Firelight Media is a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing emerging documentary filmmakers who tell stories about people, places, cultures, and issues that are underrepresented in the mainstream media, and to developing audiences for their work. Firelight Media’s key programs include the Documentary Lab, a flagship mentorship program that seeks out and supports emerging filmmakers of color.

Our sister organization, Firelight Films, is award-winning filmmaker Stanley Nelson’s production company. Recent projects include: Tulsa Burning: The 1921 Race Massacre for the History Channel, Crack: Cocaine, Corruption & Conspiracy for Netflix, and Attica for Showtime. Firelight Films is currently in production on a number of additional films, including a four-part series Creating The New World on the transatlantic slave trade.

Job Summary:

Firelight Media is seeking a Development Officer to join its growing Development department. They will work closely with the Director of Development to manage a roster of institutional, individual, and corporate donors and prospects. They will manage a calendar of funder deliverables to ensure their timely delivery, and will play a key role in the creation of funder reports, proposals, and other donor communications. The Development Officer will participate in donor cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship activities, including events. The ideal candidate will be able to work in a fast-paced environment, both independently and as part of a team and should be able to effectively communicate with a broad array of stakeholders, including trustees, executives, program officers, and major donors.


Management & Administration: 50%
  • Maintain a portfolio of Private Foundations and Public Agencies, serving as primary or secondary point of contact for Program Officers and Grants Managers
  • Lead composition and assembly of materials for institutional funder communications (e.g. LOIs, proposals, reports, etc.)
  • Maintain schedule of institutional funder deliverables and ensure their timely delivery
Donor Cultivation, Solicitation, and Stewardship: 20%
  • Assist Director of Development in the creation and implementation annual fundraising plans
  • Proactively research and identify donor prospects among individuals, corporations, and foundations, and develop appropriate cultivation and solicitation strategies
  • Stay abreast of new funding opportunities and shifts in the funding landscape
  • Attend donor events, as needed
Communications: 30%
  • Assist Director of Development in the composition and distribution of individual donor communications
  • Prepare written materials, including correspondence, solicitation materials, acknowledgements, and regular communications;
  • Report in a timely fashion to the President, Board of Directors, and funders, as required

Other duties, as assigned.

To thrive in this job you should have a willingness to try new things and be innovative in your approach to fundraising.


Must Haves:
  • A demonstrated track record of developing and implementing successful strategic fundraising plans for organizations with budgets of $1 million or more
  • A thorough understanding of private foundations and changing dynamics in philanthropy, emerging opportunities in crowdfunding, and knowledge of arts and cultural institutions and non-profit networks
  • Exceptional communications, organizational skills, independent initiative, flexibility, and good humor to be part of a fast-paced and demanding but casual work environment
  • Strong public speaking skills and a comprehensive understanding of the importance of institutional messaging
  • Alignment with Firelight’s dedication to independent filmmaking as a vehicle for change and empowerment
  • Extraordinary follow-through, attention to detail and deadlines, and a strong personal sense of accountability
  • Familiarity with corporate and individual donor strategies
  • Bachelor’s Degree and a minimum of 5 years of professional experience required
  • Excellent computer skills, including Word, Excel, and Google Drive, along with a demonstrated proficiency with relevant software and internet fundraising resources
  • Experience managing accounts within a Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) system

Position Details

Position: Development Officer

Salary Range: $65,000 - $75,000, Dependent on Experience

Benefits: A comprehensive benefits package. Benefits include 100% employer-paid health insurance; 20 vacation days accrued annually; a 403b retirement plan with employer matching and one-year vesting period; reimbursable gym membership through the employer health care plan; flexible spending accounts for transit and health care; and professional development.

Desired Start Date: December 2021

Apply By: November 30, 2021, we will be reviewing applications on a rolling basis

Location: Remote

To Apply:

Interested candidates should email cover letter, resume, and writing sample to: Please be sure to put “Development Officer - (LAST NAME, FIRST NAME)” in the subject line.

Firelight Media is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate because of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, or sexual orientation.


Join Our Mailing List

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Join us Friday, January 28 at 4pm ET for a special edition of our Beyond Resilience series at Sundance Film Festival: "Collaborating with Documentary Protagonists." RSVP to attend.

Times X icon