Reporting relationship: This position reports to the Executive Vice President 

About AJWS:

Inspired by the Jewish commitment to justice, American Jewish World Service (AJWS) works to build a more equitable world by su pporting community-driven change in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean and by advocating in the United States for foreign policies that prioritize human rights and democratic norms. 

Through philanthropy and advocacy, we provide financial support and build strong partnerships with activists, organizations and social movements facing complex global challenges – from authoritarianism, to  attacks on women’s and LGBTQI+ rights, to climate change and humanitarian crises. Working at the intersection of Jewish values and global issues, AJWS’s grass-rooted human rights approach is making demonstrable change in the lives of hundreds of millions of people around the world.

Our Change-making Strategies

To promote lasting change, AJWS funds and strengthens grassroots and global human rights organizations  – with the understanding that the people who are most affected by problems are best suited to address them. We also advocate for U.S. and international laws and policies that help overcome injustice; we conduct research to learn about and strengthen our work and advance the field of human rights; and we use strategic communications to amplify our grantees’ voices and those of our supporters to influence policymakers in the U.S. and around the globe. 

Vice President for Communications and Marketing 

American Jewish World Service (AJWS), the leading global Jewish human rights organization, is seeking an exceptional leader to serve as its next vice president for communications and marketing. The vice president will be responsible for a broad portfolio of communications and marketing strategies and activities tied to AJWS’s unique positioning as a global Jewish human rights organization supporting local grassroots advocates for social change in 18 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. The vice president will develop and implement communications and marketing strategies to enhance AJWS’s reputation and brand, grow its support and fundraising, and advance its advocacy strategies and thought leadership. AJWS, an American Jewish organization which primarily supports advocates of color in the global south, is deeply committed to the ongoing work of creating a diverse staff and an anti-racist and inclusive organizational culture, and the vice president will advance that goal as well. 

The vice president will be a versatile communications and marketing strategist and leader with a proactive campaign mentality. They will draw on the organization’s resources to advance very specific time-bound goals for reputation management, advocacy and fundraising, as well as for humanitarian responses and crisis communications. They will comfortably integrate the most current digital strategies with more traditional channels of communications and marketing into coherent and effective campaigns, educating others at AJWS about how and when specific channels are used to speak to specific audiences or advance specific goals. 

The vice president will lead a team of approximately 15 communications and marketing professionals who collaborate with external marketing partners and other consultants as well as with staff across AJWS. The communications and marketing team includes directors of content and storytelling, digital strategy and media relations/thought leadership communications, as well as a creative director and senior project manager. . 

The vice president, who will report to the executive vice president and work closely with AJWS’s president and CEO, will be a key member of AJWS’s executive leadership team, which is responsible for leading the entire organization, establishing and implementing organization-wide strategic plans in collaboration with the organization’s trustees. While the vice president will be an expert in communications and marketing, they will also possess the knowledge and skills to participate in broad swaths of organizational leadership in collaboration with the president and CEO, the executive vice president, four other vice presidents and two director-level executive leaders. The vice president will be a strategic leader and a natural collaborator, with a strong commitment to the broad success of the global AJWS team; they will motivate and inspire the communications and marketing team as well as others across the organization to increase their leadership and effectiveness. 

The vice president will sensitively lead communications strategies that center different audiences at different times, including AJWS’s mostly Jewish donors; the diverse grassroots activists of color it supports worldwide and the social movements in which they participate; peer organizations in the international NGO, philanthropy and human rights fields; as well as elected U.S. officials, journalists and a broad range of progressive American Jews. The vice president will deftly integrate all the efforts to center each of these audiences at different moments for different purposes, with a keen understanding of how to communicate through the lens of Jewish identity as well as the lens of DEI, both within and around AJWS, as well as across the organizations it supports in the Global South.

The vice president will counsel AJWS’s president and CEO, members of AJWS’s executive leadership team, and programs and advocacy staff and trustees concerning key communications questions affecting AJWS’s reputation, including crises. In responding to threats and crises, the vice president will collaborate with AJWS’s risk management team and others. 

