Jobs: Director of National Sponsors

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National Headquarters, New York

About Lambda Legal

Lambda Legal is a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, and everyone living with HIV through impact litigation, education, and public policy work.

Since 1973, Lambda Legal has used impact litigation and other advocacy tools to decriminalize same-sex relationships; challenge discrimination against LGBTQ people and people living with HIV in the workplace, in the home, in schools, in health care, and in the military; and protect LGBTQ families, including by winning and defending marriage equality. Clients are not charged for legal representation or advocacy, and Lambda Legal receives no government funding. Headquartered in New York City, Lambda Legal has regional offices in Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Washington, D.C.

Lambda Legal believes that serving the full breadth of the LGBTQ and HIV communities requires cultural competency and enthusiasm for diversity of all kinds. To be successful, the organization approaches its work with an understanding that discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is not the only obstacle to achieving full formal and lived equality for LGBTQ people and everyone living with HIV; rather, it recognizes the intersectional nature of discrimination, specifically including biases based on race, religion, national origin, gender, disability, education, and class. In light of this reality, Lambda Legal prioritizes awareness and proactive commitment to counteracting these biases and their compounding effects.   

Position Summary

Lambda Legal seeks an experienced relationship manager with experience working in or with law firms and corporations to serve as its Director of National Sponsor Program.

This position is responsible for Lambda Legal’s National Sponsor program, which currently generates more than $1 million each year for Lambda Legal’s critical impact litigation. The Director will develop, administer, and manage the sponsorship benefits package, which include recognition, event-based and online educational benefits, as well as actively solicit the more than 40 law firms that are National Sponsors. The Director of the National Sponsor Program partners with colleagues to strategize asks and to create and manage the online education programming.

The ideal candidate has experience fundraising from law firms and corporations or working in a law firm. Other backgrounds of particular interest include non-practicing JDs with law firm experience and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) program managers at law firms.

Essential Job Functions

The Director of the National Sponsor Program (DNSP) reports to the Deputy Director of Development for Major Gifts and works closely with the Events and Major Gifts teams, including Regional Directors. This role requires a “roll up your sleeves” entrepreneurial approach, vision for growth of the program, knowledge of the law firm constituency, and keen attention to detail. The following is a list of the core responsibilities of the Director of NSP (NSP):

  • Raise $1 million+ from 40+ National Sponsors for Lambda Legal annually
  • Develop annual program of NSP benefits, in collaboration with the Manager of Corporate Partnerships. Develop and maintain marketing and promotional materials for the program.
  • Actively solicit new sponsors and renew existing sponsorships. Partner with Regional Directors to develop plans for upgrading existing sponsors.
  • Collaborate with the National Events Team, event consultants, and others in Development to deliver sponsorship benefits, especially for events such as the organization’s flagship National Liberty Awards.
  • Collaborate with select members of the Legal Department and Regional Directors to plan an annual program of online education presentations as an important NSP benefit.
  • Carry a small portfolio of Major Donors ($5,000+) who are primary contacts or leads at law firms. This includes face-to-face meetings, direct solicitations, and managing cultivation touchpoints.
  • Act as lead relationship manager in partnership with Regional Directors and Legal Department representatives to further law firm engagement and relations through sponsorships and pro bono opportunities.
  • Stay apprised of law firm trends and interests, particularly in the areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), and employee resource groups (ERGs).
  • Partner with Legal Department and Regional Directors to field requests for continuing legal education (CLE) offerings and develop pricing scale for speaking engagements.
  • Serve as the primary contact for individual donors and prospects, local corporate and law firm event sponsors, and Leadership Donors nationally, as assigned.
  • Provide leadership to corporate and law firm solicitation committees of the Board and National Leadership Council, where applicable.
  • Act as an advisor in regional and local volunteer fundraising committees where law firm sponsorship support is sought.
  • Leverage existing networks in the advancement of Lambda Legal’s mission.
  • Additional duties as assigned.


