Flexible (New York City or Washington D.C. preferred)

Director of Development, Demos

The Organization

With a visionary President and high impact staff, Demos works at the intersection of democracy and racial and economic justice to achieve transformative social change for Black and brown communities. Demos’ work recognizes the importance of power building in service of creating a society that is equitable and that works to ensure that Black and brown communities are fully thriving. In doing so, Demos helps create the conditions for all of us to thrive. Demos moves ideas powerful enough to improve the lives of everyday Americans through the full life cycle of change. Through championing over-the-horizon policy solutions and shifting the dominant narrative, Demos works to galvanize acceptance and support for radical change and commits to sustain advocacy until that change is implemented. Demos’ program model leverages litigation, policy research, strategic communications, and movement building to meet the ever complex and shifting demands of the moment. This braided approach to impact has translated into real victories, from landmark credit card reforms to over 3 million new voter registration applications from low-income citizens. Throughout all their work, Demos is advocating not just for people, but for the very idea of the people – of one nation, united by shared fate.

Position Overview

Demos is pleased to invite nominations and applications for its Director of Development position. The Director of Development (DoD) will be a seasoned leader and an experienced fundraising professional who is passionate about raising funds to support Demos’ critical work centered on building power and increasing democratic participation of Black and brown communities. The DoD provides leadership and strategic direction to Demos’ fundraising efforts and is responsible for planning and implementing strategies to raise the yearly operational budget. This is an exciting opportunity for an entrepreneurial leader to work closely with Demos’ new President, Taifa Smith Butler, to raise funds to support Demos’ new strategic plan. Reporting to the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, the DoD is responsible for ensuring the long-range financial stability of Demos and Demos Action, a 501c4 project of Tides Advocacy. The DoD is a member of the Leadership body that collectively sets and manages the organizational vision, values, and strategic policies and priorities. The DoD is responsible for leading the organization’s talented development team, currently made up of six (6) staff spanning an individual giving team and a foundations team. The DoD will also manage a portfolio of key relationships including foundations and individual philanthropic partners.

The ideal candidate will have experience with individual giving and foundation fundraising and will lead with humility, drive, and emotional intelligence. The DoD will be joining Demos at an exciting inflection point in a strategic planning process that will clarify the organization’s mission, values, and vision, providing greater connection to Demos’ external work and create greater synergy between Demos’ internal program teams. The next DoD will be an entrepreneurial, strategic thinker and experienced in both fundraising and change management.


The DoD will join an extraordinary team of individuals that include a committed group of staff and a thriving community of movement partners committed to securing and strengthening our democracy and driving racial justice and impact in our communities. The DoD will lead in the following areas:

Team and People Leadership

The DoD will lead the high impact development team at Demos. They will be a valued member of the broader Demos leadership team, contributing to a healthy, results-oriented team and organizational culture. They will model organizational values and will translate a compelling vision into action. They will support and build the leadership capacity of their direct reports and ensure that they have the tools they need to be successful. Additionally, the DoD will:

  • Lead the development and implementation of a comprehensive fundraising plan that includes multi-year fundraising projections.
  • In partnership with the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, provide the Executive Team and Board of Directors with analyses, systems, and support needed to participate effectively in fundraising and stewardship of donor relationships, including developing and tracking programs, budgets, reports, and calendars related to all Demos fundraising.
  • Foster a shared vision for fundraising across the organization and drive a culture of philanthropy.
  • Directly lead, supervise, coach, and develop a cohesive and forward-thinking Development Team.
  • Track and monitor the organization’s monthly cash flow projections, in conjunction with the Finance Team.
  • Assist with the development of annual and program budgets and financial reports.

