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Director of Development

The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), a public policy organization dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government, free enterprise, and individual liberty, is currently hiring for a Director of Development.

The Director of Development will oversee the daily operations of CEI’s fundraising department, as well as manage a portfolio of key individual donors. The Director of Development will be a self-disciplined, organized team player committed to expanding the boundaries of freedom. Culture matters at CEI. We have a fun, creative environment built around experienced policy leaders and led by a high energy President & CEO. The successful candidate will be aligned with CEI’s policy positions and be a willing to serve on a team that works hard, has a good sense of humor, and is intensely dedicated to CEI’s upward trajectory of growth.

CEI is most interested in finding a long-term team member.  As such, CEI is willing to tailor the exact duties and responsibilities of this role for the right candidate. If you are intrigued by what you’re reading and passionate about CEI’s mission but don’t necessarily check off every box, we’d still like to hear from you.

This position reports to the President and will be based in the Washington, DC metro area.  CEI will also consider outstanding candidates who need to work virtually from outside the Washington, DC area. For a virtual employee, regular travel to the DC office will be required.


Oversight of Fundraising Program - 50%

•    Managing the day-to-day operations of the fundraising department

•    Managing up, down, and laterally throughout the organization

•    Working closely with the an experienced team of fundraisers, including a Director of Philanthropy and Partnerships, Grant Manager, Development Associate, and the President & CEO to cultivate financial support for CEI

•    Managing the development department’s budget, processes, and progress toward goals

•    Providing monthly updates/reports to the President & CEO depicting activity and fundraising progress and semi-annual board reports, all with eye for thoroughness, clarity, and accuracy

•    Bringing new ideas and techniques to the team with an eye toward small scale experimentation

Cultivation and Donor Portfolio Growth - 40%

•    Manage a portfolio of established donors and prospects

•    Actively cultivate donors and grow their involvement with CEI; prospect to engage new donors

•    Travel to meet with donors (up to 20%)

•    Learn complex policy positions and be comfortable discussing them with donors and prospective donors

•    Maintain detailed Salesforce records

Special Projects - 10%

•    Work with the team on planned giving initiatives

•    Follow-up on local, regional, and national donor events

•    Assist the philanthropy team with key projects

The Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate will possess the following attributes:

•    10+ years of professional experience in a nonprofit organization with demonstrated success in a development function

•    Management experience with a development team preferred

•    Experience in major gift fundraising (3-5+ years) strongly preferred

•    Intuitive relationship builder

•    Ability and willingness to be on the road at least 20 percent of the time

•    Discretion; comfortable handling highly confidential materials.

•    Ability to make the trains run on time and meet deadlines

•    Positive, flexible attitude

•    Self-starter mentality

•    Alignment with and passion for CEI’s mission

How to Apply

Qualified candidates should submit the following application materials in one PDF document:

•    Resume

•    Cover Letter detailing your interest in the position/the mission of CEI and your salary requirements. If you need to work virtually from outside the DC metro areas, please explain this in the cover letter.

Applications should be submitted to Talent Market via this link:

Questions can be directed to Claire Kittle Dixon, Executive Director of Talent Market,  who is assisting with the search:

While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview. Only direct applications will be considered. No phone calls, please.

Talent Market is a nonprofit entity dedicated to promoting liberty by helping free market nonprofits identify talent for critical roles. We provide free consulting and recruiting services to free-market think tanks, policy organizations, research centers, and capacity-building institutions dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government and free enterprise.


The Competitive Enterprise Institute internship program gives interested students and recent college graduates the opportunity to learn about and promote the principles of limited government, free enterprise, and individual liberty. We pair interns with members of CEI’s staff for a direct mentorship experience. 

Schedule of Terms
Summer: June-August
Applications: Closed for Summer 2018

Fall: September-December
Applications Due: August 18

Spring: January-May
Applications Due: December 8

Exact start and end dates subject to negotiation with successful applicants.

Click here for more information on how to apply for a CEI internship.

Warren T. Brookes Journalism Fellowship

CEI is no longer accepting applications for the Warren Brookes Journalism Fellowship. Learn more about the history of the program here.