Job Listing

Vice President of Philanthropy

Tallahassee Museum, Tallahassee



The Tallahassee Museum seeks a seasoned and accomplished Vice President of Philanthropy to join its team in shaping a new vision for its future - a future that builds upon its unique 60-year history and values, commitment to its region and propels its mission into the 21st century.

Reporting to the Museum’s President/CEO and a member of the Senior Management Team, the Vice President of Philanthropy will lead the transformation and expansion of the Tallahassee Museum’s fundraising efforts and serve as a key cultivator and solicitor of donors, inspire constituents to higher levels of giving and work collaboratively with Museum Board members, staff and volunteers to ensure success in building strong donor and constituent relationships to support the Museum’s mission and vision for the future.

The Vice President of Philanthropy will have a unique opportunity to establish a new culture of philanthropy for the Museum, provide strategic direction to the President/CEO and Board and steward the Museum’s established donors, foster new relationships and position the Museum for a successful capital campaign. The Vice President of Philanthropy will have a unique opportunity to build the Philanthropy Department over the course of their tenure.

Essential Functions

  • Identify, cultivate, solicit and steward annual fund, foundation, corporate and planned gift and existing and prospective donors in close collaboration with the President/CEO, Board members and senior leadership staff.
  • Establish, manage and provide strategic direction for major gifts and planned giving programs that encompasses all phases of development activity from prospect identification to cultivation, solicitation and stewardship.
  • Working with the President/CEO, prepare the Museum for and help lead a successful Capital Campaign for new and expanded facilities.
  • Work with the Director of Membership and Marketing to develop and implement communications, membership strategies and publications to support development activities. Directly supervise the Director of Membership and Marketing who supervises a department of two.
  • Work with senior staff and department heads in conducting fundraising activities including research, proposal writing and reporting requirements.
  • Create annual development plan with prioritized goals and objectives and develop and manage the Philanthropy Department’s revenue/expense budget in coordination with the President/CEO.
  • Leverage greater opportunities for donor engagement and social interaction by attending, participating in and engaging visitors, members and donors at Museum events and gatherings and serving as an ambassador to the community.
  • Assist with Board recruitment, training and development.
  • Oversee the maintenance of the donor/membership database and maintain gift recognition programs.
  • Provide staff support to the Development and/or Capital Campaign Committee(s).


  • Bachelor’s degree required as is at least 7-10+ years of progressively responsible development experience, quantifiable results in all areas of fundraising with a focus on major gifts, previous capital campaign leadership experience, a strong record of building long-term relationships and excellent philanthropic planning skills. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills and a strong ability to influence and inspire.
  • Ability to gather and synthesize information and turn it into a compelling case statement. Ability to effectively communicate the Museum’s mission and goals to current and prospective donors and stakeholders.
  • Strong work ethic, ability to be highly organized, efficient and effective in task and time management.
  • Ability to collaborate, coordinate and work effectively with peers, Board of Directors, volunteers and community leaders. 
  • Ability to work in high-visibility, fast-paced environment and manage multiple projects, initiatives and events in parallel.
  • Ethical compliance, confidentiality, and professionalism.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge and use of Blackbaud Altru or Razor’s Edge fundraising platforms and wealth intelligence/prospect building software such as WealthEngine;
  • CFRE certification; and
  • Previous experience in a museum or arts organization.

Museum Background

The Tallahassee Museum is a vibrant non-profit organization that has served the Big Bend community since 1957. In recent years, the Museum has made significant investments to thoughtfully plan its future, diversify and strengthen its revenues, and offer programs and activities to attract and delight a diverse audience. The result has been a substantial increase in visitors and steady growth in revenue.

The Tallahassee Museum is also one of the leading history and natural science museums in Florida and the Southeast. Located on fifty-two acres on a chain of lakes in southwest Tallahassee, the Museum offers distinctive programs, exhibits and events focused on North Florida's and South Georgia's unique cultural and natural history. The Museum has remained accredited by the American Alliance of Museums since 1985.

As one of the few museums in the nation combining historical buildings, displays of native wildlife and a beautiful natural setting, the Tallahassee Museum illustrates the dynamic interactions existing between people and their environment.  Furthermore, the Museum is unequaled in the state with its displays of vernacular architecture and live animals historically native to the region. The Museum is also the home of the internationally acclaimed exhibit, Jim Gary’s Twentieth Century Dinosaurs. These vividly colored dinosaurs sculpted from recycled car parts evoke thoughts about art, science and sustainability. Tallahassee Tree to Tree Adventures, the Museum’s aerial adventure course with zip lines, encourages visitors to explore the majesty of nature from high in the trees. 

The Museum is the region’s oldest museum and for many Tallahassee residents and visitors, the Museum is their “favorite place”, “a beloved family tradition” and “the premiere cultural organization in this community.”  With services to over 180,000 people per year, the Museum is a crucial element in the cultural and educational fabric of the region.

The Museum enjoys a broad base of support. Approximately 70% of the Museum's 3.2 million dollar budget is generated from earned income activities. Private and public donations and grant support account for the remaining 30% percent of the Museum’s budget. Furthermore, 80% of the Museum’s expenses are directly associated with program services expenses, while only 10% of expenses are allocated to management and general expenses and 10% to fundraising expenses. A recent economic impact study demonstrated that Tallahassee Museum visitors directly spent 7.5 million dollars in our community and that the Museum had a total economic impact of 11.7 million dollars.

The Museum is a private 501(c) 3 nonprofit Florida corporation that operates with a Board of Trustee, a staff of 100 full time and part-time employees and approximately 1,000 volunteers.


Tallahassee is situated in the Big Bend region of the Florida panhandle, nestled between the scenic Gulf Coast and Georgia border. This region is often described as "The Other Florida" with its deep-rooted history, rolling hills, evergreen forests, canopy roads of moss-draped oaks and Southern-style hospitality.

The Museum is located in the city of Tallahassee within Leon County which has a combined population of 275,487. Outside of Leon County, the Museum serves primarily a rural region within approximately a 65 mile radius and an estimated combined population of 450,000

As the State capitol and home of Florida State University (FSU), Florida A & M (FAMU), and Tallahassee Community College, Tallahassee offers a larger cultural and entertainment base than might be expected of a city of its size (147,500). The Tallahassee region is home to the Museum of Florida History, FSU Fine Arts Gallery and Museum, Black Archives Research Center and Museum, five historic house/sites, and six state park museums. Tallahassee also supports a symphony orchestra, ballet company, and several private and university sponsored theater arts organizations.

Tallahassee provides a relatively high per capita income and education base. The median age of 30 makes Leon County the youngest county in the state. Sixty-five percent of the employees are in white collar occupations and 45% of the adults have graduated from college.

Tallahassee is a five hour drive from Tampa, Orlando, and Atlanta, and less than three hours from Jacksonville and Pensacola. Traveling from Tallahassee by air is a quick trip to regional hubs in Atlanta, Nashville, Charlotte, Tampa, Orlando, and Miami.

Competitive and commensurate with experience.

Starting Date
Fall 2017.

Application Procedures
Interested applicants should send letter of interest detailing how their qualifications meet the profile of this position, a resume, and salary expectations in confidence to:

Russell S. Daws, President/CEO
Tallahassee Museum
3945 Museum Drive
Tallahassee, FL 32310-6325

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