Senior Director, Planned Giving

Job Type

Full Time


Minimum: $115,000
Maximum: $125,000




1615 M Street, NW
Suite 100
United States


General Description


The Senior Director of Planned Giving is responsible for leading a dynamic Planned Giving Program to achieve established fundraising goals, while inspiring new growth pathways for the program. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated experience of growing a program along with a core competency in securing and documenting bequest intentions, life income gifts and other forms of planned gifts from a portfolio of potential and qualified prospects. The Senior Director is also responsible for ensuring The Wilderness Society adheres to best practices for legacy giving and should have experience with complex giving vehicles. 


The Senior Director helps inspire the TWS Governing Council to become Planned Giving Ambassadors for the organization and embraces a holistic culture of philanthropy in his/her collaborative approach. This leader works to develop a cultivation and solicitation strategy for all planned giving prospects and leads their team in executing this strategy, will also providing support to the Major Gifts Team to facilitate appropriate planned giving discussions with current and potential major donors. S/he works closely with the Donor Relations Team to ensure that all legacy donors are appropriately stewarded, and with the Finance team to ensure all instruments are understood and approved and that donor intent is followed and clearly articulated.


Working closely with donors and their advisors, the Senior Director takes primary responsibility for marketing Planned Giving vehicles and working with professional, legal, tax and financial advisors to achieve donor goals. The s/he will work as a leader in a team environment to promote gift planning among all TWS constituencies.


The Senior Director, Planned Giving plays a critical role in establishing and reinforcing an inclusive organizational culture that is grounded in trust and accountability to shared goals and outcomes. S/he will be part of the Sr. Philanthropy Team, providing feedback and support directly to the VP of Philanthropy. Additionally, the Senior Director will be part of TWS’ Senior Leaders Group, made up of members across all areas of TWS’ work to address issues around workplace culture.


TWS has made diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic priorities for the organization. This leader will integrate these priorities throughout our Planned Giving work, from expanding our partnerships to bringing an equity lens to all facets of Planned Giving. Across our team, we aspire to be campaign oriented, nimble, collaborative, innovative, transparent, and supportive of staff – our greatest asset. 

Essential Duties & Responsibilities

·        Directs and oversees the Planned Giving program; supervises two Gift Planning Program Specialists, both based in Washington DC office.  

·        Works to manage an aggressive Planned Giving marketing program utilizing in-depth analytics to create customized marketing models for the TWS donor base, strategically marketing the program to prospects and existing donors, as appropriate.

·        Develops and manages revenue goals and provides regular accounting to the VP of Philanthropy, the Executive Team and the Governing Council regarding known gifts and expectancies. Prepares regular progress reports and analysis on the status of the Planned Giving program.

·        Develops and fosters ongoing programs to educate Governing Council members and staff about planned giving vehicles. Inspires planned giving participation at the Governing Council and staff level.

·        Manages the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship for a portfolio of current and prospective legacy donors, including Governing Council members, and conducts personal visits with Legacy Club members and prospects.

·        Develops planned giving strategies to assist major giving colleagues in identifying and soliciting planned gift prospects within their donor portfolios.

·        Manages content on the planned giving website and updates as necessary to reflect current legal requirements and/or changes.

·        Participates in appropriate professional organizations and maintains an understanding of current tax codes as related to estate gifts.

·        Performs other related duties as assigned.




Experience, Competencies, and Education

·        A minimum of 10 years’ experience in development and demonstrated success in planned giving for a charitable organization, working with donors in complex gift planning programs, and a proven record of securing gift commitments.

·        Willingness to work with prospects and the ability to explain complex instruments in a clear, patient, and ethical manner.

·        Demonstrated strong management skills with the ability to mentor and motivate staff, to provide leadership and to build an effective, successful team.

·        Knowledge of current trends in the fundraising industry, particularly in Gift Planning. Thorough knowledge of technical aspects of estate planning principles and all forms of outright and deferred charitable gifts including charitable remainder trusts, gift annuities, retained life estates, charitable lead trusts, and bequests.

·        Experience leading and managing teams representing a rich mix of talent, backgrounds, and perspectives. This includes a track record of successful recruitment, cultivation, and retention of highly skilled staff across race and gender.

·        Extensive understanding of gift assets and gift implications including securities, real estate, and property and a working knowledge of income tax and estate tax implications of giving.

·        Excellent verbal and written communications skills; ability to treat sensitive information in confidence and establish trust with donors.

·        Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and PGCalc software for preparation of planned giving illustrations and bequest language.



Desired Characteristic


·        The necessary acumen, planning, management, and leadership skills to build effective relationships and exercise sound judgment.

·        Willingness and ability to travel both nationally and regionally to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward individual donors on behalf of TWS.

·        A reputation for high ethical standards and integrity.

·        Team-focused and simultaneously able to roll up one’s sleeves and make things happen as an individual.

·        Ability to work with and maintain a cohesive team.


The Wilderness Society offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including: health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance; sick and vacation leave; a sabbatical program; and a retirement plan. TWS is an equal opportunity employer and actively works to ensure fair treatment of our employees and constituents across culture, socioeconomic status, race, marital or family situation, gender, age, ethnicity, religious beliefs, physical ability, veteran status or sexual orientation.


As an organization, we aspire to being inclusive in the work that we do, and in the kind of organization we are. Internally this means working as a team that listens to different points of view, recognizes the contributions of every employee and empowers each employee to bring their whole selves to work every day. Externally this means ensuring that public lands are inclusive and welcoming, so that our shared wildlands can help people and nature to thrive. We are committed to equity throughout our work, which we define as our commitment to realizing the promise of our public lands and ensuring that all can share in their universal benefits.


To learn more about our commitment, please see


For consideration, please submit your resume & cover letter through our online application system.




  • Emphasis on a work/life balance and some telework may be available

·        Strong organization commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. Read more about this commitment here

  • Competitive Salary, Comprehensive Medical, Dental & Vision plans
  • Medical insurance available for as little as $5.00/month for employee only coverage. Dependent coverage available at an additional cost.
  • Generous Paid Time Off plan (20 accrued vacation days, 2 personal days, 12 accrued sick days & 11 recognized holidays per year)
  •  6% contribution on Pre-Tax Retirement Funds.
  • Pre-tax transit benefits for metro and parking
  • Free DC Capital BikeShare Membership.
  • New laptops for staff- Mac or PC with high resolution monitors.
  • Cell phone service reimbursement for exempt staff.
  • Paid Community Outreach Days.
  • Expansive network of outdoor retailer discounts
  • Bi-Annual All Staff Retreat in iconic outdoor landscape.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply

Please submit your cover letter and resume through our online application system.