Director of Development and Communications

FriendshipWorks (New Kensington Group)

Job Description

FriendshipWorks’ mission is to reduce social isolation, enhance quality of life and preserve the dignity of elders in greater Boston. We accomplish this by recruiting and training volunteers of all ages and backgrounds who provide friendship, advocacy, education, assistance and emotional support to the elders we serve.  Having grown from 7 staff with an annual budget of $500K in 2013 to 20 staff with a $1.5M budget today, we’ve seen significant growth and continue on a path of evolution and expansion.   To learn more about the organization, please visit 
FriendshipWorks’ Director of Development and Communications leads the planning and implementation of a multi-year, comprehensive fundraising program to significantly increase philanthropic revenue from individuals, corporations and foundations to support the organization’s mission and vision.  The person in this position will strengthen and facilitate relationships with current and future supporters, solicit contributions on behalf of the organization, and expand a community of philanthropic investors who share a belief in the unique role that FriendshipWorks plays providing friendship, connection and care for isolated elders.  In addition, the person in this position will work collaboratively with staff and volunteer leadership to leverage increased philanthropic support.
Candidates should be experienced fundraising managers who have a track record of building comprehensive fundraising and communications programs, raising significant resources that have grown over time, working in partnership with staff and volunteer teams and closing major gifts, particularly in environments without the natural donor constituencies enjoyed by colleges, hospitals, etc.
In partnership with the Executive Director and the Board of Directors, this position is responsible for attracting philanthropic support for programmatic and operational priorities. The successful candidate will help forge new relationships to build FriendshipWorks’ visibility, impact, and financial resources.  The Director of Development and Communications reports to the Executive Director and is a member of the organization’s senior management team.  In addition to staffing the Development Committee, the Director of Development and Communications supports the fundraising efforts of the Board of Directors and supervises a staff of 4, including a development associate, events manager, communications director, and grants manager. 
Core Responsibilities:
1.      Raise the philanthropic resources necessary to achieve FriendshipWorks’ impact goals.
a.      Manage a portfolio of prospects and donors who have the potential to provide significant charitable gifts to the organization.  Cultivate, solicit and close annual, major gift and multi-year contributions. Achieve revenue goals.
b.      Identify new funding prospects to support the organization.
c.       Develop and lead grant strategy, maintaining regular correspondence with foundations, donors, and members of the Board of Directors with a long-term relationship approach.
d.      Serve as a passionate proponent of the organization and its mission.
e.      Cultivate prospects and steward donor relationship through outstanding communications, engagement and recognition.
f.        Appropriately represent the organization, its Board of Directors and staff leadership to donors and prospects.
2.      Implement a comprehensive fundraising program.
a.      Implement fundraising strategies and programs, including a special emphasis on major giving, corporate partnerships, foundation relations initiatives, and deferred and planned giving that increase the organization’s support from individuals, corporations, foundations and other sources.
b.      Leverage the philanthropic potential of all donors, including FriendshipWorks’ volunteers and clients, where significant resources exist.
c.       Provide leadership, strategic direction, management and coordination for all aspects of the program’s development and communications efforts.
d.      Prepare the annual fundraising and communications plans in collaboration with the Executive Director for presentation to the Board of Directors; provide detailed reports about the fundraising progress on a regular basis.
e.      Oversee donor stewardship and recognition programs, as well as all annual giving programs.
f.        Develop event strategy and oversee established annual and periodic fundraising events; develop plan for event revenue growth and expansion.
g.      Oversee the creation of FriendshipWorks publications, including event-specific materials, donor correspondence, annual reports, and press releases.
h.      Ensure that appropriate technological and process systems and procedures are in place to support the program’s future fundraising goals.
3.      Work collaboratively with volunteer and staff leadership to enhance their fundraising skills and to support their revenue generating efforts.
a.      Partner with the Executive Director to deploy her time and attention to leverage the greatest revenue generating opportunities.  Coordinate fundraising efforts of staff and volunteer leaders. 
b.      Work effectively with the Board of Directors and other key volunteers, leveraging their talents, resources and ideas to enhance fundraising activities; understand the Board of Directors’ giving patterns and desired involvement; enhance the members of the Board of Directors ability to identify fundraising opportunities and encourage their ongoing participation as donors and solicitors.
c.       Build strong relationships with the program’s leadership and staff; understand FriendshipWorks programs; work collaboratively with program staff to integrate innovative development strategies throughout the program. 
d.      Manage the development team.   Lead, mentor and inspire staff and volunteers with fundraising and communications responsibilities to excel in their roles.  Strategically grow staffing capacity as growth in resources allow.  Create working environment that is rewarding to staff and volunteers.
e.      Recruit and motivate community and business volunteers to increase philanthropic attainment.
f.        Lead staff and volunteers to institutionalize philanthropy and fund development within the organization.  Foster a culture of philanthropy within the organization.  Assure that the organization’s culture, systems and procedures support fund development and vice versa.
4.      Serve as a member of FriendshipWorks senior management team to advance the organization’s goals.
a.      First and foremost, maintain focus on achievement of the organization-wide goals, and build and implement the comprehensive fundraising program to support achievement of the goals set forth in FriendshipWorks’ annual and long-term strategic plan/s.
b.      Provide counsel and guidance to the Executive Director and members of the senior staff team in order to incorporate the development and communications perspective.
c.       Embrace a culture focused on strong vertical and horizontal communication lines throughout the organization.
d.      Serve as a proactive problem solver.
e.      Ensure that philanthropy and fund development are carried out in accordance with the organization’s mission, vision and values.
f.        Help establish performance measures, monitor results and help the Executive Director, development committee and Board of Directors evaluate the effectiveness of the organization’s fund development program.  Monitor all donor information; provide and present statistical analysis to Board of Directors and senior leaders as needed.


