Washington University of St. Louis Development Communications in St. Louis, Missouri

Job Type/Schedule

This position is full-time and works approximately 37.5 hours per week.

Department Name/Job Location

This position is in the Department of Development Communications. This position is for the Danforth Campus.

Essential Functions


The senior development writer will report to the executive director of development communications. The senior development writer is responsible for researching, writing, and producing proposals for major gifts. Write, edit, and produce editorial content, speeches for the chancellor and executive vice chancellor, faculty and student profiles, and other campaign communications as assigned. Cultivate and strengthen relationships with all groups within Alumni & Development Programs. Contribute to overall communications strategies and support the executive director of development communications.


  1. Plan, write, edit, and proofread proposals and solicitation materials for use by the chancellor, the executive vice chancellor for Alumni & Development Programs, and other university leaders for gifts of seven figures or more. This includes shaping and implementing communication strategies for major gifts that support the goals of the campaign. Lay out selected print pieces using design templates provided.

  2. Produce campaign-related stories for university publications and the A&D; and campaign websites.

  3. Plan, write, edit and produce high-end and highly individualized materials including brochures, speeches for events, and other communications. Lay out selected pieces using design templates provided. Lay out selected print pieces using design templates provided.

  4. Perform other duties as assigned.

Required Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree with strong English writing capabilities. Minimum of 10 years of experience with strategic communications, donor communications, or related areas, preferably in higher education or other large, complex organization.

Other relevant skills:

  • Exceptional writing and editing skills with demonstrated ability to write clear and persuasive communications.
  • Strong organizational skills and the ability to handle and prioritize multiple tasks and manage complex, often competing priorities.
  • Respect for confidentiality and a strong sense of professional ethics.
  • High degree of diplomacy, discretion, and tact.
  • Demonstrated accuracy and commitment to detail.
  • Proficient with Microsoft Word and other standard office programs.
  • Proficient with Adobe Creative Suite, including Photoshop and InDesign.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Advanced degree preferred.
  • 10–12 years of experience as a writer and editor.
  • Previous work experience in higher education.
  • Previous work experience with non-profit fundraising, with a basic understanding of fundraising techniques and strategies.
  • Knowledge of current best practices in donor communications and stewardship.
  • Expertise in proposal writing and strategic communications.
  • Demonstrated creativity in writing and communications strategy.
  • Understanding of Washington University history and culture.

Salary Range

The hiring range for this position is commensurate with experience.

Department Summary

To learn more about careers in Alumni & Development please visit http://alumni.wustl.edu/ContactUs/Career_Opportunities/


  • Retirement Savings Plan

  • 22 vacation days

  • 8 Paid Holidays

  • Sick Time

  • Tuition benefits for employee, spouse and dependent children

  • Free Metro Link/ Bus pass

  • Free Life Insurance

  • Health, Dental, Vision

  • Health Savings Accounts (HSA)

  • Long Term Disability Insurance

  • Flex Spending Plan

  • Other Benefits

Human Resources website (hr.wustl.edu)

Applicant Special Instructions

Please submit a cover letter and 2-3 writing samples with your application materials.

You may upload your cover letter and other documents after submitting the application by selecting "add attachment" on the My Activities page, accessible by clicking in the My Activities box on the upper right hand side of your home page at https://jobs.wustl.edu/.

EOE Statement

Washington University is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status.

Job Title: Senior Development Writer - Development Communications - Alumni and Development Programs - 37300

Job ID: 37300

Location: Alumni & Development Programs

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular