Careers at Reach Out and Read of Greater New York
Reach Out and Read of Greater New York’s (ROR GNY) mission is to prepare children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. In the Greater New York region, ROR GNY provides new, age-appropriate books and literacy guidance to over a quarter of a million children in New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley.
Pediatricians and early childhood specialists founded Reach Out and Read in 1989 at Boston City Hospital, now a part of Boston Medical Center. Reach Out and Read of Greater New York (ROR GNY) was later launched as a separate agency in New York City in 1997 (incorporated in 1999). Initially formed as a coalition of 35-member program sites, ROR GNY has grown incrementally over the years.
The coalition of member sites now numbers 200 ROR programs region wide. ROR GNY is an evidence-based nonprofit organization that promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms and builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning at 6 months of age. The 250,000 families served annually by ROR GNY read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies, with stronger language skills, and better prepared to succeed.
Pediatric healthcare providers (including pediatricians, family physicians, and pediatric nurse practitioners) are trained in the three-part ROR model to promote early literacy and school readiness
• In the exam room, doctors and nurses speak with parents about the importance of reading aloud to their young children every day, and offer age-appropriate tips and encouragement.
• The pediatric primary care provider gives every child 6 months through 5 years old a new, developmentally-appropriate children’s keep.
• In the waiting room, displays, information, and books create a literacy-rich environment. Where possible, volunteer readers entertain the children, modeling for parents the pleasures – and techniques – of reading aloud.
BACKGROUND: Reach Out and Read of Greater New York (ROR GNY) is a nonprofit organization that promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud. The program builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning at birth to age 5. As a 501(c)3 regional affiliate of a national, early literacy program, ROR GNY annually serves 275,000 children living in poverty at over 200 ROR program locations. Our geographic reach includes all five boroughs of New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley.
OVERVIEW OF THE POSITION: The Development Director, working closely with the Executive Director, will identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward a robust portfolio of strategic relationships with private and corporate foundations, corporate sponsors, individual donors, and government entities to help build ongoing and sustainable support for Reach Out and Read’s activities in the Greater New York region. S/he will also have knowledge of national prospects as part of our fundraising collaboration with the National Reach Out and Read office. Core responsibilities include: prospect research, lead development, grant writing, and fostering institutional relationships that result in long-term support and commitments. ROR GNY seeks a Director who can be a strategic, savvy and effective champion for the organization and its initiatives, identifying opportunities, building relationships, and establishing strong partnerships where possible.
The Development Director will effectively leverage her/his own professional network, relationships with members of ROR GNY’s Board of Directors and Advisory Board, and her/his personal knowledge of the landscape of early literacy, education and health care to manage a solicitation strategy that encompasses a range of funders, including private and family foundations, corporate philanthropies, government agencies and individual donors. The Director will prepare innovative, compelling, and well-written grant proposals, as well as letters of solicitation and appeals that will support an increase and diversification of funding. S/he will also be responsible for overseeing the annual appeal and other special solicitations throughout the year and have experience with major gift solicitations. Additionally, the Director will oversee the effective management of funder relationships, ensuring quality in service, reporting, and communication.
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE IDEAL CANDIDATE: The successful candidate will have an exceptional talent for strategically conceptualizing and framing program ideas to a range of internal and external constituencies, quickly mastering the concepts and language surrounding a particular issue or challenge. S/he will have a proven record of successfully stewarding relationships and cultivating long-term investments from public and private sources, including individuals, foundations, government and corporate donors. Superior oral and written communications skills and the ability to convey complex information in a clear and culturally appropriate way are essential. Previous supervisory experience is also required. The ideal candidate will be a high energy, team-oriented individual who possesses flexibility to work in a small, fast-paced office, coupled with a warm, engaging, and polished presentation style.
We are an organization that welcomes new perspectives and innovative means of getting things done. The ideal candidate will bring a sense of creativity and resourcefulness to the role, bringing knowledge, expertise, and new ideas that will help the organization grow and flourish.
Knowledge of computer systems including Microsoft Office, as well as a command of
development office systems (particularly GiftWorks), web design software and online databases is required. A minimum of five years of direct fundraising and grant writing experience is required, along with a bachelor’s degree (master’s degree preferred). A strong personal commitment to Reach Out and Read’s mission is a plus.
Due to the pace of this search, candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible, but no later than November 30th. Applications including a cover letter describing your interest and qualifications, your resume (in Word format), salary history and where you learned of the position should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.