Position Opening: Director of Marketing & Development, Carolina Raptor Center

Position DescriptionDirector of Marketing & Development


Client: Carolina Raptor Center
Current Location: 6000 Sample Road, Huntersville, NC 28078
Founded:  1981
Reports To: Executive Director

Carolina Raptor Center — Organizational Description

A Charlotte cultural instituion for nearly 40 years, Carolina Raptor Center is at the precipice of amazing change as it gets set to move into Quest – a state-of-the-art nature center located at Latta Nature Preserve. The organization is seeking a creative, energetic marketing and development professional to on-board this new cultural asset and further establish the Raptor Center as a top Charlotte destination for hands-on STEM engagement.

Carolina Raptor Center ignites imaginations and inspires engagement in the natural world through the exploration and rehabilitation of birds of prey.

When the first raptor – a Broad-winged Hawk — was brought to UNC-Charlotte ornithologist Dr. Richard Brown in 1975, the concept of Carolina Raptor Center was “hatched.” In 1979, six additional birds were admitted into a makeshift clinic in the basement of UNCC’s biology building.

In 1981, Carolina Raptor Center was co-founded by Dr. Brown and Deb Sue Griffin and incorporated as a non-profit 501(c) 3 corporation.  By 1984, CRC had outgrown its modest accommodations at UNCC and an effort was made to find a new site. The Latta Nature Preserve proved a suitable site, though the Center would not have a permanent facility until the Environmental Education Center was built in 1992.

Though raptor conservation was the original reason for its founding, CRC’s public-facing education trail soon became a primary way most local residents come to learn about the organization.  From the early-1990s to today, CRC has increased its capacity to serve both raptors and the public, becoming one of the state’s most well-known science centers.

Carolina Raptor Center is dedicated to the conservation of raptors. The organization meets its mission through public engagement, education programming and the rehabilitation of injured birds of prey. Nearly 1,000 raptors are rehabilitated by the organization each year, making it one of the largest volume raptor rehabilitation centers of its kind in the world.  Carolina Raptor Center is also home to 97 permanent resident birds — eagles, hawks, owls, falcons, vultures, and corvids — whose sole mission is to educate the public about the environment, human impact, and many STEM topics. More than 30,000 people visit annually to walk the Raptor Trail and engage with resident bird exhibits.

Each year, more than 27,000 school children explore natural history, biology, physics and math concepts in formal education programs run by Carolina Raptor Center. Programs are held on campus at in classrooms throughout the region. Though the organization is based in Mecklenburg County and serves many local children, the organization’s education footprint extends throughout North Carolina and South Carolina.

Following nearly a decade of discussion and visioning, Carolina Raptor Center, in partnership with Mecklenburg County Park & Recreation, is building a new state-of-the-art Center at the Latta Nature Preserve called Quest. This once-in-a-generation project promises to increase Carolina Raptor Center’s impact across a wide spectrum to include expanded conservation efforts, increased education programming and significant economic impact.

The Quest project includes the design and construction of a modern, 13,000+ sq ft Center with interactive indoor exhibits, expanded learning spaces, increased administration space and improved amenities for guests. In addition to the new facility, Carolina Raptor Center is constructing a new Raptor Trail system to include aviaries for more than 35 species of raptors and a technically-advanced amphitheater. The project also includes a renovated Raptor Medical Center to include increased capacity for the care and treatment of injured raptors.

More than 100,000 visitors are expected to visit Quest annually when the doors open in 2020. Carolina Raptor Center intends to capitalize on being one of the most visited cultural assets in the region, expanding awareness of the organization’s mission and exhibits, and deepening relationships with constituents new and old.

The Role
The Director of Marketing and Development (DoMD) is a key member of the Carolina Raptor Center Management Team, overseeing the marketing of all organizational product lines and the solicitation of gifts. The DoMD has responsibility for managing all individual, corporate and foundation relationships and works with the Management Team to identify, cultivate, solicit and steward donors. The DoMD also supports the “Our Quest” Capital Campaign and processes pledges, ensures fulfillment and participates in meetings with the Campaign Counsel.

The DoMD manages the Marketing Coordinator, the Social Media contractor, the Database Administrator and a Development Intern and promotes a culture of philanthropy and entrepreneurship with all staff and stakeholders.

The organization is seeking an entrepreneurial professional with marketing and relationship development skillset. The successful applicant will have the vision and creativity to drive visitation, increase sponsorship and maximize charitable giving from individuals and institutions. The DoMD is a self-starter, has an affinity for balancing priorities well, and stays abreast of business best practices and trends.

