United Way Jobs

Grants Director

locationDes Moines, IA, USA
PublishedPublished: Published 2 months ago
Full time
3 - 5 years of experience
$71,000 to $80,000 per year

United Way of Central Iowa employees are passionate about our mission of improving lives so individuals in our community can thrive, not just survive. If you have solid grant research and writing experience and a passion for collaborating with others for community improvement, please continue reading! We offer a hybrid remote work schedule, a robust benefit package and a competitive wage.

United Way of Central Iowa is seeking a Grants Director to support and advance United Way’s mission of improving lives by identifying potential sources of revenue through competitive grants, corporate grants, sponsorships, and other traditional and non-traditional funding sources. The Grants Director collaborates with UWCI staff and community partners to develop and write successful proposals, oversee the initial phase of implementation of grant awards, ensure compliance of funding award requirements, and report back to grantors on how their funds measurably improve lives in the Community Impact areas of Essential Needs, Early Childhood Success, Education Success, Economic Opportunity, and Health and Well-Being.

The ideal candidate must have proven success in strategically identifying, writing and attaining grants and other revenue streams. Excellent written and verbal communication skills, project management skills, and a collaborative and team-oriented approach in working with others is a must to be successful in this role.

We’re committed to building an inclusive team; we invite candidates of all backgrounds to apply.

The Grants Director is a part of the Community Impact Services team and reports to the Senior Community Impact Services Officer. The hiring salary range is $70,000 - $75,000 depending on experience.

Essential Accountabilities Include (but not Limited to):

  • Creates and executes short-term and long-term approaches for development of increased private foundation, government, and corporate foundation support that support the five elements of a thriving community: Essential Needs, Early Childhood Success, Education Success, Economic Opportunity, and Health and Well-Being.
  • Researches, develops, writes, and edits clear and compelling proposals and grants to funding organizations on behalf of United Way and our partners, ensuring detailed quality control.
  • Works collaboratively with Community Impact and Advancement staff to identify new grant opportunities and strategies to strengthen government, corporate, and foundation relations. This includes attending staff meetings in both areas and meeting with senior leadership as applicable.
  • Leads or participates in collaborative grant proposals that may include engagement of other organizations.
  • Meets agreed-upon targets for number of applications submitted, number of grants received, and funds raised through grants, sponsorships, and other revenue sources.
  • Manages and monitors multiple grant applications, follow-up and reports, ensuring that deadlines, compliance requirements, and quality standards are met.
  • Manages the organization’s sponsorship strategy by liaising with key staff to establish sponsorship priorities, facilitate meetings, ensure sponsorship materials are created, track progress, and update priorities for funding as work evolves.
  • Develops and maintains policies, procedures and objectives related to grant applications and processes.
  • Ensures Andar (organizational CRM database) is used properly.
  • Works with Finance staff to ensure consistent reporting and analysis of cost and other data.
  • Works with Strategic Communications staff to ensure appropriate and consistent communication and messaging of goals and results.
  • Works and collaborates with key staff and volunteers to ensure that essential elements of the grant project are gathered and communicated in documents.
  • Reports results of grant funding and progress toward grant deliverables to senior management, Executive Committee, and Board of Directors when requested.
  • Establishes and maintains relationships with public and private funders.
  • Participates in organization's cross-functional teams, as directed.
  • Serves as United Way's point of contact to write all letters of support for outside organizations' grant applications. Works with leadership to determine alignment, scope, and commitment for each letter of support that is requested.
  • Provides technical assistance in grant writing and research to community and funded partners, as time permits to ensure that UWCI receives well-written proposals.
  • When appropriate, provides support developing and/or reviewing contracts or agreements between United Way of Central Iowa and other entities.


  • Communication – Written: Ability to write concise, clear letters, reports, articles, or emails including proofing and editing work.
  • Communication Skills – Oral: Ability to send tactful and appropriate verbal messages and listen to others’ response in order to convey information.
  • Relationship Skills: Ability to establish and maintain good rapport and relationships with coworkers and key stakeholders.
  • Analytical Skills: Ability to develop information and raw data into meaningful conclusions.
  • Technical Aptitude: Ability to relate to topics that require specialized knowledge and understanding.
  • Project Management: Ability to plan, organize, direct, and control tasks to meet specific goals.
  • Creative – Ability to think in new ways that produce something new or lead to novel ideas. Problem solving – Ability to recognize courses of action that can be taken to handle problems and apply contingency plans to solve those problems.
  • Self-motivated – Ability to reach a goal or perform a task with little supervision or direction.
  • Business Acumen: Ability to understand business-related topics and issues.
  • Decision Making: Ability to evaluate information and select an effective suitable course of action using sound judgment.


  • Bachelor’s Degree. Extensive experience in grant writing may be considered in lieu of some education.


  • Three to five years proven success and experience in grant writing and grants management, preferably working in an organization with a team-oriented staff.
  • Preference for diverse experience with federal, state, foundation, and corporate grants.
  • Strong proficiency in Microsoft Office applications including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint; exposure to database management.
  • Preference for experience with complex contracts and grant agreements.

Why choose United Way of Central Iowa?

United Way of Central Iowa is an established and highly respected nonprofit in the Central Iowa area and the United Way Worldwide network. Employees at UWCI have a passion for the organization’s mission and community impact work and strive to create a positive, inclusive, and welcoming work environment. Our Core Values of Compassion, Integrity, Community Engagement, Responsiveness and Striving for Excellence is the foundation for how we do our work and to reach our aspiration to “Engage Community to Empower All.” In addition to a competitive salary and robust benefits package including health insurance, a dental and vision plan, 401(k) with match and paid life insurance, we offer the following:

  • Generous paid vacation plan, nine holidays, a personal holiday, and sick time
  • Paid volunteer time off
  • A commitment to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion practices
  • Commitment to employee professional development
  • Convenient central Des Moines location with free parking
  • On-site fitness center
  • Tuition Assistance
  • Fun monthly opportunities for employees to build camaraderie and coworker connections
  • Wellness initiatives

United Way is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, skin color, gender, national origin, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical or mental abilities, genetic information, pregnancy, disability, age, family or marital status, veteran status or other characteristic protected by applicable. United Way of Central Iowa will consider qualified candidates with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the role requirements and any applicable local, state, and Federal law. If you are a job seeker with a disability, or are assisting someone with a disability, and require accessibility assistance or in need of an accommodation to apply for one of our jobs, please call 515-246-6516.

Required degree level

  • Bachelor

Years of experience

  • 3 - 5 years of experience

Salary range

  • $71,000 to $80,000 per year