Feb 23, 2020
About Us: The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.
The Aspen Institute Education & Society Program (Aspen Education) improves public education by inspiring, informing, and influencing education leaders across policy and practice, with an emphasis on achieving equity for students of color and students from low-income families. Aspen Education supports leaders at all levels, from networks of urban superintendents and their teams, to state chiefs and their cabinets, to elected officials and their staffers.
About the Work:
Aspen Education is focused on:
Advancing a richer vision of student success that integrates the social, emotional, and academic dimensions of learning as essential to advancing equity.
Transforming education systems so that they can sponsor and model exemplary learning and continuous improvement practices.
Developing education leaders to achieve transformation in learning, equity, and efficacy.
Understanding and addressing poverty in America by fostering connections across education and: housing, health and nutrition, transportation, and criminal justice policy and addressing the impact of race and racism on opportunity in America.
And does this work by:
Hosting thought-provoking convenings of diverse leaders from the district, state, national, and federal levels that create powerful learning experiences that support and make explicit connections across policy and practice.
Developing resources and tools for national, state, and local policy makers, practitioners, and philanthropy leaders to inform the public discourse on public education and to disseminate lessons/promising practices in a non-partisan, non-ideological way.
Cultivating and fostering partnerships to inform and challenge our thinking, surface and spread promising practices and recommendations, and share and apply our resources and tools.
Senior Manager of Communications
The Aspen Institute Education & Society Program is seeking an innovative, creative, and passionate communications professional to build a comprehensive communications strategy and support storytelling efforts. The Aspen Institute Education & Society Program improves public education by creating venues for authentic learning and honest dialogue, and producing a range of resources and tools, for education leaders to invest in their own learning, shift mindsets, and take action.
About the Role:
The Senior Communications Manager will serve as the chief communications strategist, leading efforts to advance Aspen Education’s strategic priorities and build Aspen’s external profile. They will have the opportunity to create an overall strategy and influence communication priorities immediately. The Senior Communications Manager will report to the Managing Director and join a high-performing, mission-driven team.
Essential responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
Strategic Communications Leadership
Develop and implement a strategic communications plan that:
Strengthens the impact of the program’s strategic priorities and goals.
Increases the visibility of Aspen Education, its work, and program leaders.
Provides a framework for translating complex information into effective messages.
Enables Aspen Education to stay informed and relevant on critical education issues.
Proactively considers and targets key audiences (educators, policymakers, advocates, journalists, and foundation leaders) for dissemination and influence.
Synthesize key takeaways, themes, and promising practices from Aspen Education and partner convenings and engagements and make relevant for key audiences.
Build relationships and engage with media, partners, and the field to amplify Aspen Education content.
Cultivate, retain and manage consultants to augment the communications capacity of Aspen team.
Identify opportunities to strategically inform, complement, and advance the Aspen Institute’s overall impact and efforts to develop a better society.
Coordinate with the Institute’s communications team to leverage the Institute’s platforms and partnerships to promote Aspen Education’s work further.
Liaise with communications staff at partner organizations to support alignment, identify opportunities for collaboration and cohesion
Content and Editorial
Shape Aspen Education’s voice and narrative by creating, framing, and informing content that advances our mission, and advise on approaches and strategies for dissemination and placement, including blogs, policy reports, op-eds, press kit documents, fact sheets and other communications collateral for key audiences (policymakers, practitioners, and philanthropy), and partnerships.
Build internal capacity, including coaching Aspen staff, to deliver disciplined, strategic, coherent, and intentional external messaging.
Monitor media coverage of local, state, and national education issues, policies, trends to inform the program’s content development and outreach strategies.
Create and manage an editorial calendar and other mechanisms that help strengthen coherence across multiple priorities and activities.
Oversee entire content production process - from brainstorming to writing to design, layout and promotion, including managing vendors and consultants.
Support team with talking points, speeches, and presentations
Digital and Social Media
Oversee and enhance the program’s digital presence through social media and other tools.
Develop, manage and curate website content.
Produce and publish newsletters and other regular email communications.
Have 6+ years of strategy-related communications experience, preferably in the education or advocacy field.
Have a college degree or equivalent experience in journalism, public relations, or communications.
Experience creating an overall strategy for an organization with multi-faceted priorities
Compelling storyteller who is adept at translating messages for different key audiences including media, educators, policymakers, and other thought leaders.
Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including writing for diverse audiences.
Record of results working collaboratively with larger teams and external partners/vendors.
Excellent partner and consultant management skills, including strong organizing, planning, and follow-through.
Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite, internet research, social media platforms, and tools; Basecamp, Zoom, Mailchimp, website maintenance preferred.
Committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion across all functions, engagements, and relationships.
Have your own network of media, public relations, print/digital contacts, and influencers in the education or communication fields.
Ability to network across diverse organizations, building additional relationships with multiple stakeholders.
Aspen Education is committed to ensuring the diversity of our team. While not a minimum or mandatory qualification, we strongly encourage candidates of color, those who identify as Native American, women, people of low-income backgrounds, those who are differently-abled, and those with first-hand experience of education inequity to apply for this role.
The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.
Candidate must have the ability to work under pressure and handle stress. Candidate must also have the ability to meet the regular attendance policy of the Aspen Institute.
Washington, DC, USA