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Development Associate, Institutional Giving

Vera Institute of Justice

Vera Institute of Justice

Brooklyn, NY, USA
Posted on Sunday, September 17, 2023

Who we are:

The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, is a nonprofit criminal justice organization that strives to build just government institutions and safe communities free from the scourge of racism, white supremacy, profit, and inequity that is pervasive in this country’s legal systems. We are an “inside” lane organization that drives change at scale with ambitious public sector leaders who share our commitment to building anti-racist, reparative systems that deliver justice. We leverage our access to government to transform these systems and work collaboratively with stakeholders across many movements—including advocacy, grassroots, and grasstop organizations. Our role is to pilot solutions that are transformative and achievable, harness the power of evidence to drive effective policy and practice, and use advocacy and communications to change narratives and norms.

Vera has a staff of 300 people and offices in New York City, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, and New Orleans. We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace. We expect our staff to embody respect, independence, collaboration, commitment, anti-racism, and equity—both in our outward-facing work and the internal culture of our workplace. We value a range of experiences in people’s educational backgrounds and encourage people who have been directly impacted by the criminal justice system to apply.

Who you are:

The Development Associate of Institutional Giving will play a critical role in securing funding to advance Vera’s mission and initiatives. Working closely with colleagues on the development team, leadership, and program staff, the Development Associate will prepare proposals, reports, and letters of inquiry for foundations, corporations, government agencies, and other grant-making organizations. The Development Associate will also carry a portfolio of institutional donors and be responsible for developing and implementing cultivation and stewardship strategies in partnership with program staff. Their work will directly contribute to Vera’s ability to carry out essential programs and initiatives, ultimately making a meaningful difference in the lives of those impacted by mass incarceration.

What you'll do:

Grant Proposal Development:

  • Collaborate with program managers and staff to gather information and data needed for grant proposals
  • Write compelling grant proposals and other supporting documents, ensuring they are clear, concise, and tailored to the specific grant-making organization’s guidelines
  • Develop budgets and financial narratives in coordination with the Finance team and Director of Institutional Giving
  • Ensure all proposal components, including supporting documents and attachments, are complete and submitted by deadlines

Grant Reporting and Compliance:

  • Monitor grant awards and track progress on grant-funded projects
  • Prepare and submit timely and accurate grant reports as required by funders
  • Ensure compliance with all grant-related regulations and reporting requirements
  • Collaborate with program managers to ensure grant funds are used in accordance with grant agreements
  • Assist in grant-related audits and evaluations as necessary

Research and Identifying Funding Opportunities:

  • Collaborate with Prospect Researcher to identify and qualify potential grant opportunities that align with Vera’s mission and programs
  • Support the tracking of prospective funders in Vera’s CRM

Relationship Management:

  • Cultivate and maintain relationships with grant-making organizations, foundation representatives, and other potential funding sources
  • Attend meetings, conferences, and networking events to expand our grant funding opportunities

Other duties as assigned by the Director of Institutional Giving

What qualifications are we looking for?

  • At minimum, 3+ years of successful, progressive experience in grant writing or commensurate institutional giving work


  • Bachelor’s degree in field relevant to Vera’s scope of work or development / philanthropy

Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities you'll bring:

  • Exceptional written communication skills, attention to detail, and ability to work toward deadlines
  • Demonstrated ability to understand complex programmatic work and communicate verbally with both internal and external stakeholders
  • A demonstrated commitment to the agency mission and dismantling racism within our institution and the wider community
  • An understanding of the role that racial inequity plays in our society and in movement building and has demonstrated an ability to effectively communicate and collaborate across differences.
  • Experience conducting donor research on institutional and other private sector donors
  • Proficiency with grants databases and prospect research tools
  • Advanced judgement and interpersonal skills, including the ability to maintain tact, diplomacy, and confidentiality while representing the organization and interfacing with all levels of staff, funders, and vendors
  • Adept at working both collaboratively and independently
  • Flexibility to work infrequent events outside of regular business hours as needed

Technical knowledge we need you prepared to use:

  • Microsoft Office Suite (with an emphasis on Word and Excel)
  • EveryAction or similar fundraising database
  • Foundation Directory Online and/or related prospect research databases


Please note this role will report to our Brooklyn, NY office. Vera employees adhere to a hybrid schedule and are in-office on an alternating schedule that generally amounts to 10 days per month.

Compensation and Benefits:

The compensation range for this position is $76,000 -- $81,000. Actual salaries will vary depending on factors including but not limited to experience and performance. The salary range listed is just one component of Vera Institute’s total compensation package for employees. As an employer of choice in our field, supporting Vera staff—both personally and professionally—is a priority. To do this, we invest in the well-being of our staff through other rewards including merit pay, generous paid time off, a comprehensive health insurance plan, student loan repayment benefits, professional development training opportunities and up to $2,000 annual for education costs and fees relevant to Vera work, employer-funded retirement plan, and flexible time. To learn more about Vera’s benefits offerings, click here.

Applications may also be faxed to:

ATTN: People Resources / Development Associate of Institutional Giving
Vera Institute of Justice
34 35th St, Suite 4-2A, Brooklyn, NY 11232
Fax: (212) 941-9407
Please use only one method (online, mail or fax) of submission.
No phone calls, please. Only applicants selected for interviews will be contacted.

In order to ensure a healthy and safe work environment, Vera Institute of Justice is requiring all employees to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccine before their start date. Employees who cannot receive the vaccine because of a disability/medical contraindication or sincerely-held religious belief may request an accommodation (e.g., an exemption) to this requirement.

Vera is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, military status, prior record of arrest or conviction, citizenship status, current employment status, or caregiver status.

Vera works to advance justice, particularly racial justice, in an increasingly multicultural country and globally connected world. We value diverse experiences, including with regard to educational background and justice system contact, and depend on a diverse staff to carry out our mission.

For more information about Vera, please visit www.vera.org