Development Director- Foundations


RMI is in a period of significant growth, as stakeholders and donors increasingly recognize the need for the global energy transition and our uniquely valuable work. We are seeking an accomplished fundraising professional to generate support from philanthropic foundations. The Development Director, Foundations will manage a portfolio of new and existing foundation prospects with the capacity to make grants in the five to eight figures and beyond. They will do so by identifying and implementing strategies to engage new funders and deepen relationships with existing funders. They will collaborate with leaders across RMI to develop robust and compelling funding opportunities and to create effective plans for cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding gifts.  

Reporting to the Senior Director of Development, the Development Director, Foundations will be a key contributor to our high-performing development team and play an essential role in the achievement of RMI’s fundraising goals.  

Individuals from underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply!

Key responsibilities: 

  • Advance institutional and foundation relationships that result in philanthropic contributions in the five to eight figure range.  
  • Lead the development of high-quality grant proposals, stewardship reports, and other written material and submit them to foundations (in partnership with program staff, communications team, and finance team). Work with the Development Communications team and program teams to translate highly technical information into compelling donor materials to support key programs and projects. 
  • Manage a robust portfolio of complex foundation accounts with diverse interests and expectations.  
  • Develop and implement funder engagement and stewardship strategies.  
  • Communicate directly with funders over email, phone calls, virtual meetings, and in person in a professional manner  
  • Secure invitations from foundations to submit proposals for support   
  • Build and maintain strong working relationships with program and operations leaders.  
  • Develop and maintain strong knowledge of RMI’s program work to effectively represent the RMI’s theories of change, activities, and impacts in written communications and in meetings with funders and influencers.  
  • Prepare RMI’s senior leadership for meetings with funders, including creating prep materials, presentation slides, and talking points. Represent RMI at virtual and in-person events to expand our network and cultivate donors. 
  • Use our Salesforce database to document  and provide accurate relationship status and financial projections for the portfolio. 
  • Serve as an active member of the development team by attending and participating in staff meetings, serving on special task forces, and understanding and contributing to our development strategy, achievement and overall mission.   


As the incoming Development Director, Foundations, you will possess many, though perhaps not all, of the following characteristics and qualifications: 

  • 8+ years of front-line development experience, with a successful track record of securing at least six-figure grants from foundations within the United States, and experience working with global funders. 5+ years of experience fundraising from foundations. 
  • Experience in fundraising for organizations or programs related to climate, energy, sustainability, environmental justice, technology, or policy and are a credible and enthusiastic advocate for RMI's mission.  
  • Demonstrated  knowledge of the global philanthropic landscape and trends, as well as relevant fundraising strategies and techniques.  
  • Highly collaborative and effectively manage across and up within your organization, with experience navigating complex internal structures.  
  • Demonstrated experience meeting deadlines. 
  • Results-oriented and thrive within a fast-paced, high-growth organizational culture.  
  • Possess strong communication skills, both verbal and written, and a polished presentation style.  
  • Demonstrate strong organizational and time management skills and the ability to balance responsibilities that range from external relationship-building to internal strategy development. 
  • Prior success working as part of a geographically disparate organization is a plus.  
  • Willingness to travel on occasion as conditions allow. 


This position will remain remote through the COVID-19 pandemic. Once the COVID-19 situation improves, it is expected that these roles be located at one of our offices in New York City, Oakland, CA, Washington D.C., Basalt, CO, or Boulder, CO. This will be discussed further throughout the interview process.     

Important Note: As a U.S. federal contractor, RMI must comply with requirements outlined Executive Order Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors. This Executive Order requires that all federal contractors and subcontractors mandate and verify that all U.S. based employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are based in the U.S., you will be required to provide proof of full vaccination status as a condition of employment. You may request an accommodation for medical or religious reasons. If you are based outside of the U.S., this requirement does not apply.


RMI compensates based on the level and requirements of the role. Salary within our ranges may also be determined by your education, experience, knowledge, skills, and abilities, as required by the role, as well as internal equity and alignment with market data. Typically, new Development Directors based in the U.S. join at the minimum to mid-salary range of $134,000- $157,000. You would also have an additional 20% bonus target!


We offer a comprehensive benefits package including: 

  • Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance 
  • 403b Retirement Options (5% match immediately) 
  • Generous PTO 
  • Learning & Development opportunities 
  • Parental leave 
  • Life, AD&D, Short Term and Long-Term Disability 
  • Commuter and Wellness Benefits 


Increasing the diversity of thought, perspectives, ideas and opinions within RMI is a critical change element supporting our long-term sustainability and mission to build a clean, prosperous, and secure energy future for all.    

We strive for a level of diversity that reflects the communities we serve. Achieving this—regardless of ability, race, ethnicity, ancestry, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, veteran status, socioeconomic class, educational attainment or other social identities—is critical to the success of each RMIer and collectively as an organization. This ensures that we:    

  • Have the different array of thinking that comes from diverse backgrounds and cultures, enabling us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.    
  • Strive for a culture of inclusion and belonging by treating others with dignity, respect and appreciation enabling them to feel welcomed, supported and valued.    
  • Effectively connect, communicate and build long-lasting relationships with decision makers, stakeholders and constituents within diverse communities.    

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.       

About RMI

RMI is an independent nonprofit founded in 1982 that transforms global energy systems through market-driven solutions to align with a 1.5°C future and secure a clean, prosperous, zero-carbon future for all. We work in the world’s most critical geographies and engage businesses, policymakers, communities, and NGOs to identify and scale energy system interventions that will cut greenhouse gas emissions at least 50 percent by 2030. RMI has offices in Basalt and Boulder, Colorado; New York City; Oakland, California; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing. 


JOB CODE: 1000647