Jobs: Senior Major Gifts Officer

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National Headquarters, New York

Department: Development

Location: Headquarters, New York, NY

Reports To: Deputy Director of Development for Major Gifts

FLSA Status: Exempt/ Full-Time

Union Status: Grade 6


This position is responsible for acquiring, cultivating, and soliciting leadership ($1500+) and major ($5000+) donors, with an emphasis on donors at the five and six figure level, for organizational support in assigned markets.

The Senior Major Gifts Officer (SMGOII) will work to expand Lambda Legal’s Leadership ($1500+) and Major ($5000+) Donor Program and volunteer activities and visibility in the New York Metro Area and other markets as assigned/needed. The SMGO II is also responsible for managing relationships, communications, and individual giving plans with leadership donors and managing volunteer leadership committees, as needed in their assigned markets. The SMGO II also will work to increase planned giving in the areas covered and is responsible for increasing leadership donor revenue in each assigned market and for their overall portfolio. This position will be based in Lambda Legal’s New York office and will have travel requirements as well as local evening commitments.

Who We Are

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 LGBT people and people living with HIV in the workplace, the home, in schools, in health care, and in the military; and protect LGBT 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.

We believe that serving the full breadth of the LGBT and HIV communities requires cultural competency and enthusiasm for diversity of all kinds. To be successful, we must approach our 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 LGBT people and everyone living with HIV– rather, we recognize the intersectional nature of discrimination, specifically including biases based on race, religion, national origin, education, and class. In light of this reality, we prioritize awareness and proactive commitment to counteracting these biases and their compounding effects.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Manage leadership donor fundraising programs including acquiring, cultivating, and soliciting donors and prospects with potential to give $1,500 or more annually, with heightened focus on upgrading donors to five and six figure levels.
  • Manage volunteer leadership committees including Board and National Leadership Council members in assigned markets and additional ones, as determined.
  • Leverage their existing networks in advancement of Lambda Legal’s Mission
  • Work collaboratively with national staff, Board, and National Leadership Council (NLC) members and other volunteers to execute fundraising and cultivation events in assigned markets and additional ones, as determined. This includes identifying, soliciting and securing sponsorships (individual and firm/corporate) and leadership gifts for annual events in assigned markets. The SMGO will work closely with Events Managers and the other MGO’s in the New York office and national (as needed) on individual solicitation, event management, volunteer committees, stewardship, etc.
  • Identify and cultivate prospective volunteer solicitors, including potential Board and NLC members in assigned markets as well as support and manage annual solicitation of donors in assigned portfolio by the Chief Executive Officer, the Chief Development Officer Board, NLC members, and other key volunteers. This includes identifying and securing major donor prospect meetings for senior staff and organizational leadership.
  • Implement donor cultivation, stewardship, and appreciation programs, including recognition “house parties” (non-ticketed events) in assigned markets. This also includes providing programmatic updates to donors on an on-going basis. Lead and/or collaborate with other team members on major ticketed events, to include but not limited to Lambda Legal’s Liberty Awards National Dinner, and events in Connecticut, Fire Island Pines and Washington DC.
  • Acknowledge contributions and coordinate annual report recognition for gifts received from donors in assigned portfolio as well as work with national staff to coordinate input into grant proposals for local foundations and prospective foundation grantors.
  • Educate donors about the extra obstacles and hurdles faced by LGBT people. When appropriate, introduce and educate donors on the concept of planned giving and identify prospects for the planned giving team.
  • Work with the national development team to increase giving each year.
  • Additional duties as assigned.


Skills & Competencies:

  • At least five years development or comparable sales experience, including direct work in fundraising events and direct work with individual donors in the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of annual gifts. 
  • Experience soliciting five and six figure gifts.
  • Experience working closely with Board and key volunteers and knowledge of LGBT and/or philanthropic communities in assigned areas.
  • Significant face to face fundraising experience.
  • Experience coordinating fundraising events.
  • Able to leverage existing networks in advancement of Lambda Legal’s mission.
  • Outstanding written communication, analytical, interpersonal, personal organizational skills and administrative skills are required. 
  • Proficiency in using the Microsoft Office suite of applications.
  • Internet research skills.
  • Experience in donor database management a plus; Raiser’s Edge preferred.
  • Must be able to work in an autonomous environment and be self-directed and self-motivated. 
  • Possess the following personal attributes: Trustworthy, Strategic, Organized, Results-driven, Self-starter, Social, Inclusive, Transparent, Collaborative, Perseverant, Reliable

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, and 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.


This position may require some minimal regional travel.


Salary is based on the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The starting salary for the position will be $99,000. Competitive benefits package is provided, including medical, dental, life and long-term disability insurance, employer contributions to retirement account, and substantial vacation. 


The position is open until filled.

Send resume and cover letter by e-mail only to, attention Sara Beinert with the subject line of “Senior Major Gifts Officer”.

No calls please. Due to the high volume of applications, Lambda Legal cannot return phone calls about the position and does not notify applicants of status except when an interview is granted.

Lambda Legal is committed to further building and maintaining a staff that reflects the full range of LGBT, HIV-affected and allied communities, and is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, transgender and gender-diverse people, women, people with abilities in multiple languages, immigrants, people living with disabilities, and individuals living with HIV are encouraged to apply.