ESLT Employment Opportunities




Position Summary
The Development Director is responsible for the leadership, strategic direction and management of all fundraising and development for Eastern Sierra Land Trust (ESLT). The Development Director works closely with the Executive Director, Board of Directors, Development Committee and senior management team to facilitate a culture of fundraising and brand building. The Development Director is responsible for strengthening research and developing strategies for cultivating new prospects, facilitating the preparation and solicitation of gifts, major gift fundraising including enhancing current planned giving program, effective cultivation and stewardship of supporters and donors, and increasing public recognition of ESLT’s conservation contributions by crafting effective messages regarding organizational priorities and needs. The Development Director implements rigorous metrics to evaluate fundraising activities and effectively engages the organization in fundraising to achieve sustainable annual operating fundraising levels of $500,000 - $1,000,000. The Development Director reports to the Executive Director.

The Director is a strategic partner for the senior management team (Executive Director and Land Conservation Program Director) and the board in all areas of fundraising. He/she is an active and effective individual fundraiser who cultivates relationships and develops and manages a well-defined strategy for growing support to meet current and future operating needs.

Specific Duties

  1. Leadership & Strategy
    1. Working closely with the Executive Director and Development Committee, develop fundraising strategies, processes and systems that support our development and fundraising programs;  ensure that these programs are integrated into ESLT’s strategic and annual plans and daily decision-making and operations. Promote understanding of and organizational alignment with fundraising goals;
    2. Work with the senior management team to set goals for our various endowment funds and design fundraising plans to meet goals;
    3. Create, monitor and report on fundraising benchmarks;
    4. Partner with the Executive Director and the Board of Directors to ensure they are prepared and supported in all their fundraising efforts;
    5. Keep current on all aspects of ESLT’s mission, strategic plan, acquisitions, programs, and methods of conservation;
    6. Keep abreast of tools, laws, legal decisions, legislation, regulations, and other developments affecting non-profit fundraising;
    7. Work with ED to represent ESLT and raise its profile and visibility to funders, partners, policymakers and the public.
  2. Management
    1. Hire, mentor, motivate and evaluate a high-caliber professional and volunteer development team and ensure each team member is prepared to contribute what is required to reach individual and collective goals;
    2. Annually review and evaluate ESLT membership levels and annual fund programs;
    3. Ensure the donor database is accurate and appropriately managed; promote best practices including list management, prospect research standards, and timely and appropriate stewardship and reporting;
    4. Work closely with the Communications Coordinator to ensure communications (print, web and social media) are used as effective fundraising tools;
    5. Ensure that the design and content of member events successfully engages and cultivates  existing donors; also assure that public events successfully recruit  new members and build awareness for the organization;
    6. Establish a systematic, robust planned giving program; determine and monitor benchmarks for judging its success;
    7. Ensure the integrity of donor relationships and philanthropic agreements;
    8. Effectively manage staff time and resources to meet budgets;
    9. Prepare informative fundraising reports for the ED, Development committee and Board of Directors.
  3.   Fundraising  
    1. Work with ED to develop and maintain a prospect and major donor portfolio, and cultivate and solicit major donors and foundations;
    2. Craft and execute solicitation and cultivation strategies for major donors and prospects – prepare briefings, set meetings, designate an appropriate solicitor, (or make ask), ensure follow up of all solicitations, and steward the donation and the ongoing relationship;
    3. Secure corporate, foundation, state and federal grants;
    4. Be a visible member of the community; represent the ESLT at events including the organization’s own fundraising and membership events and at events where prospective donors are likely to congregate;
  4. Other duties as needed or directed by the ED.
  5. Experience
    1. A genuine passion for conserving land and enthusiasm for connecting people to land;
    2. Demonstrated track record of successful fundraising in an environment of similar complexity;
    3. Strong leadership skills, with an entrepreneurial spirit and strong management skills; demonstrated ability to inspire and motivate staff, volunteers, donors, and potential partners;
    4. Success developing and executing fundraising strategies for building unrestricted support;
    5. Experience identifying, cultivating and soliciting individual donors at the $10K+ level;
    6. Experience integrating marketing/communications strategies and tactics with fund development activities;
    7. Excellent relationship-building skills and agility in building rapport with internal and external stakeholders;
    8. Demonstrated experience overseeing multiple projects through to success, including meeting financial goals, project deadlines, and coordinating the work of key staff and partners;
    9. Exceptional communication skills; articulate, with proven ability to write effectively and speak persuasively;
    10. Understanding of information management systems and Moves Management principles;
    11. Knowledge of planned giving instruments;
    12. Superior organizational skills, strongly detail-oriented and expertise with computers, software and other tools needed to build an effective fundraising organization;
    13. A Bachelor’s degree.
  6. Attributes
    1. Genuinely enjoys engaging donors and the fundraising process;
    2. Comfort interacting with high-level donors and patrons;
    3. Inspires confidence and trust; demonstrates an affinity to the mission;
    4. Ability to work effectively in rural and urban communities;
    5. Ambitious and focused on success;
    6. High integrity and commitment to goals;
    7. Possesses a high degree of emotional intelligence, self-awareness and gravitas
    8. Demonstrates strong problem-solving attributes—drive, energy and creativity;
    9. Enjoys working as part of a team;
    10. Enjoys and deploys an appropriate sense of humor.

This position reports to the Executive Director

  1. Requires ability to work at a computer up to 8 hours per day with intermittent walking, standing, bending, squatting, and climbing stairs.
  2. Occasionally may be required to lift and carry items up to 40 pounds.
  3. Occasionally may require walking short distances on uphill or uneven terrain.
  4. Must have (or be willing to get) a valid CA driver’s license with insurance.

Compensation and Benefits
This position is full time and exempt. Salary is commensurate with experience and skills, with paid leave and health benefits. Some weekend and evening work; some out of town and overnight travel required. Based in Bishop, CA.


This position is open until a qualified candidate is hired.

Please direct cover letter and résumé to:
Kay Ogden, Executive Director,