Fairfield County, CT and Hartford, CT


Development department

Deadline date

Application review will begin mid-July, 2021. The position will be open until filled, with an anticipated October 1, 2021 start date.

The ACLU of Connecticut—a leader in fighting for racial justice in the criminal legal system and policing, ending mass incarceration, expanding voting rights, and LGBTQ equity in the state —is seeking a full-time Donor Relations Officer to help expand our organization’s development program in Fairfield County in order to sustain our presence and programmatic impact across the state. This is a fantastic opportunity for a professional passionate about social justice to join Connecticut’s premier defender of civil rights and liberties. We are a passionate, highly motivated group of attorneys, public policy and legislative advocates, communications experts, community organizers, and fundraisers, and we’re looking for exceptional talent to join our team. 

The Donor Relations Officer, alongside the Director of Development, Donor Relations Associate and Executive Director, will serve as a key member of our fundraising team. The Donor Relations Officer will help us raise major gifts that will expand, enhance, and sustain our programmatic goals. Under the direction and guidance of the Director of Development, the Donor Relations Officer will play a key role in managing relationships with existing donors and securing new sources of funding that will enable longstanding, tangible civil liberties victories.  The Donor Relations Officer will be responsible for developing and managing a portfolio of approximately 150 donors (each with an estimated capacity to give $10,000 or more) and creating and maintaining strategies for high-level donor stewardship. 

The Donor Relations Officer will be positioned to significantly impact the development program of the ACLU of Connecticut. This is a full-time, overtime-exempt position based in Fairfield County and presents an exciting opportunity for a professional who has a desire to strengthen a development program and has a deep passion for social justice work. The Donor Relations Officer will be expected to spend one full day per week at the ACLU of Connecticut office located in Hartford, Connecticut. 


The Donor Relations Officer will spend most of their time directly interacting with donors residing in Fairfield County, helping donors fulfill their passions and interests through their giving to the ACLU. The goal for the Donor Relations Officer is to greatly expand the number of donors located in Fairfield County making major gifts ($5,000+) to the ACLU of Connecticut. 

  • Research and qualify a list of 250+ already identified prospects for assignment to the major gifts portfolio. 
  • Manage a portfolio of approximately 100+ current donors (each with an estimated capacity to give $10,000 or more). 
  • Create individual goals for each person in the portfolio based on the donor’s history of giving and the organization’s knowledge of that donor’s potential. 
  • Create a comprehensive cultivation and solicitation strategy for each donor in the portfolio and execute. 
  • Directly solicit gifts, and partner with Executive Director, Director of Development, and ACLU National’s Associate Director of Planned Giving on meetings and key asks. 
  • Develop unique cultivation and stewardship opportunities and participate in broader donor cultivation events (virtual and small in-person). 
  • Track portfolio activity, communication, and progress in the ACLU’s donor database. Create reports as required by management that accurately reflect portfolio activity and performance.  
  • Work with the appropriate program staff to secure project information to develop personalized materials directed at individual donors/prospects that are in line with donor interests, programmatic priorities, and reports that detail progress made because of a gift, etc. 
  • Maintain working knowledge of local and national programmatic priorities and issues as they occur. 
  • Partner with colleagues from the national ACLU to advance key donor relationships.  
  • Partner with senior staff to write grant applications, as directed by the Director of Development, and prepare grant reports and other communication with funders, based on donor interests and program progress. 
  • Assist with communication to donors about the ACLU of Connecticut’s mission, activities, and successes in a transparent, inspiring, and motivating way. 
  • Make presentations and communicate in writing as may be required. 
  • Other duties as assigned by the ED and other senior Development staff. 


  • Demonstrated ability to build and sustain relationships with diverse groups, work cooperatively with communities across the political spectrum, and a personal approach that values and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability, socio-economic circumstances, and record of arrest or conviction.  
  • Demonstrate a commitment to working collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts. 
  • Demonstrate a commitment to non-partisanship per ACLU policy that stipulates the ACLU will not endorse or oppose a candidate or political party in the process of voter education or mobilization work. 


  • At least three years of professional work experience; non-profit development experience with progressive responsibility is preferred, but other, transferable experience will be considered. Direct work soliciting donors and closing and stewarding major gifts is ideal. Grantwriting experience also a plus. 
  • Demonstrated understanding, knowledge of, and commitment to civil liberties, civil rights, and the ACLU of Connecticut’s mission. 
  • Strong interpersonal skills and enthusiasm for building strong professional relationships with donors, Board members, volunteers, staff, and the general public. 
  • Excellent computer skills, including proficiency with Microsoft Office technology (including Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint). 
  • Experience working with donor databases and knowledge of Connecticut philanthropic community a plus. 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, including the ability to speak comfortably and compellingly with donors about the potential impact of their philanthropic investments in the ACLU. 
  • The ability to work occasional evening, weekend, and irregular hours and to travel within the state as needed. 
  • Organized; self-motivated. 


  • A true commitment to the principles and values of the ACLU of Connecticut and its mission. 
  • Strong self-motivation; ability to bring exceptional initiative, ambition, and follow-through. 
  • Ability to work collaboratively with diverse communities and people. 
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills. 
  • Well-developed sense of humor and compassion; friendly and collaborative. 
  • Flexibility and willingness to learn. 


The Donor Relations Officer will receive a salary between $60,000-$75,000 annually, depending on experience. The ACLU of Connecticut also offers a generous and comprehensive benefits package including four weeks paid vacation; 100%-employer premium paid medical, dental, and vision insurance, as well as a supplemental wellness benefit; 401(k) Plan including up to 5.5% employer contribution; and 13 paid holidays.  (The ACLU of Connecticut reserves the right to alter or eliminate its current employee benefit plans and programs). This position is full-time, salaried, and overtime-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act and applicable Connecticut law. 


Please submit a cover letter, resume, and three professional references including their email, phone, and relationship to you.  Send electronic materials to: search@acluct.org and please include your last name and “Donor Relations Officer” in the email subject line.  You may submit hard copies to ACLU of Connecticut, Re: Donor Relations Officer, 765 Asylum Avenue, Hartford, CT 06105.  Please also indicate in your cover letter where you heard of this career opportunity. No phone calls or walk-ins, please. 

The ACLU is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that all persons – including but not limited to persons with disabilities – have full opportunities for employment in all positions. We encourage applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations in the application process to include this information in your cover letter, or to call 860-523-9146 to discuss your needs.   

Applications will be reviewed until the position is filled, at which time this announcement will be removed from our website. 


With affiliate offices in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and Guam, the ACLU fights tirelessly in the courts, legislatures, and through community engagement to ensure that all individuals’ rights are protected.  

The ACLU of Connecticut comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut, and the ACLU Foundation of Connecticut. Both the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut and the ACLU Foundation of Connecticut are statewide organizations with the same overall mission; they share office space and employees. Our maintenance of two separate corporate entities allows us to do a broad range of work to protect civil liberties. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “ACLU of Connecticut.”  

To learn more about the work of the ACLU, both in Connecticut and nationally, please visit www.acluct.org and www.aclu.org