Skip to main content

Purchase Tickets

Director of Institutional Giving

Position Summary

Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site, Inc. (ESPHS) seeks an experienced Director of Institutional Giving to join its senior leadership team and provide strategic direction and guidance for the Development department in partnership with the Director of Major Gifts. This pivotal role requires a dynamic individual with a passion for our mission and the ability to drive fundraising efforts, manage events, and enhance our giving program. As a key member of our leadership team, you will be instrumental in advancing our organization's goals and making a positive impact in the community.

ESPHS is launching a new strategic plan this spring, and the Director of Institutional Giving will help build a fundraising and communications plan to implement it. Fundraising priorities include growing foundation, corporate and government support, and working alongside Major Gifts to expand the annual fund and membership while creating strategies for special events and special project fundraising. The Director of Institutional Giving is responsible for raising 30% of ESPHS annual budget, which is approximately $10M plus special projects.

Duties and Responsibilities

Development Strategy and Goal Setting

  • Lead the creation and implementation of comprehensive and cohesive development plans, developing both annual and long-range strategies to support sustainability and growth across all funding areas
  • Hire, supervise, mentor, and motivate development, empowering the team and setting them up for individual and collective success.
  • Collaboratively set the tone and direction for the department, embracing and enacting the ESPHS mission.
  • Create department budgets in alignment with core values and long-range strategic plan, and manage it responsibly, including implementing metrics for benchmarking and leveraging the Raiser’s Edge database.

Fundraising & Donor Relations

  • Grow and optimize a robust institutional giving pipeline and manage a pipeline of 75-100 key prospects including foundation, corporate and government donors.
  • Steward existing key foundations, grants and sponsors and create new opportunities for donor engagement.
  • Oversee internal systems for collecting, managing, and leveraging donor data in the Raiser’s Edge database to inform strategies.
  • Ensure that systems and procedures to track cultivation steps, gift entry, and acknowledgements are effective, timely, and responsive.

Supervisory Responsibilities

  • Responsible for providing employees timely, candid, and constructive performance feedback; developing employees to their fullest potential and providing challenging opportunities that enhance employee career growth; developing the appropriate talent pool to ensure adequate bench depth and succession planning; recognizing and rewarding employees for accomplishments. Additionally, this position will:
  • Recommend salary increases, promotions, disciplinary actions, and dismissals in conformance with policy and procedures; and conduct annual performance reviews.
  • Have substantial knowledge of leadership, teamwork, and management principles in line with the values of the organization.

Organizational Leadership

  • As a member of the ESPHS’s senior leadership team, serve as a strategic and creative collaborator for long-term direction setting and short-term decision making for the organization.
  • Actively contribute to strategic planning processes, as both a representative of the Development department and a thought partner.
  • Work closely with the President & CEO and the Board of Directors to develop long-term fundraising and operational strategies.
  • Provide visionary leadership to the development and operations team, fostering a positive and collaborative work environment.
  • Monitor industry trends and best practices, identifying opportunities for the organization's growth and improvement.

Organization-Wide Responsibilities

  • Embrace ESPHS’s commitment to DEAI.
  • Cross-departmental collaboration with four departments: Operations, Exhibitions, Historic Preservation and Collections, and Education
  • Advocate for policies both internally and externally that further advance the ESPHS’s stated values on an organizational, local, and national scale.
  • Contribute in meaningful ways to the organizational culture.
  • Act as a visible ambassador for ESPHS in the local community and beyond.
  • Work closely with communications team on marketing and communications strategy, ensuring communications are donor- and visitor-centered and contribute to a well-rounded fundraising and promotional strategy.
  • Working with marketing and communications, development, and program staff, develop new ways of promoting events, programs, and opportunities to members and potential members using print and electronic media.



  • At least 8 years of experience and measurable success in nonprofit fundraising, including setting and meeting goals;
  • Demonstrated managerial experience leading a strong team and creating a positive work environment;
  • Successful track record of personally identifying, cultivating, and soliciting significant contributions of $100,000 or more from a single donor;
  • Proven track record of successfully cultivating and securing significant funding from grants, foundations, corporation and individual donors.
  • Highly honed communication skills (writing and speaking)
  • Experience in development marketing and communications strategy that is donor- and visitor-centered;
  • Previous experience leading campaigns.

Essential Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Ability to set strategic direction and execute strategy effectively;
  • Strong interpersonal skills to identify, cultivate, and solicit significant contributions;
  • Strong analytical skills and ability to leverage fundraising data as a tool (familiarity with Raiser’s Edge or similar CRM is preferred);
  • Clear and effective verbal and written communication with a wide range of staff, donors, vendors, and other stakeholders;
  • Highly professional and ethical standards for handling confidential or sensitive information, including knowledge of nonprofit best practices.

Other Skills or Qualities

  • Self-motivated, organized, and able to manage multiple priorities and projects;
  • The ability to collaborate with a wide variety of people, personalities, and working styles;
  • Detail-oriented and able to see the larger picture in service of holistic and creative problem solving;
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively;
  • Understanding of how fundraising responsibilities contribute to ESPHS’s mission, embody its values, and achieve its long-term vision;
  • An appreciation for historic sites, history, museums, and criminal justice reform. Belief in the humanities as an important contributor to society.

Working Conditions

Typical schedule is Mon-Fri, 9am-5:30 pm, with some early mornings, evenings, and weekends as necessary.

Option to work from home two days per week when appropriate to the needs of the job.

The salary range for this position is estimated at $130,000 to $150,000.


TO APPLY: Click here to apply on our career portal.


About ESPHS:

Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site is a museum interpreting the legacy of American criminal justice reform from the site of the world’s first penitentiary. The facility pioneered the large-scale use of solitary confinement in the early 19th century and housed approximately 85,000 people during its 142 years of operation. The building itself was an architectural wonder: it had running water and central heat before the White House, and its revolutionary wagon-wheel design has been copied by more than 300 prisons around the globe. Although the prison now stands in ruin, its story remains relevant today.

Today, Eastern State Penitentiary attracts hundreds of thousands of guests from around the world each year to explore the site’s fascinating past and contemplate some of the most critical issues facing our nation. Its innovative public history program draws connections to contemporary justice reform through an approach that values multiple perspectives, amplifies marginalized voices, and respects a broad range of visitors’ interests and learning styles.

Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Corporation that operates the penitentiary, a National Historic Landmark, as an historic site and museum.

Commitment to Diversity:
We strongly believe in the power of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We recognize that a diverse workforce brings together unique perspectives, experiences, and talents, leading to increased creativity, innovation, and better decision-making. As such, we actively seek out and value job applicants from all backgrounds, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientation, ages, or disability. Our commitment to DEI extends throughout our hiring process, ensuring equal opportunities and fair treatment for all candidates. We firmly believe that by fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace, we can create a stronger, more vibrant, and more successful organization.

Equal Opportunity Employer Statement:
Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer that does not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, creed, color, religion, alienage or national origin, ancestry, citizenship status, age, disability or handicap, sex, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, arrest record or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local laws. Our management team is dedicated to this policy with respect to recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, benefits, employee activities and general treatment during employment.

ESPHS strongly believes in second chances and, as such, is committed to providing appropriate employment opportunities to those who have been incarcerated. As a condition of employment, all individuals who accept an employment offer must complete a criminal background check. Eastern State will review any criminal record and make appropriate employment decisions in accordance with applicable law and its policies.

2017 American Aliance of Museums Excellence in Exhibitions Overall Winner