Director, Communications

The Pew Charitable Trusts
Nov 18, 2013
Dec 18, 2013
Human Resources
Full Time

The Organization:

The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today’s most challenging problems. Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public and stimulate civic life.

Our work lays the foundation for effective policy solutions by informing and engaging citizens, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause and insisting on tangible results. Our projects encourage efficient, responsive governments – at the local, state, national and international levels – serving the best interests of the people. We partner with a diverse range of donors, public and private organizations and concerned citizens who share our interest in fact-based solutions and goal-driven investments to improve society.

With offices in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Brussels and London and staff in other regions of the United States as well as Australia, Pew provides an exciting learning environment and the opportunity to work with highly talented individuals.

The Communications Department

The Communications department supports leaders at all levels of the institution to promote project and campaign efforts, inform key audiences, and protect and advance the Pew brand. The department provides a comprehensive range of communications services for all programmatic and administrative units and Trusts-operated projects. Our in-house expertise includes: strategy and message development; editorial support; design and creative services; media event planning; digital and video production and social media. The unit oversees all communications policies, guidelines and processes in order to manage the Pew brand, ensure production of the highest quality work and effectively steward Pew’s resources.

Position Overview:

This position, based in Pew’s Washington, DC, office, reports to the Senior Director, Communications, and is a member of the Pew communications staff supporting the work of the Government Performance group (GPG). He/she oversees the development and implementation of communications strategies for projects to effectively communicate Pew’s work and messages. The Director, Communications supervises a team of three working on projects to ensure economic and financial security for American families: a Communications Officer, Senior Associate, and an Associate.

The successful candidate must have excellent writing and editing skills, be creative, think strategically, and have strong leadership and team-building skills. Extensive experience in strategic communications is required. Senior management experience is also required.

Job Requirements

Communications Strategy
* Provide senior leadership to project communications teams and strategic communications counsel to key staff to create and execute comprehensive, integrated communications strategies that advance Pew’s research, analysis, policy, and legislative objectives.
* Oversee communications for state legislative campaigns, national policy objectives and federal outreach.
* Develop communications strategies for new and growing projects in collaboration with the Senior Director, Communications, the Communications Strategy Desk, and program leadership.
* Direct development of contracts and consultants when needed, to ensure highest degree of quality of service delivery and standards for the unit.

Media Relations
* Cultivate and develop strategic media relationships at the national, state, and local levels. Translate complicated policy issues into messages that resonate with media and policymakers.
* Direct the creation, development, and implementation of effective media strategies that contribute to a well-defined media presence for Pew projects.
* Generate positive media coverage in new and creative ways, effectively curtail negative press; manage overall reputation/image among relevant policy, research, business, and advocacy communities.
* Monitor national, state, and local press coverage and adjusts communications strategies as appropriate to accomplish campaign and program goals.
* Work with the Senior Director, Communications, and communications staff to create proactive media opportunities for senior experts and provide guidance for effectively delivering the organization’s message.

Creative Collaboration
* Direct collaboration of communications project teams with Pew’s multimedia, strategy, graphic and editorial teams, ensuring message fidelity and the highest quality execution to achieve program goals.
* Work with communications peers from across the institution to leverage best practices that can be used within GPG.

Communications Leadership
* Serve as part of the senior leadership team of communications staff supporting GPG, assisting the Senior Director, Communications with management and development of a high-performing, cohesive, and smoothly functioning staff.
* Provide strategic and tactical counsel in crisis situations to protect organizational reputation and ability to achieve program goals.
* Support senior division leadership with internal and external communications needs, ranging from reporting to the executive office and the board, to public speaking and media interviews.
* Perform other duties or special projects as needed.
* Bachelor’s degree required; master’s degree desirable.
* Ten or more years of experience in strategic communications required.
* Minimum of two plus years of previous direct supervisory experience required including experience managing performance management process for direct reports and providing career development advice and counsel.
* Strong national, state, and local media contacts. Deep understanding of the rapidly evolving media and communications business.
* Management experience in a multi-site, matrixed environment. Must be flexible, creative and assume high accountability for all areas of responsibility. Must demonstrate strong collaborative spirit and leadership ability.
* Excellent oral and writing skills to effectively communicate within and outside the organization.
* Ability to think strategically, juggle multiple priorities, be extremely well-organized, manage time effectively and identify resources for projects.
* Demonstrated ability to meet multiple deadlines by maintaining a high level of organization. Able to develop and move projects forward with independence and autonomy.
* Strong interpersonal skills; able to develop and manage productive relationships with campaign managers, consultants and others involved in developing or implementing communications for the Pew Center on the States. Excellent listening skills. Good sense of humor.
* Exhibit skills of diplomacy. Able to work productively with a wide array of different people throughout the institution.
* Seasoned judgment, able to make decisions, justify recommendations and be responsive, clear and firm with colleagues.
* Exhibit a real passion for communications and proven experience in taking projects from conception to successful launch.
* Entrepreneurial, with an understanding of policy issues at all levels of government, backed by a solid comprehension of the political environment.


Some travel within the U.S. may be required.


We offer a competitive salary and excellent benefits package, including four weeks of vacation, a generous 401(k) plan and flexible benefit options.

Pew is an equal opportunity employer.

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