Since its founding at the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair, the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI) has inspired millions of people—children, teachers, and families– by offering creative, participatory ways to learn and encouraging people to explore their curiosity and nurture their creativity. Located in Queens, the most ethnically diverse county in the country, NYSCI welcomes 500,000 visitors each year and serves thousands more through outreach in schools, teacher professional development, and participation in a variety of public events and research initiatives.
NYSCI is a leader in the science museum field, recognized for its highly regarded exhibitions, programs, and products, all of which are informed by strategies of engagement called Design, Make, Play. The defining characteristics of Design, Make, Play — open-ended exploration, imaginative learning, personal relevance, deep engagement, and delight — are the ingredients that inspire passionate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learners. NYSCI engages diverse communities of learners, particularly young people, in STEM, by fostering the excitement of self-directed exploration and by tapping into the joy of learning intrinsic in young people’s play. Our transformative model for STEM exploration invites broad participation and makes engagement and learning irresistible.
NYSCI has approximately 120 full-time and over 180 part-time staff members.
About the Position
Reporting to the Chief Development Officer (CDO), the Director of Philanthropy (Director) serves as a leadership member of the Institutional Advancement team and an active participant in making strategic decisions to drive forward NYSCI’s annual strategies for raising unrestricted charitable gifts. In partnership with the CDO, this position is responsible for strategic fundraising and development activities related to NYSCI’s annual Gala and the President’s Council.
The Gala and the President’s Council present crucial opportunities for cultivating and stewarding major donors. They also serve as important platforms for raising the profile of the institution and crucial and growing sources of unrestricted revenues for the organization. The Director will use these platforms to help us strengthen our donor pipeline, bring attention to our work, and recruit new advocates to drive the revenues we need to keep this work going and growing. The successful candidate will forge relationships with NYSCI’s trustees, President’s Council members, and other advocates to steward existing supporters and bring on board new individual donors and corporate funders through these strategies.
NYSCI’s Gala — An Evening of Science and Inspiration — has a distinguished tradition of honoring top executives of the most forward-thinking and innovative companies operating in the science and technology space. The NYSCI Gala aims to raise $1.75M+ each year, with the help of our Board of Trustees and Gala honorees, whom we partner closely with to activate their networks in support of NYSCI.
NYSCI’s President’s Council is a diverse and dynamic group of individuals who are passionate about STEM. Our members provide crucial support, which sustains the core work of the institution and enables NYSCI to deliver transformative educational programs, develop groundbreaking exhibitions and experiences, and provide youth programming and mentoring that inspires the next generation to be STEM leaders. Through a series of small and medium events, the Council provides a platform for networking and engaging with topics on the cutting edge of science, technology and STEM learning.
- Work closely with NYSCI’s staff and Board leadership to lead strategy for fundraising for annual Gala, raising $1.75M+ annually. NYSCI’s Board is deeply involved in this effort, and collaborates closely with staff to drive contributions at this scale.
- Steer strategy around the President’s Council with the goal of raising new and renewed gifts ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 annually. Director shares responsibility for both the design and execution of cultivation, solicitation and stewardship strategies.
- Identify and research prospective donors, and key connectors, and develop and implement outreach strategies to engage them.
- Provide stewardship to trustees and other supporters and ambassadors associated with Gala and President’s Council activities.
- Conceptualize and carry out donor cultivation activities, including NYSCI’s annual Gala and other events, including dinners, lunches, salons, and other tie-ins with NYSCI activities and exhibitions (both independently and in collaboration with event vendors). Create personalized fundraising collateral, including invitation letters and follow-up materials for individual funders.
- Report to key stakeholders (staff, Board, donors, etc.) on the efficacy of fundraising strategies.
- Coordinate with internal leaders and staff to ensure broader organizational strategies, messaging, and goals are integrated into all aspects of special events and projects.
- Management and oversight of Manager of Individual Giving and Stewardship.
- Other duties as required.
- Ten-plus years of professional experience in a nonprofit organization; demonstrated success in a development function (managing and forging relationships with multiple donor sources).
- Tangible experience of having expanded and cultivated existing donor relationships over time.
- Excellent communication skills, both written and oral; ability to influence and engage a wide range of donors and build long-term relationships.
- Strong organizational and time management skills with exceptional attention to detail.
- Proven track record of executing projects and meeting expected outcomes within budget and time restraints– particularly with respect to large events/galas.
- Flexible and adaptable style; a leader who can positively impact both strategic and tactical fundraising initiative.
- Ability to work both independently without close oversight, but also a team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels of seniority within and outside NYSCI.
- Bachelor’s degree required, Master’s preferred.
- High energy and passion for NYSCI’s mission is essential.
Compensation: Commensurate with education, skills and experience, includes an excellent NYSCI benefits package.
How To Apply: Email resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include job title in subject line.
The New York Hall of Science supports diversity in the workplace. NYSCI is an equal opportunity / affirmative action employer (EOE) and supports a drug free workplace.