Vice President of Development (NatureServe)

Arlington, VA
Vice President

NatureServe, the research and data powerhouse that collects, analyzes, and distributes the scientific data that is the foundation of species and habitat conservation work in the Americas, has retained Development Resources inc. to lead its search for a Vice President of Development, who will build an individual and foundation donor pipeline to help build bridges between science and conservation efforts.

NatureServe is widely recognized as the standard-setter for conservation science and biodiversity data and analysis. NatureServe’s network stretches from the Artic to the Andes, providing data about more than 75,000 species in 7,000 ecosystems. NatureServe delivers data to major conservation organizations, such as the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Sustainable Forestry Initiative, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, and numerous environmental NGOs like TNC, EDF, NFWF and others to develop conservation guidelines. Since 2009, NatureServe’s research has been cited nearly 5,000 times.

NatureServe seeks a Vice President of Development who can help enhance its strategic growth by finding innovative ways to engage individual supporters in its mission, oversee grants, and foundation relations. The VP of Development will join NatureServe’s President/CEO, Sean O’Brien, Ph.D., as well as more than 70 accomplished staff members, including a dynamic group of scientists working to unearth new discoveries in biodiversity, and a committed Board of Directors.

Reporting to the President/CEO, the VP of Development will be charged with leading the development and execution of a comprehensive fundraising program. The VP of Development will support the President/CEO in leading NatureServe to meet annual and campaign fundraising goals, with dual responsibilities to build and manage a $1 million+ individual giving program and provide vital input on strategic planning. The VP of Development will have the opportunity to build a development team of professional fundraisers as the development program grows.


Desired qualifications for this role include:

  • At least ten years of experience in upper-level positions within a non-profit development program; some experience in a scientific or conservation organization is preferred.
  • Experience building and leading a high-performing and comprehensive development team.
  • Demonstrated ability to guide and support Board members and fundraising volunteers.
  • Record of leading strategies that have grown and diversified a donor base.
  • Ability to design cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship strategies for individual giving.
  • Record of securing 6- and 7-figure gifts.
  • Bachelor’s degree; advanced degree in a related field is preferred.