Job Announcement: Development Director

What We are Looking For

About the position

TransForm seeks a senior development staff member to be responsible for strategy, planning, and implementing our fundraising efforts. The Development Director (DD) works closely with the Executive Director, Board of Directors and program staff.

This might be the right job for you if you're highly motivated, creative, strategic and organized. You’ll thrive if you value building relationships; succeed at getting people so excited about a cause that they want to support it philanthropically; love a blend of big picture thinking and detailed day-to-day implementation, and you are a leader who is also a team-player!

CURRENTLY this is a primarily work-from-home position due to COVID19. When it is safe to re-open our office, the position will no longer be remote and will be based out of our downtown Oakland office. 

About TransForm

TransForm is California’s leading advocate for healthy, connected communities with affordable transportation and housing choices. For more than two decades, we’ve brought together environmental, social justice, and health advocates to shape transportation and land use decisions for the benefit of people and the planet.

TransForm is an entrepreneurial organization with a collaborative and inclusive culture. Our staff of 20 works closely with partners at the local, regional, and state levels to create healthier, more connected, and affordable communities. Our office is in downtown Oakland.

Due to COVID-19, we are currently following state and local guidance to work from home. We will return to our office once health and safety conditions can be reasonably ensured, based on guidance from health officials. We do not yet know when this will happen or what that configuration might look like. This position will be working from home until that time.

Key Responsibilities 

The Development Director develops and executes TransForm’s overall fundraising goals related to the annual fund, major gifts, foundations, and government contracts. 

This position reports to the Executive Director and works closely with staff throughout the organization. 

Key responsibility areas include:

  • Design and lead donor strategy for the annual fund, major donor program, foundation grants, and government contracts to ensure that the growth of these programs continues. Specific foci include:

    • Annual fund: Design annual fund strategy for individuals and corporations in partnership with the development team to ensure growth of the program. Strong emphasis on cultivation and stewardship plan. This includes helping to set appeal themes, writing content, executing a multi-channel approach and using best fundraising practices throughout. 

    • Major donor program: Lead this exciting time of growth for our major donor program. Work closely with the Executive Director, Board of Directors and development staff in identifying, cultivating, soliciting and stewarding major donor prospects. Personally cultivate and solicit major donors. Track goals, activities and outcomes via quarterly metrics throughout the year.

    • Foundation grants: Maintain and help increase foundation support through stewardship of current foundation supporters as well as via identification and cultivation of possible new foundations. Manage and work closely with the Executive Director and experienced program staff to make sure all pieces of the grant process (tracking, reporting, proposals, financials) are strong and happening on time. Help project foundation support during budgeting times.

    • Government contracts: Contribute to efforts to secure support that builds on TransForm’s existing activities. Support Executive Director, program staff; and coordinate with the finance team to contribute to pieces of the grant process as needed. 

  • Lead cultivation and stewardship efforts for all funders: This includes executing retention strategies for current donors, leading on and supporting the development staff, program staff and Board of Directors with major donor-focused communications and engagement, creating and supporting activities around a ladder of engagement, increasing the number of recurring donors, developing acquisition strategies to bring in new high-quality prospects and donors, and creating ways to move the supporters we already have. 

  • Coordinate fundraising events: Working with the Development team, help brainstorm and organize special events, including but not limited to an annual fall benefit, mid-year cultivation events and several Board house parties. Execute on corporate sponsorship fundraising plans to grow corporate support for these events. Write and make sure event programs and communications reflect event goals.

  • Management and budgeting: Lead on the creation of the development department budget. Work closely with the Controller on financial reporting, revenue projections and other needs. Support the communications department with writing and with other needs that come up.

  • Oversee the donor database and fundraising tracking systems (Salesforce). This includes maintenance and analysis of all fundraising data in our contact database, with significant support from the Development Manager. Ensure a high level of accuracy of donor data through quality control procedures. 


Substantial experience (minimum of five years) raising funds for nonprofits of similar or larger size, ideally in an advocacy organization where the organization’s products are often intangible and the goal is about policy change. 

  • Two years of management and supervisory experience.
  • Experience in organizational leadership and organizational development.
  • Demonstrable experience in strategic thinking and the ability to craft and implement a multi-faceted fundraising plan.
  • Track record of success in identifying, cultivating and personally soliciting large grants and individual major donor gifts.
  • Possess the skills to work with and motivate staff, board members and other volunteers.
  • Possess the desire to get out of the office and build external relationships.
  • Understanding of “moves management” methods for identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of donor prospects.
  • Be a “self-starter” and goal driven to initiate donor visits and fundraising calls.
  • Be organized and exhibit follow-through on tasks and goals.
  • Outstanding writing skills and ability to engage supporters and prospects through compelling and articulate written and oral presentations.
  • Entrepreneurial sensibility in discovering new funding opportunities and identifying new ways to talk about TransForm’s work and accomplishments to donors.
  • Ability to set clear goals and meet them.
  • Excellent computer skills, MS Office Suite and Google Workspace. Database skills are highly desired, especially Salesforce.
  • Experience planning engaging events of all sizes that meet budget expectations.
  • Willingness and ability to be a mentor to staff and volunteers.
  • A "can-do" attitude; enthusiastic; graceful under pressure; self-motivated and directed; a sense of humor and fun; demonstrate presence, self-confidence, common sense and good listening skills. 
  • A deep commitment to making positive environmental and social change in the world.

This is a full-time (37.5 hours / week) exempt position. The salary range is $93,000 - $110,000/year, commensurate with experience. Benefits include health, dental, and vision insurance, flexible spending account for medical and dependent care, generous vacation and sick time, and transit benefits. TransForm also administers a 403b retirement plan.

TransForm offers a friendly, fast-paced, flexible, and collaborative workplace. Our staff is focused on making a positive change in the world and deeply values diversity. TransForm is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, LGBTQIA+ people, women, and members of other underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled and will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Interviews will begin by Tuesday, June 1 and will be conducted remotely, via phone and Zoom. Our goal is to fill the position as soon as possible.

FIRST POSTED: May 13, 2021

HOW TO APPLY: Please complete this survey (embedded below) to receive further instructions: