The Development Manager will report to the Executive Director and be an experienced, energetic, and forward-thinking leader who will be Aspire Institute’s principal fundraiser and grant writer.

Work Expectation:

40 hours per week with occasional additional hours required in a fast pace, start-up environment. Although local staff typically work remotely Monday and Friday and in-person at Aspire’s office in Cambridge, MA Tuesday – Thursday, remote is also possible.


  • Plan, manage, and execute all aspects of development efforts to achieve Aspire’s strategic plan.
  • Work closely with senior management to develop both short and long-term fundraising goals and strategies.
  • Work with staff to develop and implement a cohesive communications plan to support the fundraising plan
  • Establish specific activity goals for all phases of the donor/prospect life-cycle (cultivation, solicitation, closure and stewardship).
  • Maintains a significant portfolio of leadership and principal gift prospects. 
  • Participate in the development of strategy and content for all development publications and events. 
  • May perform other duties as assigned.
  • Nurture a culture of philanthropy and relationship building in collaboration with the Executive Director and Co-founders
  • Implement a program of engagement and cultivation that strengthens the Aspire’s relationships with donors and foundations, which deepens their engagement.
  • Research and apply for grants to support Aspire’s programs and students.
  • Assist the executive Director with grant reports as needed. 
  • Prepare regular communication materials on Aspire’s progress to share with current donors and grantors.

Additional Qualifications:

  • Excellent interpersonal skills including the ability to work collaboratively with a diverse team.
  • Ability to work independently and take initiative in a fast pace, start-up environment with multiple tasks and projects. 
  • Advanced attention to detail and problem-solving skills.
  • Excellent listening, written, and verbal communication skills.
  • Legal authorization to work in the United States.


Aspire offers a competitive salary; paid vacation, illness and personal time off; health insurance; life and ADD insurance and a 403b retirement investment plan.

Application Process:
Interested applicants can send their resumes with a cover letter to Meena Sonea at meena@aspireleaders.org with the subject line “Aspire Institute Development Manager.”

Skills, Qualifications, and Accomplishments:

  • Bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years of related work experience in a non-profit with significant major gifts or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Advanced understanding of and familiarization with donor management systems.
  • Demonstrated ability cultivating and soliciting major and principal-gift donors.
  • Demonstrated ability using analytical tools to plan, measure, and evaluate the effectiveness of fundraising programs.
  • Proven ability to lead staff and volunteers toward shared objectives in a complex and dynamic environment.
  • A record of accomplishment of effective collaboration across traditional boundaries and roles.
  • Demonstrated ability in personally and consistently closing six-figure or larger philanthropic gifts from donors.
  • Demonstrated ability synthesizing and prioritizing information from a wide array of sources while maintaining an attention to detail and effectively managing overall workflow.
  • Ability building and maintaining long-term donor relationships.
  • An active listener with a successful track record of interacting with donors, foundations, volunteers and colleagues at the highest level
  • Demonstrated ability to leverages relationships to implement strategic solicitation of donors for gifts of their full philanthropic capacity


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