Overview

Overview

The Atlantic Council is seeking a director of strategic communications to lead the organization’s media outreach and communications strategy and to serve as a member of the broader Engagement team’s leadership.

The director will manage the Atlantic Council’s media profile, which has risen rapidly in recent years—ranking among those of the world’s top think tanks. With a growing body of innovative editorial work and high-profile newsmaker events, the Council is cited daily by the world’s leading news outlets. The director is responsible for advancing the Council’s mission by amplifying its expertise, events, and publications through earned US and international media coverage and by coordinating external communications efforts and campaigns across the institution.

The director will oversee a creative, hard-working, and collegial team that has helped make the Atlantic Council a go-to source of expertise and groundbreaking research for policymakers, the media, and global stakeholders.

The director of strategic communications will bring to the role experience working with domestic and international media in a fluid environment. The director will report to the Atlantic Council’s senior editorial director and will work collaboratively with the Council’s digital, editorial, and event production teams, along with the Council’s executive office and its sixteen programs and centers. 

This position is based in our Washington, DC headquarters on a hybrid schedule. Pay is commensurate with experience, education, and organizational equity, with offers starting at $130,000.

 

Job responsibilities

Strategic Communications

  • Lead the Atlantic Council’s overall approach to external media, as spokesperson, strategist, and advocate
  • Define and create for the Council a prominent role in its target communities and markets, and with its primary media channels, to deliver on the organization’s mission of “shaping the global future together”
  • Serve as a lead communications representative at the outset of major new Council initiatives to define a holistic communications framework and develop strategy and tactics
  • Lead drafting of comprehensive communications plans for programs at the outset of significant new efforts
  • Oversee long-term communications planning for the Council’s programs and centers
  • Work closely with each program and center to define programmatic goals and define a corresponding strategy
  • Manage Council-wide communications calendar—including Atlantic Council and external global events—to enhance the organization’s public profile around key moments
  • Create and develop the Council’s strategy toward paid media, working with others
  • Lead and expand the Council’s evolving portfolio of media partnerships

Media Relations

  • Manage the Atlantic Council’s media relations operation, staff, partners, and vendors
  • Manage and build relationships with reporters, producers, and editors at key domestic and international media outlets
  • Establish Council experts as go-to media sources 
  • Lead efforts to rapidly respond to breaking developments around the world by inserting Council expert views in the news cycle when they’re most relevant, working closely with colleagues across the Engagement team and the organization as a whole
  • Serve as the primary point of contact for crisis communications and rapid response scenarios
  • Generate media partnerships to enhance the visibility of Council events and initiatives, and coordinate the organization’s strategy toward media moderators and panelists 
  • Edit and place opinion columns in leading media outlets
  • Train staff on best practices for engaging with print, digital, and broadcast media
 

Qualifications

  • 10+ years of direct experience working with the media in a fluid communications environment
  • Demonstrated experience with strategic and crisis communications, including the capacity to craft compelling narratives about impactful, mission-driven work and to navigate and mitigate reputational risks
  • Internationally minded but with extensive knowledge of the media landscape in Washington, DC
  • Deep understanding of the news cycle and traditional and emerging media platforms 
  • Experience working on issues at the intersection of international affairs and the economy, energy, climate change, or technology
  • Strong writing ability
  • Demonstrated ability to professionally manage engagement with senior-level stakeholders (internal and external) and with colleagues at all levels of the organization
  • Ability to work effectively in high-pressure situations, including occasional time-sensitive work outside regular business hours
  • Collaborative, collegial, and creative, with the capacity to bring new ideas and approaches to the organization
  • Must be based in Washington, DC area and be available for occasional travel to support the Council’s global and flagship convenings as needed
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