Communications Director, Beyond Plastics

Bennington, Vermont, United States | Full-time | Fully remote

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POSITION SUMMARY

Beyond Plastics is seeking a highly effective and strategic communications professional with a deep commitment to ending plastic pollution everywhere. This new full time staff person will develop and implement a communications strategy that includes all aspects of our public-facing communications and media work. This position will be a key member of the Beyond Plastics staff and will interface extensively with reporters on behalf of Beyond Plastics. Candidates must have exceptional oral and written communication skills, extensive experience working with or for the media, be creative, and adapt quickly in a fast paced work environment. This position is full-time and remote, and will involve very limited travel. 

ABOUT BEYOND PLASTICS

Beyond Plastics’ mission is to end the crisis of plastic pollution. We are a catalyst for action on policies that reduce plastic production, use and disposal, promote alternatives, and require companies to take responsibility for their waste. The Beyond Plastics Program is housed in Bennington College's Center for the Advancement of Public Action.

Beyond Plastics was founded by Judith Enck, a high-profile environmental policy expert and dynamic community leader. She began her career as an environmental advocate and has held top influential positions in state and federal government, including as Regional Administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, appointed by President Obama, and as the Deputy Secretary for the Environment for two New York State Governors. After working on waste issues for more than 30 years, she saw the need to help strengthen  this new plastic pollution movement and support advocacy efforts. 

We are a growing program with a passionate, collaborative, and dedicated staff.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. Develop and implement a communications and marketing strategy.
  2. Media outreach: educate reporters on plastic pollution and solutions, amplify issue  campaigns, and pitch stories.
  3. Respond to media inquiries.
  4. Organize news conferences
  5. Serve as a spokesperson for the organization, as needed.
  6. Draft and place opinion editorials.
  7. Secure key radio and television appearances for staff.
  8. Create educational materials that clearly communicate complex programs and messages in ways that effectively engage different audiences and shift the narrative towards effective solutions to plastic pollution.
  9. Manage the Beyond Plastics website.
  10. Work with other Beyond Plastics staff to organize two media briefings each year in various locations.
  11. Think big and have fun.
  12. As a senior member of the team, provide input and new ideas to the overall direction of the work.
  13. Liaison with the Communications and Marketing department at Bennington College, for greater amplification of efforts.

Bennington serves a diverse student population inclusive of members of ethnically/racially minoritized, international, LGBTQIA+, and disability communities as well as diverse gender identities, socioeconomic backgrounds, religions, and political beliefs. Our staff and faculty also reflect diverse and intersecting backgrounds and identities. All employees are expected to be respectful and responsive to these differences in the service of building community that promotes student and employee success. Each individual (faculty, staff and students) will be accountable for upholding these values.  The College’s approach to pluralism and inclusivity—both as fields of inquiry and practice—is to prioritize flexible thought, and to invite the examination of access, value, power, and privilege through its institutional policies and areas of study. We encourage applicants from diverse realms of interest, backgrounds, experience, and accomplishment to apply. 

QUALIFICATIONS

Commitment:

  1. A strong interest in ending plastic pollution and a commitment to the goals of Beyond Plastics. 
  2. A demonstrated commitment to social equity and racial justice and an eagerness to understand how these issues are related in communities impacted by plastic pollution.
  3. Grounded in the connections between climate, economic, and racial justice and the ability to speak fluently about these issues. 
  4. Comfort in dealing with a wide range of constituencies.
  5. Finds talking to reporters enjoyable.
  6. Ability to work well within a team of motivated individuals.

Education/Experience:

  1. A bachelor’s degree and a minimum of eight years of experience working with or for the media.
  2. Proficiency with Google Suite, as well as a solid grasp of how to use current technology such as zoom, social media.
  3. Proficiency using design tools such as Canva.

Skills:

  1. Sense of humor.
  2. Exceptional writing and verbal communication skills.
  3. Ability to write quickly.
  4. Excellent research skills.
  5. Strong time management skills - knowing how to prioritize and analyze our value added opportunities.
  6. Self-organized and self-directed: able to work independently and coordinate multiple projects on tight deadlines without letting tasks slip.
  7. Persistent: willing to follow up with team members and partners to make sure you have all of the information and resources you need, and that everyone knows their part in your projects.
  8.  Ability to set goals and priorities, plan, organize, and problem-solve.
  9. Hard-working and detail-oriented.
  10. Ability to build and maintain relationships. Able to work effectively as a team player and to give constructive feedback.
  11. Comfort in dealing with a wide range of constituencies.
  12. Ability to project a professional presence and conduct relationships in an ethical manner with a high degree of tact, sensitivity, confidentiality, and respect. 

Note: The position requires the successful completion and acceptable results of a background check.

ADDITIONAL PREFERRED SKILLS/EXPERIENCE

  1. Bi-lingual in Spanish and English a plus

WORK ENVIRONMENT AND REQUIREMENTS

This is a fully remote position. The majority of work performed in a home-office environment with substantial activities completed using a computer. Must be able to work some evenings and weekends, due to the nature of working with volunteers.