Director of Communications & Strategy

New York City, New York (US)
Salary commensurate with experience + full benefits
Aug 07, 2018
Metro Area
New York
Full Time

The Center for an Urban Future (CUF), an independent, nonprofit policy organization focused on the critical issues affecting New York City’s future, seeks a Director of Communications & Strategy to help drive the policy debate in New York. The ideal candidate will have exceptional writing skills, strong instincts on the issues of the day, significant experience navigating the New York City policy and media landscapes, and the hustle required to gain attention for our important work.

CUF is a catalyst for smart and sustainable policies that reduce inequality, increase economic mobility, and grow the economy in New York City. We use fact-based research to elevate important and often overlooked issues onto the radar of policymakers and advance practical solutions that strengthen New York and help all New Yorkers participate in the city’s rising prosperity.


The Director of Communications & Strategy will play a key role in building awareness of the organization and expanding CUF’s reach and impact to shape the policy debate around economic opportunity in New York City. This highly motivated self-starter will be responsible for developing and executing all elements of the organization’s marketing, communications, and PR strategies. Duties include drafting and editing press releases, media advisories, op-eds, marketing materials, and tailored pitches to reporters, as well as managing the organization’s social media channels and e-newsletter. The Communications Director will also be responsible for identifying opportunities for CUF to weigh in on issues that are core to the organization’s mission and advance the findings and recommendations from our policy reports. Drawing on a deep well of knowledge regarding New York City’s policymaking community, the Communications Director will help drive impact through strategic marketing of CUF’s ideas, research, and recommendations to leaders in government, the media, and the private sector.

The Director of Communications & Strategy will take on the following responsibilities:

Communications & Strategy

  • Plan and execute a comprehensive communications and marketing strategy for all of the organization’s publications, research products, and events.
  • Write press releases, media advisories, marketing materials, pitches to journalists, and CUF’s email newsletter.
  • Day-to-day management of social media channels, including a prominent Twitter handle, and develop social media strategies and assets to promote the organization and market CUF’s reports and ideas.
  • Pitch and place stories in various media outlets
  • Cultivate relationships with reporters, policymakers, nonprofit and business leaders, and other key audiences to maintain visibility of CUF’s work and drive impact.
  • Secure and manage notable speaking opportunities for CUF leaders to drive organizational visibility, recognition and thought leadership
  • Develop talking points and messaging for CUF leaders and outside spokespeople to prepare for CUF events, speaking opportunities at policy conferences, and media interviews
  • Assist in ghost writing op-eds and drafting other short-form publications.
  • Develop marketing materials for the organization, including pitch decks and one-pagers
  • Identify and promote policy impacts and other organizational achievements
  • Develop and foster partnerships—public, private, and philanthropic—that advance uptake and spread of CUF’s policy recommendations

Insights & Opportunities

  • Track daily developments in state and local government and identify opportunities to market CUF’s research and ideas.
  • Collate and share relevant news links each morning with CUF staff
  • Maintain oversight of CUF’s digital analytics, including CUF’s website, social media platforms, and e-newsletters.
  • Assist in fundraising activities, including grant writing and reporting, drafting letters of interest, and identifying new prospects and opportunities.
  • Assist in brainstorming speakers and panelists for CUF events and drafting framing language and invitations
  • Help curate a pipeline of research ideas and help select topical themes for CUF's agenda

Qualities & Qualifications

Successful candidates will have the following qualities and qualifications:

  • 5+ years experience working in a communications, marketing, or PR role in a public policy setting
  • Outstanding written and oral communication skills, with significant experience writing press releases, pitches, and marketing materials
  • Proven ability to identify and craft pitches to a variety of media outlets
  • Ability to deliver complex content in a clear, concise, and persuasive manner to multiple audiences, including journalists, government officials, and business and nonprofit leaders
  • Strong and established relationships with journalists, policymakers, and local government
  • A passion for New York City’s diverse communities and a deep interest in policy issues; working knowledge of major topics in economic development and economic opportunity preferred
  • Ability to manage complex projects and exercise sound judgement
  • Fluency in Microsoft Office programs, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint (Adobe Creative Suite and basic HTML/CSS a plus)
  • Experience developing content for social media preferred
  • A team player who thrives on a challenge

This is a full-time position. Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Only applicants meeting minimum qualifications for the position will be considered.

How to Apply
Send resume, cover letter, and at least one writing sample. No phone calls please. An independent, nonpartisan policy organization, the Center is an equal-opportunity employer that is committed to promoting a diverse and inclusive workplace. We welcome applications from all qualified individuals regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, disability, marital status, veteran status, or other factors protected by law.

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