Assistant Director of Grants & Giving

Toledo Zoo & Aquarium

Under limited supervision, The Assistant Director of Grants and Giving will research, write, format, and submit compelling, high-quality grant proposals and reports to funding agencies, including federal, local, foundation and corporate grants.  This position will assist with the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individual and corporate donors to support the Zoo’s Foundation, Capital Campaign, and other fundraising programs.  Reports to the Vice President of Development & Membership.  This position is exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act and requires time worked in excess of forty hours per week.  (Hybrid/Remote work available/ 2 to 3 days a week in office)

Qualifications & Skills:

  • Excellent research, organizational, written and verbal communication skills are required. The position requires working independently through the process of writing grants, preparation of the package, the submission process, follow-up and final grant report.
  • Must be able to work with internal staff effectively in order to obtain the information necessary to prepare grant applications and final reports.
  • Knowledge of fundraising information sources are essential.
  • Works closely with the Development team to set goals, align efforts, and to identity new corporate and individual donors. Creates funding proposals utilizing existing Zoo programs and initiatives as well as spearheading new ideas and concepts.
  • Excellent phone skills and the ability to ask for and acquire donations is critical.
  • Attention to detail and deadlines is crucial.

Essential Job Functions:

  • Maintain current grant funding and submit proposals that meet deadlines for grant requests and grant reports. Understand the goals and objectives as well as the financial needs of the Toledo Zoo in order to write compelling grants to secure funding for the programs, projects, and capital needs of the organization.
  • Research new grant funding opportunities from government and non-government agencies, from private foundations, and at times, corporate foundations. Maintain records and work with staff in order to submit grant reports on a timely basis.
  • Identify mid-level and major gift prospects through donor research to predict a donor’s ability and likelihood to give. Maintains detailed records in the Zoo’s software system as well as in electronic files, and regularly reports to donors on how their gifts are creating the desired impact.
  • Cultivate gift donations by building meaningful relationships with new, existing and potential donors. An ability to empathize with donors and clearly communicate our organization’s mission is key.
  • Is knowledgeable about Toledo Zoo exhibits, activities, initiatives and programs so that donors can be engaged in the diversity of areas where they have a particular interest and the ability to provide financial support.
  • Develop and maintain positive relationships with funders as a representative of the Toledo Zoo. Maintains regular contact with existing and potential donors, in one-on-one meetings as well as social engagements at the Zoo or in the community.
  • Works with donors, the Zoo’s VP of Finance and brokerage firms to successfully coordinate stock transfers for gifts to the Zoo.
  • Prepares and processes solicitation letters, brochures, correspondence, monthly reports, budgets, goals and objectives, etc.
  • Assists Foundation and Operating Boards, and other staff, with their solicitation (e.g. provides portfolio development support and help with donor communications.)
  • Independently organizes time and schedule, prioritizing activities and demonstrating the self-motivated to achieve the satisfaction of connecting donors and funders to Zoo initiatives that fulfill their philanthropic desires.
  • Interacts and communicates with various individuals and groups within and outside the Zoo community. This includes philanthropists, business leaders in the designated community, the Zoo’s Executive Director and Management Group, the Zoo Foundation, and operating Boards and Committees, coworkers, colleagues, Zoo members, Zoo visitors, consultants, and other Zoo departments.

Additional Job Functions:

  • Maintains Zoo and departmental policies/procedures; performs work related activities as required, including during the evening or on weekends.
  • Performs other related duties as required.

Minimum Training and Experience:

Bachelor’s degree in fundraising, grant writing, communications or related field, along with three to five years of experience in fund raising, marketing, communications, grant writing or any equivalent combination of education and experience. Must have a valid drivers’ license and insurable by the fleet insurance carrier.

Apply online at the Toledo Zoo & Aquarium website:

The Toledo Zoo is an equal opportunity employer.   All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, creed, genetic information, sex, age, national origin, disability, military status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by law.