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The Marshall Project is a nonprofit news organization covering America’s criminal justice system. In 2016, The Marshall Project was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for explanatory journalism and was a Pulitzer finalist for investigative reporting. We are not advocates but we have a declared mission: to create and sustain a sense of urgency about the criminal justice system. Our newsroom produces stories that other news organizations miss, underestimate or misunderstand.

We are hiring a Director (Senior Writer) Development Communications who can compose beautiful prose, conveying our mission with urgency and grace to a growing community of donors. This is a new role and will be a key member of a small team of fundraising professionals. This position will be responsible for both drafting and overseeing tailored, high-level donor correspondence of all kinds. Their writing will support the fundraising team (including, but not limited to the President, Editor-in-Chief and board members) in cultivating, soliciting and stewarding donors.

We are a small team with big ambitions. We seek to make an impact on the criminal justice system through journalism, rendering it more fair, effective, transparent and humane. We are looking for someone who can roll up their sleeves while also supporting colleagues in writing assignments, taking on their own projects, delegating others and offering editorial feedback and support. We are looking for someone who writes clean, compelling copy both quickly and accurately. The successful candidate will thrive in a fast-paced environment and create paths where none existed previously.


  • Lead and execute all communications strategy for the development team.

  • Conceive a broad vision for using communications to build and strengthen relationships with prospective and existing donors of The Marshall Project.

  • Develop long- and short-term plans to execute that vision and measure progress.

  • Synthesize complex information related to our journalism into a clear and compelling narrative that speaks to donor audiences. This includes developing key messages about how The Marshall Project has impact, and how donors can have impact through us.

  • Manage the overall communications and messaging to prospective and existing donors, in collaboration with the Development, Communications and Editorial teams through multiple platforms: proposals, reports, letters of inquiry, membership campaigns, letters, personalized outreach and stewardship materials for both foundation and individuals.

  • Draft donor-specific correspondence – including emails, reports, proposals, solicitation materials, case statements and brief program summaries – for a frontline fundraising team who develop each donor relationship to maximize philanthropic potential.

  • Develop and design gift proposal templates and key stewardship products for donors as well as other materials.

  • Draft high-level remarks for events and other targeted speaking engagements when appropriate.

  • Create and refine systems for donor communications. Coordinate and share writing across the department to meet needs of donor audiences. Create systems to share standard language and collateral materials including impact reports, the Annual Report and summaries of news stories.

  • Develop and maintain knowledge of The Marshall Project’s history, present and vision for the future.

  • Meet all writing deadlines for assigned portfolio.


  • Significant writing experience in journalism, development, marketing, or communications

  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills, with proven experience and excellence in drafting professional content for external communications particularly for donor or customer audiences. Experience in foundation relations or a related field a plus.

  • Proven ability to synthesize and communicate complex issues clearly and concisely and to create persuasive and compelling organizational-level messaging and cases for support, adapting writing styles for varied audiences.

  • Creative thinker with the ability to prioritize, execute and manage multiple projects through to completion while meeting tight deadlines.

  • Ability to maintain a high level of accuracy and detail.

  • Ability to develop and maintain productive relationships within the team, department and across the organization.

  • Commitment to work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts.

  • Commitment to the mission of The Marshall Project.

  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity within the office using a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regards to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, disability and socio-economic circumstance

This position is full-time and will be based in our New York City newsroom. However, due to COVID-19, we are working remotely until at least until December, or possibly longer.

We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to diversity. We welcome qualified applicants of all races, ethnicities, physical abilities, genders and sexual orientations, including people who have been incarcerated or otherwise involved with the criminal justice system.

To apply, use this form to submit a resume, cover letter and references.