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The Hoover Institution at Stanford University is seeking qualified candidates for the full-time position of Development Writer.

About Stanford University's Hoover Institution: The Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace is a public policy research center devoted to the advanced study of economics, politics, history, and political economy—both domestic and foreign—as well as international affairs.

Founded in 1919 by Herbert Hoover before he became the thirty-first president of the United States, the Institution began as a repository of historical material gathered at the end of World War I. The library and archives have grown to be among the largest private repositories of documents on twentieth-century political and economic history. Over time the Institution expanded its mission from collecting archival material to conducting advanced research on contemporary history and economics and applying this scholarship to current public policy challenges. 

With its eminent scholars and world-renowned library and archives, the Hoover Institution seeks to improve the human condition by advancing ideas that promote economic opportunity and prosperity, while securing and safeguarding peace for America and all humanity.


The Development Writer at the Hoover Institution reports to the Assistant Director of Development and works closely with the Director of Development, Hoover Major Gift Officers, and others in the Hoover Institution Development Office and other departments to develop various written projects. The Development Writer is a member of the Hoover development staff and contributes to correspondence and other projects, much of which emanates from the Director of the Hoover Institution. Writing assignments may include gift acknowledgment letters, stewardship reports, funding proposals to foundations and/or individuals, and customized communications to Hoover’s donor community. Working in a team environment, the Development Writer must possess superior writing, editing, and communication skills; be able to interact comfortably with a wide range of individuals in varying roles; be highly organized and possess keen time-management skills so as to manage, track, and meet various important project deadlines; and maintain the highest standards of professionalism as well as mature judgment and discretion when dealing with sensitive and/or confidential matters.

Under minimal supervision, compose material for print, web, and other platforms.


  • Develop and research ideas for written publication/communication on topics of moderate complexity.
  • Consult with internal and external customers to understand the need and purpose of a project.
  • Compose written material for diverse audiences, across a variety of channels.
  • Manage production of own publications/communications, and adhere to deadlines.
  • Compose written material.
  • Manage production of own stories, and adhere to deadlines.
  • Develop, compile, and edit supplemental materials that support written communication (i.e., backgrounders, biographies, executive talking points, and other related materials).
  • Establish and maintain extensive contacts with key sources (media, news services, community organizations and other targeted audiences) to identify story themes and newsworthy events to promote and disseminate information.
  • Maintain department style standards.


  • Support the fund-raising and program development efforts of the Hoover Institution, in coordination with the Office of the Director of the Hoover Institution.
  • As assigned, research, compose original copy, and edit a wide variety of high-level institutional development communications (i.e. gift acknowledgment letters, proposals, stewardship reports, and custom communications to donors) and submit for final review and edits.
  • Conduct research as needed to complete assigned writing projects, including interviews with scholars as well as individuals within various Hoover departments.
  • Build and maintain knowledge of the Institution’s programs, research initiatives, and other scholarly activities of Hoover fellows, for use in writing projects.
  • Maintain and manage an effective and efficient tracking system of deadlines for proposals and stewardship reporting, as well as track gift/grant awards and pledges.

* - Other duties may also be assigned.


Education & Experience:

Bachelor's degree and five years of related experience, or a combination of education and relevant experience.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Proven success in writing for publication in print, web, and other platforms.
  • Excellent writing, interpersonal, and oral communication skills with proven ability to present, write, edit, and organize thoughts in a clear, concise, and well-organized manner.
  • Ability to understand materials of moderate complexity and synthesize across multiple sources to produce materials for diverse audiences.
  • Ability to change voice and writing style to fit a particular audience and purpose.
  • Firm understanding of web technologies and applications, including social networking, social media tools, and current communication trends.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and able to interact effectively with a diverse array of people, including senior leaders.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite.
  • Ability to manage and prioritize multiple deadlines.
  • Excellent time management skills.

Desired/Preferred Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • A strong interest in public policy issues; familiarity with the mission of the Institution and the work of its fellows; and appreciation of academia and the research process.
  • Proficient with The Raiser’s Edge, PostGrads, Stanford University Box, MailChimp, Adobe Acrobat Professional/Illustrator/Photoshop, and use of the Internet for research purposes.
  • Possess a thorough command of the English language, including grammar, punctuation, spelling, and syntax; working knowledge of the Chicago Manual of Style.
  • Ability to be flexible about accepting others’ editing to meet program needs.
  • Development writing and/or writing for an academic or public policy research center are preferred.
  • Conceptual ability to translate ideas and suggestions from the general to the philosophical in the completion of detailed donor correspondence and other development materials.
  • Highly organized with keen attention to details.
  • Demonstrated ability to work both collaboratively as a member of a professional team and independently, as well as with considerable initiative. Possess strong collaborative and relationship-building skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate comfortably in an academic and/or public policy setting.
  • Exhibit excellent judgment, listening, analytic, and interpretive abilities, as communicating the ideas of others is an important aspect of the role; possess political acumen and discretion in dealing with highly sensitive and/or confidential matters.

Certifications and Licenses:

  • None.


  • Constantly perform desk-based computer tasks.
  • Frequently stand/walk, sit, grasp lightly/fine manipulation, and use a telephone, writing by hand.
  • Occasionally reach/work above shoulders, grasp forcefully, and sort/file paperwork or parts, lift/carry/push/pull objects that weigh up to 10 pounds.
  • Visual and auditory acuity, including color vision required.

* - Consistent with its obligations under the law, the University will provide reasonable accommodation to any employee with a disability who requires accommodation to perform the essential functions of his or her job.


  • Occasional work on evenings and weekends.
  • Occasional travel.


  • Interpersonal Skills: Demonstrates the ability to work well with Stanford colleagues and clients and with external organizations.
  • Promote Culture of Safety: Demonstrates commitment to personal responsibility and value for safety; communicates safety concerns; uses and promotes safe behaviors based on training and lessons learned.
  • Subject to and expected to comply with all applicable University policies and procedures, including but not limited to the personnel policies and other policies found in the University’s Administrative Guide, http://adminguide.stanford.edu

A cover letter and resume are required for full consideration.
Provide writing samples upon request.

The Hoover Institution at Stanford University is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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