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Donor Relations Manager  


The Philanthropic Events Team supports the mission and values of the zoo while helping cultivate stronger relationships with donors, prospects and our broader community. The Philanthropic Events Manager has the primary responsibility of providing oversight, strategic leadership and execution of Woodland Park Zoo’s philanthropic events to include but not limited to the zoo’s signature fundraiser, Jungle Party, strategic events and the stewardship and cultivation events series. This position also cultivates select event guests, recruits and manages volunteer chairs and leadership committees and fosters vendor relationships. Responsible to manage and coach the Philanthropic Events Coordinator and the Development and Events Specialist to promote successful execution and verify that responsibilities and accountabilities are well defined.


Related to Jungle Party

Manage all aspects of Jungle Party event planning including messaging, branding, marketing, audience development, prospective strategy, fundraising, speakers and staffing.

Progress to Goal and Meetings:

  • Drive the Jungle Party progress to goal meetings and lead frontline fundraisers through this process, as well as coordinate and manage event-related meetings, co-chair meetings, Jungle Party Executive Committee meetings, donor meetings, and briefings.
  • Project manage all vendor contractual needs while knowing that the events team will be responsible for meetings with vendors (Sound, Rentals, Horticulture, Facilities) and day-of production. In addition, the events team will drive the vendor contract process excluding the caterer, auctioneer, emcee.
  • Provide Development staff and volunteer participants with timelines for activity, regular status reports, and creative support.


  • Build out all marketing and creative aspects of Jungle Party in collaboration with the creative, content, marketing and social media team (Engagement team).
  • Write content for all materials in collaboration with key Development and Engagement colleagues.
  • Lead and collaborate with the Engagement team on all event marketing needs including video vignettes, impact slides, sights and sounds, Fund our Future video and external facing messaging.
  • Coordinate and implement digital collateral using Mailchimp and other services as needed.


  • Collaborate with the Fund our Future campaign and stewardship team.

Event Chairs and Executive Committee:

  • Manage event chairs, as well as the Jungle Party Executive Committee.
  • Bolster the Jungle Party Executive Committee to build a sustainable foundation for the future by recruiting new members, creating avenues to engage while driving efforts towards the fundraising goals.
  • Oversee volunteer engagement efforts

Fundraising / Revenue:

  • Collaborate with staff and volunteers to increase audience development, table and ticket sales, reception ticket sales, sponsorship, Fund Our Future (raise the paddle) revenue, raffle sales and auction package bidding.

Event planning team:

  • Oversee the Development and Events Specialist on procurement (auction item/experience) strategies, requests and item/experience redemptions and the Philanthropic Events Coordinator with the Jungle Party volunteers.


  • Lead, track and manage live auction procurement efforts with special focus on unique, fresh and exceptional packages and experiences.
  • Collaborate with coordinator to build a robust live auction.

Online Auction:

  • Coordinate all aspects of the Jungle Party online auction, including partnership with Engagement colleagues on communications and marketing and data relationship services


  • Assist as needed with the creation of the sponsorship materials, sponsorship requests and sponsorship follow-through in collaboration with the Corporate Engagement Officer and Donor Stewardship Coordinator including the design of the impact report and corporate collateral.


  • Work with stewardship team on all stewardship needs including event gifts and post event correspondence.
  • Oversee the production and/or compilation of event promotional support such as giveaways, patron gifts, handouts, etc.

Data Relationship Services:

  • Work with Data Relationship Services on all banking and donation tracking needs, prospecting and Raiser’s Edge needs.

Events Team:

  • Coordinate with Events department on reserving venues, production set-up and strike, catering arrangements, booking vendors, etc.


  • Create and manage event budget.

Related to Philanthropic Events

  • Collaborate, design and implement with Development Team Leaders on conceptual design of annual philanthropic events program.
  • Provide strategic leadership to Philanthropic Events team. Coach and collaborate with direct reports on event work to ensure a well-executed event suite that meets Development team goals and aligns with Woodland Park Zoo’s strategic plan, operational plan and comprehensive campaign.
  • Privide guidance on white-glove, boutique events (House Parties) in collaboration with the Development Team Leaders and the Woodland Park Zoo comprehensive campaign.

General Duties

  • Assist in stewardship of current and new event attendees.
  • Provide high quality customer service to existing and potential donors.
  • Attend and participate in team, all-staff, executive committee and board meetings for events.
  • Develops metrics system for determining ROI vis à vis Woodland Park Zoo’s philanthropic event series.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


The Philanthropic Events Manager oversees the Philanthropic Events Coordinator and the Development Events Specialist. This position carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization's policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems.


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Overall knowledge of all aspects of events planning.
  • Experience with managing volunteers and/or committees.
  • Proficiency in or ability to learn Raiser’s Edge, Greater Giving and/or auction databases/mobile bidding
  • Positive, up-beat, professional, customer-service-oriented demeanor and able to be calm under periods dependent upon high performance.
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated reliability and punctuality.
  • Ability to work well under pressure, and to learn and adapt quickly in a fast-paced and changing environment.
  • Ability to balance multiple tasks and requests at one time.
  • Ability to work successfully as a team member and independently.
  • Ability to provide excellent levels of customer service to a variety of customers.
  • Enjoy working with the public and serving a diverse population.
  • Ability to work a non-standard/flexible schedule, including weekends, evenings and holidays.
  • Commitment to the mission of the zoo and the institution’s Core Values.


Bachelor's degree (B.A. or B.S.) from an accredited college or university; and two to three years of experience in professional development work and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience. Minimum three years of experience in fundraising event planning or catering, or equivalent project management experience. Experience supervising staff a plus.


Valid Washington State Driver's License.


Applications are only accepted online through our Jobs page at; no other forms of application will be accepted. Cover letter and resume are REQUIRED when applying for this position. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: This position will remain posted until filled; priority will be given to applications received prior to October 1, 2019.

Woodland Park Zoo is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, dedicated to a policy of non-discrimination in employment on any basis including race, color, age, sex, religion, national origin, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, or gender identity/expression.

Pay Rate  
Full-Time/Part-Time Full-Time  
Exempt/Non-Exempt Exempt  
Req Number DEV-19-00011  
EOE Statement Woodland Park Zoo is an equal opportunity employer, dedicated to a policy of non-discrimination in application and employment for any reason, including race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, national origin, age, disability or medical status including genetic information, and/or veteran’s status.

This position is currently not accepting applications.

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