Director of Foundation & Government Relations

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The Director of Foundation & Government Relations will oversee efforts to secure foundation and government funding at WQED. Working in close partnership with both internal and external stakeholders, the Director will develop and execute a comprehensive plan to identify, cultivate and solicit grant funding and steward ongoing relationships. Grants include local and national foundations, public and private funding sources from all levels of government, and public broadcasting related organizations. The Director is responsible for generating grant revenue, building positive relationships for WQED with foundation and government representatives and ensuring that the organization carries out the commitments associated with each grant. The Director of Foundation & Government Relations reports to the Vice President of Development and Membership, works closely with the Chief Executive Officer in implementing strategy and supervises the Foundation Coordinator.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

Research and Cultivation

  • Establish organizational goals for generating support from foundation and government funding sources. Goals should include both revenue generated as well as measures of activity related to effective relationship building.
  • Develop the strategy and tactics to cultivate, solicit and steward grants from local and national foundations and local, state and federal sources of public funds, leading the execution of an organization-wide plan to secure funding.
  • In collaboration with senior management and board, identify specific strategic program priorities for funding on both a yearly and ongoing basis.
  • Build a robust pipeline of foundation and government support by developing strategies for grant opportunities based on similarities between the mission of prospective funders and WQED’s identified programmatic plans and priorities.
  • Work with the Foundation Coordinator on prospect research to proactively identify untapped funding sources, including new and ongoing sources, particularly those whose guidelines are a match for WQED initiatives.
  • Work closely with staff and program leaders to coordinate with and appropriately leverage the contacts and involvement of the CEO, other senior management and board members to engage with foundation and government representatives. Manage foundation and government relationships by providing support through the formation of strategy, preparation of supporting documents, drafting correspondence and documenting contact. Foster personal connections with staff, board, and other key foundation and government contacts.
  • Spearhead, with the Foundation Coordinator, the use of contact management systems and processes to oversee stewardship of foundation and government relationships and to track pertinent application and grant information, research and reporting.

Proposal Development and Submission

  • Develop and maintain an intimate knowledge and understanding of all the current and planned programs and services WQED provides in the community.
  • Coordinate and manage the internal application process for all foundation and government funding opportunities, including developing the strategy, planning, writing, document gathering, internal and external communications, and final submission of applications, proposals, etc.
  • Craft compelling narratives for support of WQED and its programs, collaborating closely with program and communications staff to develop program proposals and reports.
  • Serve as primary editor and conduit for applications, letters of inquiry, proposals, and all other communications. Ensure that submissions are thorough and compelling. Supervise final production, ensuring that the relevant attachments are included, packaged in a quality manner, and that the mailing and/or electronic submission of proposals meets deadlines and are documented.
  • Work with the Foundation Coordinator, financial staff and relevant program staff to develop accurate budget information for funding applications.
  • Serve as the primary contact, liaison and conduit of information with funders in relation to proposals/applications and all other communications.

Grants Management

  • Once the grant award is finalized, oversee the monitoring of progress and work with staff and senior management to ensure that each grant funded project or program has been initiated and meets conditions and expectations.
  • With the Foundation Coordinator, develop a detailed tracking system and report related to the status of grants, including prospective grants, awarded grants, and grants declined or tabled.
  • Supervise the Foundation Coordinator’s work to maintain a detailed schedule of reporting requirements and other performance requirements with related deadlines, as detailed in each grant agreement.
  • Oversee the preparation and submission all required reports.
  • Maintain comprehensive historical records of all documentation related to each grant.

Required Education and Skills:

Education and Experience

  • Minimum of five years of progressively responsible development experience, including significant experience in managing foundation and government funding, proposal and report writing and supervision of staff.
  • Bachelor’s degree; advanced degree a plus.
  • Certification from the Association of Fundraising Professionals or equivalent highly desirable.
  • Fundraising strategist with demonstrated experience in successfully applying for and administering grants from foundation and government funders, preferably including grants from the local Southwestern Pennsylvania government and foundation sources.
  • Proven track record in fostering professional relationships with foundation program officers and government representatives, managing a portfolio of foundation and government funders and personally implementing cultivation strategies.
  • Experience managing the proposal development process, with a preference for candidates who have successfully coordinated various departments in preparation and submittal of grant applications/proposals.
  • Demonstrated skill in developing budgets for proposals.

Required Skills and Abilities

  • Exceptional communication skills, both verbal and written, with a proven ability to present written information in a concise and persuasive format.
  • Independent worker and also able to thrive as a successful member of an integrated, team-oriented environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to work creatively, effectively, and collaboratively in a complex organization with funders, partners, board members, management, and other staff.
  • Focused and energetic with a high level of initiative.
  • Strong organizational, critical thinking, and problem solving skills. Experienced at managing multiple tasks simultaneously, establishing priorities, working calmly under pressure, and managing competing deadlines and shifting priorities.
  • Must have the ability to manage and motivate staff in subordinate, peer and leadership positions and inspire confidence among staff, board, and foundation representatives.
  • Working knowledge of donor management/CRM system(s) and prospect research tools.

Candidates should send a resume and cover letter with salary requirements to No Phone Calls Please.

WQED is an Equal Opportunity Employer with leadership and a culture that supports diversity and inclusion.

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