The candidate for this position will be adept at working in a complex, multicultural global organization in service of AJWS’s two main lines of business: programs and development or fundraising, while also playing a leadership role in upholding the organization’s well-regarded brand, mitigating reputational crises, responding to breaking news and historic events, and communicating the organization’s thought leadership in key strategic spheres—the international NGO sector, global human rights advocacy and philanthropy, and the progressive sector of the American Jewish community. 

The candidate will possess expertise in all areas of strategic communications and marketing and understands how to deftly integrate them into the overall strategies of the organization to achieve its goals. They will have a deep appreciation for the power of storytelling with words, images and graphics, and they fully appreciate the visual nature of AJWS’s brand. They will be comfortable working with the full range of communications and marketing tools, ranging from the most up-to-date digital strategies to traditional media relations to publishing top-notch annual reports and publications. Among others, these include storytelling, visual representation, photojournalism, video production,  social media, digital advocacy, media relations, crisis communications, thought leadership and CEO communications, and direct marketing which integrates both digital fundraising and direct mail. 

The candidate will grasp and fully support AJWS’s model of social change, rooted in its deep belief in the primacy of grassroots social movements that are challenging structural inequities in the 18 countries in the global south in which it works. AJWS’s model of social change also brings together the most progressive, globally minded American Jews and others in the U.S. to serve as grass-tops advocates and allies to some of the most marginalized people in the world, whom the organization supports through grantmaking and advocacy. 

The candidate will understand the Jewish roots of AJWS and how key Jewish values and the lessons of Jewish history motivate its progressive supporters to donate their time and money to the organization. They will be an enthusiastic and expert fundraiser, able to lead AJWS’s direct-marketing program, raising funds online and through direct mail from supporters who donate less than $10K annually, as well as other efforts that support fundraising at every rung of the donor ladder, from small to multi-million-dollar donations. 

The candidate will be an experienced manager with outstanding people skills and a demonstrated commitment to, and powerful understanding of, DEI. They will reward collaboration and creativity on their team as well as responsiveness to the needs of the organization along the two main lines of business—fundraising and programs—as well as responsiveness to the professional needs of the president and CEO. 

Key Responsibilities 

The vice president will be responsible for the strategic direction, leadership and management of all communications and marketing strategies as well as the budgets, human and other resources dedicated to these efforts. The vice president will: 

  • Understand and communicate clearly AJWS’s global work rooted in its belief that those most affected by social injustice and inequity are best positioned to propose solutions to those challenges.
  • Understand and articulate AJWS’s mission to realize human rights and end poverty, inspired by the Jewish commitment to justice. 
  • Communicate the impact of AJWS’s strategies with key external audiences in order to advance the organization’s position, drive broader awareness, increase support of the organization, and protect the organization’s reputation. 
  • Serve as a key member of AJWS’s executive leadership team and engage fully with the president and CEO, the executive vice president, three other vice presidents and leadership-level directors as well as the board, its committees, and individual trustees in the development and implementation of organizational strategies and in continuing to create an inclusive, anti-racist, transparent and accountable culture rooted in AJWS’s core values. 
  • Direct AJWS’s communications and marketing function, consisting of an internal team of approximately 15 staff and several external marketing and communications partners.
  • Lead the communications and marketing function by co-leading with the communications leadership team and collaborating  with others to set a clear vision for the function as well as specific goals and strategies and clear timetables for achieving them.
  • Create a collaborative and creative work environment in the division in which key directors and staff responsible for content and storytelling, digital strategy, media relations, creative design and project management join together to advance and enhance AJWS’s communications, marketing, advocacy and fundraising strategies.
  • Shape and manage an annual divisional budget of approximately $2 million and direct an additional $2 million in consulting services for direct marketing, including digital marketing, advertising and fundraising as well as direct mail.    
  • Hold four directors and the senior project manager accountable for their specific areas of responsibility as well as their collaboration with one another and others within the communications and marketing division as well across AJWS.
  • Create a working environment in the division in which regular two-way feedback and reflection are as central to the functioning of the team as messaging, photo assets and ample budgets.
  • Act as a public spokesperson for AJWS and ensure the success of other spokespersons communicating about the organization.   
  • Advise the president and CEO, the vice presidents for program and development and other senior AJWS leaders regarding communications and public affairs matters, including potential reputational challenges and communications crises.  
  • Lead efforts to protect AJWS’s reputation and mitigate damage when it occurs.
  • Collaborate with AJWS’s leadership to take full advantage of significant opportunities to promote the reputation and visibility of AJWS across multiple sectors, including philanthropy, international human rights and development NGOs, progressive Jewish organizations, etc. 
  • Hire, mentor, train and supervise staff; hire and manage consultants. 
  • Ensure that staff have ongoing opportunities to learn from one another, other AJWS colleagues, and external experts.
  • Bring new ideas from the field into AJWS’s marketing and communications work.

