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Grant Writing Consultant RFP

PURPOSE

The Concrete Masonry Checkoff seeks to identify and select an experienced professional grant writing consultant with a proven track record of researching, developing, writing, preparing and submitting successful grant proposals. Experience with federal and state government grants, as well as private foundation grants, is preferred. The grant writing consultant will play a pivotal role in securing additional funding opportunities that will further advance the Concrete Masonry Checkoff's mission and objectives. Details of responsibilities are described in this RFP under “Scope of Services.”

ABOUT THE CONCRETE MASONRY CHECKOFF BOARD AND CHECKOFF

The Concrete Masonry Checkoff Board ("CMCB" or the "Board") is a quasi-governmental organization established under Section 501(c)(l) of the Internal Revenue Code. It was created by Congress with the passage of the Concrete Products Research, Education and Promotion Act in 2018. The CMCB operates under the auspices of the US Department of Commerce and is tasked with implementing the Act and Department of Commerce Order 2020-17515, also known as the Concrete Masonry Products Research, Education and Promotion Order. This legislation was the result of the vision of concrete block producers who sought to drive demand and increase market share for concrete masonry products.

The Checkoff itself is the outcome of a referendum mandated by the Concrete Masonry Products Research, Education, and Promotion Act. The referendum required approval by more than fifty percent of block producers registered to vote, representing more than fifty percent of the machine cavities of those registered to vote. Upon successful referendum approval, the Checkoff was established, wherein every CMU block sold is assessed one penny at the first point of sale.

Concrete masonry producers established the Checkoff in response to market challenges, and loss of market share to alternative materials like softwood lumber and steel. Despite emerging program ideas to drive demand, there was no means to fund multi-year initiatives that could reshape outdated perceptions of concrete masonry. With the establishment of the Checkoff, we are now able to fund programs that drive meaningful change for our industry.

The Checkoff investments are overseen by a group of block producers, nominated by their peers and appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. While all Checkoff investments are decided upon by the Board, there are five regional advisory committees (RACs) responsible for identifying unique funding opportunities within their regions. At least half of the Checkoff program dollars are allocated to fund regional programs, with the remaining funds directed towards national initiatives.

CHECKOFF FUNDING PRIORITIES

Checkoff leaders have identified six focus areas for funding with national and regional program investments. These focus areas should be considered in the proposal as to how the firm would analyze success with these initiatives.

SCOPE OF SERVICES

The grant writing consultant selected for this project will be tasked with leveraging the unique background and mission of the Board to secure additional funding opportunities. The consultant's role will involve researching, developing, writing, preparing, and submitting grant proposals targeting federal and state government grants, as well as private foundation grants. The scope of work includes, but is not limited to, the following tasks:

RESEARCH

  • UConduct comprehensive research to identify grant opportunities that align with the mission and objectives of the CMCB.
  • Explore funding opportunities from federal and state government agencies, as well as private foundations, that support initiatives related to concrete masonry products research, education, and promotion.
  • Gather information on grant guidelines, requirements, and deadlines for each identified opportunity.

COMMUNICATION

  • Communicate with the Checkoff CEO about identified grant opportunities.
  • Communicate relevant timelines for grant submission and approval.
  • Provide written proposals to the Checkoff CEO.

PROPOSAL DEVELOPMENT AND WRITING

  • Collaborate with CMCB stakeholders to develop grant proposals that effectively articulate the organization's goals, objectives and impact.
  • Tailor grant proposals to meet the specific requirements and preferences of each funding opportunity.
  • Ensure proposals are well-organized, clear, effective and persuasive.
  • Write compelling grant proposals that align with the mission and objectives of the CMCB, demonstrating the organization's expertise, credibility and potential for impact.
  • Craft persuasive narratives that highlight the background, vision and accomplishments, positioning it as a leader in the industry. Incorporate relevant data, statistics and evidence to support the proposed projects or programs.
  • Prepare all necessary supporting materials, attachments and documentation required for grant submission, ensuring compliance with grant guidelines and formatting requirements.
  • Review and edit proposals for clarity, coherence and compliance with requirements.
  • Coordinate with CMCB staff and stakeholders to obtain any additional information or signatures required for submission, facilitating a streamlined and efficient application process.

SUBMISSION

  • Manage the submission process for grant proposals, ensuring that all materials are submitted accurately and on time, adhering to grant deadlines and requirements.
  • Monitor the status of submitted proposals and follow up with funders as needed to provide additional information or address questions.

REPORTING AND EVALUATION

  • Assist in the preparation of progress reports, financial reports and other documentation required by funders for awarded grants, demonstrating accountability and transparency in grant management.
  • Participate in grant evaluation activities, including assessing the effectiveness of funded projects and programs, and providing insights and recommendations for future grant writing efforts.

QUALIFICATIONS

PROVEN TRACK RECORD

  • Demonstrated success in executing grant proposals specifically for non-profit organizations or checkoffs.
  • Documented experience in securing funding from federal and state government grants, as well as private foundation grants, with a track record of awarded grants and successful outcomes.
  • Ability to navigate the complexities of grant application processes, including compliance with government regulations, requirements and reporting procedures.

EXPERIENCE IN NON-PROFIT SECTOR

  • Understanding of the non-profit sector, including knowledge of funding sources, grant opportunities and funding trends relevant to non-profit organizations or checkoffs.
  • Familiarity with the mission, objectives and operations of non-profit organizations or checkoffs, with the ability to align grant proposals with organizational goals and priorities.

GOVERNMENT AGENCY EXPERIENCE

  • Experience working with government agencies at the federal, state or local levels, including familiarity with government grant programs, funding priorities and application processes.
  • Knowledge of government regulations, policies and compliance requirements related to grant funding for non-profit organizations or checkoffs.

STRONG WRITING SKILLS

  • Excellent writing skills with the ability to craft compelling and persuasive grant proposals that effectively communicate the organization's mission, goals and impact.
  • Proficiency in writing clear, concise and well-organized grant narratives, addressing grant guidelines, requirements and evaluation criteria.
  • Attention to detail in writing, editing and proofreading grant proposals to ensure accuracy, coherence and compliance with grant specifications.

RESEARCH AND ANALYTICAL SKILLS

  • Strong research skills to identify relevant grant opportunities, funding sources and potential collaborators for non-profit organizations or checkoffs.
  • Ability to analyze grant guidelines, regulations and funding priorities to develop strategic approaches for grant proposal development and submission.

ORGANIZATION AND COLLABORATION

  • Effective organization to manage multiple grant projects simultaneously, meeting deadlines and deliverables within budget constraints.
  • Collaborative approach to working with internal stakeholders, including staff, board members and volunteers to gather information, insights and input for grant proposals.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team, collaborating with diverse stakeholders to develop cohesive and impactful grant proposals.

ANTICIPATED TIMELINE

Task Deadline
RFP Distribution April 10, 2024
RFP Submissions Due May 10, 2024.
Top Agencies Interviews week of May 20, 2024
Agency Selection May 27, 2024
Introduction to Board June, 2024

PROPOSAL SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

Responses should be provided electronically here. Please respond by May 10, 2024.

Please answer the following points in your response.

  1. Please describe your experience in researching, developing, writing, preparing and submitting successful grant proposals for federal and state government grants and private foundation grants.
  2. Please share key successes you have had in securing grant awards.
  3. Outline your strategic approach for grant funding for the Checkoff, in alignment with the Checkoff’s Strategic Plan, including your initial methodology, timelines and expected results.