Senior Manager, Development Communications

United States- Arlington, VA
Apr 23, 2018
Jun 30, 2018
Full Time


Conservation International (CI) has been protecting nature for the benefit of all for over 30 years. Through science, policy, and partnerships, CI is helping build a healthier, more prosperous and more productive planet. 


The Senior Manager, Development Communications is the principal written communicator for the Development division, which is responsible for securing and managing philanthropic contributions from individuals to support CI’s $150M annual budget.  This position employs persuasive writing to inspire and encourage our sophisticated donor audience. Your role is to express CI’s values, core strengths and compelling opportunities through written work. You will produce writing that is thoughtful, impactful and exacting.

S/he is responsible for leading the development and editorial process on proposal and report writing projects that are complex and significant in programmatic scope. As the primary writer, s/he will frame, write and edit succinct, persuasive copy on conservation subjects. As a key member of the Development team, s/he will work with all programs and revenue generating units to develop these materials — requiring digging deep into the story and synthesizing complex programmatic details and technical information — for the institution’s most significant donors and prospects, including Board members and high net worth individuals. 

This position will provide direct writing and editing support to senior level leaders across the organization including the CEO and Leadership Team and program and development leads on institutionally significant solicitations. You will often help the programs to refine and communicate new areas of work leveraging your expert ability to translate complex subject matter for CI’s highest-level donors. Writing and editing other materials including stewardship materials, high-level campaign communications and donor-facing brand-level publications will also be required.


  • Provide writing and editing support for major campaign fundraising proposals (e.g. high-dollar and/or to high-potential prospects, Board members), donor reports (e.g. stewardship reports, annual reports), and other letters (e.g. gift acknowledgements) and documents to be sent by the CEO or Development leadership.
  • Provide writing and editing support for the Development Division’s fundraising efforts, with a focus on Major Donors and Board prospects and donors.
  • Work closely with program staff, program fundraising teams and development colleagues to investigate new projects and programs worthy of inclusion in high level materials, year-end reports and the like.
  • Writing support also to be provided to other CI leadership, as requested.
  • Project manage writing assignments as well as select projects.
  • Monitor/revise the proposal tracking system to ensure materials are broadly accessible for others.
  • Support the Development leadership as required, especially on broad writing and editorial assistance as well as other specific duties to evolve over time.
  • Other duties as assigned by supervisor.


  • This is an Arlington based position, with limited domestic or international travel opportunities.
  • The position will need to multitask and be comfortable working in a fast-paced, sometimes unpredictable work environment.
  • The position requires interacting with staff around the world by telephone and email.
  • This is a desk job requiring no specialized physical skills.



  • Bachelor’s degree and at least 5-7 years' experience writing and editing for persuasion of distinguished audiences.
  • Skilled in writing succinct, compelling copy and provocative headlines on complex subjects.
  • Experience transforming technical or science project subjects (sourced from experts or reports) and transforming them into interesting, accessible communications for a highly educated but not expert audience.
  • Advanced writing and editing skills, including technical proficiency in AP style and/or experience writing to exacting standards of grammar and punctuation.
  • Excellent time management skills are absolutely necessary for the success of this position as are an ability to juggle multiple projects simultaneously and work with interdisciplinary teams.
  • Ability to work with teams involving expertise outside own functional and programmatic area and to develop ideas or solutions to complex problems that go beyond established practices.
  • Ability to unearth, research, vet and accurately report on the most investment-compelling work.
  • Proficiency with the Microsoft Office suite.


  • Experience in fundraising, with an emphasis on writing and editing fundraising proposals and communications for sophisticated donor audiences.
  • Working knowledge of a publishing software like InDesign is extremely useful.
  • A demonstrated understanding of conservation and/or development issues is preferred.
CI Values

We expect that all employees will embrace the values of our organization.

Passion: We are inspired by nature and cherish the diversity of life in all of its forms. 

Respect: We respect and trust each other, and we embrace our diversity of cultures, talents, and experiences.

Integrity: We act with integrity and are accountable for our actions.

Optimism: We are optimistic about the future of life on Earth and are confident that, with our partners, we will achieve unprecedented conservation results.

Courage: We tirelessly pursue our vision, taking bold action and persevering through challenges.

Teamwork: We work together, recognizing that openness, collaboration and cooperation are fundamental to achieving a healthy and prosperous world for all.

To apply please submit your resume and cover letter.

Conservation International is an Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity Employer of minorities, females, protected veterans, and individuals with disabilities.  It is the policy of CI to afford equal employment opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment. CI offers reasonable accommodation in the employment process for individuals with disabilities.  If you need assistance in the application or hiring process to accommodate a disability, you may request an accommodation at any time.  If you require an application accommodation due to a disability, please e-mail your request to and include "accommodation" in the subject line.


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