Director of Communications

28 Dec, 2021

Jobs

Director of Communications

USA Fencing
Colorado Springs, CO

USA Fencing is the National Governing Body (NGB) for the sport of fencing in the United States. Its mission is to grow and promote the sport of fencing in the United States, honor its rich traditions and achieve sustained international success.

USA Fencing is an equal opportunity employer committed to increasing the diversity of its community. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, gender identity or expression, disability, or sexual orientation. To learn more about USA Fencing’s diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging efforts, please visit: https://www.usafencing.org/deib.

Summary

The Director of Communications is responsible for overseeing all aspects of communications for USA Fencing, including serving as the organizational spokesperson and primary point of contact for media as well as management of communication strategies for internal and external communications, including social media. This individual reports to the CEO and manages the department of communications budget and staff which will include one full-time direct-report employee, as well as contractors. This position also works closely with tournament staff, volunteers and the membership as well as National Office staff.

USA Fencing is in the midst of a transitional period as it prepares for new leadership and charts its future strategy. This offers a new Director of Communications an opportunity to build a strategic communications plan from the ground up in furtherance of the organization’s broader goals.

Primary Duties 

  • Promotes USA Fencing athletes, events, programs and clubs to local, national and international media outlets.
  • Cultivates positive relationships with members of the media, including coordinating interviews, providing photos and video of key subjects and proactive pitching of stories.
  • Executes day-to-day organizational communications duties, including development, management, and execution of a comprehensive communications strategy.
  • Works with staff and appropriate constituent groups to identify and implement public relations policies and goals of USA Fencing.
  • Manages crisis communications, serving as the organizational spokesperson when appropriate, and working with USA Fencing leadership on the development of appropriate messaging and strategy.
  • Develops vision, strategy and policies for USA Fencing website and organizational social media channels, including the creation and implementation of content calendars and working with departments and committees throughout USA Fencing to post relevant content that reflects key messaging, including direct-to-member communication, reflective of the organization’s core values.
  • Publishes periodic American Fencing magazine, including writing and development of content, oversight of editorial and design staff and print and digital publication.
  • Manages remote and in-person coverage of athlete results at domestic and international events, including the Senior and Junior World Cup circuits, Cadet European Cups and all World Championship, Olympic and Paralympic events..
  • Ensures organizational adherence to brand guidelines and works with relevant constituents to update and develop relevant style guides as needed.
  • Serves as primary point of contact for media at USA Fencing events, including domestic tournaments as well as international events held in the United States.
  • Coordinates broadcasts of international events, such as Grand Prix tournaments and World Cups as well as World Championship events held in the United States, including contracting of all aspects of production and working with the Federation Internationale d’Escrime to ensure compliance with broadcast guidelines.

