Director of Philanthropy


The Director of Philanthropy will play a leading role in the development of strategy and team structure in service of Upstream’s fundraising and investor relations goals at a time of exciting organizational impact as we enter our next phase of growth. This is a fantastic opportunity for an experienced and entrepreneurial individual with a passion for mission-driven fundraising to join a high-performing team with a strong portfolio of major gifts. 

Reporting to the Senior Director, Investor Engagement, this role will develop and implement a fundraising and donor stewardship strategy for all giving outside of principal gifts. They will also manage a sub-portfolio of major investors giving between $100,000-$999,999. The Director of Philanthropy will be responsible for hiring and building the infrastructure and support systems for a growing team of philanthropy officers responsible for deepening relationships with existing investors and developing a sophisticated pipeline of prospective investors. In collaboration with senior leadership across the fundraising team and executive office, this position will support the development of a long-term strategy for the growth and sustainability of fundraising and investor relations at Upstream. Thus, the ideal candidate will have a strong background in major gifts and a desire to own and execute a major gifts program, as well as a familiarity with broader fundraising trends.

The candidate will bring a passion for fundraising and a genuine, collaborative spirit to coaching and managing alongside a team of high performers. They will be deeply practiced in personalized relationship management and well-versed in the tools, systems, and processes that support strong major gifts programs. Attention to detail, strong “EQ”, high levels of discretion, and a sense of humor are highly valued for this position.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Creates and oversees Upstream's growth strategy and program for donors of up to $1 million.
  • Builds, manages, and mentors a team focused on major gifts and annual giving. Develop team goals, standards of practice, team culture, and learning opportunities.
  • In building out the Philanthropy team focused on major gifts and annual giving, propose team and individual goals, staffing requirements, and updated job description at the end of the 90-day on-boarding process.
  • Develops the necessary systems, processes, and tools to support a growing major gifts program.
  • Develops strategy for Major Donor portfolio management and recommends and implements key performance indicators.
  • Oversees Philanthropy Officer(s) in the ownership of their major gifts portfolio, providing input on donor engagement strategy and alignment to goals.
  • Provides strategic and tactical leadership in the development of a growing portfolio of new and prospective donors and funding streams as needed.
  • Develops strategy for and oversees Annual Giving program (donors of <$10,000).
  • Collaborates with leadership across the Development and External Affairs team, including the Senior Director of Investor Engagement, Senior Specialist of Principal Gifts and Board, Director of Strategic Services, Director of External Affairs, and the Vice President of Development and External Affairs.

Required Experience, Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Upstream celebrates and fosters an inclusive work environment and encourages people of all identities, perspectives and backgrounds to apply.  

  • 8-12 years relationship management experience (development, fundraising, advancement, philanthropy, for-profit investor relations, or similar) with increasing levels of responsibility
  • Experience successfully cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding major gifts ($100,000+)
  • Proactive, self-starter that is eager to create, own, and execute a major gifts development strategy
  • Enjoys coaching and managing others to high levels of performance and professional fulfillment
  • Understanding of relationship management processes, pipelines, and tracking mechanisms within a CRM environment in service of managing major investor pipeline, comfort in an internally facing role, working behind-the-scenes to advance relationships, as well as in the room with donors and prospects
  • Skilled communicator and listener
  • Adept at building relationships and influencing others; high “EQ”
  • Exceptional project management ability with strengths in managing multiple competing priorities
  • Demonstrated ability to operate with a high degree of urgency, self-motivation, focus on goals, and commitment to high-quality work
  • Keen attention to detail and able to exercise discretion
  • Commitment to Upstream’s mission and to mission-driven work
  • Awareness of the latest trends and industry practices in philanthropy, fundraising, and prospect research
  • Ability to effectively deliver and receive both positive and constructive feedback
  • Proficiency with Salesforce, Google and Microsoft Suites
  • Sense of humor - knows how to put the “fun” in fundraising
  • Upstream USA’s COVID-19 Vaccine Policy requires employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless a medical or religious exemption is approved. As a condition of employment, newly hired employees must provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccination.
  • All Upstreamers must be able to attend work-related in-person meetings and functions as needed.
  • In our hybrid work environments, there is a basic expectation that our Upstreamers will ensure that their work from home setups will have reliable access to phone and Internet to ensure connectivity to their teams.
  • At Upstream we gather for moments that matter for training, teaming and connection. Our teams come together for occasional in person meetings and organizational retreats. As part of our hybrid work practices, this travel expectation will be applicable for all Upstreamers, even those based remotely.

Travel Requirements

This role will require up to 25% of business travel. All Upstreamers can expect a minimum of 8 days of business travel per year to attend two annual organizational retreats and two annual team/department meetings.

Upstream Benefits

Upstream USA offers a comprehensive benefit package including medical, dental, vision, life insurance, long and short term disability, 401K with a match, generous vacation, personal, sick and holiday time off, parental leave, professional development, a fitness and cell phone allowance for all full time employees and part time employees who work a minimum of 24 hours per week.  

Hiring Range

The hiring range for this role is $111,508 to $160,000.  Final offers for this position will be based upon several factors including the scope of the role, market compensation analysis, position requirements, candidate’s experience level and capabilities, specific candidate geographic location, internal pay equity considerations and will be made within the parameters of Upstream USA's compensation framework and philosophy.

Hiring Process

Candidates who advance in our preliminary review process will have an opportunity to discuss the position, their employment background and lived experience with a member of our talent acquisition team by telephone. Those who advance to subsequent steps in our interview process may participate in up to three rounds of meetings by Zoom or in person and in a thought exercise/case study assignment. Each round could consist of multiple meetings with various Upstreamers.

At Upstream, we embrace diversity. We nurture it and we thrive on it because it benefits our organization, our partners, and our community. Our goal is to attract, develop and retain exceptional people, and to create a work environment that is dynamic, rewarding and enables each of us to realize our potential. Upstream is committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, genetic information, gender identity or Veteran status. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation, please let us know. Learn more about working at Upstream, our values, and our commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. Upstream USA participates in E-Verify.

Upstream Headquarters

2 Oliver Street, Suite 402, Boston, MA 02109

Upstream USA is an E-Verify employer.


Be advised that we do not ever conduct hiring interviews via text or email. Please protect yourself by learning more about our hiring practices and common red flags to look out for.

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