Director of Communications
The Director of Communications (DoC) leads development and implementation of VCE’s outreach strategy, a critical role that serves every arm of the organization in advancing our mission and achieving conservation outcomes. The position is key to increasing VCE’s on-the-ground conservation impact, by facilitating the establishment and growth of formal working relationships between VCE scientists and key conservation partners; this necessitates proven skills as a convener and facilitator. The position is thoroughly integrated into VCE’s development efforts. The DoC possesses a vision, enthusiasm, and talent for translating science to diverse audiences and ensuring it reaches its highest purpose. S/he brings substantive experience and demonstrated success in mission-driven communications work, with a documented return on investment of communication initiatives. S/he will share responsibility for setting and meeting objectives across the organization, particularly related to fundraising, outreach to diverse audiences, and collaborations with conservation practitioners. The DoC has a demonstrated passion for science and nature. An outstanding writer, s/he brings both breadth and depth – from innovative ideas and ability to follow through with details, to entrepreneurial energy for independent work and a strong commitment to collaborative decision-making, to comfort both as a leader and a worker in the background as others occupy the forefront. S/he exhibits keen attention to detail, commitment to excellence and creativity, and a collegial manner.
The Vermont Center for Ecostudies (www.vtecostudies.org) advances wildlife conservation across the Americas using the combined strength of scientific research, long-term monitoring, and citizen engagement. With roots firmly in Vermont, our focus on northeastern North America’s wildlife, including migratory birds, leads us to work across the western hemisphere to unite people and science for conservation. VCE currently employs a staff of 9, including 7 conservation biologists. Our offices are located in Norwich, Vermont, with abundant opportunities for four-season outdoor recreation, local farms and food, and communities with a strong conservation ethic. We are 1 mile from Dartmouth College, about 50 miles from Montpelier, Vermont’s state capital, and about 80 miles from Manchester (NH) regional airport.
• Integrate communications strategy to advance organizational goals related to audience, fundraising, and public policy. Define objectives, craft messages, establish and monitor measures of success, and be accountable for the outcomes of all communications efforts.
• Lead the finalization and implementation of VCE’s strategic plan for Communications. Direct the continued evolution of the Communications program to support and advance other organizational goals. Key areas include tracking conservation outcomes, improving communications with both funders and end-users of VCE work, and donor and constituent outreach.
• Envision, create, and deliver outstanding outreach materials and messages, including targeted communications to donors, in collaboration with other VCE staff. Represent VCE’s work both verbally and in writing, with engaging prose, captivating photos, sophisticated design, and energetic presentations. In all communications and development activities, support the strategic objectives of the organization and other staff in their communications efforts.
• Direct and manage VCE’s printed and digital communications efforts, including the annual appeal and other fundraising appeals, from vision to production and distribution. Measure the return on investment of each major product. Utilize the services of volunteers as needed.
• Interface with contracted professionals, including VCE’s web designer, graphic designer, and printing company to schedule projects, review drafts, and meet deadlines.
Approximate distribution of responsibilities:
30% Communications in service to science and conservation outcomes
30% Communications in service to philanthropy
20% Communications in service to VCE brand identity and public outreach
20% Special projects/other
• Bachelor’s degree or higher in related field
• Minimum 5 years’ experience in communications or marketing.
• Demonstrated return on investment for communications projects
• Proven ability to write with flair and clarity in a voice compatible with VCE's style
• Proven ability as a convener or facilitator
• Eagerness to connect with VCE donors and to maximize effective communication to them
• Strong editing skills and impeccable attention to detail — factual, visual, and grammatical
• Ability to organize, set priorities, and multitask
• Willingness to respond to short-term or unexpected projects with positive energy, and ability to turn around quality projects efficiently and with limited time
• Adequate experience with science or technology to allow for a quick-study of subject topics
• Ability to work productively and positively, both independently and as part of a team
• Passionate or curious about VCE’s work, and nature in general
• Desire to be part of a cohesive, genial work environment that values collegiality and humor.
• Working knowledge of Spanish is a plus
Hours: Full-time, M-F
Salary: Commensurate with experience. VCE offers a generous earned-time-off and health insurance package.
Reports to: Associate Director
To apply: Email cover letter, resume, and list of 3 professional references to Susan Hindinger, firstname.lastname@example.org.