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Development Officer, Foundations

San Francisco, CA
Department:  Development
Job Type: 
Full Time

The Foundations Development Officer raises grant support for their designated program areas and regional offices, handling a portfolio of foundation donors and prospects. This position works closely with the Senior Leadership, Managing Attorneys, Communications, and Development to cultivate and implement effective strategies to meet revenue goals.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Foundation Solicitation and Relationship Development

  • Ensure growth of donor base by identifying, researching, and cultivating potential sources of foundation support.
  • Research foundation guidelines and giving histories to determine best approach for Earthjustice solicitation.
  • Monitor foundation trends through philanthropic journals.
  • Engage with foundation staff to cultivate, solicit, and steward foundation donors; coordinate appropriate program staff involvement at each stage.
  • Work with program staff to define and articulate broad program vision, goals, objectives, and specific strategies to attain them.
  • Work with program staff to develop and submit the highest quality letters of inquiry, grant proposals, and reports to foundations.
  • Write and submit timely gift acknowledgement letters.
  • Develop budgets and financial reports in coordination with program and finance staff and occasionally with subcontractors or external partners.
  • Monitor and meet foundation proposal and reporting deadlines in coordination with attorneys’ schedules.
  • Identify and develop opportunities for personal communication between foundation contacts and Earthjustice staff and trustees.
  • Write briefings memos and manage schedules for President, Senior Leadership, and attorneys for foundation meetings.


Program Knowledge and Communication

  • Follow issues related to Earthjustice litigation and remain conversant in the work of assigned Earthjustice programs.
  • Develop a working knowledge of Earthjustice’s past accomplishments and current programs and budget.
  • Track the status of legal cases and programs through ongoing conversations with program staff.
  • Work in collaboration with communications staff and vice presidents of litigation to create and maintain program overviews that include program summaries, key speaking points, key case developments, important statistics, and a budget.


General Responsibilities

  • Participate in the preparation of foundation revenue estimates for the annual budget.
  • Develop and implement an individual work plan to meet revenue goals.
  • Collaborate with development staff on donor cultivation activities, site visits, solicitations, and special events. 
  • Serve as a resource for program writing and budgets for the Development Department.
  • Maintain current and accurate hardcopy and computer database records to track foundation relations.
  • Additional duties as assigned.



  • Bachelor’s degree required.  
  • Five years’ successful experience in foundation fund raising. Knowledge of foundations that emphasize environmental giving a plus.
  • Ability to synthesize complex material and translate it into simple and engaging prose.
  • Excellent persuasive writing skills.
  • Ability to build and interpret a program budget and financial reports.
  • Outstanding verbal and interpersonal communication skills.
  • Ability to prioritize and to manage work independently; ability to perform effectively and with minimal supervision under pressure of multiple deadlines.
  • Ability to take initiative in identifying and skillfully solving problems.
  • Ability to work and communicate effectively with a wide range of people, including the public, foundation staff, and in-house staff.
  • Ability to work constructively as a member of a team.
  • Interest in environmental protection and public health concerns.
  • Legal and/or environmental background preferred.
  • Ability to use relational database systems.
  • This position requires occasional travel.
  • Occasional evening and weekend work may be required.

We offer a mission and employee-focused work environment and a competitive compensation package including excellent benefits. Diversity is highly valued.


To Apply

Interested candidates should submit a resume along with cover letter to Please include “Development Officer, Foundations” in the subject line.


Our Values

Earthjustice is driven by a passion for justice, partnership and excellence. Our core values lead us to seek a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds to achieve our mission and to maintain an inclusive environment where all staff are valued and respected.

As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure that employees and applicants for employment are provided with equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information or any other factor that is not related to the position.

About Earthjustice

Founded in 1971, Earthjustice is the premier nonprofit environmental law organization. We take on the biggest, most precedent-setting cases across the country. We wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people’s health; to preserve magnificent places and wildlife; to advance clean energy; and to combat climate change. We partner with thousands of groups, supporters and citizens to engage the critical environmental issues of our time, and bring about positive change. We are here because the earth needs a good lawyer.