Director, Donor Communications

With world attention on both the environment and the economy, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is where policymakers and business leaders turn for win-win solutions. By focusing on strong science, uncommon partnerships and market-based approaches, we tackle urgent threats with practical solutions. We are one of the world’s largest environmental organizations, with more than two million members and a staff of approximately 700 scientists, economists, policy experts, and other professionals around the world. We operate in 22 geographies with unique projects running across four programs. You will be part of a vibrant workplace that welcomes diverse perspectives, talents and contributions, where innovation and results are a way of life.


EDF envisions a world in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected to the environmental challenges we face and are engaged in creating durable, equitable solutions. We seek talented candidates who share the Core Values that allow us to experiment courageously in our work while staying true to who we’ve been as an organization for 50 years. Are you a results oriented individual who is passionate about creating environmental solutions that make a lasting difference in the world? Do you respect diverse perspectives, talents and contributions? Do you value innovation and enjoy designing and using a wide range of problem-solving tools? Do you embrace environmental goals with a sense of optimism while taking into account real-world dynamics? If you have integrity and a strong desire to uphold a commitment to science, rigorous analysis, intellectual honesty and ethical action, then EDF is the place for you.

This position can be based in any US EDF Office. 


Overall responsibility


The Director of Development Communications serves as a leader within the Development Department and EDF overall on communications strategy and execution for current and prospective donors of at least $100,000. Under the supervision of the senior director of Development Communications, the director manages a group of experienced donor communications professionals to ensure the delivery of high quality general and customized donor communications materials. The director partners with institutional, major and principal gift officers, program leadership and other members of the executive team to ensure that the organization’s greatest needs are met. The director mentors and provides advice to direct reports and others within the Development Communications Team, and identifies and implements new ways to improve quality, efficiency and productivity. The director also serves as the Development liaison to the Internal Communications and Crisis Communications Working Groups, partners with colleagues in Marketing and Communications, and produces a variety of high priority deliverables as needed.


The director reports to the Senior Director of Development Communications.

Key Responsibilities

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Develop and implement overall communications strategy for current and prospective donors of at least $100,000 in partnership with Senior Director and VP for Development
  • Manage, coach and mentor Development Communications staff members
  • Manage workload and distribution of assignments to team members in partnership with Senior Director
  • Partner with institutional, major and principal gift officers to determine the best way to produce deliverables needed for the donors in their portfolios
  • Provide guidance and editorial direction on the production of board communications, proposals, funding menus, reports, fact sheets, brochures, donor emails, teleconference scripts, PowerPoints and other communications
  • Identify needs for new or revised materials, graphics, photos; create new ways to communicate with high-capacity donors and prospects
  • Maintain a working knowledge of current best practices in fundraising and donor communications
  • Maintain a working knowledge of the philanthropic priorities and activities of the organization’s top donors
  • Work with Program and Development leadership to create communications strategies for EDF’s highest priority funding needs
  • Develop and maintain productive working relationships with program leadership to ensure clear understanding of and work plans to advance shared priorities
  • Make sure that all Development staff have access to the program information they need to fundraise successfully, through the project space, internal emails, in-person updates by program staff, and other means
  • Carryout special projects that will add value for the department or the organization
  • Serve as the Development lead on EDF-wide internal communications and crisis communications



  • Bachelor’s degree in English/communications/journalism or related field; advanced degree preferred
  • Minimum 10 years’ development/marketing/communications experience
  • Experience in the environmental or nonprofit field; or on a science and policy heavy topic/campaign
  • Experience working in a matrixed organization with multiple internal/external stakeholders and teams and consultants spanning the globe
  • Proven ability to use communications as a tool to achieve goals
  • Strong team management and mentoring skills
  • Superb strategy, writing, editing and communications skills

Environmental Defense Fund is an equal opportunity employer where an applicant's qualifications are considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis prohibited by law.