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Manager, Development Communications

National Trust for Historic Preservation
District of Columbia, United States
$63,000.00 - $68,000.00
Closing date
Oct 27, 2021

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Position Type
Fundraising, Donor Relations, Fundraising Administration, Major Gifts, Prospect Research
Arts, Community Development, Environment, Museum
Employment Type
Full Time
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Careers at the National Trust for Historical Preservation

Job Summary

The Development Communications Manager uses their skills and experience in writing and project management to create clear, accurate, and persuasive development communications and implement them in a way that advances the work, fundraising goals, and human-centric impacts of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

The Development Communications Manager works closely with the Associate Director of Development Communications and in collaboration with colleagues and stakeholders from across the organization to craft original development materials and high-quality, personalized communications for major and leadership giving prospects and donors.

The Development Communications Manager is a perceptive and persuasive writer and storyteller with demonstrated editorial judgment and abilities who can manage multiple projects with tight deadlines and competing priorities. This position plays a key role in administering and optimizing Development Communications calendars and workflows, as well as organizing and maintaining its growing portfolio of products and resources.


C-Suite Acknowledgements and Appeals (30%):

  • Stay up to date with the National Trust’s latest priorities and impacts to craft original, timely, and compelling acknowledgments, written appeals, templates, talking points, presentations, and other communications materials for high-level donors and prospects from the President & CEO and other members of the Executive Team.
  • Manage routing, review, and processing of all CEO acknowledgements and partner as needed with Development Division colleagues to help ensure all major and high-level gifts are properly receipted, acknowledged, and documented.

Donor Stewardship and Solicitation (25%):

  • Research, write, and design compelling appeals and publications that convey the impact and promise of donor support through endowments and signature programs of the National Trust (e.g., historic sites, public lands, the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund, and the Campaign for Where Women Made History).
  • Support the Associate Director of Development Communications in writing, proofing, and distribution of the National Trust Annual Report.

Membership Giving Program Support (25%):

  • Manage planning, drafting, design, and quarterly distribution of the Council News and Action Fund News e-newsletters.
  • Partner with Donor Engagement staff to research and draft promotional copy for donor event and travel programs.
  • Provide technical assistance and editorial guidance to help tell the National Trust’s story through polished, high-quality program communications and ensure program materials are consistent with National Trust’s style, brand, and messaging guidelines.

Project Management and Administration (20%):

  • Partner with colleagues to develop and maintain a Development Communications Calendar to track and inform communications strategy across the division.
  • Organize and maintain a Development Communications Library, including promotional materials and cases for support, examples of appeals and proposals, and forms and templates, along with an archive of past newsletters and donor reports.
  • Develop and maintain an inventory for tracking, indexing, and making more readily accessible human-centered impacts of the National Trust.


Writing and Nonprofit Communications Skills and Experience:

  • 5+ years of professional experience, including at least 1-3 years of experience shaping, writing, and managing strong, accurate, persuasive editorial pieces geared toward cause-oriented supporters.
  • Related experience in a nonprofit fundraising setting preferred, particularly in a matrixed and geographically dispersed nonprofit.
  • Strong writing, storytelling, and proofreading skills with excellent editorial judgment, attention to detail, and the demonstrated ability to manage editorial projects from inception to completion with only general supervision.
  • Ability to synthesize complex ideas into coherent and compelling language that can clearly and persuasively relate the National Trust’s work and impact to the interests and concerns of specific (or broad) donor audiences.
  • Skilled at identifying and developing compelling stories in both journalistic and narrative styles
  • Ability to vary and control nuances of tone, diction, rhythm, pace, and other stylistic features in writings.
  • Effective presentation skills. Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

Project Management Skills:

  • Intermediate project-management skills with demonstrated success in managing multiple projects with conflicting deadlines.
  • Ability to take initiative and develop systems and materials as needed to manage workflow in a complex environment.
  • Advanced organizational, analytical and problem-solving skills, including issue identification and prioritization.
  • Ability to prioritize, multitask efficiently, and respond to a high volume of ongoing requests in a timely fashion.
  • Ability to achieve results with general supervision.

Collaboration and Work Management Skills:

  • Strong organizational skills and ability to meet deadlines.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and skill set are essential.
  • Must be self-motivated team player with a track record of building and maintaining productive and collaborative relationships with multiple stakeholders across teams to implement processes and achieve results.
  • Customer service mentality/focus with the capacity to work effectively with a wide range of cultures, personalities, and working styles.
  • Ability to adapt in a dynamic work environment with frequent interruptions and changing schedules and priorities.
  • Proven ability to continually develop skills related to use of rapidly changing technology and communications best practices.

Hands-On Experience:

  • Intermediate knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint required.
  • Experience with CRM databases and design software (Adobe Photoshop and InDesign) is a plus
  • Proficiency with email marketing (MailChimp) and digital engagement (Engaging Networks) platforms is also a plus.
  • Demonstrated success in marketing to and engaging culturally diverse audiences and partners; able to write effectively about identities such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class, ability, or gender in plain, specific terms as they relate to cultural heritage and the work of the National Trust. Ties to diverse affinity groups, professional organizations, or related associations are also a plus.

Academic and Related Qualifications

  • Degree equivalent combination of studies, training, and/or professional experience in communications, writing, English, journalism, marketing, public history, historic preservation, development or nonprofit fundraising, or related field is required.
  • Interest in historic preservation or related field is strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated commitment to the values and goals of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and its 2020 Black Lives Matter Statement is required.
  • Must be willing to perform routine, repetitive tasks, as well as able to take on challenging projects with only general supervision.
  • Regular and reliable attendance required.
Pay & Benefits This is a full-time, exempt level position, eligible for full benefits, including health, dental and life insurance, retirement benefits, and 3+ weeks of vacation, plus sick time and holidays.   Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this and most other National Trust positions at our DC headquarters will continue to work remotely for the foreseeable future (currently projected through December 2021).    The National Trust has recently implemented a policy requiring all staff to show proof of vaccination by October 31 (with limited exceptions for religious or medical reasons, subject to conditions such as weekly testing.)    Hiring Range:  $63,000 - 68,000 per year


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