Professional Responsibilities

Marketing Program Management

  • Works with Marketing Coordinator to guide marketing strategy for all programs and events.
  • Manages Social Media contractor.
  • Provides internal client management with all departments to deliver strategic communications.
  • Works with Marketing Coordinator to meet deadlines and prioritize projects.

Development Program Management

  • Conceive and execute a comprehensive annual development plan for Annual Fund, Take Flight Society (leadership gifts), Board of Directors, Corporations and Foundations and Legacy Giving.
  • Identify, cultivate, solicit and steward donor relationships and ensure a donor-centered approach to fundraising to support the mission.
  • Organize and manage the Take Flight Society (Major Gifts) and the Golden Eagle Society (Legacy Gifts and utilize support from the Board of Directors and Executive Director to help cultivate and steward the relationships.
  • Manage foundation grants program and contract grant writer for larger requests. Compose and provide reporting for CRC’s Arts & Science Operating Grant and assist staff with identifying and composing smaller grants.
  • Update Annual Fund and Assigned Contacts in Altru on a regular basis. Limited Gift entry and acknowledgement. Work with Database Administrator to enter, acknowledge gifts and provide regular reporting to the management team on giving.
  • Work with the Executive Director and Board to create a culture of philanthropy, including motivating all staff and volunteers to support relationship building efforts.
  • Create compelling cases for support that all staff and volunteers can articulate and establish infrastructure that supports and celebrates donors.
  • Stay abreast of best practices in fund development and marketing and implement in the annual fundraising activities of the organization.

Special Events

  • Serve as the staff liaison to the Talon to Table Task Force for our annual farm-to-fork gala. Responsible for contracting with venue, caterer, software, etc. and developing a sound event budget.
  • Create the case for support for Corporate Sponsorships, make asks and support the Task Force and Board in making asks. Submit formal requests for proposals.
  • Inspire the Task Force and Board to solicit in-kind donations for the auction, food and beverage.
  • Work with the Program Team to develop the experiences for the evening.

Capital Campaign Support

  • Develop the strategy to convert major donors to the Campaign into major donors for ongoing Annual Fund support.
  • Support the Management Team and Campaign Counsel to guide the fundraising efforts around the “Birds Inspire” phase of the “Our Quest” Campaign – the final capital portion of the campaign to build out the new exhibits on the new Raptor Trail.
  • Provide administrative support to process new pledges to the Campaign, track existing pledges to ensure fulfillment, and work with the Finance Manager on auditing pledges for the annual audit report

Administration and Supervisory Role

  • Create the annual development/marketing budget in conjunction with the Finance Manager
  • Manage the Marketing Coordinator and oversee the development of the annual marketing plan.
  • Supervise the Database Administrator. Provide strategic direction for reporting and development dashboard.
  • Supervise the Development Intern. Set annual goals and provide opportunities for professional development.

Other Duties

  • Serve as a member of the  Management Team
  • Employee goal setting and evaluation
  • Provide direction and support for the Board’s Development Committee – Staff Liaison

Required Qualifications & Competencies
The ideal candidate would have the following capabilities and qualities:

  • Bachelor’s degree and a minimum of 5 years of development and/or marketing experience
  • Highly-skilled relationship builder who can work with varied constituencies (donors, volunteers, and co-workers) to achieve mutually beneficial goals
  • Proven track record in achieving revenue goals and growth
  • A proficient technical writer who can distill an inspiring and mission-focused message
  • Passion and understanding for the Carolina Raptor Center mission
  • Curiosity in and skill with using technology to inform the decision-making process. Microsoft Office proficient and CRM familiarity preferred
  • Self-motivated and able to work independently
  • Affinity and respect for fundraising best practices – interest in pursuing CFRE certification
  • Patience and an ability to project a cool, calming influence in high-pressure situations

Compensation will be competitive and commensurate with experience. Health and retirement benefits offered.

To Apply
Carolina Raptor Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in its work and staff. Employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sex, national origin, physical or mental disability, age, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable state or federal law. Carolina Raptor Center encourages candidates of all groups and communities to apply for this position.

Beginning January 10, 2019 all inquiries, nominations and applications are to be directed via email to Next Stage Consulting: search@nextstage-consulting.com.  Applications must include a custom cover letter and CV to be considered.  Please indicate in the subject line of your email the position and organization to which you are applying and where you learned of the opportunity. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

Please note that only those candidates invited for screening will be contacted.

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