Philanthropy Officer, Corporate and Individual Giving

The Sponsorship & Major Gifts Philanthropy Officer is a dual role responsible for advancing the activities of both the Institutional and Individual Giving efforts of the National Aquarium’s Philanthropy team. The Officer will have accountability for annual general operating, special project, and capital contributed revenue goals, working with both corporate sponsors and individual major donors.

This key Philanthropy team leader will cultivate, solicit and steward an independent portfolio of the Aquarium’s current corporate partners and individual donors, and realize significant portfolio growth by identifying, qualifying, and acquiring new prospects from a variety of sources.

The Officer will work closely with all members of the Philanthropy team to implement a strategic and comprehensive giving program through collaboration with Board-level volunteers and other staff throughout the organization. This role is responsible for generating new commitments of more than $1,000,000 annually.


Donor Strategy, Relationship Management and Solicitation

Manage an active portfolio of high-level corporate sponsors and prospective institutional partners, 70+ individual major donor prospects of $5,000 and above, and lead efforts to develop and implement cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship plans for each, ensuring plans are complete, strategic, sustainable and effective. Direct activities that support plans, including:

    • Engaging with prospective sponsors and donors on a personal level, ensuring they have ample opportunity to truly engage with the Aquarium in an innovative and meaningful way
    • Creating and leading efforts around cultivation, solicitation & stewardship events, visits, calls, letters, etc.
    • Devising and implementing a comprehensive strategy to solicit prospects based on determination of their experiences with, and interest in, the Aquarium, mutually beneficial brand and mission alignment, and giving capacity
    • Educating and engaging key members of Aquarium leadership and staff to ensure successful and impactful participation in donor activities
  • Achieve activity (calls, meetings, solicitations per month) and financial goals created on an annual basis
  • Develop strategic funding requests based on immediate needs and long-term funding goals of the Aquarium
  • Working with the VP of Philanthropy and VP of Institutional Giving, identify new prospects from a variety of sources including donor lists, prospect screening information, and conversations with existing corporate partners, donors and volunteers
  • Working with the Corporate Relations Manager, Annual Giving Manager and Director of Membership, identify current partners, annual donors and members who have the capacity to increase their engagement,; design and implement appropriate strategies
  • Collaborate internally with key partners across the organization to achieve annual goals

Donor Communication, Cultivation and Stewardship
  • Generate and conduct effective and engaging in-person presentations to high-level audiences in support of Aquarium projects and programs
  • Develop / prepare materials – including letters, proposals, meeting collateral, stewardship reports, etc. to support engagement and solicitation strategies
  • Manage and update contact information, plans and actions in Sales Force using identified protocol, complete timely and accurate call and progress reports
  • Ensure consistent and timely communication throughout Philanthropy department, among Aquarium staff as appropriate, and with volunteers regarding prospect and donor contact and activity

  • Thoroughly understand the National Aquarium, its mission and policies, culture, values, history, key stakeholders, programs, and finances
  • In all aspects of work, consider and promote NA’s impact on and relationships within the community
  • Work closely and collaboratively with representatives from across the Aquarium
  • Fully engage in Philanthropy department activities, contributing to both overall team and organization-wide goals
  • Contribute to long-range planning for the growth and increased overall impact and prominence of the Aquarium’s Philanthropy program
  • Adhere to all organizational and departmental policies and procedures
  • Maintain professional growth and development through seminars, workshops and professional affiliations as well as readings to keep abreast of fundraising trends
  • Other duties as assigned or required

  • Must be creative, driven, and results-focused conduct, and must truly value the Aquarium’s commitment to inspiring conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures
  • Must have a sincere interest in stewarding donor relationships and investments, a strategic understanding of mutually beneficial corporate/nonprofit partnerships, and a desire to work in a donor-centered development culture and produce products of exceptionally high quality
  • A minimum of five years of professional experience in nonprofit fundraising
  • Keen knowledge of and experience with developing and implementing sophisticated strategies for corporate partner, donor and volunteer involvement
  • Bachelor’s degree is required; advanced degree preferred
  • Strong interpersonal skills, with an ability to effectively present information verbally and to respond to questions from key leaders, partners, donors and the general public is required
  • Excellent listening, writing, and personal communication skills are required as is high attention to detail.
  • Must be a motivated team player who can engage and inspire fellow managers and volunteer leaders in the organization
  • Must demonstrate proven success in soliciting and closing both individual and corporate gifts.
  • Must be a self-starter and self-motivated
  • Must have ability to work occasional evenings and weekends and be proficient with office computer equipment and standard office software

The National Aquarium is committed to diversity and invites individuals who bring a diversity of culture, experience and ideas to apply.


The work environment at the National Aquarium is high-energy and high-performance. The pace is very fast, and change is constant. In those ways, it is not like a more traditional nonprofit workplace where work responsibilities might be fixed and unchanging, or expectations unclear. Here, we hold ourselves to very high expectations. It is a stimulating workplace that attracts unique and energetic people. It’s also a culture of continuous improvement, which means we’re constantly seeking to move from good to better to best.

The reason for this is the urgency is our mission. We are focused on changing the way humanity cares for our ocean planet. Our mission and communications are rooted in evidence-based science. We are at the center of Baltimore’s renaissance, a major player in restoring its iconic Inner Harbor, and deeply committed to inspiring our guests to become “hope-filled conservationists” on a national and international scale.

If you believe this is the kind of environment where you could thrive, we want to we want you on our team. If your talents and our culture are a match, you will grow in ways you never imagined.


Recently named one of Baltimore’s Best Places to Work, the National Aquarium opened in 1981 as a nonprofit aquatic education and conservation organization, the jewel of the city’s Inner Harbor redevelopment. SmartCEO Magazine honored the National Aquarium with the Healthiest Workplace award and the Corporate Culture award in 2016. With a mission to inspire conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures, the Aquarium is consistently ranked one of the nation’s two top aquariums and has hosted over 51 million guests since opening.

Today, the National Aquarium builds on a 36-year history of local, regional and global conservation initiatives that provide real solutions for protecting marine life, ecosystems and aquatic communities. Its Animal Rescue team has rescued, rehabilitated and released hundreds of marine mammals and endangered sea turtles throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Its Animal Welfare and Science teams participate in important research efforts to confront pressing ocean conservation issues and advocate for smarter policies at local, state and federal levels. Through education, research, conservation action and advocacy, the National Aquarium is pursuing a vision to change the way humanity cares for our ocean planet.


Interested and engaged applicants should apply through our website Requests for reasonable accommodation can be made by e-mailing

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