Senior Director, Grant Development

Job Type

Full Time




29-76 Northern Blvd.
Long Island City
United States


Unit:                          Development

Reports to:               VP of Development & Communications

Status:           Full-Time; Regular; Exempt

Location:                  LIC

Days/Hours:              Monday – Friday

Date Prepared:         March 6, 2018


Position Summary:

The Senior Director of Grant Development will report directly to the AVP of Development & Communications. S/he will serve as a key leader within the Development unit and will play the primary role in overseeing and managing all of the work of grant development at Fortune. S/he will directly supervise two full-time Grant Writers and receive administrative support from the Executive Assistant. S/he must have an exceptional track record of fundraising from government and private foundation grants as the lead and must be able to lead a highly successful Grant Development team at a fast-growing organization with an annual budget exceeding $28 million. A positive, collaborative work style and comfort in a multi-cultural, multi-generational environment is extremely important.   


Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Manage and lead all of the work of grant development at Fortune, which includes seeing out government RFPs and managing the work necessary to submit highly competitive proposals; ensuring that we maintain as many active private foundation funders as possible; and monitoring private foundation report deadlines. Closely supervise two full-time Grant Writers in all aspects of the grant development process, including leading RFP meetings, preparing and submitting top-quality proposals, managing relationships with funders/partners and leading post-award meetings;
  • Actively cultivate relationships with private foundations with a focus on being invited or strongly encouraged to apply for funding and ultimately awarded new funding. Provide intensive guidance and support to two full-time Grant Writers, so that they become increasingly skilled and successful in private foundation cultivation over time;
  • Directly supervise two full-time Grant Writers to maximize their overall productivity, effectiveness, professional development and career growth in the Development field. Regularly evaluate their performance, including through weekly supervision meetings, daily support, and annual reviews;
  • Serve as lead Grant Writer for some government RFPs and private foundation grants, when the workload of the two full-time Grant Writers is at full capacity;
  • Serve as the primary liaison to the President/CEO, VP of Operations, and Senior Vice President, and other key senior staff for highly “innovative” or complex government RFPs, providing intensive guidance and support to the lead Grant Writer and intervening when necessary to ensure important program and budget-related decisions are made in a timely manner to meet deadlines. Meet with the President/CEO and Senior VP, as needed, to discuss solutions to challenges that impact our ability to achieving our fundraising goals for the organization;
  • Create an annual Strategic Plan for Grant Development, using the Contracts List as a guide to determine where funding is most needed each year and laying out a plan for fundraising in each of the major program areas of the organization;
  • Assist in developing and achieving the goals set forth in an ambitious Fundraising Plan, targeting primarily government RFPs and private foundations. Work closely with the Senior Direct of Major Gifts in cultivating relationships individuals who are important to both private foundation cultivation and to individual donor cultivation and support the Senior Director of Major Gifts in submitting reports or detailed follow-up materials to any individual donors who request them;
  • Develop and explore innovative strategies to maximize new revenue, including social enterprises or other revenue-generating vehicles. Support and empower the full-time Grant Writers in their role to think strategically and creatively as fundraisers, encouraging them to take on an increasing leadership role over time in presenting new ideas to maximize fundraising and solve problems;
  • Support the Director of Design & Digital Media with certain communications products where key program data or program updates are important, such as the Annual Report;
  • Work with the Director of Contract Review and Compliance to improve systems and resolve problems related to the post-award process and hand-off from Development to program staff to ensure smooth transitions and to maintain strong relationships with funders and key partners;
  • Work with the Evaluation and Quality Improvement (EQI) team to ensure that our outcomes reporting and tracking process is strong and effective, so that we can report compelling outcomes data to funders on a regular basis;
  • Provide regular updates to key staff on the status of our grant development work, which includes distributing the monthly Grants Timeline and other updates, and regularly review the Contracts List to ensure that we can anticipate new RFPs likely to be released;
  • Provide leadership as a member of the Senior Executive team, especially as the voice of Grant Development in offering solutions to problems and in challenging the status quo. Serve as a key leader as part of the larger Development, Communications and DRCPP team, pro-actively seeking out opportunities for cross-collaboration to maximize our fundraising opportunities and success;
  • Participate in external trainings, conferences, and events – including those related to non-profit management, leadership, supervision, project management, fundraising, and criminal justice/reentry issues – actively seeking out ways to represent and promote Fortune in the NYC non-profit world;
  • Develop and lead trainings, such as the Grant Writer Training session, and seek out other opportunities to speak and present at conferences, meetings, and events. Integrate lessons learned from project management, supervisory, and leadership trainings to strengthen processes and hold staff accountable across the agency to ensure we consistently produce top-quality, highly competitive proposals and meet key deadlines;
  • Ensure that the Grant Development team establishes a clear method to ensure that we have a comprehensive understanding of all Fortune programs and contracts (i.e. “Listening Tours”) and that the team’s working knowledge of key issues in criminal justice and reentry, along with the key individual and organizational players in the field, is as deep, broad, and fresh as possible; and
  • Other duties as required.


Supervisory Responsibilities:

Directly supervise Grant Writers. Carry out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization’s policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and engaging employees; addressing employee relations and resolving problems.



  • Progressively responsible supervisory experience in the field of Grant Development;
  • BA or BS and/or advanced degree, or equivalent experience;
  • Highly successful track record of fundraising success from government RFPs and private foundations for a major non-profit organization, ideally 5+ years successful experience;
  • Excellent written communication skills with great attention to detail;
  • Excellent organizational, leadership, and problem-solving skills;
  • Demonstrated capacity to cultivate relationships with funders and key strategic partners;
  • Demonstrated experience supervising Grant Writers and leading highly successful fundraising teams, with a focus on institutional fundraising;
  • Ability to closely supervise and support two full-time Grant Writers in managing their time efficiently and effectively in a fast-paced, high-energy environment;
  • Ability to be a strong team player and willingness to work as part of a diverse team with shared responsibility and accountability;
  • Strong interest in professional growth and development in the fundraising field; and
  • Deep commitment to criminal justice reform, alternatives to incarceration, and reentry programs demonstrated through a strong desire to support the work of The Fortune Society by increasing funds raised through government and private foundation grants.


We seek talented, dedicated individuals from all walks of life who possess a strong commitment to this mission. Relevant personal experience is a plus.


Travel Requirements - May require travel to our Harlem site along with some city-wide meetings, trainings, conferences, and events.


Physical Demands:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The responsibilities and requirements listed are representative of the knowledge, skills, minimum education, training, licensing, experience and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.


The Fortune Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will be afforded equal employment opportunities without discrimination because of conviction history, race, religion/creed, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, military status, predisposing genetic characteristics, victim of domestic violence status or marital status.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply