Development Director

Development Director

Mission to provide people impacted by disabilities with a daily opportunity to be fit, active, healthy, and to play.

Vision to build communities where all abilities are provided a universal opportunity for health, wellness and recreation.

Goal to provide a higher quality of life for people of all abilities by transforming greater Milwaukee into the most universally inclusive recreation destination in the world.

Values Inclusion. Collaboration. Partnership. Family. Community.

Job Description

The Development Director will lead all aspects of Development for The Ability Center. The Development Director will be responsible for the following: 

  • Programmatic Sponsorship/Gifts – approximately $100,000 per year
  • Foundation and Corporate Grants – approximately  $250,000 per year
  • Giving Day and Year-End Campaign – approximately $25,000 per year 
  • Corporate Speaking Engagement – approximately $40,000 per year 

Job Summary

Manages the daily activities of a non-profit organization’s development programs. Assists in the development of goals and strategies for all fundraising campaigns. Arranges and attends meetings with donors and prospective donors to create and foster relationships. Creates a balanced funding mix of donor sources and solicitation programs tailored to the needs of the organization. 


Essential Duties

  • Design and implement a comprehensive Fundraising Plan annually which maintains the fiscal health of the organization and provides future financial resources for growth and expansion. Work in partnership with the Managing Director to align the Fundraising Plan with the yearly budget.
  • Develop strong relationships within the community to foster a positive image such that companies, schools, civic organizations and individuals will make The Ability Center (TAC) the local charity of choice for funding.
  • Act as primary point of contact for funding, donations, and fundraising event inquiries.
  • Collect, organize, and maintain a complete and accurate database record of donors and funding received. Establish tracking tools and monitor funding on a regular basis, utilizing fundraising database, Network for Good, Facebook and corporate matching gift systems.
  • Create and maintain donor and major gifts reporting to share with TAC’s Board of Directors.
  • Acknowledge all donations on a timely basis. Generate requires tax receipt letters for applicable donations.
  • Work collaboratively with the Development Director – Special Projects, to align outreach and stewardship efforts.
  • In partnership with the Community Program Manager, oversee branding, image, and consistency of messaging in all organization materials. Including ensuring The Ability Center messaging is updated and accurate in all marketing and outreach materials.
  • Perform networking at selected community and leadership events.
  • Act as primary support to Founder and Executive Director when it comes to delivering presentations on programs/mission to various community, corporate and other groups as needed.


Programmatic Sponsorship/Gifts

  • Lead all sponsorship and program grant development for The Ability Center, securing approximately $100,000 per year in programmatic sponsorship/corporate grant support. 
  • Provide leadership to the Founder and Executive Director to achieve the organization’s philanthropic and sponsorship goals.
  • Proactively identify potential sponsors. Steward potential sponsors, develop sponsorship proposals, schedule meetings to discuss opportunities and follow-up to secure sponsors.
  • Lead creation of sponsorship support materials, including marketing and collateral material, in partnership with Community Program Manager, while maintaining consistency with brand guidelines. 
  • Draft and edit donor materials and copy.
  • Negotiate and manage sponsorship agreements and serve as a liaison with corporate partners on sponsorship execution.
  • Manage sponsorship budget. Responsible for all aspects of financial management including, coordinating sponsor invoicing (in partnership with Managing Director) and tracking of program components.


Foundation and Corporate Grants

  • Identify, evaluate, and pursue grant opportunities. Prepare and submit grant applications, monitor their approval process, and generate necessary follow up reports.
  • Maintain and grow current foundation contacts and gifts, while identifying and setting goals towards grant growth to achieve and maintain approximately $250,000 in awards per year.
  • Identify a yearly plan that includes specific grant targets and/or restrictions or general operating funds. 


Support Pilot to Purpose Initiative

  • Support Development Director – Special Projects in the three-year Pilot to Purpose Initiative
  • Promote Initiative within day-to-day work and while networking
  • Invite corporate, community and foundation partners as appropriate
  • Attend all Pilot to Purpose events 


Giving Day and Year-End Campaign

  • Develop and oversee the implementation of the marketing/ fundraising strategy for the annual giving campaign each year, including printed materials, e-communications, social media, etc. 
  • Engage full staff team and TAC Board and Advisors and Supporters to raise approximately $25,000 of unrestricted funds from Giving Tuesday through the end of the calendar/fiscal year.
  • Evaluate the annual giving program on a regular basis and provide updates to the Founder and Executive Director and Board of Directors


Skills and Knowledge

  • Excellent personal, verbal, and written communication skills
  • Customer service, communication and record keeping experience required
  • Able to manage multiple projects while meeting deadlines
  • Solid organizational, time management and project management skills required
  • Initiative and collaborative skills indicated
  • Foster and promote business relationships and partnering within the community
  • Comfortable working with people from diverse backgrounds; passion, empathy, and openness to people with disabilities
  • Establish rapport and build on relationships to promote The Ability Center’s mission
  • Strong networking/fundraising skills; experience in donor stewardship, grant writing/management, and event management is desired
  • Demonstrated strategic thinking and planning abilities
  • Ability to envision and convey an organization’s strategic future to staff, board, volunteers, donors and community partners 
  • High level of resourcefulness, creativity, and solid organizational leadership


Professional Qualifications and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree or related experience. Knowledge and experience with nonprofits and fundraising.
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience in nonprofit fundraising with proven results
  • Minimum of 2 years of experience working or volunteering with a diverse population of adults and children, in a nonprofit setting. 
  • Willing to work a flexible schedule of morning, afternoon, and occasional evening and weekend hours.
  • Proficient use and understanding of Google: Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

Start Date: January 30, 2023 

Salary Range: $65,000-$75,000 commensurate with experience

Benefits: health, dental and vision, life and long-term disability insurance, employee assistance program, holidays and PTO.

Submission Requirements

Submit resume, cover letter, three professional references and salary requirements in ONE pdf to by 12/9/2022. In email subject please note, “Development Director_LAST NAME”

Click here for a PDF of this job description.

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