Vice President for Development

Climate Central

Princeton, NJ, US

The time is now to join a high-impact effort addressing the great challenge of climate change.

Climate Central, an influential climate communications and research group, seeks a senior leader to be its chief development officer and a key member of the senior-staff leadership team. The VP will be responsible for all fundraising and development activities, from planning to soliciting to stewardship and reporting of accomplishments to staff, board, funders and prospects. The VP will work closely with the CEO, senior staff, and members of the Board of Directors to plan, develop, and execute a comprehensive program of fundraising. Emphasis will be on major and principal philanthropic giving from individuals and foundations, but it will also include government grants and new funding programs to diversify the portfolio of revenue streams over time.

Climate Central is an independent group of scientists and science translators who research and report the facts about our changing climate and how it affects people’s lives. We use science, big data, and tech to generate thousands of local storylines and compelling visuals that make climate change relevant and show what can be done about it. We address climate science, energy, sea level rise, extreme weather, and related topics. We collaborate nationwide with TV meteorologists, journalists, and other respected messengers, reaching broad audiences through local voices. Our programs spurred more than 2,000 TV spots in the U.S. over the last 12 months. Media have covered our global sea level research, maps, and imagery in at least 89 nations. We see major and timely opportunities to continue to grow our impact.

Working with members of the Board, the CEO, and senior staff, the VP will plan and orchestrate solicitations of prospective donors, engaging most closely or directly for principal gift work. The VP oversees a development team including local and remote staff, and will lead efforts of development and other staff from proposal creation through stewardship activities. With direct reports, the VP will set and monitor progress toward individual fundraising performance goals, helping each team member achieve excellent results through empowerment, continuous staff development, and mentoring. The VP will serve as key liaison between development staff and the CEO and senior staff.

The VP will play a key role with the CEO, senior staff and the Board in developing the overall strategy for Climate Central, with an eye to what may attract funding interest. The VP will work as a member of the senior staff team to help develop communications strategies that reach and move large geographically and ideologically diverse US and global audiences as well as key decision-makers to understand and act on climate change at a level commensurate to its great threat. As a team, they will develop specific strategic goals for the organization, for Board review. Collaborating with the CEO and with input of fellow members of the senior staff, the VP will set fundraising goals and strategies, and will be accountable for reaching funding targets agreed to in the planning and budgeting processes.     

Additionally, the VP will work with Programs, Finance and Administration, and other internal groups to provide necessary support to achieve shared objectives. These include, among others, contributing to creating a consistent, high-quality brand for Climate Central across all program areas and platforms; developing and reporting on budgets with support of the VP for Finance, and setting annual organizational goals and regularly reporting progress toward those goals. 

Along with the senior staff, the VP will assist the CEO in forming the agenda for board meetings. Further the VP will assist the CEO in working with the Nominating Committee to create a robust list of potential Board nominees and plans to cultivate them towards membership.  The VP will manage a Development Committee of the Board.

The VP will represent Climate Central in external meetings and conferences as appropriate.  Working together with colleagues or independently, the VP may be called upon to help initiate possible partnerships between Climate Central and other groups working toward similar objectives. These may range from strategic alliances to informal collaborations at local, national, or global scale. The VP will advise the CEO and senior staff of such arrangements on a regular basis.

Experience and Qualifications

Experience and qualifications should be commensurate with a position of this great importance and seniority within the organization. Representative (but not strict) requirements follow:

  • 10+ years of development experience, with a strong record of raising major and principal gifts from both individuals and foundations, and success in all stages of the development cycle
  • 5+ years of experience in a senior leadership/executive role with a record of success for leading effective, efficient and spirited teams with high levels of trust and communication
  • Demonstrated ability to engage and support Board and other high-level volunteers
  • Demonstrated success in building new donor programs 
  • Fundraising success and issue knowledge specifically for climate change, scientific research, communications, and/or media preferred
  • A clear and deeply held commitment to addressing climate change
  • Excellent analytical, organizational, time management and communications skills
  • Creativity and initiative
  • Unquestionable integrity and commitment to ethics; responsibility with sensitive information
  • Able to travel and extend work hours for critical priorities
  • Advanced degree preferred


Climate Central’s headquarters are in Princeton, N.J. A meaningful amount of presence at headquarters will be important, but majority-time remote work is an option for this position. 


Compensation is competitive, with generous benefits.


Climate Central strongly encourages diverse candidates to apply. We are an Equal Employment Opportunity employer and as such do not discriminate against any applicant for employment or employee on the basis of race, color, religious creed, gender, age, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, veteran status or any other classification protected by applicable discrimination laws.

How to Apply

Please send your cover letter including salary expectations; your resume; and contact information for three references familiar with your work, to [email protected] with the exact subject line, “VP for Development” (no quotes). Due to the volume of employment applications and queries received, Climate Central is unable to respond to each application individually. Applicants will be contacted directly if selected as a candidate. The search will close when a successful candidate is recruited.



IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development