Development Director

Mar 15, 2022 | Work at PEN/Faulkner

The PEN/Faulkner Foundation is seeking a Development Director to work in close partnership with its Executive Director and Board in three primary areas: establishing and deepening relationships with individual donors; extending the organization’s base of foundation, government, and corporate support; and planning and executing meaningful special events.

Status: Full-time with a flexible schedule

Compensation: $65,000-$70,000/year

Benefits: 403b plan with automatic 5% employer contribution (no match required); subsidized individual health, dental, and vision; generous PTO and paid holidays, including a winter break

Location: At present, PEN/Faulkner does not maintain an in-person office, so most work is performed remotely. Given that we expect in-person events to resume, however, the position is based in Washington, DC, and candidates will be expected to be present in-person, as much as health and safety conditions allow, when necessary. Candidates must have reliable home internet access.

Your Background

This position might be right for you if:

  • You are ready to apply your fundraising experience to a strategic role
  • You are an avid reader who is passionate about literature
  • You believe all young people deserve access to literary learning
  • You are an excellent communicator, both verbal and written
  • You enjoy brainstorming and innovation and new perspectives
  • You are excited to join a small team where you can have a big impact
  • You don’t mind rolling up your sleeves and love paying attention to details
  • You know how to be both a thought partner and a thought leader

About PEN/Faulkner

The PEN/Faulkner Foundation is a nonprofit organization that celebrates literature and fosters connections between readers and writers to enrich and inspire individuals and communities. In fulfilling that mission, PEN/Faulkner administers education programs that bring donated books, visits from authors, and writing instruction into low-income DC schools; hosts public literary programs that create opportunities for conversation between writers and readers; and recognizes significant achievements nationwide by giving out the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction and the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story, as well as by selecting a PEN/Faulkner Literary Champion.

Detailed Responsibilities

Responsibilities for this position include the following:


  • Developing (in partnership with the PEN/Faulkner Board and the Executive Director) the organization’s overall annual development plan and tracking the necessary metrics to report on the plan’s effectiveness
  • Working with the Board and Executive Director to develop and steward a culture of philanthropy throughout the organization
  • Contributing to the organization’s upcoming strategic planning process

Donor Relations and Communication

  • Identifying new prospects and working with the Board and Executive Director to cultivate those prospects and, when needed, solicit their support
  • Developing individual plans for PEN/Faulkner’s end-of-year, end-of-fiscal year, and Giving Tuesday campaigns, as well as implementing those plans
  • Coordinating PEN/Faulkner’s Founding Friends membership program: tracking renewals, sending email reminders and announcements, and preparing reports
  • Planning and participating in quarterly donor events: email invitations, tracking participants, follow-up communications
  • Creating or contributing materials to engage donors and funders in the organization’s mission and work, including (but not limited to) emails and an annual impact report


  • Planning and executing an annual fundraiser (in collaboration with the Executive Director and Board): sponsorship plans and materials, sponsorship tracking, and occasionally making asks
  • Making occasional donation pitches during PEN/Faulkner literary programs
  • Representing PEN/Faulkner at community events as needed


  • Preparing grant applications and letters of inquiry (in collaboration with the Executive Director)
  • Preparing and submitting grant reports
  • Maintaining a grants calendar
  • Researching new foundation, corporate, and government grant opportunities


  • Managing PEN/Faulkner’s donor CRM system (Little Green Light): creating campaigns, entering donations, generating weekly and quarterly reports, and sending receipts and thank you emails
  • Managing PEN/Faulkner’s donation platforms: GiveLively, Stripe, Square, and PayPal

Required Qualifications

Qualified candidates for this position will demonstrate the following:

  • At least three years of fundraising experience
  • Experience with grant writing, donor relations, and event planning
  • Extroversion and comfort in engaging with donors and audience members
  • Excellent written communication
  • Proficiency with MS Office and Google Suite applications
  • Comfort with learning new technologies
  • Flexibility in a fast-paced work environment
  • Ability to learn from (and own) failures/setbacks

Additional Qualifications

The ideal candidate for this position may also have experience with some of the following:

  • Writing grant proposals and grant reports
  • Little Green Light or any other donor CRM system
  • GiveLively, Stripe, Square, and/or PayPal

Application Instructions

Send a cover letter and resume to [email protected] with “Development Director” in the subject line. Tell us your story. Why do you imagine yourself in this role? What do you have to contribute? What inspires you?

Please note: the PEN/Faulkner Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate against employees based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual identity, national origin, age, disability, or genetic information.

Download as a PDF: PEN/Faulkner Development Director Position Description

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