May 25, 2018

Director of Development Communications (Digital and Direct Marketing)

Cato Institute/Talent Market
May 25, 2018
DC, Washington
Job Type


Director of Development Communications (Digital and Direct Marketing)

Cato Institute

Washington, DC

The Cato Institute seeks applications for a Director of Development Communications (Digital and Direct Marketing), a full-time position located in Washington, DC, to manage Cato’s direct mail fundraising program and digital marketing to Cato Sponsors. Candidates should have at least five years of successful direct marketing, fundraising, or equivalent sales experience. This is a tremendous opportunity to join a dynamic and high-achieving development team as it works to grow Cato’s $30+ million annual budget.

Organization Overview:

The Cato Institute is a public policy research organization — a think tank —dedicated to the principles of individual liberty, limited government, free markets and peace. Its scholars and analysts conduct independent, nonpartisan research on a wide range of policy issues. The Cato Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


The Director will be responsible for overseeing and executing the Institute’s existing direct mail fundraising program with the goal of acquiring new, and renewing lapsed, Cato Sponsors.  In addition, the position will manage marketing to current Cato Sponsors—from mailings to collateral to digital products.  You will work closely with Cato’s development team and the Institute’s policy staff to conceptualize direct mail packages and create materials or publications that communicate Cato’s impact and tell its story to donors.  For a talented mid-level person, the role will present significant growth opportunity and a chance to become a leader on the development team. For a more experienced professional, the role will provide key leadership to a thriving development team.

The Director will also play a key role in leveraging Cato’s CRM for fundraising success.  Other responsibilities may include drafting copy, copyediting, executing special projects for development events, general management, and other duties as assigned.


The successful candidate will have:

  • 5+ years of experience in direct marketing, fundraising, or relevant sales
  • A strong writing capability
  • Outstanding project management skills
  • A firm grasp of the metrics and analytical decisions that drive direct mail fundraising
  • An ability to negotiate with outside vendors and manage related projects
  • The creative mind required to conceptualize direct mail packages
  • Experience with digital marketing and acquisition is a plus
  • Experience utilizing databases (Salesforce in particular), including creating detailed reports and leveraging data
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • An entrepreneurial spirit
  • The ability to balance shifting and competing priorities
  • The capacity to adjust strategies and tactics quickly in response to new information
  • The discipline to keep meticulous records
  • A strong affinity for public policy and Cato’s mission
  • Knowledge of “moves management” fundraising is a plus

Compensation package will be competitive for a director-level nonprofit position in the Washington, DC area, depending on experience.


Qualified candidates should submit the following in one PDF file with your full name in the file name:

    • Résumé
    • Cover letter describing: a) your alignment with Cato’s mission, and b) your salary requirements
    • A development/sales oriented writing sample, preferably a past direct mail fundraising package or letter

PDF applications should be submitted to Talent Market via this link:

Questions about the opening can be directed to Claire Kittle Dixon, Executive Director of Talent Market, who is assisting with the search:

Cato will invite strong candidates to complete a series of challenges before we schedule interviews. While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview. No phone calls please.

Talent Market is a nonprofit entity dedicated to promoting liberty by helping free-market nonprofits identify talent for critical roles. We provide free consulting and recruiting services to free-market think tanks, policy organizations, research centers, and capacity-building institutions dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government and free enterprise. 

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