The ACLU of Arizona is seeking an accomplished leader with at least 5 years of experience in strategic communications to serve as our Communications Director and help advance the affiliate’s goals around core ACLU issues such as criminal justice reform, immigrants’ rights, LGBTQ equality and education equity. The Communications Director will oversee a small communications team and all external communications, including communications planning and strategy, messaging, media relations, digital media and brand awareness. The Communications Director, who will be part of the senior leadership team, will work with staff to ensure that communications initiatives are integrated in core advocacy areas, leveraging the power of concerted efforts to achieve maximum impact on programmatic and organizational goals.
This is an incredibly exciting time to join the ACLU. We’re centering the leadership of impacted people and making space for them to come to the table, meet with decision-makers, and push for reforms. The organization is growing rapidly and has identified critical advocacy objectives that need proactive campaigns to succeed. The Communications Director will co-create affiliate-wide policies and practices that promote this new integrated advocacy model and foster teamwork and collaboration to make transformative policy changes.
The ACLU of Arizona is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, public interest organization dedicated to defending and preserving individual rights and liberties in Arizona. Our four strategic priority areas are: criminal justice reform, educational equity, LGBTQ equality, and immigrants’ rights. The ACLU of Arizona has 22 staff members, 15 board members, approximately 14,000 members, and an annual budget of $3,150,155. Visit us at: www.acluaz.org
Setting Strategy & Planning:
Set and manage short- and long-term goals for achieving communications milestones that are tied to the overall mission of ACLU of Arizona and our multi-year campaign goals. Oversee the entirety of the affiliate’s external communications including messaging, media relations, digital media and brand awareness. Develop, review and update the affiliate’s communications plan and assess its impact on our overall goals, including whether the messages were delivered clearly and effectively to targeted audiences.
Strategic Campaign Communications:
Work with our advocacy teams to develop and execute communications strategies that advance ACLU of Arizona’s multi-year campaign goals. Work with our issue-based campaign teams, including a Campaign Strategist and Campaign Manager, to oversee the execution of campaign-style communications strategies focused on neutralizing opposition, driving narratives that support ACLU values, rapidly responding to news cycles, and influencing decision makers through traditional and social media. Work with our political strategist to develop a political communications plan that ensures a pro-civil liberties agenda is front and center in important, highly visible candidate races. Measure outcomes and use data to adjust strategies and tactics.
Brand & Media Relations:
Strategically raise the visibility of the ACLU of Arizona through both national and local media outlets. Identify ways to leverage our core leaders externally to influence policymakers and mobilize supporters to take action. Collaborate with campaign teams to ensure that all content is on-brand, consistent in style, quality and tone of voice, and optimized for search and user experience. Oversee all media relations activities, including writing press releases, pitching stories, responding to media inquiries, coordinating press conferences, and serving as spokesperson when needed. Partner with leaders internally and externally to identify influencers, opportunities and platforms to amplify messages.
Develop and drive a clear online strategy, using digital assets and especially social media to influence the conversation around ACLU issues and achieve campaign goals. Oversee the drafting/editing of content for social media or email communications and oversee the content production of the ACLU’s web site, www.acluaz.org. Evaluate the performance of digital content to continuously refine and optimize the digital communications program.
Organizational Leadership and Management:
Manage and mentor members of the communications team. Assess where there are gaps in communications internally or externally and devise solutions to address them. Manage the complex relationship between elevating a clear and compelling ACLU brand and promoting priority campaigns. Develop and adhere to annual communications budgets and issue timely progress reports to the Executive Director, Board of Directors and funders.
Publications: Lead the creation of content that highlights both the ACLU and our campaigns and ensure public education materials are regularly updated and accessible for our diverse communities, especially Spanish-speaking audiences.
Public education events and projects: Conceptualize and execute public events that strengthen ACLU of Arizona’s brand, deepen public understanding of our mission and work, and create opportunities for growth and volunteer leadership development.
Public representation: Serve as a highly visible spokesperson for the ACLU of Arizona and routinely represent the ACLU at public functions or speaking engagements. Train volunteers and staff on how to deliver the ACLU’s messages and ensure speakers have adequate background materials before delivering talks or speaking in the press.
- A strong commitment to civil rights, civil liberties and social justice issues.
- At least 5 years of experience doing communications and media work for advocacy campaigns or other organizations. In lieu of a degree, work experience in the fields of communications, marketing and public relations is acceptable.
- Demonstrated ability to develop and implement strategic communications plans, craft messages, and produce clear, compelling communications materials.
- Experience managing and executing work across several communications channels.
- Excellent written and spoken communication skills.
- Strong, demonstrated commitment to the needs and concerns of working people and diverse communities, and ability to work within diverse coalitions.
- Experience with websites, social media, and emerging media platforms, and understanding of communications technology trends.
- Experience with these programs is preferred: Word Press, Adobe Suite (InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Premiere)
- Familiarity with media outreach and the news industry overall.
- Ability to problem-solve and generate ideas, and to do so under deadline pressure while maintaining good humor.
- Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively as part of a team and to work independently, with the self-motivation to produce excellent work on time.
- Ability to anticipate needs and plan accordingly, coordinate complex activities, prioritize conflicting demands, and meet deadlines with minimal supervision.
- Written and spoken proficiency in Spanish is a plus.
ABOUT THE ACLU
For the past nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been at the forefront of every major civil liberties fight in our country’s history. Whether it’s reducing the prison and jail population, achieving full equality for the LGBTQ community, reducing immigration detention, or ending unjust laws that strip people of their fundamental right to vote due to criminal convictions, we take up the toughest civil liberties issues to defend all individuals from government abuse and overreach. With ACLU affiliate offices in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, we fight tirelessly to defend our rights in the courts, influence public policy, and empower communities to advance rights for all. We are a passionate, highly motivated group of lawyers, public policy experts, lobbyists, communications strategists, organizers, and fundraisers, and we’re looking for exceptional talent to join our team.
Salary is commensurate with experience and within the parameters of ACLU of Arizona’s salary scale. Excellent benefits include three weeks paid vacation, 100% employer-paid medical and dental insurance, 401(k) plan with an employer match, life and long-term disability insurance, and generous paid holidays.
Please submit a cover letter to email@example.com that illustrates your commitment to civil liberties and civil rights, resume and 1-3 writing samples relevant to the work of this position. Include “Communications Director Search” in the subject line and specify how you heard about the posting. No phone calls or walk-ins, please.
Hard copy materials may also be sent to the attention of “Communications Director Search,” ACLU of Arizona, P.O. Box 17148, Phoenix, AZ 85011.
The ACLU of Arizona and its Foundation operate jointly as private, non-profit organizations devoted to protecting civil rights and civil liberties. To achieve our mission, we manage legal, legislative, and public education programs on a broad range of constitutional issues including immigrants’ rights, LGBTQ equality, reproductive rights, education equity, and voting rights. Founded in 1959, the ACLU of Arizona has an office located in central Phoenix and a Tucson office focused on border-related litigation and advocacy. The organization has over 14,000 members and supporters and a 22-member staff. To learn more about the work of the ACLU, please visit www.acluaz.org and www.aclu.org.
ACLU is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status and record of arrest or conviction.