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Director of Communication and Fundraising

UHAB | The Urban Homesteading Assistance Board

The Urban Homesteading Assistance Board is seeking the right candidate to help us to tell our story and raise more money. Since its founding at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine 40 years ago UHAB has been assisting tenants and low-income New Yorkers to become part of their own housing solution. Whether as homesteaders using their own sweat equity to rehab a vacant distressed building; or as a group of tenants in a tax foreclosed city-owned property to take over the management and eventually ownership as an affordable cooperative; or as residents in a building owned, managed and rehabbed by UHAB that is being converted to their co-operative; or as tenants in a building in foreclosure, organized by UHAB and now have an opportunity to choose how their building will be owned and redeveloped - each of these circumstances is an instance of a successful housing solution based on UHAB's founding principle of self-help. Each is a great story that is one of our "best kept secrets".

Having assisted more than 1,800 buildings with about 30,000 households over the past 40 years, UHAB has a lot to tell. It is the job of the Director of Communication and Fundraising to get these stories told.

If you can research and write about housing and community issues, maintain a web site, actively participate in meetings with colleagues, post to a blog, be excited about asking for money, network with everybody and above all be passionate about telling a story, please apply for this job!


The Director of Communications and Fundraising, who will be UHAB's chief storyteller, will need a broad view of communications as the job will span online and social media communications, grant writing/reporting and individual, corporate and event fundraising. This individual should have the instincts and skills of a journalist; able to identify a story, do research and interview sources and write for the web, our blog, to use in a grant application or to illustrate a grant report. A background in journalism is a plus for this job. This Director will also need to have strong interpersonal skills; able to develop close and effective relationships with other Directors and UHAB staff as well as community members who may be the subject or source of our stories.

The Director of Communications and Fundraising will be supported by consultants and part-time staff on a limited and as needed basis and he or she will have to be able to identify the need for and source of technical expertise and then have the ability to efficiently and effectively manage the consultants and staff. This Director will be an integral part of UHAB's management team. S/he will work closely with and be supervised by the Executive Director. S/he will work directly with UHAB's Program Directors.

• Collaborate with the Executive Director, senior management including other directors and staff to develop communication strategies that will broaden UHAB's programmatic reach, deepen our impact and attract resources.
• Work with senior management and staff to recognize internal and external communications opportunities and solutions and develop and execute appropriate strategies to support them.
• Be responsible for the development, content, distribution and maintenance of all print and electronic communications including but not limited to newsletters, brochures, reports, press releases,, blogs and social media.
• Manage all media contacts. Fundraising
• Work with senior management to develop a fundraising plan, identify the funds needed, preferred funding targets and approaches to include corporate, foundation and government grants and individual and event fundraising.
• Conduct prospecting for funding sources; research, write and follow-up on proposals, applications and reports; and track, report and archive all fundraising activity.
• Plan and oversee all fundraising events.
• Create, facilitate engage ad hoc staff committee(s) for Communication and Fund Raising at UHAB to support these activities in keeping with UHAB's self-help traditions.

The ideal candidate will be a great writer/communicator who is ready to take on UHAB's fundraising challenge. Specific qualifications include:
• Experience in researching and writing about people and their communities.
• The ability to write in an accessible and engaging manner that at the same time communicates serious and at times complicated social, community development, financial and housing issues.
• A strong interest in fundraising.
• Oral communications skills.
• Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work with and engage with people of diverse backgrounds and in all parts of NYC.
• A collaborator who works well in teams.
• A “multi-tasker” who is organized, detail oriented and able to keep track of multiple projects and deadlines.
• Computer, Digital and IT savvy.
• Social media skills.
• A facility and passion for telling our story and making the case to those who can provide the resources and support for UHAB's work.
• Bachelor's degree or equivalent experience.


The job will be located at UHAB’s main office in Lower Manhattan but travel throughout NYC’s neighborhoods is expected as part of this position.


Commensurate with experience.

Send resume and a cover letter that includes salary requirements to: UHAB 120 Wall Street, 20th Fl. New York, NY 10005 Attention: Chief Storyteller Fax: (212) 344-6457 Email:

About Organization:
UHAB | Urban Homesteading Assistance Board supports affordable housing and self-reliance by organizing, developing and supporting low-income resident-controlled housing co-operatives. UHAB’s activities include: advocacy, organizing, classroom and on-site training, direct technical assistance, development consulting, development and sponsorship of new co-ops, and services to member co-ops that include bookkeeping, insurance, legal services, bulk purchasing, newsletters, and online information.

UHAB's work is carried out at our offices in Lower Manhattan and Harlem by 44 dedicated staff members.

Although 85% of UHAB’s $5.4 million budget is earned income, the funds raised through foundation and private donations are vital to new initiatives. Currently, UHAB relies primarily on foundations and corporations for this donated funding but also has a small but loyal group of donors. The Director of Communication and Fundraising is responsible for expanding UHAB’s base of both supporters and donors and believes that the best way to accomplish this is to tell our story.



View Mark Anthony Thomas's profile on LinkedIn