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4 Jan 2023

Full-Time Manager, Development Operations

California Academy of Sciences – Posted by Calacademy San Francisco, California, United States

Job Description

About the Opportunity
The Manager, Development Operations provides Academy-wide database support, manages the contribution processing team, and produces and analyzes data for specific fundraising efforts and various Development needs. This role partners with teams across the Academy to improve database use related to gift processing and donor data management and makes strategic decisions for process improvements. This role oversees all Development related technical troubleshooting and training. This full-time position reports to the Director, Development Operations and Direct Response and supervises two Development Operations Coordinators.

Organizational Culture:
Join a team dedicated to the Academy’s mission, vision and values! Currently, the Academy has a new strategic plan including three initiatives – Hope for ReefsThriving California, and Islands 2030 – that leverage biodiversity science, environmental learning, and collaborative engagement to regenerate fragile ecosystems around the world. Learn more at

We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The mission of the California Academy of Sciences is to regenerate the natural world through science, learning, and collaboration. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every one of the qualifications for the position.

This position is based in San Francisco, California. Staff are currently expected to work from the Academy offices at least 2-3 times per week, which may fluctuate based on business needs. Please do not apply if you are not able to work onsite. Candidates are required to have up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination, including receiving a booster shot, as a condition of employment, absent qualifying exemptions in accordance with applicable laws. Individuals receiving a conditional offer of employment from the California Academy of Sciences will be provided the full text of the vaccination policy.

About the Development Team
The Development team’s purpose is to raise funds to advance the Academy’s mission through purposeful outreach, storytelling, and intentional relationships with individuals and organizations.

We build, inspire, and engage a diverse community to solve the planet’s most pressing challenges and create a more hopeful future for all.

Key Responsibilities


  • Provides Tessitura database subject matter expertise, which includes spearheading configurations of Tessitura to meet Academy fundraising needs, managing and participating in various data projects, conducting system testing, training, and advising Development staff and Academy partners on database usage.
  • Represents Development needs as part of the Academy’s Tessitura User Group. The Tessitura User Group comprises implementation specialists and is responsible for configuring and maintaining Tessitura, addressing and creating solutions to issues and concerns, and developing improvement and process proposals to be escalated to the Academy’s Tessitura Steering Committee for review.
  • Executes complex lists, reports, output sets, imports, extractions, and supplemental data updates requiring comprehensive knowledge of Academy data in Tessitura.
  • Consults with teams on data needs and provides critical multifaceted data requests to reach fundraising goals. These data requests are used for donor solicitation, sending invitations for fundraising and stewardship events, analyzing donor trends, contribution history, and portfolio moves management, among other use cases.
  • Partners considerably with IT and Membership on data clean-up projects, data testing and review, mass record merging, system configuration, and data management. Identifies necessary and critical opportunities for improved data integration processes.
  • Leads efforts between Development and other Academy partners to ensure fundraising products are available, functioning correctly, and providing the most efficient and strategic donor experience. Product examples include donor-level memberships, general donations, Development web pages, donor recognition, and significant fundraising events.
  • Holds regular meetings and training sessions to guide Development staff through extensive data tracking tools in Tessitura, discuss and adapt data processes, and make business decisions to increase database use and performance across the department.
  • Maintains external consulting relationships to create custom ways to report Tessitura data that meet business needs.
  • Advises and recommends fundraising and stewardship operational strategies by establishing and enforcing best practices for proposal tracking and partnering with the Donor Relations Manager.
  • Provides technical guidance to the Prospect Research Analyst regarding wealth screening and donor engagement tools.
  • Oversees database event tracking systems and manages event check-in applications.
  • Follows all Academy safety regulations
  • Other duties as assigned

Supervisory Responsibilities:

  • Manages and develops two Development Operations staff members, including monitoring their workloads, providing training and meetings, and supporting their professional development.
  • Oversees daily gift and fundraising operations, including guiding the gift entry team, troubleshooting complications, and reevaluating and establishing best practices to ensure accurate and efficient gift processing turnarounds and proper support to the department.




  • Advanced experience using fundraising databases (preferably Tessitura) to record contributions and run reports: at least five years of combined experience in development operations, fundraising systems, data analysis, and supervisory experience.
  • Solid knowledge of CRMs and data analysis skills.


  • Bachelor’s degree



  • Possesses leadership skills in decision-making, problem-solving, and supervisory personnel management.
  • Able to maintain the confidentiality of sensitive information and use good judgment.
  • Positive, flexible, and well-organized to thrive in a rapid environment and meet challenging deadlines.
  • Competency of Google Suite, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • Experience navigating, analyzing, and managing data, preferably confidential fundraising information.


  • Creative, conceptual, and donor-centric thinking and deep technical understanding.
  • A good attitude and sense of enjoyment when working with different groups of people, exploring diverse viewpoints, and finding points of agreement to move a project forward.
  • Interest and/or experience in museums and concepts related to biodiversity, regeneration, and the natural world.
  • Demonstrates experience in database and spreadsheet applications and ability to visualize data.

Physical Environment: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential job duty satisfactorily. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

Compensation and Benefits

Hiring range: $82,000-$92,000

Schedule: Full-Time, 40 hours per week

Starting salary will vary based on experience and relevant skills/knowledge set. The Academy offers a total compensation package that emphasizes both base salary and comprehensive benefits.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, place of birth, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, height or weight, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.

How to Apply

Please apply by uploading your resume, writing a cover letter, and submitting a brief online application on our careers page.

Job Types: Full-Time. Salaries: 80,000 - 100,000.

Job expires in 60 days.

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