Development and Special Events Coordinator

Pensacola Opera

Pensacola, FL

Work Location: In-office


  • Full Time
  • Pensacola, FL (Remote)
  • Sun, Dec 31, 2023
  • Work Location: In-office
  • Opera
  • $50,000.00
  • $55,000.00

Website PensacolaOpera Pensacola Opera

Founded in 1983 by a group of community volunteers (some of whom remain active Trustees), Pensacola Opera is the only opera company in Northwest Florida and one of only five professional opera companies affiliated with OPERA America in the state. Our mainstage productions feature acclaimed artists who regularly appear throughout our nation and the world. When they combine their talents with those of our community partners – Pensacola Symphony Orchestra, Ballet Pensacola, Pensacola Opera Chorus, and Pensacola Children’s Chorus – they fill and thrill the Saenger Theatre, enhancing the quality of life throughout the Gulf Coast.

The mission of Pensacola Opera is to enrich the culture of Northwest Florida by producing professional opera performances, educational programs, and other opera-related community events for people of all ages, interests and backgrounds.

Pensacola Opera’s vision is to be a vital, treasured, and sustainable part of the regions cultural community, with a reputation for artistic excellence, civic impact, organizational effectiveness, and community engagement.
The Opera’s programs serve to nurture existing audiences, build new audiences and stimulate the community in which we live, culturally and economically, through the magnificent art form of opera. Volunteer programs, dynamic special events, comprehensive marketing initiatives and strong governance and administration will support these programmatic activities, serving to grow the support base for Pensacola Opera and expanding its cultural impact. The current annual operating budget is approximately $1.3 million. Patron Manager is its CRM software.

The Development and Special Events Coordinator is responsible for planning, organizing, and directing all of Pensacola Opera’s fundraising including, special events, annual fund program, production and event sponsorships, the major gifts program, and capital campaigns. The Development and Special Events Coordinator works closely with the General Director and the Board of Directors to set and meet fundraising goals. The successful candidate will have significant fundraising experience in the arts.

1. Have an attitude of service, a commitment to ongoing learning, and ability to contribute to a team.
2. Must embrace the mission of Pensacola Opera.
3. Energetic, entrepreneurial, “people person” who can work nimbly within a frequently changing creative environment to motivate a team and achieve goals.
4. Have knowledge and experience in fundraising techniques, particularly special events and major gift fundraising.
5. “Customer focused” and possess strong, persuasive interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to articulate compelling messages for support that generate enthusiasm and commitment among stakeholders.
6. Possess the skills to work with and motivate staff, board members and other volunteers.
7. Have the desire to get out of the office and build external relationships.
8. Be a “self-starter” and goal driven to initiate donor visits and fundraising calls.
9. Be organized and exhibit “follow through” on tasks and goals.
10. Display a positive attitude, show concern for people and community, demonstrate presence, self-confidence, common sense and good listening ability.
11. A Bachelor’s Degree or Masters Degree.
12. 3-5+ years minimum experience in professional fundraising preferred (preferably in a cultural institution)


Special Events (60%)
1. The department plans and executes the organization’s special events, including year-round donor engagement, receptions, dinners, sponsor parties, brunches, and opera preview events.
2. Solicit and secure special event sponsorships for all fundraising initiatives.
3. Negotiates contracts and manages relationships with all event vendors.
4. Develops and maintains accurate special events budgets, monitoring and ensuring projects are within budget.
5. Identify, manage and assign volunteers and staff to event roles.
6. Works closely with Marketing Director on developing all special event materials (print and social media).
7. Collaborate, solicit and report to board of trustees on all fundraising initiatives.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities (40%)
1. Oversee the annual fund program, including mailings and annual fundraising drives.
2. Secure Production Sponsorships for the Mainstage Productions and Events.
3. Increase contributed support through targeted growth of sponsorships and grants.
4. Meet prospective donors and supporters on a continual basis to establish effective communications with them.
5. Provide strategic guidance to support ongoing identification, cultivation and solicitation of new prospects.
6. Continue to grow major gifts program including identification, cultivation and solicitation of major donors.
7. Work closely with the General Director to provide careful stewardship and meaningful cultivation opportunities for the opera’s major donors.
8. Present monthly board development reports to the Board of Trustees during board meetings.
9. Assist the General Director with grants including research, proposal writing, and reporting requirements.
10. Oversee preparation of fundraising materials and work with Marketing Director to ensure timely preparation of donor lists and collateral materials.
11. Work with Patron Services to ensure that all gifts are appropriately acknowledged in a timely manner.
12. Build the planned giving program with a focus on deferred gifts such as bequest expectancies.
13. Assist General Director with capital campaigns and other major fundraising drives.
14. Make public appearances/accept speaking engagements to share information about Pensacola Opera with the community.
15. Oversee Pensacola Opera’s Voices for Change Program
16. Oversee fundraising, development reports, and tracking systems in Patron Manager.

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