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Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center

Grants and Prospect Research Manager

Development – Boston, Massachusetts
Department Development
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Manager/Supervisor

POSITION:  Manager of Grants and Prospect Research


Vice President of Development




Full-time, year round


Dry Dock Office, Seaport District, Boston


Thompson Island Outward Bound is seeking a Manager of Grants and Prospect Research (MGPR) responsible for researching opportunities; writing and submitting program related grants and reports (including corporate, foundation and government proposals); maintaining the grants database and grants reporting calendar; generating departmental reports; and maintaining and managing the relationships with funders as needed as assigned by the Vice President of Development (VPD).  In addition, the Manager will research individual prospects in support of the major gift efforts and may assist the Development team in other fundraising activities, such as events and individual donor engagement.


Essential Responsibilities

Grants Management & Development (50%)

- Builds strong relationships at all levels of the organization to ensure complete understanding of the Island and TIOBEC programs.

Under the supervision of the VPD, identifies organization-wide funding needs.

Develops and maintains a thorough understanding of all current and past grant relationships.

Writes letters of intent and corporate, foundation, and government grant proposals; prepares supporting documents in response to requests for proposals; adapts existing proposals as necessary; and delivers all submissions ahead of deadlines.

Prepares and submits correspondence related to grant applications or other funder relations.

Maintains up-to-date files and grants database for the tracking of grant renewals, deadlines, and execution.

In conjunction with the programs team and other key staff, maintains accuracy, uniformity, and consistent messaging in submission of all TIOBEC grant documents.

Builds in realistic timelines and turnaround times for content that meets the needs of all relevant staff members providing content.

Completes special development or organizational writing projects as needed.

Writes all grants and funder communications in grammatically correct, written English which is reliably free of typos, emphasizes clarity and readability, and requires very minimal copy editing from others.

Maintains a portfolio of grants and foundation relationships and serves as the primary manager, to be determined with the VPD.

Responsible for driving and documenting the moves management process for other key staff members relationships with major funders where the relationship falls outside of the MGPR’s portfolio.

Prospect Research (20%)

Follows up on all grant denials to determine the cause, and if re-submission is an option, map out the steps to building a stronger proposal/relationship for the next round and execute those steps.

To identify new opportunities, actively utilizes multiple tools to complete deep and comprehensive research on both prospective individual funders (in support of the Major Gifts team) as well as corporate and foundation funders in all relevant areas of opportunity.

Keeps detailed records of what has been researched and follows established protocols to determine how and when prospects are put into the database.

Collaborates with the VPD to maintain a comprehensive inventory of renewable and new funding opportunities in line with the development plan.

Reporting (15%)

Act as liaison with the programs department on program goals, student/program data, evaluation systems and results, and changes to program content and delivery.

Assist the programs department in analyzing and presenting student and evaluation data in ways that are appropriate for funders as well as other development or communications needs.

Ensures reporting compliance for all grants and provides writing and editing support to program managers and the development department when needed.

Ensures all online donor search engines, including but not limited to Guidestar & Charity Navigator, have accurate data and an up-to-date organization profile.

Uses database to inform management of grant status and progress toward goals, both informally and via management reporting documents.

Works collaboratively with the Senior Development Officer responsible for corporate relations and island events staff to research and pursue all funding opportunities through corporations who are donating in other ways or hosting events on the Island.

Database Management (5%)

Updates and maintains grants database and grants forecast tracking document.

Budgeting Assistance (5%)

Assists in the grant budget preparation process in collaboration with Program Managers and Finance.

Develops foundation grant revenue goals, in consultation with the VPD, for annual, program, endowment, and capital support. Monitors progress toward goals, partnering with key development staff responsible for managing the relationships.

Other Activities (5%)

Supports other development staff when directed, in activities such as Events, Individual Donors, and department-wide writing projects.

Performs other duties as assigned.

Secondary Responsibilities

Leads or participates in appropriate TIOBEC meetings.

Attends workshops, training, and meetings as needed.

Works a flexible schedule as necessary, including at times additional weekend or evening hours for special events or deadlines.

Performs other duties as assigned by supervisor.



Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work history required

Three + years of proven success in foundation grant writing, preferably in the Boston area

Exceptional written communication skills with attention to detail

Excellent computer skills and ability to use the internet as a research tool

Familiar with Raiser’s Edge or similar CRM database software preferred

Ability to work and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment

Familiarity and strong belief in the value of outdoor education and experienced-based learning a plus



40 hour work week in the Drydock offices. Occasional night and weekend work required.



Industry competitive pay, commensurate with experience. 401(k) retirement plan with competitive match after 6 months of consecutive employment. Vacation and sick time. Work that engages a diverse and dynamic community of educators and other professionals, with the shared vision of shaping a better future for Boston’s youth. A quality work environment with access to the natural wonders and positive impacts of Thompson Island. This is an exempt position.

Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center is an equal opportunity employer and actively seeks a diverse staff group, reflective of the communities it serves. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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