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Ally Murray on her journey to Director – Membership & Fundraising at The Wilderness Society

People find amazing jobs on EthicalJobs.com.au every day. This is part of a series of articles that go behind the scenes to meet some of the people and organisations finding each other through EthicalJobs.com.au.

Today’s story is from Ally Murray, who found her role as Director – Membership & Fundraising at The Wilderness Society on EthicalJobs.com.au.

The Wilderness Society is an independent environmental advocacy organisation. Since 1976, they’ve stood at the forefront of the country’s most historic campaigns, including the Franklin River, Fraser Island, Tasmanian Forests, Great Australian Bight, James Price Point in the Kimberley and numerous World Heritage Areas.

Starting out with work

My first job was as a kennel hand at my local vet hospital when I was 14. I ended up working there for 6 years including as a receptionist and assistant vet nurse while I was at uni.

I wanted to be a vet growing up and started studying Veterinary Science but it wasn’t for me. I ended up doing a Bachelor of Business (majoring in Marketing and Financial Management) and a Master of Arts in Communications which couldn’t be further from Vet Science but have helped to gently steer me where I am today. I’m now a couple of subjects into what will end up being an MBA in Social Impact in a few years’ time.

I worked in a few general marketing and direct marketing roles in the commercial sector before finding my home in for-purpose organisations over 12 years ago. I’ve worked in organisations of all different sizes with teams of all different sizes and makeups and I’ve been very lucky to work with and for some excellent people.

Working at The Wilderness Society

The Wilderness Society works to deliver a future that flourishes because of our responsible stewardship of nature and our climate.

My role is Director – Membership & Fundraising. I spend a lot of time talking to people – luckily, I love it! In a normal week I spend around 40% of my time supporting my team to deliver their programs (for example through 1-1 coaching), 30% working with my peers in the executive management team to steer the organisation and deliver cross-organisational projects, 10% in relationship management and 20% in strategy and analysis (what I like to call “spreadsheet land” – my happy place).

The best thing I have ever done in my current job is to hug a baby wombat. Hands-down best experience of my life.

Working for a better world

EthicalJobs.com.au must have been recommended by someone – that’s how I find all excellent things. I saw the Director – Membership & Fundraising role at The Wilderness Society advertised.

It’s a great organisation and I had a friend who’d worked there for many years so I knew quite a bit about it. The job was 90% similar to my previous role – Donald Trump had won the election a few months prior and I thought, “I’m way more qualified for this job than he is for the role of President,” so I threw my hat in the ring.

I’m really driven by purpose, it’s one of my core values, and working in this sector is one of the ways I can make the biggest personal impact. My salary – whilst not at a commercial level for an equivalent role – is decent and fair, and supports a very happy and fulfilled life.

My advice to other ethical jobseekers is know what your personal purpose is and use it as a guide to make career decisions. Be really committed to continuous learning. Reach out and ask people for advice and support. And don’t be scared to take opportunities when they knock!


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