Strategic Fundraising and Funder Stewardship

The DoD will be responsible for key relationships and partnerships. The DoD portfolio will have a deep focus on relationships with foundations given that close to 80 percent of Demos’ funding comes from foundations. However, to the DoD portfolio will also include major individual donors. In addition to fundraising and managing funder relations, the DoD will also foster a greater awareness of the importance of fundraising across the organization. The DoD will also focus on building new funder relationships and enhancing Demos’ donor pipeline. Other fundraising and stewardship responsibilities include:

  • Lead the development and implementation of comprehensive individual and foundation fundraising plans.
  • Build and maintain a high-level portfolio of foundation and major donors, with a specific revenue goal attached.
  • Support the Development Team in the building, maintaining, and stewarding of their own fundraising portfolios, setting high reaching, but achievable goals.
  • Manage ongoing strategy for outreach; cultivate, solicit, and steward a portfolio of funders and relationships; prepare and staff key Demos personnel across relevant foundation relationships.
  • Develop strategies to grow and maintain long-range financial stability.
  • Accompany the President and other key staff on fundraising visits, as appropriate.
  • Represent Demos with key external audiences.


The ideal DoD candidate will be first and foremost committed to Demos’ mission and the visionary evolution of the organization. They will be eager to step in and help Demos maintain and strengthen existing funder relationships while also building new relationships. They will be passionate about advancing racial equity and bring compelling people leadership skills.

While no one person will embody all of the qualities listed below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:

Excellent fundraising strategist. You are an experienced fundraising professional, with steadily increasing responsibilities, preferably at a think-tank, advocacy organization, grassroots organization, or political campaign, and are very familiar with the progressive field. You have significant experience raising money from foundations and individuals and managing the full prospect/donor lifecycle. The ideal candidate has directly created prospect engagement strategies, focused on prospect cultivation, solicited gifts, and stewarded donors post-gift. You are agile with an entrepreneurial spirit and can identify – and are willing to seize — fundraising opportunities as they arise.

Ability to Lead Efforts to Advance Racial Equity. You are committed to leading on racial equity with Demos and our external partnerships, with a sophisticated understanding of how structural racism, white supremacy, and anti-blackness influence supervisory relationships, organizational culture, partnerships, campaigns, and coalition work; understanding of how systemic racism affects present-day systems and ability to advance racial equity goals through communications strategies; demonstrated history of successfully intervening in problematic dynamics and deepening a racial justice approach within an organization, team, partnership or campaign; and commitment to Demos’ culture of respect, shared responsibility, and consistent feedback. You will work to ensure our funding strategies are in alignment with our commitment to racial and economic equity.

Ability to lead and manage a team. You know how to lead a team, develop, and support talent, manage tough situations, encourage innovation, and work within an organization to set a vision and execute it effectively. You know how to achieve your goals in collaboration with others and are skilled at nurturing talent and supervising staff. You have exceptional interpersonal skills with the ability to listen, develop, and maintain strong relationships. A sense of humor is a plus.

Exceptional detail-oriented project manager. You delegate effectively, manage multiple priorities, organize a large volume of work and keep it flowing through the pipeline. You are a problem solver, tenacious, and proactive with the ability to get things done, and are comfortable working in a fluid, multiple-stakeholder environment. You come to the table with ideas and a plan and can make it happen through sound instincts and based on experience.

Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Written and verbal communication is one of your strengths and you have substantial experience with persuasive writing and editing other people’s work.

The strongest candidates will also have some of the following skills and experience:

  • Knowledge of political and electoral fundraising and/or 501c4 fundraising approaches.
  • Familiarity with some of Demos’ core issue areas.

Additionally, candidates need to bring a strong commitment to excellence and an ability to work in a fast-paced environment.


Work Location:  Demos staff are currently working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Workplace attendance criteria is still being determined as public health conditions continue to evolve. This is a full-time position and will ideally be based in the New York City or Washington D.C. area. Demos is exploring a remote, hybrid-first work model once it reopens offices in the New York City or Washington D.C. area. Candidates based in any continental U.S. location with ability to travel are encouraged to apply.

Salary and Benefits:  The salary range for this position is $140,000 – $160,000 and commensurate with experience. Demos has a generous benefits package which includes health insurance, dental and vision insurance, 10 paid holidays, 18 vacation days per year, 5 floating holidays per year, 12 sick days per year, paid time off Dec. 25-Jan. 1, and a voluntary 403b plan.

How To Apply

For more information about Demos, please visit:  www.demos.org

This search is being led by Julian Jackson and Sarah Hecklau, of NPAG. Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.

Demos is an Equal Opportunity Employer–people of color, people with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. We are committed to a diverse workplace, and to supporting our staff with ongoing career development opportunities.

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