Development Associate, Foundations

Common Sense (/) is the nation's leading independent nonprofit organization devoted to helping kids and families thrive in a world of media and technology.

Every day, millions of families turn to Common Sense for trusted advice and unbiased ratings. We offer the largest library of independent age-based and educational ratings and reviews for everything your kids want to watch, play, read, and learn. Our movie and TV ratings are available on Comcast, DirecTV, Netflix, and many other partner networks, helping families and kids make smart media choices. Through our schools program, we provide educators with a curriculum that teaches the essential digital citizenship and literacy skills every student needs to succeed. More than 600,000 registered educators and 55,000 schools use our ratings and curriculum and content. We also work with policymakers, industry leaders, and legislators to improve the media, tech, and education landscape for kids, families, and schools.

Under the direction of the director of development, foundations, the development associate, foundations, works to help the foundations team identify, cultivate, solicit, and expand a ~$10 million grant portfolio. Responsibilities include identification of and research on new foundation prospects; project management of existing grants and deliverables; writing grant concept papers, letters of inquiry (LOIs), proposals, and progress reports; and developing meeting materials (e.g., Google Slides).

LOCATION: San Francisco, Calif.


Research and administration:

  • Research and identify potential new funders and trends in corporate and institutional support.
  • Develop and update foundation profiles for new and current foundation partners.
  • Help to maintain Salesforce database of active grants and foundation prospects.

Grants project management:

  • Participate in weekly program team meetings to surface potential new funding opportunities.
  • Create and maintain organizational grant deliverables chart, working closely with program teams to ensure that reporting and other deliverables are in accordance with grant agreements.


  • Draft grant progress and final reports for active foundation grants.
  • Support the director of development, foundations, and foundations manager in writing concept papers, LOIs, and grant proposals.
  • Take the lead on prep for meetings with program officers, including developing foundation backgrounders and bios; outlining past history with Common Sense; assessing potential alignment between foundation priorities and Common Sense programs; and creating presentation slides.
  • Participate in foundation meetings to take notes and log activity in Salesforce.


  • A bachelor's degree and 1+ years of experience in a nonprofit or education setting.
  • Outstanding writing skills, with experience writing in a professional, research, or academic setting.
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to prioritize workload in a timely manner to complete assignments when faced with many deadlines and competing requirements.
  • Strong research and analytical skills and familiarity with full suite of Google tools.
  • Salesforce experience a plus.
  • A high degree of self-motivation, self-direction, and ingenuity in a highly entrepreneurial environment.
  • A collaborative mindset. You have a knack for working effectively with diverse stakeholders.
  • An ability to build and maintain positive and authentic relationships.
  • A passion for the mission and goals of Common Sense!


  • You are energetic, enthusiastic, disciplined, hardworking, and a total team player.
  • You are organized and able to work on multiple projects with overlapping deadlines.
  • You are deeply inspired by the Common Sense mission.
  • You have a great sense of humor, even when meeting tough deadlines.


  • The chance to work with talented, passionate professionals.
  • Competitive health and welfare benefits, including medical, dental, vision, and a matching 401(k).
  • An organization that offers work/life balance.
  • The opportunity to really make a difference in the lives of kids and families!


Common Sense values the diversity of its employees and is an equal opportunity employer.