Director of Development

Read Alliance | New York, New York


The mission of Read Alliance is to improve the educational trajectory of at-risk, early elementary students through one-to-one tutoring in foundational reading skills. Established in 1999, Read Alliance is an innovative and effective organization that improves the chances of academic success of the educationally and economically disadvantaged children we serve by ensuring they possess the reading skills necessary to read grade-level appropriate text and catch up to their classmates. Using a researched based curriculum, Read Alliance’s students achieve significant and measurable reading gains. Read Alliance pre- and post- assessment data has consistently shown that after just one program cycle, students who receive Read Alliance intervention average more than a full year's growth in foundational reading skills as outlined in the Common Core learning standards.

Over the past 16 years, Read Alliance's intervention program has proved to make a significant difference in the academic success of the students it has served. Since our inception, more than 13,000 early elementary students have received reading intervention through Read Alliance's one-to-one model delivered by more than 10,000 trained teen-aged tutors. Our programs are designed to give students the help they need to reach higher reading levels, supply teens with jobs that will teach them important skills and educate schools on our method of teaching.

Read more about our work and impact at

Read Alliance encourages individuals of all backgrounds to apply for this position, and we do not discriminate on any basis prohibited by applicable law. We celebrate the diversity of our nation and communities, and we seek to build a team that reflects that diversity. We welcome and encourage all qualified applicants who share that same vision, as we want to engage all those who can contribute to our work and this mission.

Job Summary

The Director of Development will report to Read Alliance’s Executive Director and focus on fundraising via private philanthropy for READ’s $2.4M budget.  The successful candidate will be highly committed to READ’s mission and will demonstrate initiative, leadership and strong organizational, writing, interpersonal and research skills.  The Director will create and implement fundraising strategy and lead cultivation and stewardship of many high level external relationships.  The ideal candidate is goal driven, proactive and prepared to bring a high level of energy and enthusiasm to ensure that Read Alliance raises the necessary revenue to achieve its mission. 


A successful Director of Development will achieve the following outcomes in the first year:

  • Collaborate with the Executive Director and Board of Directors to create, lead, and drive all revenue activities to meet annual fundraising goals
  • Continue to develop and execute and comprehensive corporate donor strategy, including appropriate calendars for communication, engagement, and cultivation
  • Increase the number of major, individual donors and develop a thoughtful stewardship plan to engage and retain existing donors

Your Contribution

  • Develop and implement innovative strategies to increase individual and corporate giving, with emphasis on multi-year pledge commitments.
  • Conduct 6-8 high impact personal donor visits per month to cultivate positive and purposeful relationships and identify, cultivate, and secure major gifts at the $10,000 plus level.
  • Oversee the grants management process, in coordination with the Development and Communications Manager, including deadline tracking, research, writing and reporting to all corporate and foundation funders.
  • Manage the relationship with the special events consultant and lead the planning, fundraising, and execution of the annual Benefit raising at least $500,000 annually.

External Communications

  • Develop donor cultivation and fundraising pieces, in coordination with Development and Communications Manager, including direct mail, online newsletters and brochures.
  • Oversee accurate and timely reporting to donors on the impact of their philanthropy through acknowledgement letters, regular communications and programmatic updates.
  • Serve as an ambassador for Read Alliance, quickly establishing credibility when promoting the organization to external audiences.
  • Build the organization’s relationship with press and media outlets (including social media), always seeking to raise READ’s profile and public presence.

Organizational Leadership and Management

  • Manage the development team to execute plans and ensure achievement of goals, while providing leadership, mentoring, and training.
  • Oversee the maintenance of READ’s donor database (i.e. Raiser’s Edge).
  • Foster collaboration between development and program staff to build and sustain a successful philanthropic culture.
  • Contribute to the strategic thinking and development of READ through involvement with senior staff and the Board of Directors and steer the Fund Development Committee of the Board of Directors to support the efforts of the full Board to raise money on behalf of the organization and to steward relationships.  


As the incoming Director of Development, you will possess many, though perhaps not all, of the following characteristics and qualifications:

  • Significant experience and demonstrated success with major gift fundraising (i.e. $10,000+) in a nonprofit setting
  • Several years of leadership experience in a fundraising role, with a track record of increasing revenue from corporations, individual donors, and foundations and familiarity with all aspects of development including capital campaigns, event management, annual giving, online giving, and planned giving.
  • A proven track record of working closely with senior leadership, Board members and key stakeholders. 
  • Experience leading a team, able to strategically delegate to and oversee various development functions in order to set and meet aggressive fundraising goals
  • Ability to leverage technology, marketing materials and social media to engage internal and external stakeholders.
    • A flexible attitude and willingness to re-prioritize workstreams as needed, with the ability to work well independently, as well as collaboratively, to maximize output.
    • Authentic presence, exceptional communications and interpersonal skills and a customer service attitude. 
    • Experience working with Raiser’s Edge preferred
      • Bachelor’s degree required

How to Apply

Please upload a resume alongside a thoughtful and targeted cover letter, outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position and stating how you heard about this opportunity, both in Word format, addressed to Kelley Perkins, Executive Director at

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

About Commongood Careers

Read Alliance has partnered with Commongood Careers to conduct the search for a Director of Development. Commongood Careers is a mission-driven search firm that supports the hiring needs of high-impact nonprofits. With an approach that leverages robust talent networks, recruitment and search management expertise, and a deep understanding of our clients’ missions and cultures, we help organizations secure the talent they need to create greater social impact. Since our founding in 2005, Commongood Careers has led more than 800 searches at 300 organizations in 33 states, making us one of the most experienced and dedicated nonprofit search firms in the country. Learn more about nonprofit job opportunities at Commongood Careers.

Read Alliance


Organization: Nonprofit Organizations