Director of Advancement

Job Type

Full Time


Details: Salary commensurate with experience.



Start Date


Application Deadline



45 Farmhouse Square
United States


The Director is responsible for building, maintaining relationships with and securing Retreat Farm-sustaining resources - donations, commitments of time and social capital - from a large network of individuals who will over time become closely connected to the Farm as donors, partners, advisors and advocates. The Director is also principally responsible for building relationships with institutions that are important strategically to the Farm and its programs. Finally, the Director is a principal informant with respect to Retreat Farm strategic policy as well as the ultimate sequencing of new program initiatives, building renovation and other property development. 


Primary Responsibilities

  • Donations and Capital Campaign- Develop a (major gifts) donor network (Friends-Building) and/or endowment capable of generating $500,000 annually to support Retreat Farm operations. Work, principally with president, to secure annual major gifts to support this target. Further in consultation with president and Director of Property, Policy and Development (who is working on foundation and government grants) determine whether or not to characterize these initiatives as a “capital campaign,” which the director would lead. Work with Operations and Marketing Director to generate $100K to 150K annually in local donations and memberships. Explore establishing a Retreat Farm legacy gift society.

  • Strategic Institutional Relations - Lead the effort, in collaboration with other directors and president, to build and maintain relations and partnerships with a range of non- and for-profit institutions, e.g. Windham Foundation, Brattleboro Retreat, Strolling of the Heifers, Food Connects, Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, United Way, NECCA, NE Youth Theater, Latchis Arts, local social service agencies, and especially nature and farm related organizations.

  • Develop and maintain a capital projects and asks menu, listing all programs and buildings, and their sequencing, that we expect to come online - This menu will constitute a central component of the Farm’s strategic plan, to be revisited regularly and serve as a resource to match donors to potential projects.

  • Donor Value Propositions and Messaging - Work with internal managers to identify and articulate messaging for key value propositions and donor benefits of each program area. Work with Operations and Marketing Director to ensure that all public Retreat Farm communication is reviewed for possible donor or “Friends-Building” value.

  • Integrating “Friends-Building” - Work with Program Director and Operations and Marketing Director to ensure that there are effective and respectful channels for Friends identification and development (at a minimum CRM database building) wherever our activity intersects with the public.

  • Volunteers - Work with the Operations and Marketing Director and Program Director to establish an advisory board(s) to support educational program development, environmental policy development, natural and cultural history research and interpretation, etc.

  • Customer Relations Management System - Work with the Operations and Marketing Director to manage and maintain our Salesforce CRM.

  • Public RF Programs - Help as needed and available for CFF and Events

  • Member of Marketing Committee (monthly)- with Operations and Marketing Director, Director of Property, Policy and Development; generating messaging and value propositions for various audiences and collateral materials and strategies to convey messaging.

  • Member of Strategy Committee - formally quarterly and informally continuously with president and other directors.

  • Additional Responsibilities - Some listed responsibilities may evolve, and others added as opportunities arise and work loads and skills change among staff.

Reports to Executive Director


  • 5 years experience and accomplishment in fund-raising and developing major donor relationships
  • Superior oral and written communicating skills
  • Energetic, enthusiastic and collaborative demeanor
  • Demonstrated commitment to Retreat Farm’s mission and values

About Retreat Farm

Founded in 1837, Retreat Farm served for over 150 years as a principal source of food, fuel, and therapy for the patients of the Brattleboro Retreat. Innovative at its founding, the Farm was the first established to serve an American psychiatric hospital and became the model for all similar institutions for the next 100 years.

Adjacent to downtown Brattleboro, at the confluence of the West and Connecticut Rivers, Retreat Farm today features 500 acres of forests, farmlands, waters, trails, and an iconic nine-barn farmstead. 

Retreat Farm, Ltd. (RFL), 501(c)(3) public charity, was established to restore and preserve the lands, waters and buildings. We are working with experts and community stakeholders to repurpose the property as a natural and cultural commons to connect Vermonters and visitors alike to the land and one-another through educational programs, recreation resources, land-based enterprise, and community events. Today, while no longer connected to the hospital, Retreat Farm remains an expansive and vital resource for Southern Vermont. 

Retreat Farm is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Please provide a resume and cover letter expressing your interest in Retreat Farm.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

Please provide a resume and cover letter expressing your interest in Retreat Farm.