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Manager of Direct Response Giving


The Planetary Society Seeks Manager of Direct Response Giving

Are you an energetic fundraising professional with a passion for space, the desire to grow a program, and to make your mark on a dynamic, evolving organization?

Like the universe itself, The Planetary Society is in expansion mode. We are growing our space science and exploration programs to new levels of excellence and achievement, and growing our support base to ensure that we are sustainable. We are creating an amazing team, and we plan nothing less than to change the world!

Do you have skill in telling captivating stories? Are you able to read the “stories” embedded in donor data? Are you adept with digital fundraising tools? Are you driven to help donors achieve their philanthropic goals by connecting them to a compelling mission and exciting programs? Have you created a record of successful work that causes you to swell with pride?

Our team needs someone like you; we need someone to help us with break new ground in our quest to provide the resources vital to our continued growth and impact.

This is a full-time position in our headquarters situated in the world capital of planetary science and exploration: Pasadena, California. Please read our full position description and follow the directions to apply. We can’t wait to find out more about you!

The Position

Reporting to the Chief Development Officer and working jointly with the Development and the Marketing and Communications teams, the Manager of Direct Response is responsible for providing effective project management for The Planetary Society’s appeals program; managing membership acquisition and upgrade programs; supporting the continuing development, integrity, and integration of the fundraising databases; and preparing management reports on key indicators tied to development and membership programs; preparing revenue and expense projections for direct response programs for the annual budget.  

The Manager will participate in and provide project management for membership acquisition, renewals, and reinstatement efforts, including tools such as the welcome series, online advertising (such as Facebook Ads and Google Adwords), and traditional mail campaigns. The Manager will also lead the Development Department’s integration of Crystal Reports and other applications, such as Microsoft Excel, to prepare business intelligence, budget, and other reports useful for implementation of routine processes and procedures as well as tracking key department indicators. 

The position has a direct line of reporting to the Chief Development Officer and a dotted-line reporting relationship to the Chief Communications Officer. 

Here's what you will do: 

Appeals – 40%

Membership – 25%

Work closely with the Chief Development Officer and other staff in the Development and Membership Department and the Marketing and Communication Department to manage membership acquisition, renewals and reinstatements, and upgrades to support the Society’s mission, to maximize income, and to reach a goal of 75,000 members by the end of the 2024 fiscal year.

Database – 15%

Work with the Chief Development Officer, other staff in the Development and Membership Department, and the Systems Administrator to support the continuing development, integrity, integration, and functionality of the fundraising databases. 

Analytics: Budget & Key Indicators – 15%

Work with the Chief Development Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and other staff in the Development and Membership Department to apply analytics to data related to the Society’s fundraising activities. 

Other Duties – 5%


Environmental Factors


The Planetary Society is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritize diversity at all levels of our work. Job applicants from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

How To Apply

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, with application reviews commencing immediately.  Your submission should include a resume, cover letter and a list of references. Please email your submission to

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