Vera Institute of Justice

Associate Director, Media Strategy-- Communications & External Affairs (NYC, DC, and LA)

Communications & External Affairs - Brooklyn, NY - Full Time

Who we are:

The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, is a nonprofit criminal justice organization that strives to build just government institutions and safe communities free from the scourge of racism, white supremacy, profit, and inequity that is pervasive in this country’s legal systems. We are an “inside” lane organization that drives change at scale with ambitious public sector leaders who share our commitment to building anti-racist, reparative systems that deliver justice. We leverage our access to government to transform these systems and work collaboratively with stakeholders across many movements—including advocacy, grassroots, and grassroots organizations. Our role is to pilot solutions that are transformative and achievable, harness the power of evidence to drive effective policy and practice, and use advocacy and communications to change narratives and norms.

Vera has a staff of almost 300 people and offices in New York City, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, and New Orleans. We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace. We expect our staff to embody respect, independence, collaboration, commitment, anti-racism, and equity—both in our outward-facing work and the internal culture of our workplace. We value a range of experiences in people’s educational backgrounds and encourage people who have been directly impacted by the criminal justice system to apply.

Who you are:

The Associate Director, Media Strategy will conceptualize and oversee media strategy and execution for mature initiatives across the Institution. The Associate Director will also play a role in skill and career development as well as establishing processes and leading project management across the Media Strategy team. This position will also work directly with leaders of initiatives across the Institute to ensure that media strategy team efforts are supporting initiative’s strategy and goals. The Associate Director will also hold bottom-line responsibility in overseeing the measurement of the media strategy team’s impact across their specific portfolio.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

Managerial responsibilities

  • Provide direct supervision to at least four media strategy staffers.
  • Supervision includes oversight of writing assignments, media plans, and quarterly and annual goals, as well as career and skill development at the team and individual level
  • Manage vendors and other consultants as needed

Development and execution of communications strategy

  • Develop and execute a communications strategy to drive narrative and policy change at the national, regional, and local levels, in collaboration and in partnership with other Vera staffers
  • Survey the media landscape for opportunities and challenges based on national legislation, breaking news, and other trends
  • Develop messaging to support initiatives’ work, as needed
  • Develop and execute a crisis communications plan for a variety of scenarios related to specific initiatives

Collaborate with and partner with a range of internal stakeholders

  • Collaborate with communications, advocacy, research, digital, and editorial and program staff to ensure coherent messaging development and delivery
  • Collaborate with Vera’s digital and editorial teams to ensure coordination of communication strategies and tight integration with the Institute’s overall messaging

What qualifications do you need?

Required:

  • 8-10 years of work experience in communications, including at least 5 years of experience in nonprofit or government
  • Candidates who have a background in media relations or communications strategy are welcome to apply.
  • We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace—specifically, we value diverse experiences regarding educational background and justice system contact.
  • Strong managerial skills.
  • Strong writing and research skills.
  • Strong inter-relational skills and experience working effectively in a large organization with multiple stakeholders.
  • Flexibility, adaptability, and productivity in a changing political climate;
  • Experience working with policy coalitions and community-based partners.
  • Ability to consider multiple perspectives, think critically, provide an analysis, evaluate risk, and implement solutions to complex problems.
  • Influential communication skills, able to justify recommendations to diverse audiences in a compelling manner.
  • Highly proficient with Microsoft Office Suite
  • An uncompromising commitment to race equity.

Preferred:

  • Work experience that includes 2-3 years of direct supervisory experience of rising communications talent

List of required software applications:

  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • Media monitoring services (i.e. Cision)

Compensation and Benefits:

The compensation range for this position is $108,000 – $111,000. Actual salaries will vary depending on factors including but not limited to experience and performance. The salary range listed is just one component of Vera Institute’s total compensation package for employees. As an employer of choice in our field, supporting Vera staff—both personally and professionally—is a priority. To do this, we invest in the well-being of our staff through other rewards including merit pay, generous paid time off, a comprehensive health insurance plan, student loan repayment benefits, professional development training opportunities and up to $2,000 annual for education costs and fees relevant to Vera work, employer-funded retirement plan, and flexible time and remote work schedules. To learn more about Vera’s benefits offerings,  click here.

Applications may also be faxed to:

ATTN: People Resources / Associate Director, Media Strategy, Comms & External Affairs
Vera Institute of Justice
34 35th St, Suite 4-2A, Brooklyn, NY 11232
Fax: (212) 941-9407
Please use only one method (online, mail or fax) of submission.
No phone calls, please. Only applicants selected for interviews will be contacted.

As a federal contractor, and in order to ensure a healthy and safe work environment, Vera Institute of Justice is requiring all employees to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccine before their start date. Employees who cannot receive the vaccine because of a disability/medical contraindication or sincerely-held religious belief may request an accommodation (e.g., an exemption) to this requirement.

Vera is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.  All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, military status, prior record of arrest or conviction, citizenship status, current employment status, or caregiver status. 

Vera works to advance justice, particularly racial justice, in an increasingly multicultural country and globally connected world. We value diverse experiences, including with regard to educational background and justice system contact, and depend on a diverse staff to carry out our mission. 

For more information about Vera, please visit www.vera.org

Apply: Associate Director, Media Strategy-- Communications & External Affairs (NYC, DC, and LA)
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