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Development Director (Freedom Writers Foundation)

 In Job Postings

Position Title:                        Development Director

Reports To:                           Chief Operating Officer, Executive Director and Board of Directors

Job Type:                               Salaried; Exempt; Full-time


Organization Summary

The Freedom Writers Foundation (FWF) is a nonprofit organization, which gained international recognition from the feature film, Freedom Writers, and the New York Times bestseller, The Freedom Writers Diary. Central to FWF’s mission is providing educators with tools to empower all students to succeed. As an operating Foundation with a global reach, FWF’s research and programs focus on teacher training, student outreach, curriculum development and scholarships. Learn more at:


Primary Role

The Development Director will identify and cultivate opportunities and relationships, and secure contributed income for the organization in the forms of gifts, grants, and sponsorships, from individuals, corporations, foundations and public agencies in support of the Foundation’s $1.2M annual budget.  The Development Director reports directly to the Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer and liaises with the Board of Trustees on matters of institutional advancement.


A successful candidate will have experience in a multi-faceted fundraising approach including annual fund, grants, and on-line giving.




Fund Development:

  • Build the fund development capacity to support the goals and requirements of the FWF’s core programs; ensure programs are fully funded.
  • Work with the Board of Directors, Chief Operating Officer and the Executive Director to set and meet aggressive fundraising goals.
  • Design, implement and manage all fundraising activities.
  • Identify, solicit and cultivate major prospects.
  • Develop and execute strategic plans for donor cultivation, solicitation, and ongoing engagement.
  • Maintain contact with and develop grant proposals for foundations, corporations and government funding sources.
  • Assess past and current giving, identify areas for improvement, and then create and implement a new strategy to fuel organization’s growth.
  • Solicit corporate sponsorships and partnerships, establishing sponsorship levels
  • Create planned giving options for donors and build towards an endowment for the FWF


Grant Proposal Writing and Communications:

  • Research grants and review application guidelines
  • Write grant proposals.
  • Submit funding requests in an organized and timely manner, adhering to all deadlines.
  • Track deadlines and funds raised.
  • Write end-of-year reports and create an organized grant calendar.
  • Collaborate with Marketing to develop a public relations and social media plan that promotes the Foundation’s fundraising goals.



  • Act as Program Director and Recruiter for the Freedom Writers Institute (FWI), an international teacher training program
  • Recruit 50 educators for two summer Institutes, soliciting $5,000 sponsorships for each participant
  • Plan and manage all Institute logistics
  • Manage post event evaluation and communicate key metrics to funders.


Event Planning:

  • Plan and oversee the annual holiday party and other fundraising events; maximize opportunities for guests to give and stay connected with the FWF.



  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • Strong writing skills
  • Event planning experience a plus
  • Interest in education and social justice;
  • Minimum 2-3 years of successful experience with fund development;
  • Grant writing experience, ideally for education focused nonprofits;
  • Familiarity with the nonprofit and education community in California;
  • Must be proactive and goal-driven
  • Occasional travel may be required
  • Salesforce and MailChimp experience, a plus


To apply, please submit: a cover letter, resume, a sample of a successful grant or campaign you managed, and 3 professional references to

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