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Donor Communications Manager


Seattle Opera is accepting applications for the position of Donor Communications Manager. This is full-time, exempt position.


This position is responsible for planning and implementing communications to support an effective, comprehensive donor engagement and solicitation program, including annual fund renewal and acquisition materials. The Donor Communications Manager leads all planning and execution of donor communications, including copy, image, and design development across all channels (print, email, and fundraising-related social media and other digital) plus website content and development. Partners with Planned Giving Officer on all Planned Giving communications and Capital Campaign Manager on all capital campaign communications. Serves as liaison and representative with the Marketing department on Development content, branding, and design.



  • Coordinate a robust system and schedule of high-tech and high-frequency donor communications, including frequent testing and evaluation. Write copy and source images for related pieces, overseeing work of designers, photographers, videographers, consultants, printers, and mail handlers.

  • Maintain a close working relationship with the Marketing department, especially the company’s Graphic Designer, Web Producer, and Digital Marketing Manager. Ensure donor communications are scheduled early and integrated into the company’s email and print calendars. Attend weekly Production meetings serving as primary Development department representative.

  • Manage a comprehensive email program that engages donors and delivers revenue. Layout in email client (Wordfly), source photos, and generate copy. Serve as a Development department expert in email, implementing best practices from the arts and beyond in daily work.

  • Craft intriguing and compelling content for the program book. Support donor recognition via the program book, managing data and proofing.

  • Lead the department's use of the website, social media platforms, and paid digital media. Ensure all content is current, relevant, and effective and develop systems to do so. Seek to incorporate social media into fundraising efforts where appropriate. Serve as key partner in planning, testing, and execution of digital projects.

  • Develop all communication strategy and materials for the Seattle Opera at the Center capital campaign. Includes theme, core messages, visual identity, print collateral, presentations, as well as timelines and strategy documents.

  • Partner with Planned Giving Officer to create a strategic communication plan to steward existing planned givers, acquire new planned givers, and promote direct gifts to Seattle Opera Foundation.

  • Ensure all donor communications appropriately conform to the company’s brand standards. Advise on the evolution of branding guidelines for fundraising communications.

  • Manage a small portfolio of individual donor accounts, in coordination with Associate Director of Development.

  • Work donor events and donor lounges during opera performances and programs as required.

  • Oversee Donor Stewardship Manager’s creation and deployment of donor event communications.

  • Supervise development interns and volunteers as needed.

  • Perform other duties as assigned and needed to achieve Development department goals.



Materials: Responsible for supplies and materials as required for Annual Giving communications, benefits, and events within specified budget.


Internal Relationships: Development department liaison to Marketing and Communications department. Close collaboration with Marketing and Communications regarding communications, graphic design, branding, and website.


External Relationships: Contact with donors including board members, volunteers, and vendors.



Undergraduate degree, preferably in the field of performing arts management, required. English major or other writing intensive program also desirable. 3 years of successful experience writing for both print and electronic media, ideally in a non-profit environment. Demonstrated success in creating and executing direct marketing campaigns. Tessitura or similar fundraising/CRM database experience. Knowledge of opera and the performing arts preferred.


Evening and weekend work required for events and departmental activities for which employee will make own, suitable transportation arrangements and receive transportation reimbursement according to company policy.



  • Able to produce content meeting specific objectives with little to no revision under tight deadlines. Able to adapt writing to different and new styles and strategies.

  • Able to plan ahead, meet deadlines and goals, manage multiple projects simultaneously, perform well under pressure, and appropriately interact with high level donors.

  • Possess outstanding written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills.

  • Collaborative, collegial, and visionary approach to assignments.

  • Professional attitude, highly motivated, and accountable.

  • Keen eye for detail.

  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Familiarity with graphic design/layout software.


Salary commensurate with experience.  Seattle Opera offers a benefit package that includes medical, dental, life and disability insurance, paid vacation, holidays, and sick leave.



Qualified candidates are invited to submit a cover letter and resume. Attn: Donor Communications Manager, 1020 John Street, Seattle, WA 98109 or e-mail jobs@seattleopera.org.  No phone calls, please.  Position is open until filled.


Seattle Opera is an equal opportunity employer.

Questions about Membership or this application? Please contact Vincent Covatto, organizational membership manager, at VCovatto@operaamerica.org or by calling 646.699.5237.
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