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Director of Membership, Lincoln Park Zoo

  • 01/27/2023 3:14 PM
    Message # 13075525
    Sarah Rutledge (Administrator)

    General Summary:

    Lincoln Park Zoo inspires communities to create environments where wildlife will thrive in our urbanizing world. The zoo is a leader in local and global conservation, animal care and welfare, learning, and science. A historic Chicago landmark founded in 1868, the not-for-profit Lincoln Park Zoo, is a privately-managed, member-supported organization and is free and open 365 days a year. Lincoln Park Zoo is committed to an environment that is inclusive and welcoming. We celebrate the diverse qualities, perspectives, value, and experiences of all people. For Wildlife. For All. Visit us at

    The Director of Membership provides overall strategy, leadership, and direction for the membership program at Lincoln Park Zoo. The Director is responsible for stewarding, retaining, and upgrading current donors and cultivating new member acquisition. The Director of Membership collaborates with Senior Director of Principal Gifts and Director of Annual Fund to align member and donor strategies across programs. The position reports to the Vice President of Development and is responsible for supervising membership staff and activities including daily operations, onsite membership presence, processing, acquisition, benefit fulfillment and retention efforts.

    Successful candidates should possess a calm, approachable demeanor and be detail-oriented self-starters with an exceptional ability to manage and prioritize multiple projects to deadline.

    Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities:

    • 5-7 years of nonprofit membership experience and minimum of 2 years in a management role
    • Very strong proficiency with Raiser’s Edge software (queries, forms and reports) and all aspects of the Microsoft Office Suite, especially word processing and spreadsheet software
    • Direct mail program experience required, including copy development, segmentation and analysis
    • Strong writing and editing skills
    • Experience with Salesforce a plus
    • Utmost discretion in handling confidential data
    • Available to work special events which may occur outside of regular work schedule as assigned
    • Foster culture of mutual respect, collaboration, transparency, that allows all team members to feel included, valued, and appreciated
    • Demonstrate flexibility and adapt to evolving priorities and urgent needs Essential Job Functions:
    • Maintain collaborative and customer-focused basic membership program at the zoo
    • Implement membership strategies for donor retention and acquisition; evaluate and report on the effectiveness of these strategies.
    • Oversee Membership and ADOPT an Animal fulfillment, including acknowledgements and marketing materials
    • Use data to broaden reach and increase effectiveness of membership program
    • Survey members and benchmark against other institutions to ensure market-competitive, impactful member benefits
    • Plan, promote, coordinate, and execute member events
    • Work closely with communications team to coordinate message targeting, brand alignment, and zoo mission across all donor communication
    • Stay abreast of all zoo programming and creatively incorporate on-site learning and programmatic opportunities to educate and inform membership base
    • Work with Director of Development Services to refine and create suite of dashboards and metrics that clearly track membership activity and progress to goals
    • Oversee inventory control and budgeting for the team and collaborate closely with Accounting and Finance departments
    • Manage membership team and collaborate with annual fund, principal gifts, and development services teams to drive moves management efforts and build a donor pipeline
    • Support Membership Sales Manager in hiring and training new on-site membership staff through clearly-outlined training program and documentation

    Education Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree preferred

    Additional Responsibilities:

    • Serve as a liaison between Membership and other zoo departments
    • Some physical labor required for transporting items on-grounds
    • Must be able to work seated in front of a computer for extended periods of time
    • All Lincoln Park Zoo employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19

    Lincoln Park Zoo is committed to an environment that is inclusive and welcoming.  We celebrate the diverse qualities, perspectives, values and experiences of all people.  For Wildlife. For All.

    Apply online at: Director of Membership | Chicago, IL | Lincoln Park Zoological Society (

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