Common Ground is Seeking a Development Manager for Supporter Engagement

The New Haven Ecology Project/Common Ground
Development Manager for Supporter Engagement – full time position

Target Start Date: January, 2020

Organization Overview

Common Ground is a center for learning and leadership, its mission is inviting people across ages and identities to connect to their urban environment, build community, grow into their full potential, and contribute to a just and sustainable world. We work toward this mission through active, authentic learning rooted in justice and our environment: a farm, in a forest, in a city. Three connected efforts are at the core of Common Ground’s work:

  • An environmental education center, offering programs that connect people of all ages with the natural world while helping them develop habits of sustainable living.
  • Connecticut’s only charter high school focused on the environment, preparing students for success in college and in environmental leadership.
  • An urban farm that practices sustainable agriculture while contributing to a healthy food system for New Haven area residents. Common Ground follows organic growing practices, avoiding the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers on site.

Common Ground has a commitment to examining the intersection of social, environmental, and food justice issues; how systems of oppression, including white privilege, impact the organization’s work; and how resistance to those systems can position people to lead the change towards a more equitable and sustainable society. For more information on Common Ground, see

Job Description

The Development Manager is an integral part of a small team that raised $1.5 million last year for a growing and evolving complex organization. Common Ground seeks an organized, computer savvy, detail oriented person to join the team with a focus on direct response, events and communications. The right candidate will have a passion for connecting people to the organization. Reporting directly to the Director of Development, the Development Manager’s work will include responsibility for:

  • Supporter engagement (involving, asking, thanking)
    • Crafting a year long cultivation and stewardship strategy for our supporters, and implementing that strategy.
    • Thoughtfully and personally letting supporters know in writing how their support is changing lives at Common Ground; including at least two print items – an October donor newsletter and annual Gratitude Report (March), and connecting throughout the year with donors who make recurring monthly gifts.
    • Responsible for developing and execution of direct-response ask strategies, including direct mail, email, and peer to peer fundraising.
  • Events strategy and management
    • Leadership of Common Ground’s signature fundraising event, Feast from the Fields; to include development and stewardship of a group of event volunteers.
    • Leadership of Common Sense, Common Ground’s signature thank-you event, designed to showcase in late May/early June all the many ways supporters have made a difference in people’s lives.
    • Rock to Rock – Responsible for organizing Common Ground’s peer to peer fundraising team and helping team-members reach fundraising goals. Assisting overall with Rock to Rock organizers, and/or other joint fundraising events with other area nonprofit organizations.
    • Securing corporate, foundation, and individual sponsorships for all events.
    • Design of smaller events designed to connect our supporters with what they have made possible; and, to attract new supporters to Common Ground.
    • Adult and student volunteer management.
  • Donor communications and data management
    • Produce Common Ground’s monthly email newsletter, via Constant Contact.
    • Manage the Constant Contact database.
    • Craft strategy for and coordinate Common Ground’s presence on social media.
    • Responsible for current and prospective donor research, including information on assets and income; as well as information on interests and personal connections.
    • Responsible for ensuring CRM database (currently GiftWorks) reflects development activity such as mailings; and, ensuring its interface with Constant Contact.
  • Other development and administrative related duties as assigned by the Director of Development.
  • Passion for Common Ground’s mission – at the intersection of social and environmental justice with an educational focus; and, a desire to work with a diverse community of youth and adults.
  • Experience with social justice work, in New Haven or in another community.
  • Enthusiasm for and commitment to the New Haven area.
  • 2-3 years experience in nonprofit development or event planning preferred; alternately, equivalent length of experience in sales or marketing experience in the for-profit sector.
  • Experience with project/program development, from design and organization, to management and execution.
  • Understanding of how to create and manage to a budget using spreadsheets.
  • Meticulous attention to detail when it comes to customer service.
  • Skilled volunteer recruiter, motivator and manager.
  • Strong and experienced writer, and has experience managing the pressure of writing under deadlines, including media writing and editing.
  • Computer and internet proficient, experience with spreadsheets, customer relationship management databases (Common Ground uses GiftWorks), Constant Contact, and social media outlets. Common Ground uses the Google suite of products and the Microsoft Office suite of products. Experience with video a plus.
Work Schedule and Compensation

Common Ground’s work hours typically run Monday through Friday. Some nights and weekends are required of this position, especially to ensure the smooth functioning of events and volunteer committees. Work hours will be scheduled in agreement with the Development Director. Common Ground offers many benefits, including health and dental benefits, and financial compensation is commensurate with the level of responsibility.

Competitive salary and benefits package including vacation, sick, and holiday time, medical, dental, and life insurance, and retirement plan. Homemade lunch from the farm is provided free to all employees!

How to Apply

To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Kimball Cartwright at Cover letters and resumes will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. In your cover letter, please describe why Common Ground’s mission resonates for you personally and how your qualifications and experience fit with the goals and responsibilities of this position.


Common Ground is committed to the recruitment and retention of staff that is reflective of the communities we work with. We strongly encourage applicants from people of color, immigrants, women, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups.

It has been the policy and will continue to be the strong commitment of the Common Ground and all contractors and subcontractors who do business with Common Ground to provide equal opportunities in employment to all qualified persons solely on the basis of job-related skills, ability and merit. Common Ground will continue to take Affirmative Action to ensure that applicants are employed and that employees are treated during employment without regard to their race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, mental disorder (present or past history thereof) age, physical disability (but not limited to blindness), marital status, intellectual disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and criminal record. Such action includes, but is not limited to, employment, promotion, demotion or transfer; recruitment or recruitment advertising; layoff or termination; rates of pay or other forms of compensation, and selection for training, professional development, attendance at conferences or other opportunities for advancement. Common Ground, its contractors and subcontractors will continue to make good faith efforts to comply with all federal and state laws and policies which speak to equal employment opportunity.

The principles of Affirmative Action are addressed in the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments of the United States Constitution, Civil Rights Act of 1866, 1870, 1871, Equal Pay Act of 1963, Title VI and VII of the 1964 United States Civil Rights Act, Presidential Executive Order 11246, amended by 11375, (Non-discrimination under federal contracts)< Act 1, Section 1 and 20 of the Connecticut Constitution, Governor Grasso’s Executive Order Number 11, Governor O’Neill’s Executive Order 9, the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Law (Sec. 46a-60-69) of the Connecticut General Statutes, Connecticut Code of Fair Practices (46a-7081), Deprivation of Civil Rights (46a-58(a)(d)), Public Accommodations Law (46a-63-64), Discrimination against Criminal Offenders (46a-80), definition of Blind (46a-51(1)), definition of Physically Disabled (46a-51(15)), definition of Intellectual Disability (46a51(13)), cooperation with the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (46a-77), Sexual Harassment (46a-60(a)-8), Connecticut Credit Discrimination Law (360436 through 439), Title I of the State and Local Fiscal Assistance Act of 1972.
This Affirmative Action Policy Statement re-affirms Common Ground’s commitment to equity in the workplace and the principles of Equal Employment Opportunity.


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