Upstream Arts is seeking an experienced Development and Communications Assistant to join our staff.

This position is 30 hours a week, with a minimum of 4 days a week in the office.
$17-$19 per hour, depending on experience.
Applications accepted until February 20, 2020.

The mission of Upstream Arts is to use the power of the creative arts to activate and amplify the voice and choice of individuals with disabilities, through interactive arts residencies, community arts events and performances, and professional development.

In our programs, professional artists teach fundamental skills in a variety of art forms through activities that nurture self-expression, conversation skills, and group participation. We integrate individuals with cognitive, developmental, emotional, behavioral, and physical disabilities into multidisciplinary arts programming designed to develop social and communication skills vital to success in school, work, and life.

The Development and Communications Assistant carries out the organization’s external communications, supports fundraising and development, and provides administrative support to the organization and the Leadership team in the areas of operations and programs.

Essential Responsibilities:

Development and Fundraising Support

Supervisor: Executive Director and Associate Director

  • Works with Associate Director to determine organization’s annual development plan and individual donor strategies.
  • Manages Fund Appeals mailings and online solicitations and fundraising campaigns
  • Manages donation entry, tracking, processing and acknowledgment
  • Manages touchpoints, meetings and communications with individual donors
  • Carries out individual donor data tracking/ analysis to use in maintaining strong relationships with donors, touchpoints, and in determining fundraising activities.
  • Fundraising and Community Event support, including oversight of reservations and registration, management of design and printing of invitations and programs, implementation of communications plan and activities surrounding specific events, tracking and management of sponsorships and in-kind donations, and general event support.
  • Prepares materials and support to the Board for fundraising activities.
  • Manages administration of grants (contracts, paperwork, filing)
  • Miscellaneous development activities, including management of matching gifts, third party fundraising initiatives, and online giving platforms.

 Communications / Marketing

Supervisor: Executive Director

  • Works with Executive Director to determine and oversee implementation of organization’s annual communication plan, as well as communications surrounding specific events and initiatives
  • Write copy, design and manage dissemination of the e-newsletter to the e-mail list, and other Communications, Fundraising and Marketing Emails, as needed.
  • Annual Report: With the Executive Director, conceive of concept, and act as liaison to graphic designer to design and print; Oversee mailing with fund appeal to mailing list
  • Social Media: Manage Upstream Arts’ presence on Facebook and Twitter
  • Website Content and Update: Develop and upload new copy or updates as needed
  • Blog: Write and/or coordinate the writing of Upstream Arts’ blog
  • Determine, in collaboration with Leadership Team, photo and footage needs, and arrange photographers/ filming of programs, manage photo/ video documentation and send out, track and manage media releases
  • Send out Curriculum Opt-in forms and manage engagement with families
  • Coordination with Graphic Designer on design of communications pieces
  • Performance/ Special Event copy, postcards, invites, communications pieces (digital and hard)
  • Design, use design templates or work with a Graphic Designer to create and order business cards, letterhead, performance programs and program flyers, as needed
    • Miscellaneous external communications/ online presence (pulling copy, stories and images for partners orgs, managing online profiles on various platforms)

Administrative Support

Supervisor: Executive Director and Associate Director

  • Provides general administrative support to the organization, including to the Leadership Team and the Operations Manager
  • Supports the Operations Manager in carrying out organizational administration, and in maintaining sound and efficient administrative and human resources systems
  • Carries out database entry and maintains contact and mailing lists
  • Assists in supervising interns and design collaborators on Communications/ Development Projects
  • Responsible for inventory, maintenance and ordering of program, office and mailing supplies
  • Coordinates meeting and Teaching Artist training scheduling and set up including printing, copying and catering arrangement
  • Assists in evaluation implementation and tracking
  • Assists in making travel arrangements for out of town programming, trainings and events.


Required Qualifications:

  • B.A. or equivalent degree or experience
  • Professional in representing Upstream Arts to its clients, partners and supporters
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Ability to self manage and take initiative
  • Ability to independently manage projects
  • Ability to work and collaborate as part of a team
  • Ability to meet deadlines in a timely fashion
  • Basic skills working with Microsoft Office, Excel, databases, website content software
  • Strong project management skills and attention to details

Preferred Qualifications:

  • 1-3 years of administrative experience
  • Development and/or Communications experience
  • Experience in the nonprofit sector and/or arts sector
  • Passion for and / or experience with the arts or disability communities
  • Proficiency in FileMaker Pro, Word Press, Adobe InDesign


  • Paid Time Off, starting with 64 hours annually (equivalent of 10 days/ 2 weeks) as outlined in Staff Manual, increased each year based on years of service
  • 10 paid holidays (Each holiday=6 hours equivalent)
  • Option to join 401k Retirement plan

How to Apply

Mail or email a cover letter and resume to:

Julie Guidry
Executive Director
Upstream Arts
3501 Chicago Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55407

[email protected]

Upstream Arts is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, disability, color, creed, religion, ancestry, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, citizenship, age, veteran status, marital status or status with regard to public assistance.  Individuals with disabilities, people of color, women, trans, and gender-queer individuals are strongly encouraged to apply.