Development Director

South Santa Barbara County
Santa Barbara
Full Time
Santa Barbara Channelkeeper

Santa Barbara Channelkeeper (SBCK) is seeking a Development Director to join our team.

Position Description – Development Director

The Development Director serves as SBCK’s principal fundraising strategist and is responsible for planning, managing, and implementing SBCK’s fundraising programs, including the annual fund, major gifts, planned giving, fundraising events, institutional grants, and capital/special gifts campaigns. The Development Director works closely with the Executive Director and Board of Directors to implement successful donor development and fundraising programs to meet or exceed the annual and long-term fundraising goals of SBCK. The Development Director engages, coordinates, and motivates volunteers to assist in the organization’s fundraising efforts and is responsible for all aspects of donor management and tracking, such as prospect research, gift processing, gift acknowledgement, donor recognition, and organizational involvement.

Santa Barbara Channelkeeper’s current annual budget is $822,000. The organization is financially stable and poised for strategic growth.

The Development Director should be passionate about the mission and work of Santa Barbara Channelkeeper, enthusiastic about fundraising, and experienced in asking for financial support from a diversity of sources.

Organizational Background

For more than 20 years Santa Barbara Channelkeeper has been protecting and restoring the Santa Barbara Channel and its watersheds by fighting for clean water through science-based advocacy, public education and engagement, field work, and when other avenues fail, legal action.

With boots on the ground and a boat in the water, SBCK is a leading regional advocate for clean water and healthy aquatic habitats. It also conducts field surveys and engages the public to protect the Channel and waterways within the 500 square miles of coastal watersheds stretching from California’s Gaviota Coast to the Ventura River.



Plan, manage, and implement fundraising initiatives, including annual fund, capital/special gift campaigns, planned giving, corporate support, and events, such as the annual Blue Water Ball.
In partnership with Executive Director and Board of Directors’ Development Committee, identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward major gift prospects, including implementing a major gifts and planned giving program.

Build and deepen relationships with Santa Barbara Channelkeeper supporters, including Board of Directors and past, current, and future donors.
Working closely with Executive Director and staff, oversee the identification, research, and submission of high-quality grant proposals and reports to foundations and other institutional supporters.

Write and manage annual fund appeals using direct mail, e-mail, and social media, process donations and acknowledgement letters, track contributions, and generate donor reports.
Develop fundraising materials.
Maintain organizational grant tracking system, including key dates and guidelines.
Manage and maintain database of SBCK’s supporters and prospects.
Develop and implement creative strategies to build organizational support at all giving levels.
Develop, maintain, and oversee policies and best practices related to fundraising activities that meet the standards of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.


Work with Executive Director to develop annual and long-range fundraising goals and plans.
Contribute to annual budget preparation.
Develop and maintain organization’s development and donor communication calendar.
Work with Executive Director to establish and monitor budgets for special fundraising events and other initiatives.

Board/Volunteer Engagement

Recruit, manage, and support volunteers in planning and execution of fundraising events.
Recruit, provide orientation and training, coordinate, and motivate all Board Members and additional organization supporters to participate in specific fundraising activities.
Act as staff liaison to the Board of Directors’ Development Committee.
Work with Executive Director to identify and cultivate Board prospects.


Participate in appropriate professional and networking organizations.
Supervise staff as the organization grows.
Perform other duties as assigned by Executive Director.


A minimum of 5 years of fundraising experience with a record of demonstrated success among a diversity of donor sources (major donors, foundations, annual appeals, etc.).
Ability to foster and deepen relationships with individuals, foundations, businesses, and government agencies.
Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal.
Strong organizational and time management skills.
Attentive to detail and follow-through.
Strong work ethic.
Ability to collaborate with colleagues as a leader and team member.
Experience working with Board of Directors and volunteers on development activities.
Enthusiastic about Santa Barbara Channelkeeper’s mission and impact.
Ability to work occasional evenings and weekends for meetings and events.
Experience with the following is required: donor management software, word processing, spreadsheet and budget management, email, and Internet research.
Strong ties to the Santa Barbara region’s philanthropic community are a plus.


Competitive, non-profit salary commensurate with experience; benefits

To Apply:
Send a cover letter and resume as a single PDF to: careers@sbck.org and include “Development Director position” as the email subject.

Please, no phone calls or drop-in meetings.

Santa Barbara Channelkeeper is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, and other categories protected by law in employment decisions.

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