Development Associate

Development Washington, DC, United States


Job Summary:

Reporting to WRI-US Deputy Director, in this new position you will play a critical role in helping to shape and strategically build a sustainable funding base to ensure the work is properly resourced to sustain and expand the US program’s impact. In coordination with the Global Development team, you will work with directors and managers across all WRI-US workstreams to design fundraising strategies; cultivate relationships with donors; identify new opportunities; write proposal and pitch materials; and facilitate internal processes with WRI’s Global Development team.

You will empower US program leadership to fundraise more effectively, while also developing an expertise in our programmatic work to independently engage with and pitch to funders. 

This position is remote due to Covid-19 and can remain remote once restrictions are lifted.

Job Responsibilities:

Funding Strategy Support & Prospect Research

  • With program leadership, co-design and support fundraising strategies to achieve continuous, sustainable funding that scales the ambition and opportunities of WRI’s mission and objectives in the United States
  • Engage regularly with program leadership and operations to identify fundraising needs and develop plans to meet those needs
  • Work with WRI-US program staff and core/global Development staff to identify and research prospective donors, and use that knowledge to determine which grants to pursue and how to message our work to their priorities
  • Build expertise on the field of funders in the US climate, energy, and environment space to advise program leadership Proposal Development
  • Draft compelling pitches to prospective funders that translate complex technical concepts into concise and convincing narratives
  • Build knowledge of funder objectives and interests to increase the success rate of concept notes and proposals
  • Oversee proposal processes, including assigning inputs to technical experts, managing deadlines, and ensuring that proposals meet funder requirements
  • Provide expert advice and assistance on proposal development and donor engagement to managers in the WRI-US program Internal

Coordination & Tracking

  • Manage proposals, prospects, and contacts in Salesforce CRM to monitor progress, capture synergy opportunities, and avoid institutional conflicts
  • Support annual and multi-year project planning efforts to ensure the development of aligned projects, compelling offers, and early engagement on fundraising priorities and opportunities
  • Serve as point person for WRI-US with WRI’s Core/Global Development Department
  • Track funding cycles of key donors to ensure proactive and sustained engagement
  • Draft internal strategic briefs and presentations on prospective donors to WRI—including foundations, US government agencies, multilateral institutions, corporations, and individuals – to guide US program team’s interactions with prospective donors
  • Work collaboratively with WRI’s Core/Global Development team on funding approaches involving centrally managed institutional donors to ensure internal coordination and sharing of donor intelligence

Donor Stewardship and External Communication

  • Ensure appropriate and timely follow-up on donor requests
  • Support WRI-US leadership to build strong relationships with donors through excellent engagement and stewardship
  • Coordinate, develop, and maintain regular outreach and communications with current and prospective program donors and partners, including drafting tailored stewardship correspondence for program leads, and writing and editing of regular funder reports
  • Support leadership to represent the WRI-US program in key donor engagement events

Job Qualifications:

  • Master’s in relevant field (or 2 additional years of experience and a Bachelor’s degree)
  • Minimum of 3 years of full-time work experience in fundraising experience, preferably in US climate, energy and/or environment field
  • Prior experience working with various donor types, including corporations, foundations, governments, and high-net-worth individuals
  • Experience developing proposals to various US federal agencies is preferred
  • Exceptional writing and proofreading skills; ability to translate technical information into compelling lay language; experience in developing and organizing proposals for varying audiences
  • Strong interpersonal and collaborative skills; a demonstrated ability to diplomatically communicate internally and externally
  • Experience in managing proposal development processes with various funders
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Office 365, SharePoint, and CRM systems (Salesforce experience preferred)
  • Ability to take initiative, work independently, and be flexible on changing priorities
  • US work authorization is required for this

Potential Salary:

$59,000 - $77,000. Salary is commensurate with experience and other compensable factors.

How to Apply:

Applicants must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered. Please submit a cover letter and resume or CV.

Program Overview:

WRI United States works to advance practical solutions to reduce and remove greenhouse gas emissions, deploy clean energy solutions, improve resilience to climate impacts, and achieve a strong, clean economy that benefits all Americans. We do so through rigorous peer-reviewed expert analysis, consultation, convening, coalition building, and clear communications. We work at all levels of government and with leading businesses across the United States. Our experience, reputation and connections in the policy arena, the private sector and beyond place us in a unique position to help shape federal and state climate policy and generate new ideas and practices for low-carbon development over the coming years.

 WRI Overview:

World Resources Institute (WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organization that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity, and human well-being. We are working to address seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade in order to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean.

We are passionate. We value our diversity of interests, skills, and backgrounds. We have a flexible work environment. And we share a common goal to catalyze change that will improve the lives of people. Our shared ideals are at the core of our approach. They include: integrity, innovation, urgency, independence, and respect.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps, and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business, and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.

We have been growing rapidly: our staff has doubled in size over the past 5 years, and our operating budget is now $150 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of 1,000+ people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, and the United States, as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.  

WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organizational and programmatic practices.