Development Manager (SS)


Solar Sister is a movement of women, men, allies, and partners who care about the well-being of people and planet. Our mission is to eradicate energy poverty by empowering women with economic opportunity. We are creating a deliberately woman-centered network of entrepreneurs to bring the breakthrough potential of clean energy technology to even the most remote communities in rural Africa.
Our model is simple: each Solar Sister entrepreneur buys her lights and cookstoves from Solar Sister, then sells and delivers them — woman-to-woman — to her family, friends and neighbors. We provide essential services and training that enable women entrepreneurs to build sustainable businesses in their own communities. Since our founding in 2010, Solar Sister has supported over 5,000 entrepreneurs, distributed over 400,000 clean energy products, and reached nearly 2 million people.


At a time of programmatic growth and opportunity, Solar Sister seeks a mission-driven, energetic, and nimble Development Manager to drive fundraising strategies for individual and institutional giving. Joining a lean 4-member US-based team – and working alongside colleagues in Africa -- the Development Manager will partner closely with the CEO and Board of Directors to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward a range of supporters, with an emphasis on raising unrestricted gifts from major individual and institutional donors. In addition, the Development Manager will strengthen Solar Sister’s development systems and processes to ensure smooth day-to-day fundraising operations and donor management.
Specifically, the Development Manager will:
  • Lead the design and implementation of a comprehensive fundraising plan to meet the needs of Solar Sister’s annual and 5-year goals, inclusive of: 1) raising $2M in FY21 and positioning the organization to grow to $6M in the coming years, 2) grow engagement of current institutional supporters through renewing and/or increasing multi-year grants, and 3) diversifying revenue streams and increasing unrestricted gifts from individual donors.
  • Build out a robust individual giving program, inclusive of major giving, annual giving, events, capital campaigns, and other giving vehicles. Lead efforts to identify and qualify prospective major donors. Play a lead role in outreach and cultivation of new donors.
  • Provide thought partnership and direction to the CEO to ensure efficiency of their time spent on fundraising and position them to cultivate, solicit, and steward relationships with donors. Facilitate the board-led fundraising committee and engage board members in prospecting, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding donors.
  • Conduct ongoing pipeline research on prospective donors and prioritize fundraising opportunities with foundations, corporate partners, and family foundations, and government funding programs.
  • Partner with the Grants Manager to craft letters of inquiry, case statements, proposals, and reports, and tightly manage a fundraising calendar to ensure that proposals, renewals, and reports are submitted on time. Ensure close collaboration with program staff in crafting funding opportunities and proposals.
  • Guide the creation of strategic donor communications, including stewardship touchpoints, briefing materials for donor meetings, funder presentations, written appeals, gift acknowledgements, and other materials as needed. Leverage data, impact stories, and knowledge of Solar Sister’s work in communications.
  • Craft letters of inquiry, case statements, and proposals, and tightly manage a fundraising calendar to ensure that proposals are submitted on time. Ensure close collaboration with Grant Manager and program staff in crafting funding opportunities and proposals.
  • Establish and maintain processes and systems for fundraising operations, ensuring that all donor information, touchpoints, and projections are tracked effectively in the Salesforce database.
  • Track and analyze fundraising metrics to monitor success and inform strategy.
  • Operate and thrive on a lean and remote team that values sisterhood, trust, and grit, with a willingness to jump in and collaborate with colleagues across the organization.


  • A passionate advocate who is committed to Solar Sister’s mission and values. You believe in a brighter world powered by women entrepreneurs and their power to seize economic opportunity and address the clean energy challenge. You resonate with Solar Sister’s values of sisterhood, trust, and grit.
  • A versatile and well-rounded fund development professional. You bring at least 5 years of work experience in fundraising, with a track record of identifying, qualifying, cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding institutional and individual supporters. You enjoy both the operational and donor-facing aspects of fundraising, and are knowledgeable about fundraising systems, processes, and best practices.
  • An exceptional writer, storyteller, and communicator. You are able to grasp new concepts quickly, absorb complex information, and condense it for lay audiences to understand. You demonstrate an understanding of the context surrounding an issue area and create logical arguments that clearly articulate the ‘why’ behind mission and impact. Prior grant writing experience is required.
  • A thoughtful relationship builder who develops rapport easily and fosters long-term connections. You have a warm, energetic, poised, and authentic personality that translates to building lasting relationships both internally and externally. You “manage up” with senior leadership and board members on fundraising activities, and effectively work across functional teams. You are adept at connecting individuals with stories about Solar Sister’s impact that matter to them.
  • A well-organized and resourceful behind-the-scenes manager. You are experienced in managing multiple projects and tasks, proactively and independently addressing challenges as they arise. You have a mind for operations and efficiency, and strategically use limited resources to create systems and processes. You are skilled at getting the most out of donor relationship management and donor research systems. 
  • A flexible, self-directed, and willing team member. You are at home in a lean nonprofit environment with the ability to stay focused and nimble in the face of growth and change. You are willing to try new things, fail quickly, and try again. You are collaborative, pitch in wherever is needed, and are comfortable with shared responsibility.
  • An authentic personality full of confidence and heart. You carry yourself with the same dignity and positivity you provide others. You are inspired by challenges and are motivated by big goals.
 The following knowledge, skills, and experiences are nice to have:
  • Knowledge of women’s rights, international development, and/or clean energy sector
  • Experience working at an international organization and knowledge of the international philanthropic landscape
  • Experience using Salesforce as a donor management system
This full-time position is available immediately. This position is virtual and can work from anywhere in the United States. Washington, D.C. Metro Area home base is preferred. While there is no travel during COVID, there may be domestic and international travel once it is safe to do so.
Salary is $70,000 and additional benefits of $500/month allowance for medical insurance, 20 days for personal time off, 10 national holidays, and a 2-week closure at the end of the calendar year. Solar Sister offers a flexible work environment that supports the wellbeing of our team.


Please follow instructions online here.

If this opportunity calls out to you, please click here Apply Now button with 1) a tailored cover letter that explains why Solar Sister’s mission excites you and why this particular role is a fit for you and 2) your resume. Please address your cover letter to Katherine Lucey, Chief Executive Officer. We review applications on a rolling basis and strive to get back to applicants within two weeks.
Solar Sister values a diverse workplace and strongly encourages women, people of color, LGBT individuals, people with disabilities, members of ethnic minorities, foreign-born residents, and veterans to apply.
Solar Sister is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will not be discriminated against because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition or any protected category prohibited by local, state or federal laws.


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  • Reed Young
    published this page in Job Board 2020-10-13 08:34:22 -0400