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Development Manager

About us

Founded in 1937, Community Art Center (CAC) is a neighborhood institution committed to our mission: to cultivate an engaged community of youth whose powerful artistic voices transform their lives, their neighborhoods, and their worlds. We believe in the power of young people. We believe in the power of artistic expression. We believe in taking care of ourselves and each other. We believe in creating positive change in our neighborhood & beyond.

CAC was founded by a group of parents who understood that creativity is central to human development. The organization began during the Great Depression, in the basement of Newtowne Court, one of America's oldest public housing developments. It emerged as a way to improve access to education, arts-rich experiences, and creative enrichment activities for children and youth in low-income situations. By 1980 CAC received its first state child care license (through the Department of Early Education and Care) allowing for expanded services and reach. In 1999 CAC moved into a former Polaroid Warehouse building across the street from Newtowne Court.

Programs today include the School Aged Child Care Program for youth aged 5-12, providing  interdisciplinary art lessons alongside essential child care for families. Teen Public Art and Teen Media Programs, support creative development and help prepare young people for post-secondary opportunities, building phenomenal portfolios along the way. The Teen Media Program operates Do It Your Damn Self!! National Youth Film Festival, the nation's longest-running youth-led film festival for teens ages 13-19. The film festival was founded as a bold act of self-determination, to give voice to young people and those from historically marginalized backgrounds. Today, many films center on themes of social justice and explore the complexities of identities, from a youth lens.

Community Art Center’s Teen Public Art Program engages young people in collaborative projects. Teens employ tools of civic engagement, and work with neighbors, organizations, companies, and municipal agencies to conceptualize, design, and execute installations. Their public art keeps their voice and perspective central to the dialogue, as they participate in what their neighborhood looks like. Community Art Center’s Teen Public Art murals can be spotted on buildings and walls around Cambridge!

Youth programs are offered in a family like environment with transportation, mental and emotional supports, and up to three full meals a day. "Port Arise" and community programs are open to all ages, ensuring that families in crisis have their basic needs met. Now in its 87th year, CAC is still a grass-roots organization that serves the most historically marginalized residents of the Port-neighborhood in Cambridge.

Community Art Center regularly partners with City of Cambridge agencies, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University, and a plethora of life sciences and tech companies in the community. The organization has worked with Boston Children’s Hospital, Cambridge Health Alliance, and numerous property developers in the area, as well. The Art Center maintains a long history of quality, arts-based youth development programming. The Development Manager will have the exciting opportunity to strengthen and grow our historic organization and lead creative new approaches to corporate, governmental and institutional giving.

What we seek

An energetic, ambitious, unflappable, go-getter who is committed to mission-driven work, and embodies a robust dedication to confronting issues of social justice, access, and equity - in the spirit that has permeated the organization since its early beginnings. The Development Manager will see challenges as opportunities, will dream big dreams, and have a knack for working with the CAC Team to convey human stories of impact. The Development Manager will be a strong writer, with an ability to cut through jargon. One who exhibits a staunch sense of responsibility, and  a strict adherence to deadlines and time management. The organization seeks someone with a reliable work ethic, who understands their role as part of a larger ecosystem, and is driven and motivated to advance the lives of those around them. A creative thinker, the Development Manager will not be immobilized by obstacles; the right person will seek solutions and thrive in problem-solver mode. The Development Manager should have a good sense of humor, be curious, and possess an ability to listen to others with interest and an empathetic ear. The Development Manager will have a need to work well collaboratively, and often independently. The Development Manager must be comfortable representing the organization, and speaking plainly to others about its mission, work, challenges, and opportunities.

The Development Manager reports to the Executive Director and will help to build and implement the Community Art Center’s fundraising program to meet our financial needs. The Development Manager will work closely with the Executive Director to shape strategy and drive campaigns to reach our current annual fundraising goal of $1.6 million. The Development Manager will help to create and execute on a multi-year development plan in order to meet program and financial goals over the long term with a particular focus on foundations and corporate funding, with some smaller efforts targeted at individual giving. The Development Manager is a member of the organization’s leadership team and is responsible for leading the effort to meet short and long term development objectives for Community Art Center. They will serve as the primary fundraiser for Community Art Center alongside the Executive Director and members of the Board of Directors. The Development Manager will work closely with the Teen Public Art Manager, Teen Media Manager, School Age Child Care Program Manager, Director of Operations & Finance, Director of Programs, Administrative Assistant, and a number of interns throughout the year.

