Special Events Manager

Minnesota Zoo Foundation

| Apple Valley, MN | January 8, 2020

General Description

The Special Events Manager coordinates all events for the Minnesota Zoo Foundation, including fundraising events, donor cultivation events, corporate and foundation events, VIP openings for new exhibits, and potentially new events in collaboration with the Foundation team, Zoo team, and an active volunteer committee.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities
1. Work with Foundation team to coordinate and project manage a major fundraising gala (Beastly Bash) with a goal of $1 MM gross. This will include the following and other tasks:
o overall coordination, planning and execution of the annual gala
o assisting committee chair(s) and members with various tasks on a regular basis such as scheduling meetings, soliciting auction items, etc.
o coordinating Foundation and Zoo team members as well as outside event consultants, volunteers and vendors (tent rental, entertainment, etc.)
o communicating and coordinating with event participants, auctioneer, emcee, band, golf carts, valet, etc.
o managing the design and editing of publications and promotional materials including an event website, invitations, event program and advertising
o ensuring event wrap-up and reporting to committee, as well as auction item fulfillment and follow-up
2. Work with Foundation team to coordinate and project manage ongoing donor cultivation and stewardship events such as Director’s Crawl, Friends Farm Babies, exhibit preview nights and more.
o Oversee all event coordination details including coordination of volunteers, interns, and staff in event-related capacities
o Generate mailing lists for events and develop event-related communications for both online and printed materials
o Organize donor tours, making sure to follow protocol relating to requesting keeper time, placing catering orders, and completing space requests
3. Develop and oversee event budget, tracking all revenue and expenses responsibly
4. Serve as primary liaison with Lancer Catering, managing all Foundation catering requests and invoices
5. Manage setup of all Foundation event online registrations and ticket sales in donor database (Tessitura and/or BidPal)
6. Develop and steward relationships with donors, volunteers and trustees through events
7. Other duties as assigned based on organizational priorities

Work Experience and Qualification Requirements
• 3-5 years previous event planning experience with increasing responsibility. Preference given for experience in fundraising and nonprofits.
• Strong project management skills organizing diverse aspects of events (registrations, entertainment, catering, staffing, communications, etc.), including the ability to prioritize and manage multiple deadlines
• Ability to work a flexible schedule and the ability to “change course” quickly
• Excellent written and oral communication skills
• Collaborative style and the ability to work with a diverse group of individuals both inside the organization and out in the community
• Ability to work independently and proactively while keeping supervisor apprised of issues, opportunities and progress
• High degree of integrity, ethical decision making, and commitment to maintaining confidentiality
• Proficiency with Microsoft Office
• Proficiency with donor and contact management databases, Tessitura software and BidPal preferred
• Demonstrated ability to clearly represent and present the mission and vision of the Minnesota Zoo

Education Requirements: Bachelor’s degree or equivalent

Reports to: Director of Individual Giving

Supervises: interns

Type of Position: Full-time, exempt
Salary Range: $54,000 – $58,000 based on qualifications

To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Linda Carlson at linda.d.carlson@mnzoo.org.
Applications received by Jan 25 will receive first consideration.

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