Public Relations Specialist

15 Jan, 2020


Public Relations Specialist

American Physical Society (APS)
College Park, MD

Who we are:

The American Physical Society (APS) is a nonprofit membership organization working to advance and diffuse the knowledge of physics through its outstanding research journals, scientific meetings, and education, outreach, advocacy, and international activities. APS represents over 55,000 members, including physicists in academia, national laboratories, and industry in the United States and throughout the world. Society offices are located in College Park, MD (Headquarters), Ridge, NY, and Washington, D.C.


Position Summary:

The Public Relations Specialist will develop and direct all APS public relations strategies and media relations activities in support of our mission to advance the knowledge of Physics, and support the physics community at large. As the leader of the Public Relations team, you’ll manage daily operations, and ensure that the strategies and goals you establish are executed successfully. You’ll work closely with the media and press, and manage the Society’s social media presence to ensure a positive image of APS at all times.


Public Relations Strategy

  • Create and maintain a PR strategy that details the objectives, tactics, messages, channels, measurements, and outcomes to achieve success.
  • Manage daily operations of the public relations team by setting objectives, monitoring performance, and managing the work of 2 staff members.
  • Provide guidance and training to leadership, members, and staff to better communicate with the media and the public.
  • Maintain a keen understanding of PR trends and make appropriate recommendations regarding activities.
  • Cultivate and maintain relationships with media organizations, press officers, influencers, thought leaders, and public relations professionals at other scientific societies.
  • Build and execute a social media strategy through competitive research, platform determination, benchmarking, messaging, and audience identification.
  • Maintain the favorable image of the Society by monitoring press and social media daily to identify and address sensitive issues and present solutions in times of crisis.
  • Collaborate with Communications and Marketing teams to maintain brand consistency.
  • Generate, edit, publish, and monitor social media content and lead cross-organization team to ensure brand consistency and effective messaging while building meaningful engagements with key audiences.

Media Relations

  • Organize and manage press events such as newsrooms and press conferences.
  • Handle press inquiries and coordinate responses with subject matter experts, staff, and members as necessary.
  • Brainstorm, pitch, and secure proactive media opportunities and op-ed placements.
  • Facilitate media interviews and speaking engagements with staff persons and prepare appropriate briefing materials including talking points and speeches.
  • Track campaign success and media coverage including compiling a weekly report of press clips for distribution to staff and leadership.
  • Prepare and distribute press releases, fact sheets, press kits, tip sheets, etc. regarding Society activities, new initiatives, and scientific publications.


  • Bachelor’s degree in public relations, media relations, or communications required. Master’s degree preferred.
  • 6+ years progressive experience in Public Relations for an association or nonprofit.
  • Extensive experience of successfully managing organizational image and interacting with the media.
  • Polished interpersonal, written, and public speaking skills.
  • Ability to design and execute successful media and PR campaigns for scientific audiences at the national level.
  • Strong leadership skills, and the ability to motivate people, resolve conflicts, coordinate people and tasks.
  • Experience building and maintaining strong relationships with local and national media outlets.
  • Strong organization, documentation, and prioritization skills, and the ability to adapt quickly to changing schedules and deadlines.
  • Excellent organizational, analytical, and problem-solving skills, and a keen eye for details.
  • Proficient in commonly used technology platforms and software, including Google Business Applications, Gmail, project management software, social media channels and management software.
  • Member of PRSA and APR certification preferred (not required).
  • Travel up to 10% of the time (to national conferences and meetings).

Our Mission:

To advance and diffuse the knowledge of physics for the benefit of humanity, promote physics, and serve the broader physics community, we:

  • Provide a welcoming and supportive professional home for an active, engaged, and diverse membership
  • Advance scientific discovery and research dissemination
  • Advocate for physics and physicists, and amplify the voice for science
  • Share the excitement of physics and communicate the essential role physics plays in the modern world
  • Promote effective physics education for all

The Core Values that drive our mission are:

  • The Scientific Method
  • Truth and Integrity
  • Diversity, Inclusion, and Respect
  • Partnering, Cooperation, and Open Collaboration
  • Speaking Out
  • Education and Learning


The American Physical Society is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnic or national origin, ancestry, pregnancy (including childbirth or related condition), citizenship, familial status, mental or physical disability, veteran status, genetic information, other non-disqualifying disability, or any other characteristic protected by law.

We welcome you to apply today!

Learn more here

Job posted: 2020-01-15