Development Director - ACLU of Arkansas

Affiliate Offices
February 8, 2018

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas (ACLU of Arkansas) seeks a dynamic, experienced development professional to build and conduct a philanthropy program with a strong emphasis on major gifts. A senior position reporting directly to the Executive Director.

It is an exciting time to join the ACLU of Arkansas. This trusted and respected organization is on the front lines of some of today’s most important issues and is now receiving unprecedented levels of public support. We are currently supported by 6,500 donors and members, reflecting significant growth since the November 2016 elections. We are looking to increase our organization’s resources dramatically to continue this growth and expand our organization’s impact.

We are located in Little Rock, Arkansas, a city known for its “livability.” Little Rock has been recognized in recent years by major publications (Forbes, Kiplinger, Gallup, et. al.) as a top U.S. city overall and for lifestyle, outdoors/the environment, healthy living, happiness and value, where educational and cultural offerings continue to grow.

For more about our great city, please see the attachment “Living and Working In and Near Little Rock” at


Major Gifts

First and foremost, he/she will be responsible for developing and executing a comprehensive development program that focuses on major gifts with clear fund-raising goals and targets. He/she will:

  • Expand our pool of major donors with gift-making capacity of $10,000+;
  • Identify high-level prospects and conduct meetings for qualifications, cultivations and face-to-face solicitations;
  • Partner with our executive director to develop and support her work with her own portfolio;
  • Be responsible for the “back-end” work of a development shop as well;
  • Draft and send donor correspondence and gift proposals: ensure that contributions are acknowledged quickly and thoughtfully, that all appropriate stewardship is done and that gifts are recorded in a timely manner; and
  • Work with our staff, board of directors and other volunteers to nurture a culture of philanthropy.

Planned Giving

  • Steward existing planned giving donors;
  • Pursue strategies to expand membership in planned giving programs; and
  • Market planned giving opportunities to a range of supporters.


  • Maintain the accuracy, security and hygiene of our donor database and development files, including giving histories, profiles, interactions, etc.;
  • Help transition to our new, comprehensive donor/constituent management system in 2018;
  • Track development goals, prepare regular reports (analyze gifts, results, trends, projections, etc.) and communicate results to appropriate audiences;
  • Oversee production of formal reports for internal and external purposes;
  • Enforce confidentiality and work quality requirements within the organization’s development functions; and
  • Oversee the creation and production of development messages and materials.

Cooperative Work

  • Work with staff to maximize success on specific goals and cross-department initiatives;
  • Take advantage of the support and resources offered by the ACLU National office and partner with them on state and national goals; and
  • Share resources and best practices with peers at ACLU offices around the country.


  • Bachelor’s degree and/or an equivalent combination of education and experience;
  • Successful track record of identifying, cultivating and soliciting gifts from individual major donors and prospects;
  • Personal commitment to civil liberties principles and an understanding of and appreciation for the ACLU’s values, mission and goals;
  • Commitment to diversity--with a personal approach that values individuals and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstance--plus the ability to work with diverse individuals within the organization and in the broader community;
  • At least three years of demonstrated experience in nonprofit fundraising w/ an emphasis on individual major gifts and/or work in developing/managing relationships with donor portfolios (knowledge of AR philanthropic community a plus);
  • Exceptional initiative, vision and ambition to lead a vibrant and growing philanthropy program;
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills;
  • Demonstrated leadership skills; experience successfully directing people at all levels of an organization in executing development-related activities;
  • Follow-through and the ability to meet tight deadlines;
  • Willingness and ability to work beyond a 9-5 workday as needed;
  • Knowledge of and comfort level with budgeting and financial management principles;
  • (Desirable) experience working with advocacy and/or community-based organizations;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft’s Office suite, social media communications and fundraising databases; and
  • Ability and willingness to travel regularly in-state and occasionally out-of-state, with possession of a valid driver’s license or driver’s privilege card and a reliable vehicle.

Compensation & Benefits

Salary negotiable, DOE. Excellent benefits, incl. paid vacation (2 weeks to start), paid insurance: medical, dental, life and long-term disability ins., matched 401(k) plan, and generous paid holidays. We also offer flexibility for life’s interruptions.

More About the ACLU of Arkansas

Founded in 1969, the ACLU of Arkansas is a not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization which uses legal, legislative and public education to protect and promote a broad range of civil rights and civil liberties, including free speech, racial justice, privacy, religious liberty, reproductive rights, LGBT rights and more. The ACLU of Arkansas is an affiliate of the national ACLU, the leading defender of the civil liberties guaranteed by our nation’s Bill of Rights. (To learn more about the work of the ACLU visit and

The ACLU of Arkansas is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We encourage applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability or veteran status. The ACLU of Arkansas undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that persons with disabilities have full opportunities for employment in all positions.

To Apply

Send cover letter, resume, three professional references and a two-page business writing sample to the ACLU of Arkansas:

Mail: Development Director Job, ACLU of Arkansas, 904 West 2nd Street, Little Rock, AR 72201
Email: (put “Development Director” and last name in the subj. line.)

Indicate how you learned about the position. Applications reviewed on a rolling basis until filled.

Stay Informed