Location: Washington, DC

American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.5 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres, and helped thousands of farm families make a go of it (primarily through programs that increase farm viability and/or enhance farmland access). Long a pioneering leader, AFT is now riding a new wave of growth, driven by agriculture’s most pressing needs and opportunities.

The Director of Institutional Partnerships (IP) acts as a crucial member of the development team, supporting the goals and objectives for American Farmland Trust’s robust and ambitious IP efforts, specifically including: securing grants/contributions from foundations, and government sources. This position is responsible for the management of the IP team, works closely with program colleagues, and drives both the long-term strategy and day-to-day execution of the IP program. The Director of Institutional Partnerships reports to the Vice President of Development.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Leads a team of 5 in executing IP strategy. 
  • Recruits, trains, mentors, and develops IP staff.
  • Provides overall direction and strategy for AFT relationships with foundations, and government prospects.
  • Oversees identification and cultivation of IP prospects.
  • Manages the development and timely submission of letters of inquiry, proposals, and grant reports. 
  • Manages the personnel, financial, and operational activities of foundation-related activities. 
  • Coordinates and implements fundraising donor meetings, and when appropriate, includes AFT program staff and the AFT President.
  • Manages annual revenue and expense budgets and develops budgets for future work.
  • Participates, as needed, in program planning processes to provide insight to related fundraising opportunities.
  • Significantly scales AFT’s success in soliciting and securing large grants from foundations and government prospects. 
  • Collaborates with the VP of Development in the development and implementation of department-wide strategic planning.
  • Completes other duties as assigned.


  • Bachelor’s degree, and at least 5-7 years of experience in foundation, government, corporate, and/or individual fundraising.
  • Demonstrated success in foundational, corporate, government, or individual fundraising at a significant level.
  • Ability to skillfully manage the AFT relationship with high-level foundation officers, travelling as required to market AFT’s programmatic and fundraising opportunities.
  • Critical and strategic thinker with a history of building fundraising programs and scaling an organization’s work.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the principles and best practices associated with fundraising from foundations and government sources at non-profits and/or higher-ed.
  • Demonstrated donor relations or related customer service experience a plus.
  • Possessing high standards of integrity, credibility, and reliability to articulate the organization’s needs, opportunities, and aspirations with clarity and enthusiasm is required.
  • Must have the ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously, set priorities, and meet deadlines.
  • Raisers Edge and Convio experience preferred, general familiarity with CMS required; proficient in Microsoft Office and web content management and analytics.
  • Be a demonstrated team player with commitment to the mission, philosophy, and values of American Farmland Trust.
  • Must be organized, creative, pro-active, and detail-oriented with a strong ability to prioritize. 
  • Have sound judgment in maintaining confidentiality of donor information. 
  • Excellent oral, written, interpersonal, analytical, and organizational skills required.

If you are eager to join our team, please visit this page to apply.

Please include a cover letter with resume to be considered.

American Farmland Trust provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Farmland Trust complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the organization has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.