Skills + Competencies

  • 5+ years of demonstrated success in a major gift, law firm, corporate, or events fundraising function.
  • Proven experience having expanded and cultivated existing donor relationships over time.
  • Experience working closely with Boards of Directors and key volunteers; knowledge of the LGBT and/or philanthropic communities in assigned areas is required.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and interpersonal; ability to influence and engage a wide range of donors and build long-term authentic relationships.
  • Flexible, adaptive, and innovative work style; a collaborator who can positively impact both strategic and tactical fundraising initiatives.
  • Willingness and ability to leverage existing networks in advancement of Lambda Legal’s mission.
  • Ability to work both independently without close oversight, but also as a team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels of seniority within and outside the organization.
  • High energy and passion for Lambda Legal’s mission is essential.
  • Strong organizational, time management, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills with exceptional attention to detail.
  • Highly proficient with Microsoft Office applications and Raiser’s Edge database.
  • Ability to interact with all levels of the organization and to excel in an environment that emphasizes teamwork and collaboration.
  • Some travel is required for this position.
  • Any successful candidate will welcome the opportunity to work in a racially- and gender-diverse environment and to contribute to a positive and inclusive atmosphere.

Working at Lambda Legal requires a demonstrated awareness of and commitment to the concerns of the breadth of the communities that Lambda Legal serves. Prior work on behalf of the LGBT community and/or people living with HIV is highly desirable. Some experience working with historically marginalized communities (in a professional or volunteer capacity) is also desirable. Any successful candidate will welcome the opportunity to work in a gender-diverse and racially diverse environment.

Reporting Relationships

The Director of National Sponsor Program reports to the Deputy Director of Development for Major Gifts and has no supervisory responsibilities.

Compensation + Benefits

Salary is based on the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The salary range for this position is $100,000 to $110,000.

A competitive benefits package is provided, including:

  • Medical*
  • Dental*
  • Life insurance*
  • Short- and long-term disability insurance*
  • Vision
  • Pre-tax Health Flexible Spending Account
  • Dependent care account
  • Commuter transit account
  • 403(b) retirement account with a 2% employer contribution plus up to a 4% match
  • Substantial vacation (accrue up to 15 days year 1)
  • Three personal, 12 sick days
  • Lambda Legal observes ten holidays per year and is supportive of observance of religious holidays

* Life insurance, short- and long-term disability, and basic medical and dental provided at no cost to the employee.

As a reflection of our firm’s commitment to equity and equal pay for all, it is Cooper Coleman’s requirement that salary ranges or salary starting points be published for every search we conduct. The practice of not posting salaries perpetuates the gender and racial wage gap and discriminates against women, people of color, and other historically excluded populations by causing individuals to negotiate from a disadvantaged starting point.


This position is located in Lambda Legal's National Headquarters (HDQ) in New York City.

Travel + COVID Statement

During the COVID-19 pandemic, travel will be minimal. In the future, however, some amount of travel (~30%) will be required.

The health and wellbeing of our employees and their loved ones are of the utmost importance to us. During the pandemic, we have chosen to close our offices. Although staff are mostly working from home, some employees have returned to work in the office voluntarily. We follow CDC and Department of Health guidelines to ensure the safety of employees who occasionally need to work from the office. We have an employee task force that is continually evaluating and assessing when we can re-open. At this time, the offices will remain closed until at least February 2022.

EEO + Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Lambda Legal is committed to further building and maintaining a staff that reflects the full range of LGBTQ, HIV-affected and allied communities, and is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, transgender, non-binary and gender-diverse people, women, people with abilities in multiple languages, immigrants, people living with HIV, and people living with (or perceived as having) other physical or mental disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Background Checks

Before sending your resume for this position, please read it over for accuracy. Cooper Coleman verifies its candidates' employment and academic credentials at the time of offer, and our clients frequently conduct background checks before finalizing an offer.

Submission Instructions (read carefully)

Cooper Coleman is leading this search on behalf of Lambda Legal. To apply, click here and complete the application. 

All inquiries will be held in confidence.

A cover letter is not required with your initial application. Candidates invited for interviews will be asked to provide a thoughtful letter of interest indicating their specific qualifications for the opportunity, desire to join Lambda Legal, and connection to its mission.

Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the successful candidate has been selected.

Cooper Coleman LLC is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all qualified candidates and will refer candidates without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation or identity, age, ability, veteran status, or any other legally protected basis.