Her brief is to review the group's relationship with big business and government, and to introduce fresh ways of raising funds.
'Although Tate's four galleries are successful, they are in constant competition for visitors and sponsors with museums and other exhibitions,' said Shawe. 'We want to get businesses to engage more with the galleries and show them what we can offer if they get involved.'
The development director position became vacant in April when Andrea Dixon left to become executive director of Tate Liverpool.
Shawe, who spent one year on a corporate advisory board for the galleries in 1996, said she took her new role on the understanding that it would be an interim contract lasting six months.
She has ruled herself out of taking the role, reporting to deputy director Alex Beard, on a permanent basis.
As well as the original Tate Britain and the iconic Tate Modern in London, the group opened a St Ives gallery in 1993 and one in Liverpool in 1988.
The London galleries pull in around five million visitors a year between them. Tate Liverpool was part of the city's much-feted Albert Dock regeneration project.
Jan Shawe contributes to Reputation Check, p14