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Development & Grants Manager Job Description

Level Ground Mixed Martial Arts

Level Ground Mixed Martial Arts is a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to empowering
urban youth through athletics, academics, and employment opportunities. We use martial arts
as a vehicle to create positive, supportive relationships with our students, as well as teach key
values such as persistence and determination. As the Development & Grants Manager, you will
develop and implement the organization’s fundraising strategies and activities, and manage all
grant efforts. This is a full-time role.

About Level Ground Mixed Martial Arts

Level Ground is the first and only nonprofit organization in the United States that leverages the
popular sport of Mixed Martial Arts as a vehicle for positive youth development, and uniquely
couples MMA with meaningful academic and employment opportunities.

Founded in 2013, our work began in partnership with the Egleston Square YMCA where we
offered martial arts classes once per week to teenagers living in Roxbury, Dorchester, and
Mattapan. We gradually expanded beyond athletics and developed our robust “Success Tracks”
program model. These College Access and Workforce Development offerings collectively
ensure that youth have the skills and opportunities necessary to achieve their ambitions on and
off of the mat.

In 2017, we opened our 6,500 square foot Training Center. This Training Center includes two
athletic areas and an Academic and Career Development Center, and is managed by our youth
staff. Our Student Trainer program provides young people with paid, hands-on skills
development in gym management (including operations, administration, and client
management), as well as personal training and martial arts instruction. Once they complete the
program, youth qualify to earn permanent paid employment and are given significant
responsibility as Gym Managers, Personal Trainers, and Athletic Instructors at Level Ground.

Since opening our Training Center, Level Ground has expanded our athletic offerings to include
30+ weekly athletic classes Monday-Saturday that remain free to youth and affordable for
adults. In 2024, Level Ground served 600+ youth and adults through athletics.

Position Summary

Level Ground Mixed Martial Arts is seeking an eager, flexible, and highly motivated individual to
help take a burgeoning organization to the next level. As our new Development & Grants

Manager, you will support the Executive Director in all fundraising and grant seeking activities
as it aligns with the strategic vision of the organization. Your responsibilities will include:

  • Stewarding current donor and funding relationships
  • Identifying and securing new funding sources
  • Managing all grant efforts
  • Developing and launching long-term fundraising efforts, including a capital campaign

In addition to reporting to our Executive Director, you will work closely with a passionate and committed Board of Directors. It is imperative to regularly engage with our Program Staff and youth to ensure that fundraising efforts are aligned with the culture of our organization, and that messaging accurately represents our work and the youth that we serve.

Detailed Roles and Responsibilities (including, but not limited to)

  • Develop and manage a development strategy and plan for Level Ground, define objectives and targets, and create tools to track progress
  • Steward relationships with donors and funders in a highly professional, positive, and relational manner
  • Cultivate new donor relationships and appropriate outreach strategies at multiple giving levels, including:
    • Prospecting and securing high-net worth donor relationships
    • Designing and launching monthly donor program
  • Draft and coordinate donor and prospect correspondence, including customized cultivation (ie. mailings, supplemental thank you letters, reports, etc.)
  • Develop and maintain a donor database. Perform donation management activities and reports.
  • Spearhead major fundraising efforts from start to finish, including annual appeals and capital campaign
  • Research and cultivate corporate, foundation and city/state/federal funding opportunities
  • Broaden Level Ground’s corporate fundraising partnerships
  • Identify, draft, and submit grant proposals, and follow up with appropriate updates and reports to foundations. Manage administrative components of grants, and ensure compliance
  • Coordinate with Program Staff and youth to ensure that messaging meaningfully represents our work and the youth that we serve

Qualifications and Skills

Level Ground is seeking an enthusiastic, adaptable, and skilled new member of our team!

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree, preferably in nonprofit management, business administration, marketing, business, communications, or a related field, or equivalent work experience
  • 3-5 years of experience in development with demonstrated success
  • Proven ability to secure and manage grants and multiple donor/funder relationships
  • Excellent organizational and management skills, with ability to oversee multiple projects simultaneously
  • Exceptional interpersonal, oral, and written communication, including excellent writing and editing ability
  • Knowledge of and experience building strong relationships with Boston’s nonprofit, philanthropy, and social enterprise sectors.
  • Proficient computer skills, including Word, Excel, and Powerpoint, knowledge of customer relations software
  • Ability to develop and administer budgets
  • Experience with evaluation of youth development programs, including leveraging qualitative and quantitative data for grant-writing purposes
  • Values youth athletics as a pathway and powerful driver of successful outcomes for youth
  • Values honesty, integrity, and empathy as the fabric of all successful social ventures and lives that value
  • Values youth development beyond traditional educational pipelines [i.e. alternatives to four-year college]
  • Values building and maintaining relationships with urban youth and youths of color
  • Enthusiasm and current practice in sports, athletics and/or fitness
  • Passionate, committed, flexible, adaptive, and fun to be around

Additional Preferred Qualifications

  • Prior experience working with a youth serving nonprofit
  • Prior experience in managing a capital campaign
  • Working knowledge of how to leverage social media to increase a nonprofit organization’s visibility and enhance its profile
  • Experience working in multiracial, multicultural organizations
  • Has deep understanding of the communities of Roxbury, Dorchester, and Mattapan through firsthand experience [lives or has previous work experience in the community]
  • Experience in practicing Brazilian jiu jitsu, boxing, kickboxing, yoga, or other forms of martial arts

Salary and Benefits

The Development & Grants Manager role is a full-time position, with a competitive salary and
benefits based on experience.

Level Ground Mixed Martial Arts is an equal opportunity employer and actively seeks a diverse
pool of qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national
origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, age, disability, or Vietnam era, or
other eligible veteran status, or any other protected factor.

Application Requirements

Please submit a resume, cover letter, and salary requirements to:
Ali Fuller, Executive Director
ali@levelgroundmma.org
PO Box 220676
Dorchester, MA 02122
Please include a list and contact information for 3 professional references.