Forward Justice is a nonpartisan law, policy, and strategy center dedicated to advancing racial, social, and economic justice in the U.S. South. We serve as a strategic partner for nonprofit organizations, coalitions, and networks at the forefront of movements organizing for a more just, equitable, and free South. Our work catalyzes tangible success for movements and expands democratic opportunities for people affected by injustice. For more information visit our website at www.forwardjustice.org.
Forward Justice seeks an accomplished, innovative, and dynamic Communications Manager to develop, coordinate, and execute a communications plan for all of Forward Justice’s program areas. This position will require the candidate to immerse themselves in the work we do with our movement partners, to be able to fully understand and disseminate our partner’s narratives. The ideal candidate will have a deep understanding of traditional and new media, and should be willing to adapt an organizers’ mentality and a passion for movement-building.
In addition to guiding the strategy of all communications work at Forward Justice, the Communications Manager will periodically update our website and public relations materials to consistently articulate Forward Justice’s mission and the mission of movement partners. The Communications Manager will collaborate with appropriate staff members on a variety of strategic initiatives and programs.
This position will report directly to the Co-Executive Directors of the organization. The communications strategist will work alongside a stellar staff and directly with our partner organizations, to ensure that the strategies and plans shift the public dialogue to one that values collective solutions.
Management & Strategic Communications:
● Develop, coordinate, and execute an integrated communications strategy across multiple media platforms to engage and grow Forward Justice’s community.
● Manage an ongoing editorial strategy and calendar, by coordinating with movement partners to advance advocacy efforts and create engaging and integrated content.
● Monitor news cycle and public discourse related to movement work and goals. This will include leading rapid response to determine when organizational response is necessary and manage next steps.
● Keep the staff apprised of organizational and project specific communication, talking points, news coverage, and social media activities.
● Manage the development, distribution, and maintenance of all print and electronic collateral including, but not limited to, ongoing email newsletters, brochures. Work in close coordination with development on marketing and fundraising materials.
● Develop a vibrant and dynamic web presence, particularly by updating and adding to the existing website, and ensuring a consistent and engagement social media presence.
● Provide programmatic support to partners by:
○ Leading partners in the co-development and implementation of narrative strategy, framing/messaging, and corresponding campaigns.
○ Support partners with media/communications-related trainings and share knowledge, research, and practices, particularly as it relates to effective digital media strategies.
○ Ensure work moves forward, measurable goals are met through clear and consistent evaluation and measurement of impact.
● Manage and maintain relationships with reporters and other media contacts. Pitch stories and spokespeople, write news releases, support in drafting op-eds and other necessary media communications. Maintain comprehensive and shared media list.
Internal Support, Coaching, and Organizational Development:
● Work across all Forward Justice program areas to effectively manage lists and list-building strategies.
● Review and contribute to grant proposal writing, reporting, and communication with funders.
● Provide on-demand coaching and strategic guidance for media relations to organizational and partner spokespeople. Vet and coordinate all media interviews and provide coordination and support for public appearances and speaking engagements.
● Further develop and maintain organizational brand guide and train staff on logo/identity usage, external presence, and key messaging.
● Advise and support with planning and staffing of partner organizations’ press events, direct actions, and editorial board meetings.
Required qualifications and competencies:
● A demonstrated commitment to the shared values of Forward Justice and its partner organizations, including experience working for social justice.
● Proven ability to work with a large and diverse cross-section of populations and a commitment to anti-racism and leadership centered on directly impacted communities. Respect for differences — race, ethnicity, class, sexual orientation, gender.
● An understanding of trends in public discourse and policy making.
● Cumulative 3-5 years experience in two or more of the following: policy, advocacy, electoral or organizing campaigns, journalism, public relations or advocacy communications, project/program management.
● Excellent writing, editing, and verbal communications abilities.
● Experience with social media management tools and WordPress. HTML and graphic design skills (particularly with Adobe Creative Suite) a plus.
● Strong analytical and strategic thinker who considers mission and vision of organization in all their planning and actions.
● Good personal organization, time management, and planning skills.
● Dedicated team player with abilities to work with staff, board, and partner organizations.
● Effective listener who seeks and accepts feedback. Looks for opportunities to learn and grow in their work.
● A passion for learning and helping others.
● Position is based in Durham, NC and some statewide and national travel may be required.
This is a full-time, exempt position. Compensation is competitive and negotiable depending on background and experience in a range of $60,000 to $70,000 and includes an excellent benefits package.
Please send a cover letter, resume, and three references to email@example.com, with the subject line: “Communications Manager” and your name. Forward Justice is immediately seeking to fill this position, but looking for the best candidate to support a growing organization. Interviews will occur on a rolling basis. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women, people of color, directly-impacted, queer, trans folks, and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.