Careers & Internships

The following position is currently open at the Woods Hole Research Center:


Director of Foundation Relations
Job # DFR17

SUMMARY: The Woods Hole Research Center (WHRC), a leading climate change science and policy think tank, seeks an experienced front-line fundraising professional to join a dynamic and expanding Development team. Reporting to the Chief Development Officer (CDO), the Director of Foundation Relations will manage relationships with foundations and other institutional donors, and will contribute significantly to the planning, organization and execution of a comprehensive program to expand private gifts and grant support from these donors. The position will maintain effective stewardship of existing institutional donors, and take the lead in identifying and securing new funding sources. The candidate will work closely with WHRC scientists and other staff to coordinate the proposal development and submission process, and manage all associated deadlines and reporting. This position requires strong interpersonal skills, an interest in environmental/science issues, and an understanding of the environmental philanthropy landscape.

Responsibilities: Core responsibilities include prospect research and identification, proposal and report writing and submission, prospect and donor relationship management, and monitoring progress toward goals of grants within portfolio.

  • Identify, cultivate, and solicit new foundation prospects and steward existing funders.
  • Work closely with scientists to package programs, develop concepts and cases of support for new initiatives; this requires ongoing effort to build and maintain a thorough knowledge of WHRC’s priorities and activities.
  • Play a key role in assigning and managing the portfolio of relationships to be cultivated by WHRC scientists and in coaching these staff to effectively steward those relationships.
  • Secure meetings with foundation contacts, craft messaging, facilitate meeting logistics and follow up.
  • Help to manage administration of current grants, including tracking deadlines, collecting information from program staff and the finance department, writing and submitting timely proposals, reports, updates and stewardship reports, and letters of inquiry.
  • Work with scientists, finance, and other staff to monitor progress toward grant goals and accurate spenddown of grant funding.
  • Support staff and/or Board members working with foundation donors and prospects.
  • Assist with other departmental projects and related major gift solicitations as assigned by the CDO.

Qualifications and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree and 5+ years directly relevant development or grant experience
  • Knowledge and interest in environmental science/issues
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills (writing samples will be required)
  • Experience with Raisers Edge and fundraising/grant prospect research tools is helpful
  • Exceptional interpersonal, presentation and communication skills, with the ability to interact with a wide range of constituents, including scientific experts and donors.
  • Ability to work well independently and as part of a dynamic team in a constantly evolving environment, with people of diverse backgrounds, cultures and nationalities

Application deadlineAugust 25, 2017 or until position filled

Desired Start Date: As soon as possible

Salary Range: Commensurate with experience, a full benefit package, exempt position.

Application Instructions: To apply, please send cover letter referencing “Director of Foundation Relations Job #DFR17,” curriculum vitae, and contact information for three references to