Key Areas of Responsibility

  • Resource Development

  • Assist in providing long-term direction and strategy for resource seeking.

  • Maintain and develop administrative processes for all resource seeking needs including boilerplate language for a variety of grants and proposals.

  • Prioritize a grants calendar ensuring that proposals are submitted in a timely fashion

  • Research and write foundation, corporate and governmental grant proposals and reports

  • Update statistics on Community Art Center staff, youth and families for grant and reporting purposes

  • Manage occasional communications with corporate public art clients and cultivate new clients with support from the Executive Director

  • Support events and marketing efforts in soliciting businesses and corporations to be event sponsors

  • Create and implement annual solicitation for individual donors

  • Oversee development operations to ensure timely and secure gift processing and acknowledgments and database integrity

  • Manage relationships with organizations/institutions that wish to donate in-kind goods or services

  • Engage External Stakeholders

  • Develop an organizational marketing, branding and outreach strategy with input from organizational leadership

  • Represent the Community Art Center at meetings with key funders, outreach events and public forums

  • Oversee the Events and Marketing Manager in the creation and maintenance of Art Center external communications including website, social media and printed materials

  • Seeks out opportunities to create and build new and strategic connections for the organization

  • Must be comfortable with making phone calls, sending emails to update and reach out to current and/or prospective funders

  • Attend occasional networking opportunities, representing the organization

  • Events Support

  • Participate/ assist in organizing small and large fundraising events and incorporate fundraising components into programmatic events

  • Supports & participates in programmatic events like the organization’s Do It Your Damn Self!! Youth Film Festival; the annual block party, Port Arts Fest; Mural Masters painting competition; School Age Child Care Program’s Fall Festival, etc.

  • Organizational Leadership

  • Provide support to the Development Committee of the Board of Directors

  • Participate in leadership team meetings and organizational strategy sessions

  • Attend and support major program culmination events

  • Carry out tasks and duties as assigned by the Executive Director

Additional Qualifications

Candidates must be committed to the Community Art Center’s mission and organizational values, which are: We believe in the power of young people. We believe in the power of artistic expression. We believe in taking care of ourselves and each other. We believe in creating positive change in our neighborhood and beyond.


  • Bachelor’s degree and/or fundraising certification preferred


  • Minimum 3 years working in the development field

  • Experience in the planning and successful implementation of multi-faceted programmatic, administrative or development activities as well of a working knowledge of multiple aspects of development including corporate, governmental and foundation grants, individual giving, event management and marketing

  • Experience conducting prospect research and fundraising proposal development work

  • Experience with corporate sponsorship preferred

  • Knowledge of and experience with out of school time, community based, youth-serving or arts focused organizations is a plus

The organization is open to developing the right candidate, with limited experience. However, the following Skills/ Competencies are non-negotiable.


  • Must be a strong writer with an ability to convey stories of impact, and follow proposal guidelines

  • Works well with others, is accountable and trustworthy and adapts and responds to change

  • Has a consistent and grounded presence and moves easily between detailed and global perspectives

  • Exhibits cultural humility; with a curiosity and interest in others

  • Examines complex social situations with a social and historical lens

  • Seeks to understand the parents, schools and community served by the Art Center

  • Participates actively in the field and is able to build mutually beneficial relationships

  • Highly organized, detail-oriented and able to prioritize competing assignments and deliver quality results on deadline

  • Communicates effectively across multiple sectors and with people of different backgrounds and levels of authority

  • Demonstrated ability to work as part of a team as well as independently

  • Takes initiative and is enterprising – willing to experiment and try new methods

  • Is not deterred by obstacles or challenges; enthusiastically seeks opportunities and solutions


$68,000-$70,000 / individual & family health & dental; 401K with organizational match; opportunities for professional development and executive education courses


Full time - 40 hours/week.

For the first 6 months of this position, the Development Manager will be required in the office from 10am - 6pm (Monday - Friday)

* After 6 months, we will consider a schedule of 2 days remote, 3 days in-office.

How to Apply

Please email a formal cover letter and resume to:, Attn: Development Director

Preference will be given to resumes received by Friday, August 16, 2024

Community Art Center is an equal opportunity employer

Due to the anticipated high volume of responses only qualified candidates will be contacted.

Community Art Center is an equal opportunity employer

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