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Development Director

Company: Communities for a Better Environment
Date Posted: March 26, 2018

Communities for a Better Environment (CBE) is one of the preeminent environmental justice organizations in the nation. CBE builds people’s power in California’s communities of color and low-income communities to achieve environmental health and justice by preventing and reducing pollution and building green, healthy and sustainable communities and environments. CBE provides residents in four disproportionately polluted communities (Richmond, East Oakland, Southeast Los Angeles County, and Wilmington) with organizing skills, leadership training and legal, scientific and research support. In partnership with CBE, our communities defeat threats to their environmental health and build toward a clean energy future. Our local work is connected to our statewide policy work, which protects all Californians.

General Position Summary:

Reporting to the Executive Director, the Development Director (DD) shapes and guides strategy to meet organizational fundraising goals, which total $2.5 million in 2018. The DD leads a Development Team with a full-time Grassroots Fundraising Organizer (GFO), a full-time Grants Manager, and a 0.6 FTE Northern California Grant Writer. The DD works closely with the Executive Director and a statewide Funder Team on funder and donor relations, and with the Finance Director on organizational income projections and financial reporting to funders. The DD meets with and reports each quarter to the Board of Directors.

CBE’s emerging Transformative Organizing Model is in the process of reorienting the organization with the goal of building more power – including fundraising power – in the communities where we organize. The DD fosters a culture of giving and receiving across the organization as a means of building community power within and beyond the limitations of CBE itself. Toward these ends, the DD shares fundraising knowledge and helps to shape strategy, including working with the GFO to engage our four Community Teams, local members, and the Board of Directors in fundraising activities.

CBE receives support from individuals, foundations, government agencies and socially responsible businesses. Our fundraising appeals include foundation, corporate and government grant requests, as well as direct mail, email, social media, phone banking, and events.  We are growing our culture of grassroots fundraising and our work with major donors. We plan to launch a planned giving legacy circle. We are looking for candidates with significant experience relevant to the above plans, as well as a proven track record in successfully securing six figure grants. 

CBE’s Development Team (except for the part-time Northern California Grant Writer, to be hired) operates out of our Huntington Park office and occasionally visits our other offices.


Direct Fundraising: 60%

  • Lead and actively participate in the identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of a portfolio of institutional funders aligned with CBE’s mission.
  • Directly prepare letters of inquiry, proposals and reports, and oversee other staff members’ work to do the same.
  • Guide the Executive Director and other staff in building relationships with donors and funders, particularly major donors and program officers.
  • Oversee donor engagement work, including direct mail, online appeals, and phone banking scripts.
  • Oversee the development of content for development communications materials, including brochures, annual reports, etc.
  • Assist with development of program budgets and financial reports, in coordination with the Director of Finance and Operations and other staff.

Strategy and Planning: 20%

  • Develop annual fundraising plans with the Development Team.
  • Monitor, adapt, and evaluate fundraising strategies, as needed.
  • Guide decisions on where to focus fundraising time and resources.
  • Participate in CBE’s Communications Team and guide development communications strategy.
  • Support staff to integrate development messaging within CBE’s communications stream.
  • Help guide planning and implementation of CBE’s 40th Anniversary activities in 2018. 

Supervision/Management: 20%

  • Coach and supervise Development staff, guide evolution of work plans, and organize annual 360 performance reviews.
  • Coordinate with the GFO and Executive Director to oversee Board fundraising activities.
  • Serve on CBE’s interdepartmental Admin Team.


  • Five or more years of fundraising experience, preferably at an environmental justice or social justice organization.
  • Two or more years of experience managing professional staff.
  • Proven success in strategic planning and implementation to achieve fundraising goals.
  • Demonstrated experience with foundations, including a track record of securing $100K-plus grants.
  • Proven achievement in prospecting, cultivating, soliciting and stewarding individual donors.
  • Event coordination experience.
  • Excellent communication, computer, and donor database skills.
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks, set priorities, and adapt to changing circumstances.
  • Bachelor's degree preferred.
  • Bilingual in Spanish preferred but not required.

Preference will be given to applicants with professional or personal experience related to the environmental movement, social justice, public interest, civil rights, community organizing, scientific training, and/or a personal history with communities highly impacted by pollution. 


This is a full-time, exempt, permanent position. Salary range is $65K-$75K annually, based on experience. The DD will receive CBE’s comprehensive benefits package, including a generous vacation and leave policy; fully-paid premiums for medical, vision and dental insurance; a 403(b) retirement plan; and a flexible spending plan. CBE pays full premiums for medical, dental and vision insurance for the employee, any partner and any dependents.

To apply: Please submit the following to 1) a cover letter, 2) a resume, 3) a list of personal and professional references with telephone numbers, and 4) a writing sample of a report and a proposal that you authored or had primary responsibility for producing. Include Development Director followed by your name in the subject line of your email and in the filename of each of your attachments. You will receive an email confirming receipt of your application. Please do not call us or send additional emails unless we contact you for a discussion or an interview. If we do contact you, we will be happy to answer any questions you may have at that time. The position will remain open until filled. 

CBE is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or any other prohibited category. We strongly encourage women, people of color, LGBTQ individuals, and all qualified persons to apply for this position.