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Deputy Director for Development and Communications

Humanities New York:

Deputy Director for Development and Communications

 An exciting new position in a premier institution of the public humanities.


Humanities New York is known nationally as an innovator and leader in the exciting and growing field of the public humanities. Using dialogue, reflection, and critical thinking, Humanities New York applies the humanities to strengthen democratic society.



Are you a credible proponent of HNY’s organizational values of justice; community; dialogue; diversity; collaboration; and relevance?

Are you inspired to play a vital role in the dynamic field of the public humanities?

Are you energized to build a development team, nuts to bolts? And prepared to help bring the greatest financial resources to one of the premier institutions for the public humanities?

Are you a growth-oriented builder? A builder of relationships? A builder of teams? A builder of the brand? A builder for the greater success of our democratic society?

Are you resourceful and ready to work effectively in a lean organization while able to command the respect and support of new and existing donors and stakeholders?

Are you a lifelong learner, avid reader, curious researcher, and self-starter?

If so, then we invite you to keep reading and think about the untapped opportunities for you to make a lasting difference in helping to strengthen the fabric of community in New York State.



Since 1975, Humanities New York has been the sole statewide proponent of the public humanities, offering grants and signature programs to the cultural field across the state.  It is the NYS partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities and a member of the Federation of State Humanities Councils, which networks HNY with its counterparts in every US state and territory.  Its grants and programs have a decades-long focus on and track record of equitable distribution and user-friendly accessibility.  HNY’s new strategic plan includes work with prison populations, including a new grant line for equitable partnerships, a book discussion program, and a podcast; an annual benefit event; and work with indigenous people across NYS.  HNY is proud of its diverse and illustrious board of directors, staff, and its 200+ partner organizations across the state.  Its commitment to DEI work and training also ensures a continued focus on equity and justice.  During the pandemic, HNY has successfully pivoted to online events as well as provided relief grant opportunities through the CARES and ARP acts, making it a key resource during difficult times.  HNY advocates for public support of the humanities, in general, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, in particular, and reports on the statewide results of public funding.  Now, HNY is poised to make significant investments in its external affairs, beginning with the position of Deputy Director for Communications and Development.




This role, which reports to and collaborates closely with the Executive Director, will provide leadership for all of Humanities New York’s communications and fundraising activities, with a particular focus on strategic systems and communications that support individual giving, fundraising events, and corporate partnerships.  The position will also manage at least one full-time development position, potential additional part- or full-time positions, and relevant consultants. Employment at HNY includes a full benefits package, including health and dental insurance, generous leave including family sick time, holidays, vacation, and, upon one year of employment, a tax-advantaged retirement savings plan (403b). 

The Deputy Director for Development and Communications will liaise with selected committees of Humanities New York’s 21-member board of directors to expand the organization’s case-making and fundraising capacity.  HNY is raising resources for a multi-year “prison ecosystem initiative” that brings the public humanities to impacted communities; HNY also seeks to support collaboration and new research in indigenous and Native American communities.  Projects that work closely with committees of the board include planning for future campaigns such as the 50th anniversary of HNY in 2025; commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 2026; and creation of HNY’s first endowment.

The Deputy Director for Development and Communications will also be responsible for standardizing HNY’s donor management systems; establishing updated fundraising plans, policies and procedures; participating in strategic planning and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts; and overseeing communications.  The position will also be crucial in the hiring process for an expanded development and communications team.

This is an incredible opportunity for a seasoned administrator and fundraising expert who shares HNY’s organizational values—justice, community, diversity, collaboration, dialogue, and relevance—and excitement for implementing strategies to help grow a dynamic cultural institution with a leadership role in the public humanities for New York State and the nation.  The position is responsible for areas of:


  • Manage a team of direct reports including a development associate and a digital media position (or outside firm).
  • Select and manage consultants and vendors that are key to institutional advancement.


  • Help build out the most recent strategic plans with long- and short-term development strategies, including the management of HNY’s annual fundraising and planning for longer-term campaigns.
  • Partner with the Executive Director and committees of the board of directors to define annual revenue targets.
  • Lead the creation of messaging and content for the organization’s communications collateral, with a special eye to case-making and donor materials.
  • Oversee the preparation of annual reports, funder reports, sponsorship decks, legislator reports, and other organizational materials.
  • Strengthen organizational infrastructure to support the development program, including the selection, implementation, and maintenance of a new fundraising database.
  • Help grow a culture of philanthropy for HNY.

Private Giving

  • Develop and execute processes for the cultivation and stewardship of individual donors, with the goal of increasing individual giving through the annual appeal, special events including the annual benefit, and other fundraising mechanisms.
  • Oversee stewardship of individual donors, ensuring the effective advancement of prospects and donors by administrating, strategizing, and participating in cultivation and solicitation meetings. 
  • Strategize with program colleagues to identify donors and sponsors, and make program-specific funding requests.
  • Oversee and maximize the effectiveness of HNY’s fundraising events, which include an annual benefit as well as VIP opportunities at HNY-conducted public programs, panels and talks; board trips; and private parties and receptions.
  • Research, establish and steward relationships with current and new corporate funders and partners, with a particular focus on event sponsorships.
  • Collaborate with staff members to manage and expand HNY’s portfolio of foundation funders.

Work with Board of Directors

  • Support the Executive Director in setting roles and expectations for board members, and help guide and administrate the work of fundraising and event committees.
  • Innovate and collaborate with Board members on new fundraising ideas that help “build the list” of potential donors or better engage existing ones.
  • Partner closely with Board members and organizational leadership to create and implement strategies for leveraging members and their networks.



What makes you a compelling candidate?

  • At least five years of fundraising experience, including a thorough understanding of traditional fundraising strategies and communications.
  • A B.A. or higher degree, with at least some humanities coursework.
  • Flexibility to work at a visionary level as well as tackle detailed tasks associated with the work of a small organization.
  • Familiarity with, and active interest in, the public humanities.
  • Maturity and polish to serve in a leadership position within the organization and to represent the organization when meeting with stakeholders.
  • Strong track record of creating and cultivating long-term relationships with individual/major donors and board members.
  • Demonstrated success in securing some of the following: new individual donors; major gifts; event sponsors; or corporate funding.
  • Track record of successful written communications and public speaking.



Send resumé and cover letter to  Initial interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis and continue until the position has been filled   Candidates invited to further interviews will be asked for a writing sample and three contacts for references.  HNY requests that candidates not call the office.     


Humanities New York provides equal opportunities to all individuals without regard to race, religion, national origin, disability, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, veteran status, or any other status protected by law. It does not discriminate based on any status protected by law. Black, Indigenous, and people of color; trans, non-binary, and intersex people, especially transwomen; those from poor and working-class backgrounds, immigrants, and people with disabilities; as well as people at the intersections of these experiences are highly encouraged to apply.

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