Special Olympics Vermont

Director of Development | Full Time

Category: Non-profit

Location: 16 Gregory Drive, South Burlington, VT, USA

Director of Development


POSITION: Full Time, Salary



Driven by the power of sport, inclusion is at the heart of all that we do at Special Olympics Vermont. We strive to celebrate and promote unity and create a world where everyone belongs. We value and respect differences, backgrounds, and perspectives, and understand that greater diversity, equity, and inclusion make us stronger and more innovative to deliver better results as we work together in all communities.


The Director of Development works to raise funds in support of, and consistent with the mission, goals and philosophy of Special Olympics Vermont (SOVT). This role will design and implement targeted strategies to identify, cultivate, engage and solicit individuals and companies to financially support SOVT, and plan and coordinate all fundraising event activity for our dynamic, well-respected organization. Primary function of the role is “Rainmaker” – the person in the organization who drives revenue. This includes growing relationships with existing donors, partners, and corporate sponsors while cultivating and creating relationships with new ones, and oversight of all event fundraising activity.

The Director of Development will work proactively, utilizing a comprehensive development plan with integrated strategies and goals. This person ensures sponsor relationships are optimized and coordinated across multiple opportunities, including Special Olympics Vermont competitive state-wide Games. The role also has primary oversight of all fundraising activity, including the Penguin Plunge. The Director of Development is expected to fully leverage these events to both drive revenue and secure volunteers from sponsors for these events, to bring the SOVT experience to the business community.


Special Olympics Vermont is a fun, closely-knit and dynamic non-profit that provides a variety of opportunities to, and advocates for the inclusion of, people with intellectual disabilities. Employees must demonstrate personal discipline, self-motivation, and a commitment to working as a team.  Each staff member is expected to demonstrate strong interpersonal skills, professionalism, attention to detail and flexibility in assignments, tasks, schedules, and roles. Employees treat everyone with dignity and respect. They are expected to engage in constructive, creative problem solving, as well as pro-actively foster communications in a collaborative and professional manner with all members of the Special Olympics Vermont community, including co-workers, volunteers, individual and corporate supporters, business vendors, and athletes.


  • Medical and Dental Insurance
  • Generous Combined Time Off and Paid Holidays
  • HSA Employer Contribution
  • Fun, Flexible Work Environment with Great Coworkers!
  • 401k Employer Match
  • Disability, Life, ADD Insurance
  • Cell Phone Stipend
  • Mission-Driven Work
  • Opportunity for Professional Growth


This position works at the direction of and very closely with the CEO, and in collaboration with the Advancement Team to:

  • Collaborate with CEO, and board of director leadership as appropriate, to articulate an effective fundraising strategy;
    • strategy to include individual and corporate giving, event and Games sponsorships, fundraising events, end of year giving, foundation and government grants, and all other revenue-generating opportunities;
    • implement and oversee all aspects of the fundraising strategy.
  • Create and manage efforts to deliver annual appeals, major gifts, and planned giving, with guidance from CEO, to deliver operations revenue.
  • Draft investment and sponsorship proposals with a long-term relationship-management approach;
    • sell investment and sponsorship opportunities;
    • steward donor and sponsor relationships.
  • Oversee development-related record keeping, including updates to donor database, donor and sponsorship levels/opportunities, and philanthropic pledges and agreements.
  • Utilize the SOVT donor database, Little Green Light, as a resource to grow and steward donor and revenue base; collaborate with coworkers for impactful data analysis and activation.
  • Work directly with President/CEO, and Director of Finance and Administration, on annual budget planning and management.
  • Inform and support Special Olympics Vermont Board of Directors; serve as primary staff liaison to the development committee.
  • Co-lead the Advancement Team together with the Director of Communications, Marketing and Public Affairs, and includes the CEO and the Communications and Development Coordinator.
  • Support the Director of Communications, Marketing and Public Affairs in that role’s responsibilities of:
    • Defining and executing development-related communications initiatives, including all donor communications and campaigns.
    • Leveraging social media and emerging technology to educate, encourage, and inspire existing and future donors to give.
  • Responsible for the planning and execution for the following fundraising events (included but not limited to):
    • Burlington Penguin Plunge
    • Southern Vermont Penguin Plunge
    • Law Enforcement Torch Run
      • Tip-A-Cop
      • T-Shirt Sales
    • SOVT Golf Tournaments
    • Major Donor Events
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • BA/BS in Business Administration or a related field
  • 5+ years in development/fundraising/sales/marketing, some nonprofit sector experience preferred
  • Team player: Ability to work with diverse groups in a collaborative environment
  • Demonstrated success with sponsorship solicitation and donor cultivation
  • Experience with fundraising events
  • Motivated by setting and achieving measurable goals
  • Strong budget development and management
  • Proficient time management skills, attention to detail and proven verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to travel as needed
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Constant Contact (or similar), web analytics, online fundraising tools and basic HTML
  • Ability to work flexible hours, including evenings and weekends
  • Ability to travel for work, by car, plane, etc., and manage travel arrangements
  • Valid driver’s license


Include but are not limited to the following:

  • Long periods of sitting, standing, and moving around, depending on the day.
  • Every employee must be able to perform the duties and responsibilities of the position without posing a threat to their own health and safety or that of other individuals.
  • Assist in loading and moving various materials, around the office and a variety of event locations, sometimes into personal or other vehicles as needed.
  • Work sometimes requires occasional nights, weekends, and travel. Travel by automobile to communities throughout VT for events and competitions may be required. Employees must maintain a valid VT driver’s license. Employees manage their own travel within the applicable guidelines and policies of Special Olympics Vermont and are responsible for tracking and reporting reimbursable expenses.
  • Safe driving by SOVT employees is required, including the wearing of seat belts. When driving for business purposes, SOVT employees are expected to follow motor vehicle laws of each state, including laws prohibiting the use of cell phones while driving.


SOVT is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  We do not discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, neurodiversity, age, parental status, socio-economic background, military service, or any other characteristic or status protected by applicable law.

Special Olympics Vermont strives to create an organization that reflects our communities and where everyone feels empowered to do their best work. SOVT will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, or bullying. Anyone who does not comply with this policy and/or is found to have engaged in discrimination, harassment, or bullying will be subject to appropriate action, up to and including separation from the organization.

Deadline: May 28, 2022 12:00 am

To Apply:

Interested candidates should send resume and cover letter to Missy Siner Shea, President & CEO – mshea@vtso.org