Director of Development opening

Help IRW keep government and corporations accountable while securing the future of independent journalism.

The Investigative Reporting Workshop is seeking a Director of Development to lead all fundraising activities.  By raising external funds, the position drives the Workshop’s mission to hold institutions of power accountable while training the next generation of investigative reporters.

The Director of Development has primary responsibility for developing and implementing fundraising campaigns to realize IRW’s annual budget of approximately $2 million by securing individual donations (small to major gifts) and grants from foundations.  To ensure its journalistic independence, IRW does not accept corporate or government funding.

Key responsibilities of the position include:

  • Developing, implementing, monitoring and reporting on annual fundraising plans.
  • Prospecting, cultivating, soliciting and retaining individual and foundation funders.
  • Grant submission, compliance, and reporting.
  • Raising IRW’s profile in the arena of foundation and individual philanthropy.
  • Staying informed on and adhering to philanthropic best practices.
  • Strategic planning in collaboration with Workshop editors and staff.

The position reports to the Executive Editor, who oversees all aspects of the Workshop, including fundraising.  The position works closely with IRW’s senior staff.  The Director of Development also leverages American University (AU) resources to support IRW’s growth, coordinating with AU’s Office of Development (including Alumni Relations) and Office of Sponsored Programs.

The Investigative Reporting Workshop pairs experienced reporters and editors with undergraduate, graduate-student and post-graduate interns and fellows to conduct in-depth, long-form journalism on such issues as the environment, health, criminal justice, national security, immigration, and the economy.  These investigations are co-published across print, web, television, film, and radio with major media partners and nonprofit newsrooms, including the Washington Post, NPR, and Reveal.  The Workshop also co-produces documentaries for PBS’s award-winning series FRONTLINE. 

For more about IRW, please visit the ABOUT page.


  • Bachelor’s degree required, Master’s degree preferred.
  • A minimum of 5-7 years demonstrated progressive and successful development experience in nonprofit organization(s).
  • Prior responsibility for institutional and project budgets and goals.
  • Excellent skills communicating orally and in writing with diverse audiences.
  • Proven ability to work independently to meet goals and deadlines.
  • Demonstrated creativity and resourcefulness in the development and implementation of fundraising strategies.

Benefits (including, but not limited to):

  • Salary commensurate with experience
  • Flexible schedule
  • Health and Dental
  • Life insurance
  • Tuition remission (including family members)
  • For more details, visit

How to apply:

Applications must be submitted through American University.  No phone calls or emails, please.

Additional Information:

  • The position is fully contingent on external funds. 
  • Occasional travel may be required. 
  • Occasional evening and weekend work may be required.
  • Hiring offers for this position are contingent on a successful completion of a background check.

American University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution that operates in compliance with applicable laws and regulations.  The university does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), age, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, personal appearance, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, source of income, veteran status, an individual’s genetic information or any other bases under federal or local laws (collectively “Protected Bases”) in its programs and activities.