Director of Development

Job Type

Full Time




1500 K Street NW, Suite 900
United States


The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Lawyers’ Committee) seeks an experienced and ambitious fundraiser to serve as our Director of Development. This position requires a skilled professional who can manage and grow all facets of development with a focus on crafting overall development strategy and shaping a major gifts program at a national racial justice organization with an annual budget of $10 million.

The Lawyers’ Committee has played a central role in the nationwide, nonpartisan struggle for racial justice since 1963, and we continue to combat attacks on civil rights using litigation in federal and state courts across the country, mobilization of the private bar, advocacy and public education. The organization’s long-standing areas of focus include voting rights, equal educational opportunity, fair housing, and public policy. Our newest projects--in the areas of economic justice, criminal justice and hate crimes--reflect our strength, responsiveness and ability to evolve to deal with today’s threats to civil rights.

A successful Director of Development candidate will be deeply committed to our mission and able to act quickly and think creatively to maximize development opportunities and leverage our record of success. The candidate will have a proven track record of creating and implementing strategic fundraising plans.

Working closely with the Executive Director as part of the Executive Management Team, the Director of Development is responsible for designing and managing the Lawyers’ Committee’s fundraising program, setting development goals and working with the development team, staff and Board to ensure those goals are met. The Director of Development will manage a talented development team to significantly broaden our major donor base and bring new individual and institutional donors to the organization. To do so, the Director of Development will collaborate with and advise the Executive Director to build and manage a portfolio of major donors and prospects, while working with the Board of Directors and staff to enhance a culture of philanthropy. The Director of Development will also oversee outreach to foundations and cultivate new relationships with a broad range of traditional, family and corporate-based foundations. In addition, the Director of Development will facilitate a successful annual fund drive and annual fundraising gala (that raises over $2 million), generate effective online fundraising appeals, increase current donor support and cultivate support from prospective donors. The Director of Development will also work closely with the Communications team to implement the organization’s external-facing strategic communications agenda and with the Accounting team to ensure proper financial controls.

This is a unique opportunity for a candidate who is eager to lead and drive a development program and elevate it to the next level—all within an exciting work environment that values racial justice, diversity and inclusion. The position is full-time, based in Washington, D.C., and requires periodic travel.

To learn more about the Lawyers’ Committee, please visit

Roles and Responsibilities 

The Director of Development’s responsibilities include:

●       Developing and managing a comprehensive, strategic and donor-centered fundraising program that includes the setting of specific fundraising goals and targets for major gifts, annual support, grants and planned giving. 

●       Managing relationships with individuals, including Board members, major gift donors and prospects.

●       Cultivating and growing relationships with foundations, including traditional, family-based and corporate foundations focused on civil rights, racial justice and social justice.

●       Collaborating on the planning and execution of special events, including our large-scale annual gala in New York City.

●       Managing a strong Development team that works collaboratively to achieve sound, strategic development goals.

●       Implementing effective systems for accurate, secure and confidential data and donor records, including donor recognition.

●       Fostering the engagement of our over 200 person Board of Directors in our fund development goals and priorities, working closely with the organization’s operating Board of approximately 18 attorneys, and facilitating the Board’s development committee.

●       Preparing monthly development plans and reports of all fundraising activities for the Executive Director and Executive Board of Directors.

●       Collaborating with the Communications team to develop and implement a communications plan, including development of messages, preparation of high-quality collateral materials and online appeals.

●       Collaborating with the Finance and Accounting Team to perform regular reconciliations and prepare reports for project director staff and the Executive Director.

Experience and Qualifications

The Director of Development must have:

●       At least 7 years of experience in a complex, non-profit development program, including significant experience in major donor fundraising, planned giving, event management and grant writing, or equivalent experience with clearly transferable skills. 

●       Serving in a senior development position for 3 consecutive years or more.

●       B.A. required

●       A deep, passionate commitment to racial justice and to the Lawyers’ Committee mission.

●       A proven and broad record of fundraising success. Existing relationships with national foundations and corporate giving programs a strong plus. An ability to work independently and cooperatively, exhibiting patience, confidence, goodwill, good judgment and a commitment to excellence and accuracy.

●       A faculty for handling demanding situations with grace and maturity, and the ability to maintain a professional demeanor at all times.

●       Superb leadership, management, interpersonal, oral, and written communication and presentation skills. A demonstrated ability to communicate effectively, comfortably and respectfully with donors, staff and community leaders, including the ability to synthesize and present complex legal themes and activities in a digestible and compelling way.

●       Strong organizational and time management skills, with the ability to juggle and prioritize many concurrent tasks, manage a high-volume workload, pay extremely close attention to detail, adapt quickly to changing circumstances and meet moving deadlines.

●       Experience and comfort with donor database management and systems for tracking donor history, interests and activity. Proficiency with online campaigns and appeals, Microsoft Office applications, database management (Raiser’s Edge experience a plus) and various web platforms.

●       A respect and value for differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstance.

●       Knowledge of budgeting and financial management principles.

●       Ability to travel (approximately 10-20% of time).

Application Procedure

Please use the following subject header: Lawyers’ Committee - CDO - [your last name]. We do not accept calls.

The Lawyers’ Committee does not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibility, personal appearance, genetic information, matriculation, political affiliation, or any other status protected under law.

We encourage candidates of color and candidates from underrepresented communities to apply.

Accessibility Assistance: We do not accept calls about the position; however, if you are an individual with a disability and need assistance completing the online application, please call 202-662-8600 and ask for an applicant accommodation or send an email with the subject line “Applicant Accommodation” to


Salary and benefits are competitive for a non-profit legal organization.

Level of Language Proficiency


Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

To Apply: Please submit a cover letter, resume, requested salary range and brief, relevant writing sample to