  • Bachelor's degree required; Master's preferred. 
  • 5-plus years of professional experience in a nonprofit organization; demonstrated success in a development function (creating and managing relationships with multiple donor sources). 
  • Demonstrated experience in managing people and budgets 
  • Demonstrable track record of personally identifying, cultivating, soliciting, and closing individual donors, corporations and foundations
  • A record of measurable results in organizing and implementing such activities as: major gifts, annual funds, corporate and foundation giving, planned giving, direct response and special events
  • Demonstrated capacity to conceptualize and plan successful fundraising events
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with and quickly gain the respect and support of various constituencies, including the Board of Directors and staff members, donors, foundation and civic leaders.
  • Knowledge of Boston area as well as national and regional funders, foundations and corporations;
  • A solid understanding of nonprofit/for-profit fiscal management, principles and best practice.
  • Experience implementing and managing a database system, preferably Salesforce
  • Creative, resilient and strategic in approach
  • A track record as an effective communicator; highly developed skills in writing and speaking; competence at crafting messaging for donor audiences; the ability to communicate the program’s mission and interests to a broad audience
  • Ability to give and receive feedback as a tool for growth
  • Flexible and adaptable style; a leader who can positively impact both strategic and tactical fundraising initiatives
  • High energy and passion for FriendshipWorks mission is essential
  • Strong organizational and time management skills with exceptional attention to detail
  • The ability to work independently and as a team player, to take initiative, and to manage multiple tasks and projects at a time
  • Outstanding customer service skills
  • Passion for philanthropy and nonprofit work
  • Works well under pressure to meet deadlines

Valid Driver’s License and access to a car preferred.  
FriendshipWorks is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any individual, employee, or application for employment on the basis of race, color, marital status, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, handicap, or any other legally protected status under federal, state or local law.
FriendshipWorks is committed to hiring staff who reflect the diversity of the communities we serve. Candidates of color, bilingual and bicultural candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.  If you are interested in working at a well-established, fast-paced and supportive organization committed to serving elders, please apply.

Interested candidates should send resume, cover letter and compensation requirements to:   Chuck Gordon, President and CEO, New Kensington Group, at