Qualifications

  • Proven ability to think through complex communications scenarios and issues, demonstrated experience developing, managing, and executing on strategic communications plans and awareness campaigns that will further organizational goals
  • Proven ability to collaborate with an Executive team on internal and external communications to ensure the strategic alignment and cadence of communications strategies and activities, to increase organizational and program visibility, credibility, thought leadership, and brand awareness, and to maintain organizational brand and messaging guidelines
  • Ability and experience developing and deploying a robust set of tools to inform and empower internal and external teams around the progress of communications goals and opportunities to promote messaging and support work; act as a connector across project teams to support integrated communications and messaging that communicate the breadth of USA Fencing activities
  • Ability to develop and oversee contracts with communications vendors and consultants (e.g. marketing/branding firms, content writers and editors, graphic designers, event planners, web developers, photographers, etc.) to ensure effective engagement, efficient contributions, and aligned support of communication goals
  • Proven ability to cultivate and maintain strong relationships with journalists, editors, major press outlets, and influencers across print, digital, and broadcast media
  • Proven ability to develop, oversee, and implement a year-round strategic media relations plan to achieve the organization’s key business objectives in a way that aligns with an annual Communications plan.
  • Proven ability to develop and maintain clear, transparent metrics to track the efficacy of communications efforts in advancing business goals, experience gathering and using data to drive decision-making with metrics tracking and tools (e.g. Sprout, Google Analytics), ability to identify key performance indicators, and experiment, invest, and evaluate communications return on investment in support of goals.
  • Excellent and efficient writing and editing skills with a knack for storytelling, evoking shared values, and moving people to action. Ability to appropriately represent tone, message for varied audiences, and communicate complex or new ideas through clear, concise, accessible, and persuasive language.
  • Impeccable presentation and oral communication skills with the ability to communicate effectively, comfortably, and respectfully; ability to provide media training to those less comfortable with presentation skills.
  • Ability to listen and assess the interests of various audiences; listens to media reports and reads news articles relevant to the work of the organization in order to identify opportunities to enhance reach
  • Strong technical ability to produce and disseminate compelling written copy and visual content (photo, video, and graphics) across a wide range of communications platforms including social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube), blogs, emails blasts, videos, podcasts, press releases, op eds, thought-leadership pieces, etc.
  • Experience supporting special events and external audience engagement including: coordinating/attending press and networking events, drafting speeches and talking points, producing event-specific communications materials (advertising, marketing collateral), and representing the organization
  • Knowledge and proficiency with various communications tools: analytics (e.g., Jetpack and Google Analytics), news monitoring (e.g., Meltwater, Vocus, Google Alerts), other relevant tools (Constant Contact, Mail Chimp, WordPress, Canva, InDesign, Adobe Creative Suite)
  • A strong team player with the ability to inspire collaboration, maintains a positive attitude, and transparency and integrity in all actions.
  • A calm resourceful problem-solver with exceptional planning and organizational skills and an eye for details who can thrive in an entrepreneurial environment, manage multiple projects and meet strict deadlines under pressure. A proven history of getting things done even in the face of obstacles.
  • Passion and commitment to USA Fencing’s mission and goals
  • Bachelor’s degree in journalism, communications, or related field with at least 5-7 years of experience in a leadership communications role. Experience with Olympic/Paralympic, professional or college sports organizations preferred.

 

Competencies:

  • Written Communication: Writes clearly and informatively; Varies writing style to meet needs.
  • Adaptability: Adapts to changes in the work environment; Manages competing demands; Changes approach or method to best fit the situation; Able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events.
  • Diversity: Demonstrates willingness to gain knowledge of EEO policies; Shows respect and sensitivity for cultural differences; Educates others on value of diversity; Promotes a harassment-free environment.
  • Ethics: Treats people with respect; Keeps commitments; Inspires the trust of others; Works with integrity and ethically; Upholds organizational values.
  • Oral Communication: Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; Listens and gets clarification; Responds well to questions; Demonstrates group presentation skills; Participates in meetings.
  • Planning/Organizing: Prioritizes and plans work activities; Uses time efficiently; Plans for additional resources; Sets goals and objectives; Organizes or schedules other people and their tasks; Develops realistic action plans.
  • Problem Solving: Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem solving situations; Uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics.
  • Strategic Thinking: Develops strategies to achieve organizational goals; Understands organization’s strengths & weaknesses; Analyzes market and competition; Identifies external threats and opportunities; Adapts strategy to changing conditions.

Starting Salary Range 

  • $85,000 – $100,000 annually – Commensurate with experience

Benefits Offered

  • Paid vacation, personal and sick time
  • Nine paid holidays per year
  • 401(k) retirement plan
  • Medical, dental and vision insurance
  • Employer paid life insurance

Other Information

  • The USA Fencing National Office is located in Colorado Springs, CO; ability to work from National Office is preferred. Candidates from throughout the U.S. will be considered. Remote employees will travel more frequently than previously stated.
  • This is a full-time exempt position with competitive pay and flexible schedule.

Application Process

To be considered, applicants must submit a cover letter and resume using this link: https://form.typeform.com/to/wKgdcKCQ

Job posted: 2021-12-28