Development Director



Development Director

Employment Type:

Full time


Seattle, WA


$90k - $105,000

Application Contact:

Job Description:

Washington Trails Association (WTA) seeks a seasoned Development Director to grow our successful resource development program. Join us as we mobilize hikers and everyone who loves the outdoors to explore, steward and champion trails and public lands. This position drives WTA’s multi-year funding strategy as the organization launches new strategic initiatives to achieve our vision of trails for everyone, forever.
WTA’s Development Director is charged with enabling WTA to achieve greater reach and impact through building and executing a fund development strategy that advances a diversified and growing revenue base including memberships, contributions, corporate support, foundation grants, planned giving, and endowment gifts. The position manages a strong seven-person team to deliver multifaceted development programs, partners with WTA’s communications team to drive results, and works closely with the Executive Director and Board of Directors. The team raises approximately 70% of the organization’s operating revenue each year with a fundraising goal of $3.6 million for 2019 and expectations to grow this goal to $5-6 million within 3-5 years.
The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to take initiative, think strategically, lead effectively, and drive fundraising results while advancing the organization’s goals for diversity, equity and inclusion within the fundraising program. This person will be passionate about taking a leadership role in increasing donor engagement and pursuing new funding opportunities. The Development Director is a full-time exempt position and reports directly to the Executive Director.

Primary Responsibilities

Leadership and Strategy

  • Designs WTA’s overall resource development strategy to drive investment in its initiatives, in partnership with the Executive Director and Board of Directors Philanthropy Committee.
  • Fosters a culture of philanthropy where fundraising is embraced as an essential part of building WTA’s community and advancing its mission; works with other department directors to encourage organization-wide engagement in development.
  • Leads a high-performing development team with an emphasis on leadership development; results-oriented performance; diversity, equity and inclusion; and cross-functional collaboration.
  • Serves as a member of WTA’s leadership team, including participation in organization-wide strategic planning.
  • Staffs the Board of Directors Philanthropy Committee, helping guide the work of the Committee in collaboration with the Committee Chair. Attends and reports at board meetings and board retreats, as needed.

Development Planning

  • Leads the creation of the annual development plan including goals, strategies and tactics to grow the resources of WTA that align with the overall vision and goals for the organization.
  • Works with the Finance & Administration Director to prepare annual and multi-year organizational revenue projections and funding priorities; manages the development team budget.
  • Engages the Executive Director, Philanthropy Committee and development team in meaningful ways to create buy-in and momentum during planning.
  • Identifies areas needing improvement and brings solutions that enable the development team to be high-functioning and efficient.
  • Assists with the planning and implementation of special campaigns, as required.


  • Directly supervises three development team staff members: two managers (who supervise four other employees); and one major gifts officer.
  • Oversees a compelling membership acquisition and retention program in order to expand WTA’s member and donor base.
  • Oversees a robust annual giving program to engage donors giving up to $5,000, including exciting events like Hike-a-Thon.
  • Oversees a growing major giving program with donors giving over $5,000 or making a planned or endowment gift.
  • Oversees the grant program by providing strategy and guidance to the team and ensuring reporting and other requirements are met in collaboration with program staff.
  • Manages a portfolio of 15-20 significant funders, including cultivation, solicitation and stewardship.
  • Works with the Major Gifts Officer to support the Executive Director, board members and fundraising volunteers in the implementation of their personalized portfolios for engagement with high-profile funders.
  • Collaborates with communications staff to promote multi-channel fundraising campaigns and ensure well-coordinated print and online communications with members, donors and prospects.
  • Works cross-departmentally to develop strategies to engage significant corporate and foundation prospects to ensure cohesion in how WTA engages with those entities.
  • Represents WTA at local and regional community events.
  • Oversees relationship management in Salesforce and related systems as they relate to donor engagement and project management.


  • Proven track record of nonprofit fundraising for organizations with annual budgets exceeding $1 million, including success with major gifts, grants and/or planned giving, or equivalent revenue development or marketing experience.
  • Strong commitment to WTA’s mission and values of diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Motivated to integrate equity best practices into WTA’s development goals, strategies and tactics, and work as part of WTA’s leadership team to create an inclusive organization.
  • Demonstrated success leading fundraising campaigns that employ equity best practices preferred. 
  • Demonstrated success working with nonprofit boards and building relationships with donors, or equivalent relationship-building experience.
  • Proven ability to build and maintain internal and external relationships at all levels.
  • Robust management skills including staff supervision and professional development.
  • Persuasive communication and interpersonal skills with exceptional writing and editing ability, including a track record of inspiring others to take action.
  • Knowledge of the philanthropic community in Seattle and Washington State, preferred.
  • Integrity, positive attitude and sense of humor with sensitivity to the needs of donors/volunteers and commitment to the highest standards of ethics in fundraising.
  • Demonstrated resourcefulness in setting priorities, multi-tasking, creating efficiencies, building investment in people and systems, and strong organizational skills.
  • Track record in using data to analyze results and drive decision making.
  • Experience using a database, preferably Salesforce, to track and report on donors/clients and campaigns.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office programs.


Salary depends on experience with benefit package including medical, dental, vision, retirement, disability, transportation, and holiday, vacation and sick leave.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

WTA has a commitment to advancing equity through our work and by becoming a more inclusive organization. People of color and others with underrepresented identities (including but not limited to: gender identity, class, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, age, ability, and background) are strongly encouraged to apply.

Washington Trails Association is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of age, ancestry, color, creed, gender identity, marital status, military status, national origin, parental status, political ideology, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, the presence of any sensory, mental or physical disability, or any other characteristic protected by law.

To Apply: Email a resume and a brief cover letter detailing how your experience and qualifications translate to the requirements of the role to Reference the job title “Development Director” in the subject line. This position is open until filled, with priority given to applications received by March 4th, 2019.

Washington Trails Association
705 2nd Ave Suite 300
Seattle, WA, United States
Phone: 206-625-1367

Organization Profile