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Development Writer

Job Location

Oakland, CA


Type of Job




Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Sep 1, 2021

About the job

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About the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment

For over 25 years, the Rose Foundation has supported grassroots initiatives that inspire community action to protect the environment, community health, and people’s rights. Our community-based grantmaking approach has earned national recognition for building grassroots power for conservation and social justice causes. Our New Voices Are Rising youth leadership program trains Oakland high school students to step forward as the next generation of environmental justice leaders.

Position Summary

The Rose Foundation seeks an experienced, proactive writer who is committed to protecting the environment, community health, and people’s rights. As part of an innovative grantmaking public foundation, the Development Writer will help manage a diverse funding stream from traditional philanthropy (family and community foundations), government agencies, and legal settlements. The Development Writer will also play a critical role of storyteller by writing impact pieces, cases for support, and other pieces. This is a great opportunity for a writer who thrives on appealing to varied audiences, is mission-driven, and understands the intersections between community health, environmental protection, and social, racial, and economic justice.

Our Ideal Candidate

You have outstanding writing skills and care deeply about environmental conservation, social justice, and consumer protection. You are adept at understanding and conveying complexity, nuance, and enthusiasm. You are inquisitive, proactive, and have impeccable attention to detail. You have experience in building relationships, conveying impact through your writing, and making the case for investment and partnership. You enjoy playing a crucial role in a small, highly collaborative team, but are also comfortable working independently and taking ownership of your projects. We welcome candidates who have honed their writing skills in nonprofit development, communications, and/or marketing, as well as strong writers from other sectors who are quick learners and interested in applying those skills to mission- and impact-based work.

Duties and Responsibilities

Development and Fund Raising

  • Serve as one of Rose’s principal storytellers: convey the urgency and relevancy of our work, illustrate our impact, and move the audience to action, particularly towards financial support.
  • Outline, draft, and edit grant proposals and reports about Rose’s grantmaking programs, and New Voices Are Rising youth leadership development program for private and community foundations, government agencies, and legal settlement audiences.
  • Lead prospect research efforts, identify new funding opportunities and funder relationships, and submit first-time proposals and LOI’s, as well as seek out and identify opportunities for non-traditional funding/partnership requests.
  • Help program staff find their roles in the grantseeking and storytelling process, coach staff members in improving their writing, and provide excellent editing and proofreading for all grant materials.
  • Work closely with the Development Team to develop and translate Rose’s work into appealing messaging for a wide variety of audiences including impact pieces, appeals, and cases for support.
  • Collaboratively manage and strengthen relationships with funding partners, following up on information requests, moving funding conversations forward, and supporting periodic one-on-one check ins.
  • Draft and send personalized acknowledgement letters to funders within your portfolio.
  • Support team-wide activities, such as the annual Film Fest.

Portfolio & Systems Management

  • Help manage the organization’s pipeline of grants received and government contracts, collaborating with team members to ensure on-time submission of all materials (e.g., proposals and reports).
  • Manage cross-team collaboration to gather insights and report to funders on progress toward grant objectives. Ensure that deliverables are being met through project management tools such as workplans.
  • Support the organization’s portfolio of settlement awards with pitch and report writing.
  • Develop Salesforce reports and dashboards that help the team keep a pulse on the funding portfolio.


  • Minimum two years of persuasive writing experience, such as grantwriting, cases for support, business pitches, impact statements, op-eds, and marketing narratives.
  • Exceptional English writing and editing skills with the ability to understand and appeal to multiple and varied audiences.
  • Impeccable attention to detail and ability to produce high quality work against a deadline while managing a variety of projects concurrently.
  • Relationship builder with the flexibility and finesse to work collaboratively with all constituent groups including staff, board members, volunteers, donors, program participants, and other stakeholders.
  • Team player who balances team and individual responsibilities, gives and welcomes feedback as a way to support everyone’s efforts to succeed.
  • Curious, proactive, mature, and possesses sound judgement.
  • Willing to occasionally work some evenings and weekends; able to sit at a standard desk for periods of 2 hours or more.

Additional Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Experience managing a grant portfolio, submitting successful grant applications, and conducting prospect research
  • Experience with grassroots initiatives, environmental justice, conservation, and/or youth leadership
  • Familiarity with managing government grants and/or contracts
  • Familiarity with program evaluation
  • Background in coaching others in writing skills
  • Comfortable using Microsoft Office Applications and learning a variety of new software applications

Salary, Hours, and Benefits

The Development Writer is a full-time, exempt, at-will position. Starting pay is in the range of $65,000- $80,000 annual salary depending on experience and qualifications. Benefits include fully paid health insurance (medical/dental/vision) for employee and dependents; sick leave which exceeds California standards; generous vacation and paid holidays; Flexible Spending Accounts; and 401k with employer contribution and match; plus, sabbatical and professional development opportunities. General hours are 9:30am-5:30pm, Monday through Friday, but occasional evening or weekend hours may be required.

Workplace Considerations

During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and shelter-in-place, Rose staff is largely continuing to work remotely, with the option of working from the office if fully vaccinated against covid. We continue to monitor local and national public health guidelines and update our office/work protocols accordingly. The Rose Foundation will work with the hired candidate to ensure proper equipment setup and connectivity.

Our office is in a commuter-friendly location five blocks from Lake Merritt BART; located near Jack London Amtrak, AC Transit including the 72R, 12, and Broadway Free Shuttle, and Oakland’s network of bike lanes.

How to Apply

Send your resume, cover letter, and at least one writing sample to Please write “Development Writer—[Your Name]” in the subject line. Please also include how you learned about this position within your cover letter, and why you are interested in this specific job. Writing sample(s) should demonstrate formal persuasive writing skills, for example grant proposal, report, or Op/Ed piece. Applications will be reviewed as received. We are looking to fill this position as soon as possible – please apply early!

The Rose Foundation provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.

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