Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

23 Aug, 2023


Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

The Aspen Institute
Washington, D.C.

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment.

Program Description:

The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program’s (FSP) mission is to illuminate and solve the most critical financial challenges facing American households and to make financial security for all a top national priority. We aim for nothing less than a more inclusive economy with reduced wealth inequality and shared prosperity. We believe that transformational change requires innovation, trust, leadership, and entrepreneurial thinking. FSP galvanizes a diverse set of leaders across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to solve the most critical financial challenges. We do this through deep, deliberate private and public dialogues and by elevating evidence-based research and solutions that will strengthen the financial health and security of financially vulnerable Americans.

The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program is committed to having a workforce that reflects diversity at all levels of the program team. We recognize the importance of not viewing individuals based on a single identity, and we thrive on being equitable in our recruitment process as well as in our efforts to be inclusive of all employees. We encourage all applicants regardless of gender, race, religion, age, sexual orientation, disability, or other social identity. While not a minimum or mandatory qualification, we strongly encourage candidates of color, those who identify as Native American, people of low-income backgrounds, and those with first-hand experience of financial security inequity to apply for this role.

Basic Function:

Aspen FSP is seeking a seasoned professional to lead strategic marketing and communications for our creative and high-performing team. The Associate Director of Marketing and Communications will oversee communications, marketing, publications, and events for Aspen FSP, collaborating and coordinating internally with FSP team members and other Aspen programs and externally with funders and strategic partners. The Associate Director will be responsible for setting, operationalizing, and managing to communications goals across FSP. The Associate Director will be challenged to think creatively about project design, strategy, audience engagement and project management. They will serve on FSP’s Management team, helping to shape the strategic direction of the program.

Please note the expectation is for this role to be in our D.C. office a minimum of 2x a week to collaborate with colleagues. Additionally, the candidate is expected to have the ability to commit to up to 15% domestic travel, with occasional evening meetings (depending on public health conditions).

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Strategic Communications

Work closely with Co-Executive Directors and members of FSP’s Management Team to ensure alignment between policy and practice in all external-facing communications, including advising leadership on how to translate our work into effective messaging– leveraging various platforms and strategies, lifting learning from our initiatives convenings and networks, identifying timely and relevant campaign ideas in various types of media, and overseeing brand and style guidelines

Lead planning, and implementation of all communications aspects of diverse types of Aspen FSP events (public events, roundtable discussions, press conferences, presentations, etc.), including post-event efforts (creation of short videos, podcasts, blog posts, etc.

Work in collaboration with FSP’s leadership team, especially Director of Programs, to build sustainable and scalable communications strategies across multiple initiatives, such as audience engagement and growth; thought leadership and media/digital presence.

Write, edit, and/or commission high-quality written products that advance Aspen FSP’s overall mission and/or synthesize learnings for our core audiences and wider community of practice

People and Systems Management

Lead a team currently consisting of three full-time employees, plus upward of a dozen vendors and contractors, assuming responsibility for:

Coaching and growing FSP staff skills and strategies around integrated marketing, communications, and events management.

Managing, supporting, and identifying new external vendors and partners, including a PR agency, writers, editors, and designers.

Liaising with the Aspen Institute central communications team for collaboration and support.

Ensure consistency of operations across communications activities and products. Identify and manage core processes to be applied across FSP’s marketing and communications work and products.

Coordinate and oversee routine team functions and ongoing activities such as team meetings, annual work planning, team budget and staff capacity planning.

Responsibility for maintaining and improving the processes, systems, software, and strategies around events and communications management for FSP at the Aspen Institute, including adhering to Institute policies and developing new capabilities for disability inclusion, diversity strategies, and other attendee experience enhancements.

Content Strategy & Management

Oversee the Editorial Calendar and make decisions and troubleshooting around timing, capacity, capabilities, and cadence for publications, events, meetings, and announcements.

Oversee vendor management as well as design and branding standards for papers, briefs, blogs, and backgrounders production, including over 15 long papers per year, over two dozen blogs, and several additional briefs and presentations.

Guide internal team members and external vendors in Aspen FSP design standard across a variety of platforms, striving for inclusive design.

Work with Aspen FSP researchers, writers, and policy and program teams to translate their work into engaging, relevant, and accurate content online.

Work with Aspen FSP leadership team to understand priority audiences and work to build and strengthen distribution plans and platforms.

Marketing of Events and Conferences

Oversee strategic planning and logistics for three flagship (private) events per year.

Responsibility for ensuring comms team staff have plans, capacity and tools for each meeting or event’s web-based presence; attendee registration and communications; sponsorship branding; on-site collateral; and attendee experience.

Lead marketing and promotion plan for public events or event series throughout the year (between 4 and 10) aligned with current research topics to help amplify and promote the FSP brand and ideas.

Communications, Funder, and Media Engagement

Manage incoming requests from reporters, maintaining existing press lists, and creating press plans to support initiatives, research, and events.

Manage the public point of view in external communications for consistency, relevancy, and in line with the mission of the organization.

Write, edit, and/or commission high-quality written products that advance Aspen FSP’s overall mission and/or synthesize learnings for our core audiences and wider community of practice.

Edit external communications such as press releases, newsletters, email marketing, social media toolkits, and paper marketing and distribution plans.

Responsible for strong funder and partner communications relationships, including writing communications plans in grant reports, executing against activities promised, obtaining necessary approvals and reporting back on activities completed.

Responsible for obtaining funder approvals on brand use and attribution on activities sponsored by them.

Other tasks, as requested.

Knowledge, Education, and Experience:

Bachelor’s degree in relevant field or equivalent professional experience with convening and audience messaging tools and platforms including grant and technical writing, events design, and management and digital communications.

8-10 years of relevant experience in a communications role.

Outstanding interpersonal, oral and written communication skills. Ability to conceptualize and draft a variety of written products for multiple audiences.

Knowledge of or interest in issues related to financial security policy, including retirement savings, asset building, or consumer protection. Experience with policy programs a plus.

Demonstrated experience building or strengthening structures, supports, and teams.

Successful track record of building and delivering communications plans and products that deliver measurable impact.

Deep working knowledge of communications tools, digital strategy and platforms.

Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.

Ability to multi-task on numerous projects, large and small, in both collaborative and independent situations.

Previous experience with design and execution of high impact meetings, convening and events.

Ability to develop high value scopes of work, negotiate, close and manage vendor and partner contracts.

Proven ability to coach, mentor, and develop staff and manage the work of external consultants.

Enthusiasm for the ongoing work of Aspen FSP and a deep passion for its mission of widespread financial security and equitable wealth-building for US households.

The Aspen Institute offers a generous benefits package including health, dental, vision, and prescription benefits, retirement benefits, and paid leave.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

Individuals needing an accommodation to complete the job application can contact or call (202) 736-5800.

Learn more here

Job posted: 2023-08-23