About Tuolumne River Trust

Solid Ground is working with Tuolumne River Trust to find their next Development Director. The Tuolumne River Trust promotes the stewardship of the Tuolumne River and its tributaries to ensure a healthy watershed, from Yosemite National Park through the San Joaquin Valley and to the San Francisco Bay-Delta. Founded in 1981, the Trust is the only organization working throughout the watershed, linking Sierra and Valley conservation issues, and forging strong ties between rural mountain and valley regions and Bay Area urban communities. The Trust has an annual core budget of approximately a million dollars, 8 employees, a cadre of consultants, and offices in San Francisco, Modesto, and Sonora.

TRT programs include: a) participation in the relicensing of the Don Pedro Dam, which regulates stream flows in the lower Tuolumne River, and the Bay Delta Water Quality Control Plan update to ensure improved river flows for fish and wildlife in the lower Tuolumne River, b) restoration of floodplains, riparian forests, and other habitat along the lower Tuolumne River, and conifer forests, meadows, and streams in the Sierra Nevada, c) improving water management policies in the Bay Area and Central Valley to support river restoration goals while supporting healthy economies and communities, d) building public support for watershed stewardship by connecting the public to the River through education and outreach, and e) educating schoolchildren about the importance of the Tuolumne River to our region.

By linking mountain, valley, and Bay Area conservation issues, and connecting people to the river through outings and education, the Trust is building broad support for watershed stewardship. Our strategic approach melds advocacy, education, collaboration, scientific inquiry, and litigation when necessary to address threats and take advantage of conservation and restoration opportunities. For more information about the Tuolumne River Trust, visit: www.tuolumne.org.

About the Position

The Development Director will be central to the success of the Trust by increasing our ability to raise money to drive organizational impact through membership, major gifts, private and government grants, online presence, special events, and planned giving. You will report to the Executive Director and work closely with the Finance Director, Communications Manager, program staff, and the Board of Directors to create and implement our development plan and reach our fundraising goals. You will be based in the San Francisco Bay Area and can expect to work from a home office. As Covid pandemic concerns continue to recede, regular travel to donor meetings and networking meetings/events in the Bay Area is expected, and periodic travel to board and staff meetings in the Bay Area, Central Valley, and Sierra Nevada is anticipated. The Development Director will:

  • Lead the development program, including supervision of two direct reports (with potential to add more employees); organization-wide fundraising, marketing, and communications.
  • Develop and implement an annual fundraising plan to meet budget goals and track and report on progress through quarterly fundraising reports for the Board of Directors. Conduct data analysis on fundraising program activities, including annual membership and major donor analyses and reporting.
  • Plan and implement a direct mail program for membership renewals and seasonal appeals and manage membership program including a lapsed donor win-back initiative.
  • Manage the major donor program, including weekly team meetings, solicitation of gifts of five- to six- figures, weekly communications with donors, and other associated activities.
  • Oversee a comprehensive grant program, including researching foundations, corporate, and government grant opportunities; cultivating funder relations; writing and editing proposals; and working with program staff to meet proposal and reporting deadlines.
  • Grow endowment and legacy giving portfolio.
  • In collaboration with the Communications Manager, the Development Director will oversee the Trust’s online presence to ensure consistent messaging and marketing across all programs. Work with cross-functional team to develop stories, data-driven design, website copy, and stakeholder reports. Coordinate and write stakeholder communications, including tri-annual newsletter, major donor correspondence, direct mail appeals, and membership materials.
  • Supervise planning and coordination of fundraising and membership/major donor events. This includes an annual peer-to-peer fundraising event, and other one-off activities, both virtual and in-person.
  • Work with the Finance Department to ensure accurate data tracking and reporting procedures. Collaborate with the Finance Director to complete quarterly reconciliation of CRM with general ledger.


The ideal candidate is an experienced fundraiser with a passion for protecting and improving river health. We are seeking a degreed professional with a minimum of three years of development experience in a non-profit organization, including experience with individual donor solicitations. Experience with major gifts solicitation and demonstrated experience with fundraising planning is preferred.

You will be a skilled leader with exceptional verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to compellingly articulate the Trust’s mission and work to different external audiences. The job requires an ability to establish and cultivate relationships with people from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

The job requires strong computer skills and familiarity with membership/donor databases/CRM. You will need to be highly organized and detail oriented.

We are seeking a team player with experience working independently with minimal supervision and a high energy level, positive attitude, flexible, self-motivated, and self-confident.

Compensation and Benefits

The salary range for the position is $80,000 to $110,000 depending on qualifications. TRT provides excellent benefits including medical, dental, vision, chiropractic care, life insurance, matched retirement, training, generous paid time off, parental leave, and a flexible schedule.

Equity at TRT

TRT holds a deep commitment to equity, inclusion, diversity, and access as core principles integral to the work we do. As we add new members across all levels of the organization, we welcome diverse perspectives and lived experiences that foster learning, creativity, innovation, and equity. We welcome and encourage applications from candidates who can contribute to the diversity of our workforce across a range of dimensions.

To Apply or for More Information

Initial review of applicants will begin immediately. Please send an email with cover letter and resume as attachments to Jim Morris at Solid Ground Consulting: jim@solidgroundconsulting.com. The position will remain open until a candidate has been selected. We hope to have a new hire start by mid- to late-August to provide some overlap with our outgoing Director of Partnerships for training.