Partnerships Lead (Trusts and Foundations) - North America

Commercial · Flexible, New York
Department Commercial
Employment Type Contractor
Compensation US$85,000 per annum

Are you a highly motivated partnerships broker from a charity background, but looking for something a bit different?


Lightful is a technology company (and a registered B Corp) with a mission to change the world through the power of technology. We work with charities, purpose-led enterprises and those tackling the world’s biggest challenges, to multiply their impact through digital. 

Over the past 18 months, Lightful has grown tremendously and we are now delivering our digital products and services in over 55 countries around the world, working with funders large and small, from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to the UK Government and Comic Relief.

We offer three services; Lightful Products, Lightful Learning and Lightful Solutions. Each service is different but highly interconnected, designed for the different needs of the social and environmental-focused organisations we’re proud to serve and work with.

Since achieving B Corp status in 2020, we have created an impact out of the office too. We have planted 12,371 trees planted through our employee carbon offset programme, saved 295,497 litres of water, and offset 1,107 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide emissions through 28 global carbon reduction projects.

You can read more about our purpose, mission and values on our website

Lightful Learning

Lightful Learning provides learning programmes that help our partners master real world skills through a combination of tools and support - building their confidence and resilience. It was designed to respond to the growing needs of charities, purpose-led enterprises, and individuals affecting change, for digital skills to keep them ahead of the curve.

Building Resilience in Digital Growth and Engagement (BRIDGE) is Lightful Learning's flagship programme for impact organisations looking to future-proof their operations at a time of great change. It combines a learning syllabus, delivered through a combination of live and recorded sessions and webinars, with the Lightful Social Platform, and supports them to;

  • Develop a digital strategy
  • Tell powerful stories
  • Run effective digital fundraising campaigns

BRIDGE is supported by foundations and other funders, and offered to small-to-medium sized charities that they support. 

In addition, we now have 2 further programmes, developed for purpose-led enterprises, and individuals respectively, called Thrive, and Amplify. You can read more about our programmes here

Role Description 

Your primary focus will be growing the BRIDGE, Thrive and Amplify Programmes. By creating new partnerships with foundations and other funders, you will help them to support nonprofits, purpose-led enterprises, and individuals affecting change to reach more people and raise more funds, leading to a genuinely positive impact on the world and society. Our learning programmes equips organisations with the digital tools and capabilities to become more resilient and deliver greater impact. BRIDGE generates incredible results for participating nonprofits - 64% increases in fundraising - and amazing returns for the Foundations who fund it. You will report to the Head of Partnerships and will be a key part of the commercial team. 

Existing partnerships across North America include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Jessie Ball duPont Fund and Fidelity Charitable. We’ve also worked with Comic Relief, the UK Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), Homeless Link and the London Housing Foundation in the EMEA region. We have a strong pipeline of leads and contacts that this role would manage, and we would expect you to use your own contacts from previous roles to generate new leads and opportunities. This position will work to initiate new contacts, establish long term partnerships, and strengthen existing relationships.


First and foremost, the Partnerships Lead (Trusts and Foundations) responsibility is to help Lightful reach more organisations by finding leads, nurturing relationships and winning new business.

  • Build and nurture strategic funding partnerships with trusts and foundations, (as well as other funders where required) across North America to grow the Lightful Learning offer
  • Lead in the research and identification of potential new funding partners, and be comfortable building relationships with different types of partners - be they large capital backed funds or grassroots community groups
  • Introduce Lightful to relevant contacts from your existing Trust & Foundation relationships
  • Manage a varied portfolio of Lightful’s trusts, foundation and partnerships including other grant-making organisations
  • Write high quality communications, bids, proposals, reports and presentations for donors and internal and external stakeholders, liaising with the design and customer success teams as needed
  • Represent Lightful at conferences, sector events, create and deliver best-in-class thought leadership (written and spoken) and also with the press (mainstream, sector and tech)
  • Work closely with the CRM administrator to ensure reports and data are kept up-to-date
  • Coordinate closely with the Co-Founders to identify sector partners who can accelerate the Lightful business plan
  • Know when to leverage and deploy Lightful’s Co-Founders to support introductions and/or proposals
  • Lead and manage internal events with current and potential clients and other friends of Lightful
  • Achieve sales targets by winning business from new partners and building multi-year contracts with existing partners

Essential experience

  • Significant experience in fundraising, partnerships and/or business development
  • Working and creating funding partnerships with Trusts & Foundations
  • Excellent relationship management, interpersonal, and negotiation skills
  • Experience with CRM systems 
  • An understanding of funders’ needs, and how to meet these needs through thorough and relevant research, and creating compelling applications for support
  • Ability to craft compelling narratives for external audiences
  • Strength in developing case statements and strategic plans for support, and executing against those plans to achieve goals and objectives
  • Experience working directly with the most senior levels of an organization, and the ability to effectively strategize and engage various groups and constituents
  • Highly developed skills in organizational efficiency and project leadership, including demonstrated accomplishments while working with cross-functional teams
  • Ability to extract and analyze data to make effective, efficient decisions about prospect strategy and process
  • Knowledge of fundraising information sources and familiarity with research techniques for prospect research

Personal qualities 

  • Ability to work independently - yet communicate clearly and regularly with the wider team
  • Highly self-motivated - with a proactive nature to seek out new opportunities
  • Takes responsibility - a willingness to make and own decisions
  • Great communicator - with people of different backgrounds or seniority levels
  • A natural salesperson - can explain the benefits of complex concepts simply, and without being pushy
  • Calm under pressure - and can manage competing priorities and deadlines
  • Great attention to detail - someone who can spot a typo in the footnote of the final draft of a contract
  • Values-driven and committed to personal and professional development
  • Ability to thrive in a dynamic entrepreneurial environment
  • Deep commitment to social and environmental change and the nonprofit sector

Additional Requirements

This role is working with Lightful as a contractor as we are not yet incorporated in the US. This is initially a remote role, but we will expect the candidate to travel to clients when it’s safe to do so. 

Equal opportunities statement

A diverse range of opinions and perspectives is core to Lightful’s open culture and ongoing success. As an equal opportunities organization, all applicants will be considered for this role without attention to ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, family or parental status, national origin, veteran, neurodiversity status or disability status.

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  • Location
    Flexible, New York
  • Department
  • Employment Type
  • Compensation
    US$85,000 per annum