 2022 MRT created a DEIJ Action Plan (2022-2025) as one of many steppingstones along our organization’s journey. We have work to do. We encourage all candidates, particularly those with diverse backgrounds in culture, education, and professional experience, to apply for this position and help us with that work.