Posted On: 2017-08-03
Closing On: 2017-09-04
Location: Toronto (preferred), Calgary or Vancouver
Effective: Flexible start date
Employment Type: Full-Time
Level: Management
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Job Description

Position Overview

The Pembina Institute is seeking a Director of Strategic Partnerships to join our senior management team and fill two key roles:

  • Reporting to the Executive Director, lead a team of regional fund developers and their operational and administrative support team.
  • Lead fundraiser for the Ontario region and for the Institute’s annual unGALA event on an interim basis, with a view to hiring an additional person into this role no later than early 2018.

The Pembina Institute’s recent accomplishments in translating advocacy and compelling ideas into progressive climate and energy policy have put the organization on a growth trajectory. Funders are investing in larger, longer-term partnerships with us. This is an ideal time to seek a natural leader with the vision, experience, creativity and discipline to take us to the next level.

Reporting to the Executive Director, and working closely with the other senior managers and regional Strategic Partnership leads, this experienced and well-connected individual will drive partnership strategy, ensure consistency of approach, maintain accountability, and offer innovative flair to the Institute’s fund development efforts across the country and internationally, as well as across donor types, meticulously stewarding and growing our funder portfolio. Demonstrating a willingness to support the Pembina Institute’s mission, the successful candidate will be high performing, goal oriented, and excited by big fundraising opportunities and targets. Understanding the relationship between strategy and revenue development, this individual will insightfully leverage the interplay among strategy, communication and donor engagement.

The full-time position will require some travel and occasional work on evenings and weekends.

Why the Pembina Institute?

The Pembina Institute is a national non-partisan think tank that advocates for strong, effective policies to support Canada’s clean energy transition. Through research, consulting and convening, we employ multi-faceted and highly collaborative approaches to change to reduce the environmental impacts of energy production and use.

Our people are passionate about sustainability and dedicated to enabling positive social change. Our organizational culture encourages creativity and collaboration, and we offer a flexible and fast-paced work environment that rewards honest character, personal initiative and innovation. The successful candidate will join our dynamic team of nationally recognized professionals working on delivering clean energy solutions into the hands of Canada’s decision makers and key influencers.

Compensation and Benefits

The salary rate is competitive for a senior development professional in the environmental non-profit sector and will be based on skills, experience and qualifications of the successful candidate.

Benefits include:

  • extended health and dental 
  • four weeks of holidays per year
  • flexible work hours
  • RRSP plan
  • training and development opportunities

Further terms of employment will be discussed with candidates during the interview process.

Roles and Responsibilities

As the Director of Strategic Partnerships of the Pembina Institute, you will lead the fundraising efforts of the Institute in support of its strategic priorities, to strengthen and further diversify the organization’s sources of revenue. This includes:

  • Overseeing all of the Institute’s Strategic Partnerships activities and continuing to build internal fundraising infrastructure including strategies, analytics, systems and processes in support of fundraising activities.
  • Leading or supporting the acquisition of revenue from a combination of Canadian and international foundations, major donors, annual and monthly donors (direct mail and online appeals), legacy donations/bequests, special events, corporate sponsors, federal and provincial grants and fee-for-service projects, and other sources.
  • Effectively identifying, acquiring and stewarding donors, using rigorous analytics and consistent processes to systematically strengthen our donor base and levels of individual donor commitment over time.
  • Building, managing and growing the Strategic Partnerships team, currently made up of four full-time professionals based in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto.
  • Engaging in internal processes to define organizational strategic direction.
  • Serving as a member of the senior management team.

An initial focus will be to shore-up existing donor relationships and ensure the success of the unGALA event in Toronto in early 2018, while developing — in consultation with the senior management team — a strategy for improving the financial resilience of the Institute and delivering a step change in its efficacy, leveraging its recent policy successes, growing international profile and shifting from transactional to multi-year funding.

Skills and Qualifications

Candidates must clearly address the following points in their application. The ideal candidate:

  • Is a seasoned fundraising professional with solid fund development training (this can take many forms), and comprehensive experience with grant applications and reporting.
  • Has trust-based senior-level relationships with major Canadian and international foundation decision-makers and philanthropists, executives and influencers; has insight into their strategic priorities and is able to engage them in conversations about the change they seek in the world.
  • Demonstrates comfort in delivering multi-year grants and major donor gifts. This calls for a strategic thinker and organizer, with experience building a donor cabinet and running development campaigns, and in establishing and growing novel revenue sources.
  • Has staff and budget management experience, ideally crossing regional or national borders, in the charitable and non-profit sector, including team recruitment and leadership within a frugal organizational culture.
  • Knows how to help program staff compellingly articulate the unique value of an organization or its activities to donors.  For the Pembina Institute, this means being demonstrably able to understand and translate the organization’s climate and energy content focus and theory of change into fundraising messaging and materials.
  • Has strong interpersonal and communication skills, a collaborative and consultative approach, and ability to maintain excellent relationships (often remotely via virtual tools) with Pembina Institute staff, volunteer Board of Directors, foundation funders, industry executives, major donors, individual donors, service providers, and partners. The ideal candidate has a track record of establishing clear roles and expectations; creating an open and trust-based team environment; demonstrating a willingness to delegate; and showing personal commitment to mentoring and elevating the skills and profile of all team members.
  • Is an independent and entrepreneurial problem solver, with the experience and mindset needed to confidently navigate sensitive situations, manage change and stress, and find a pathway to personal sustainability.
  • Shows personal commitment or alignment with the climate and energy objectives and pragmatic approach of the Pembina Institute.
  • Has a strong familiarity with the requirements of the Canada Revenue Agency for charities and non-profit organizations. This requires a cautious approach, sound judgment and respect for established policies, procedures and guidelines, as well as experience in supervising complex agreements that adhere to CRA guidelines and financial controls.

To Apply

Email your cover letter and resume to Please ensure the following:

  • Subject line includes PI SP Director and your last name
  • Cover letter (maximum three pages) explains why you are interested in working with the Pembina Institute, how your skills and qualifications meet the criteria outlined for this position, and your approach to delivering a step change in revenue for the organization over a three-year period
  • Resume outlines your relevant skills, education and experience
  • Cover letter and resume are saved as one PDF document using the naming convention lastnamefirstletter-application-position-year.pdf
  • example: smithm-application-PISPDirector-2017.pdf

Review of applications will begin immediately and the search will remain open until the position is filled.

The Pembina Institute is an equal opportunity employer.

We thank all applicants for their interest but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.