Philanthropy for Voter Engagement Initiative
Founded in 2005, Nonprofit VOTE equips our nation’s nonprofits
with nonpartisan tools and resources to help the communities they
serve participate in voting and democracy. Our work is divided into
four major program areas, including building the capacity of
nonprofits to do voter engagement through our trainings and
resources, engaging the philanthropic sector and other strategic
partners, building state capacity through a multi-state field
program, and management of the collaborative efforts of National
Voter Registration Day. More info
Nonprofit VOTE is seeking an experienced consultant to
act as the organizer and facilitator for the Philanthropy for Voter
Engagement Initiative. This Initiative seeks to mobilize
foundations to support voter engagement among their grantees and
within their communities, both directly through grant-making and
indirectly through their actions. This Initiative is not about
fundraising for any particular organization, but rather resourcing
and supporting critical voter engagement work at nonprofits across
Funding within the voter engagement space is often cyclical and
narrowly focused on groups that do voter engagement work almost
exclusively. Such a strategy fails to provide needed consistency
and underutilizes the vast nonprofit infrastructure already in
place in communities around the nation, including food pantries,
housing clinics, family service agencies, community-based
organizations, advocacy groups, and other nonprofits that have
long-standing, year-around relations with the communities they
The long-term goal of the Initiative is to foster a
philanthropic system that consistently supports and resources voter
engagement among their grantees and broader community. The
immediate objective is to build upon work that Nonprofit VOTE
conducted in partnership with various philanthropy serving
organizations (PSOs) to produce the Voter Engagement Toolkit for
community foundation editions) in 2018. The toolkit to be
updated identifies common strategies from direct funding of voter
engagement work to the hosting trainings and revising
overly-restrictive grant language.
As the toolkits make clear, a foundation need not be a civic
engagement funder to support voter engagement. There are roles for
health funders, housing funders, environmental funders and most
other types of funders to support voter engagement in a way that
enables them and their grantees to more effectively deliver on
their missions and strengthen the communities they serve.
The Initiative consultant will work in close partnership with
Nonprofit VOTE’s executive director and other key staff.
- Build an array of case studies, best practices, and toolkits
that highlight successful foundations strategies for funding and
supporting nonprofits doing voter engagement work. Use the toolkit
to leverage speaking opportunities and communications that engage
the broader philanthropic community ahead of the 2024 election
- Explore idea of foundation pledges to fund nonprofits doing
voter engagement work, especially direct client serving community
nonprofits in under-voting communities.
- Explore potential partnerships for longer-term work beyond the
toolkits that can bring the Initiative to scale. Such a longer-term
initiative may involve shared funding, administration, branding,
and a unifying campaign like the foundation pledge above.
Key Responsibilities of Consultant:
- Identify potential stakeholders and clearly articulate
objectives of the Philanthropy for Voter Engagement Initiative,
exploring options for scaling the work long term in collaboration
with others. Engage civic-focused philanthropy networks in the
process. Recommended partnerships to scale can be presented and
explored at any time during the initiative, but goal would be to
have options ready by early 2024.
- Identify, develop, and support a working group of foundation
and PSO leaders (including some from our own Leadership Council)
- Serve as champions of the work among the broader philanthropic
- Help think through strategies, provide input into publicity
campaigns, and open doors for additional workshops and
- Help fund the overall work by leveraging support from
foundations (Nonprofit VOTE will provide front-end investments on
year 1-2, but hope this could ultimately be self-funded initiative,
or a jointly managed initiative with other funding partners)
- Collect updated profiles and strategies from 15-20 foundations
that support voter engagement within their respective grantee
cohorts and networks as a model for others and vehicle for
identifying best practices.
- Outreach to funders, schedule meetings, collect stories:
- Reconnect with previously profiled foundations to update case
studies as needed.
- ID new funders not previously profiled to get their stories.
Working group can be used to help us ID new foundations not
- Generate a first draft of case studies (interview notes
mostly), and work with Nonprofit VOTE’s development and comms staff
to prepare case studies for public use.
- Update strategies and best practices based on case
- Work with Nonprofit VOTE’s comms staff to produce an updated
toolkit and case studies by December 2023 or sooner, which may be
either a micro-web site and / or updated front-to-back PDF
with printed counterparts.
- Work with our comms staff to develop and implement a publicity
campaign extending into early 2024 to get the toolkits out via PSO
email list serves, virtual and in-person speaking engagements (see
below), and more. We may also trickle case studies out as ready
through communications strategies
- Secure and prepare for 3-5 additional speaking engagements at
various funder convenings and meetings of philanthropy serving
organizations on an ongoing basis, but amplified following release
of toolkits. Outreach targets include networks such as the Council
on Foundations, United Philanthropy Forum, The Funder Network,
PACE, FCCP, and others to make case for funder support of voter
- The updated toolkit above can be used to help leverage new
speaking opportunities (like the one we are doing at TFN)
- May include presenting or co-presenting with philanthropy
champions and/or Nonprofit VOTE staff.
- Explore and develop national campaign strategies, in
partnership with the working group, that can be run to engage a
broader swath of foundations and/or deepen the commitment level of
those already doing voter engagement work. This could include a
campaign akin to the "Just Add 5" initiative used for advancing the
Census GOTC work.
Timeline: Anticipate 60-70 hours per month from
April 2023 - April 2024.
- Strategic thinker, ability to visualize broader goals and
strategy to advance
- Ability to identify potential partners, amplify impact…
- Strong interpersonal skills, established relationships, and
ability to work within the funder community.
- Strong interviewing skills and ability to draw out powerful
stories, effective strategies, common themes, and best
- Organizational writing skills, including ability to effectively
convey key elements and common themes.
- Strategic thinker and ability to position initiative
effectively within the philanthropic community.
- Group facilitation skills, including ability to convene and
move the philanthropy working group
Submissions should include resumes, narrative
of relevant experience, fee structure and two to three references.
Fully remote with some travel. Please submit your credentials
electronically to email@example.com by EOD
on March 15, 2023 to be considered.
Nonprofit VOTE is committed to values of diversity,
equity, and inclusion. These values are reflected
in our external work to engage marginalized communities in voting
and elections. Internally, we seek to build and empower a diverse
staff, consultant, and leadership team. Consultants and firms led
by people of color, people with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ+
candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. Nonprofit VOTE is an
Equal Opportunity Employer.