Development Officer

  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    May 20

Position description

Do you pride yourself on providing philanthropic investors with everything they need to understand their social impact, inspiring them to do more? Are you a changemaker who wants to play a pivotal role in restoring vision for millions of people in low-income communities around the world?

VisionSpring is a pioneering social enterprise recognized by philanthropic leaders as one of the world’s high-impact social enterprises. In fact, we just crossed the billion-dollar impact mark, correcting the vision of 7.5 million people, and we are growing at a rate of ~20-25% per year. With a robust portfolio of leading national and international foundations, governments, and corporations as supporters, including the Skoll Foundation, Mulago Foundation, Jasmine Social Investments, USAID, an innovative partnership with Warby Parker, and a growing cadre of long-term, major donors, VisionSpring is poised for significant expansion.

VisionSpring seeks a development officer to join our development team and build strategic partnerships with a growing portfolio of dynamic, sophisticated funders. Reporting to the global director of development and working closely with the CEO and the founder, the development officer will play a primary facilitative role in VisionSpring's fundraising efforts with philanthropic investors, foundations, and corporate funders. The person in this role will work as part of an entrepreneurial team to raise the philanthropic capital needed to augment our earned revenue. Working remotely temporarily, but based at VisionSpring’s New York City office once it reopens, the development officer will work collaboratively with our teams across eight countries and in support of our work globally.


  • You love generating funds to do good, better. You are building a career in fundraising, not waiting to transition into a program implementation role.
  • You are deeply curious about social enterprise models, field operations, and the experience of partners and customers. That makes you an exceptional organizational ambassador.
  • You view funders as integral partners and foster rich relationships with donors that are much more than transactional.
  • You shine when communicating with funders, derive satisfaction in finding a shared agenda with others, are upbeat, and can get others excited about what they are going to do.
  • You enjoy creating structure, have exceptional focus and follow-through, and prioritize before you act. You’re an “inbox zero” natural.
  • You operate with integrity; you take pride in going above and beyond even when no one is watching. You are inclined to break out into song or dance when winning support for your organization. Nothing feels better than exceeding fundraising targets.


  • VisionSpring is creating access to affordable eyewear, everywhere. Clear vision creates opportunities for increased learning, work, safety, civic participation, and quality of life.
  • As a social enterprise, social change motivates us first. Our focus on sales and revenue targets serves and advances our mission objective—to increase functioning, productivity, and income earning potential for our low-income consumers by correcting refractive error with eyeglasses.
  • We are working to transform the systemic dysfunction of an optical market that has failed to deliver eyeglasses—a 700-year-old technology—to 2.5 billion consumers in need of vision correction, most of whom live on less than $4 a day.
  • We serve low-income consumers, not as beneficiaries but as customers. Our customers expect a high-quality and affordable product, and they will spend limited discretionary income for the immediate and tangible benefits of vision correction.
  • By selling eyeglasses, we awaken new demand and seed a viable market. By selling new eyeglasses we are able to serve four times as many people per dollar input than the alternative of donating recycled ones. To efficiently scale, we must deliver each new unit with lower cost.
  • We run our business on both sales metrics and social impact measures. We exploit a range of organizational forms and practices to get the job done.
  • We believe in scaling our impact, not our organization. We are a lean team of doers.


Donor Engagement & Fundraising

  • Cultivate and nurture a portfolio of funders, including institutional foundations, community foundations, corporate CSR partners, and individual donors, by expanding long-term relationships with VisionSpring’s philanthropic investors and building new partnerships with prospective donors.
  • Support the continual improvement of our organizational donor stewardship practices to maintain the effectiveness and integrity of VisionSpring collaborations. Proactively communicate with donors and look for ways to engage philanthropic investors in order to keep them connected to our work. 
  • Ensure donors receive timely, comprehensive, and accurate reports.
  • Prepare thoughtful proposals and requests for renewal funding, working collaboratively with program/field staff on objectives, indicator development, and budgeting. 
  • Develop and monitor the opportunity pipeline and calendar for punctual execution of proposals, reports, trips to the field, and other forms of engagement.
  • Leverage VisionSpring’s Salesforce customer relationship management system to track written communications, meetings, submissions, and gift processing, with strict attention to data integrity.
  • Process incoming donations (via check and online giving) and ensure all donors receive timely acknowledgement.

Strategic Planning

  • Actively participate in departmental strategy development and execution.
  • Work with the development team, CEO, and founder to design and implement annual development plans and budgets, including close collaboration with the board of directors.
  • Report on key metrics to the board of directors and other stakeholders.


  • A minimum of 5-7 years of professional experience.
  • Demonstrated success managing a portfolio of funders with increasing responsibility and revenue performance. (Candidates without this specific experience, but who can demonstrate meaningful experience liaising and coordinating engagement with a different group of organizational stakeholders, should use their cover letters to explain how the skills they have developed are transferrable to this fundraising role.)
  • Prior experience with relationship management, including working with diverse and sophisticated thinkers.
  • Prior experience with persuasive writing, grant writing, pitch deck development, or business plan writing.
  • Demonstrated interest in social enterprise models and desire to learn how to articulate and share VisionSpring’s unique approach.
  • Extraordinary follow-through, attention to detail and deadlines, and a strong personal sense of accountability.
  • Must meet the highest standards of ethics, with a demonstrated capacity for discretion and for handling sensitive information with care.
  • A strong commitment to respectful collaboration with colleagues from diverse backgrounds.
  • Experience developing budgets.
  • Aptitude in Microsoft Office, especially Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • The ability to travel 5-10% of your time, domestically and internationally, as needed. Willingness to travel to locations with limited infrastructure.
  • Permanently authorized to work in the United States.    
  • Preferred experience: (1) Synthesizing program updates from the field to generate evocative and compelling reports; (2) Proficiency with CRMs such as Salesforce; (3) Experience living in a low-income setting and/or working across languages and cultures; and/or (4) Working with high-net-wealth individuals and family offices.


  • Salary range is $65,000 - $80,000 per year, based on experience.
  • We offer comprehensive benefits, including medical, dental, and vision, as well as 401(k) with match, pre-tax commuter plan, and generous vacation/personal time.

Application instructions

Please be sure to indicate that you saw this position on