Experience & Characteristics

The candidate for Vice President for Marketing and Communications will:

  • Be an ambitious, innovative and creative communications and marketing leader with the strategic insights, creativity and judgment to care for and promote a brand that has thirty-five years of equity, maintaining the loyalty of existing supporters while attracting new ones. 
  • Demonstrate a strong vision for communicating about and marketing AJWS, enhanced by  a strategic, creative and collaborative approach. 
  • Have 10-15 years of leadership and management experience in marketing, communications and public affairs within complex and dynamic mission-driven organizations engaged in supporting domestic and global social change campaigns.
  • Possess significant campaign experience with a proactive campaign mindset, which will enable them to draw quickly and strategically on resources to advance very specific time-bound goals in reputation management, advocacy and fundraising, as well as humanitarian responses and crisis communications.
  • Be a mission-driven professional with a deep belief that the communities most affected by social injustice and social inequities are best positioned to lead efforts to challenge and solve those problems.
  • Be comfortable advancing AJWS’s mission inspired by the Jewish commitment to justice and centering its mostly progressive Jewish donors, when appropriate. 
  • Demonstrate a proven track record of exceptional mission-driven messaging through written, oral and visual communications.
  • Exhibit an unquestionable commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and demonstrate ample experience working effectively with colleagues from diverse cultures and communicating respectfully with diverse audiences.
  • Have extensive experience ensuring the highest quality messaging and writing across one or more organizations with sensitivity to the differing needs of different audiences.  
  • Be knowledgeable about the human rights, global development, non-profit and philanthropic sectors. A very strong track record in mission-driven non-profit work in a service-oriented environment is preferred. 
  • Be digitally fluent, with up-to-date knowledge of digital strategies for marketing, fundraising and advocacy, including but not limited to digital advertising and advocacy, email programs, social media and website strategies. 
  • Have experience handling sensitive and confidential issues, including  personnel matters and challenges to the organization’s reputation. 
  • Have earned a reputation for professional credibility, good judgment, honesty and integrity. 
  • Possess excellent interpersonal skills, including a desire and ability to work as part of a team and build strong  relationships. 
  • Demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively and concisely, listening as well as giving advice, and respecting the views and abilities of others, regardless of their position, professional experience or background. 
  • Have the desire and ability to travel domestically and globally as necessary.


A Bachelor’s degree is required, and an advanced degree is preferred in any number of fields including communications, journalism, marketing, gender studies, human rights, law, etc. 

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:

AJWS’s leadership is deeply committed to enhancing our organizational culture, policies and practices to ensure that they are diverse, equitable and inclusive (DEI). 

We strive to build a culture in which each member of our team—particularly those who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color—is welcomed in their full humanity, treated equitably and with respect and able to lead and thrive at AJWS. We see our continued exploration of what DEI means to our staff and our Board as intimately tied to the values that drive our work and will be crucial to our success as an organization moving forward.

How to apply: Please submit your resume using the "apply" button and email a cover letter to amy@chaloner.com

Apply Now