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Senior Communications Manager
SENIOR COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER
FEDERAL POLICY OFFICE – WASHINGTON, DC
West Harlem Environmental Action a/k/a WE ACT for Environmental Justice is a non profit,
community-based advocacy organization that works to build healthy communities by ensuring that
people of color and/or low income residents participate meaningfully in the creation of sound and fair
environmental health and protection policies and practices. WE ACT is a nationally recognized leader
in the environmental justice (EJ) movement and is known for its work in the areas of children’s
environmental health; government accountability; and climate, energy and environmental justice. WE
ACT’s deep roots in the community, track record of policy impact, integrity and reputation are driving
exponential growth over the next year, including in our federal policy office.
WE ACT is the only national EJ organization with a permanent presence in Washington, DC. Our
newly minted five-year strategic plan outlines a federal policy strategy that includes advancing and
reforming new national policy, practices and regulations; supporting policy implementation and
regulatory efforts of existing policy to ensure accountability; convening coalitions, organizations and
researchers to drive a shared national EJ agenda; building a powerful narrative to catalyze a national EJ
movement; and serving as a connector, regrantor and technical assistance provider to build the capacity
of EJ organizations into a powerful, cohesive national movement.
WE ACT prioritizes the voices of longstanding community members, communities of color, lowerincome communities and, most importantly, those who have been historically marginalized and
subjected to environmental and other forms of racism and exclusion. In accordance with the Jemez
Principles, we believe that communities must speak for themselves.We work at the intersection of
community engagement and activation, policy, research and education. WE ACT leverages our place at
the table to push system actors, including elected officials, Big Greens, coalitions and allies to center
racial justice and equity.
ABOUT THE ROLE
WE ACT is seeking a Senior Communications Manager with a demonstrated passion for justice
and equity issues for our Federal Policy Office. This individual reports to the Director of the Federal
Policy Office, with a dotted line relationship to the Communications Director in WE ACT’s New York
headquarters, and is a key player in the development, implementation and evaluation of traditional and
digital communications programs and campaigns.
The EJ narrative has shifted dramatically in the last few years due to the racial reckoning and inequity
raised by the COVID 19 global pandemic. WE ACT aims to take a proactive role in shaping the national
and international narrative of EJ and climate change commitments. By centering and amplifying the
voices of Black, Brown, and low-wealth communities, WE ACT will heighten EJ awareness to spur
federal, state, and local policy wins. The Senior Communications Manager will execute a national
communications strategy designed to support these objectives. Key Responsibilities include:
● Co-create and implement a comprehensive communications plan in support of the policy
priorities of the Federal Policy Office and to define short- and long-term goals and objectives
related to WE ACT’s visibility, credibility and growth.
● Ensure that our brand value and position are clear, compelling and consistent across platforms
and that they resonate with and inspire increased engagement.
● Identify opportunities to enhance the organization’s position in the landscape among relevant
constituents, including advocates, public policymakers, funders and the media.
● Liaise with partner organizations on coordinated communications campaigns and rapid
response programs to drive a national EJ narrative.
● Create and distribute WE ACT’s communications to external stakeholders, ensuring that
the team develops and maintains an editorial calendar of targeted correspondence, regular
website updates, newsletter content, social media posts and reporter pitches.
● Craft external communications tools such as talking points, press releases, opinion pieces,
reports, blog posts, infographics, case studies and other materials.
● Test, evaluate and iterate new communications technologies, platforms and email marketing
techniques, using analytics to improve strategy.
● Ensuring the regular maintenance of WE ACT’s federal policy office website content and social
media identities, leveraging these platforms for campaigns and ongoing community engagement
and movement building efforts.
● Enhance current and build new relationships with journalists, bloggers and other media
influencers and opinion makers in order to promote WE ACT’s expertise.
● Identify opportunities to boost WE ACT’s visibility and thought leadership through writing and
speaking opportunities such as opinion editorials, keynotes and expert panel participation.
● Field and manage day-to-day media and speaking requests for the Federal Policy Office.
● Plan and execute rapid response media and digital actions that center environmental justice.
● Track environmental justice news that is related to the priorities of the Federal Policy Office
and proactively identify engagement opportunities.
● Coordinate events hosted by the Federal Policy Office including press conferences.
The incoming Senior Communications Manager is driven by their belief in and commitment to WE
ACT’s vision and mission. Through their track record as a communications professional, the successful
candidate manages critical aspects of the communications strategy to advance our goals. The Senior
Communications Manager builds authentic and lasting relationships inside and outside the organization
with coalition members and the media, engaging with them as partners in WE ACT’s mission and vision.
The successful candidate is entrepreneurial and self-directed, bringing creativity and outstanding project
management capabilities to prioritize an ambitious agenda for maximum impact. This role requires a deep
commitment to the principles of environmental justice and the ability to tell compelling stories of
community-based advocacy. The optimal candidate has worked in an advocacy environment and
understands the movement context, possessing a strong grasp of the economic, social and political forces
that shape environmental policy in the U.S. The selected candidate will also possess most of the
following Core and Preferred qualifications:
● Strong commitment to the mission and goals of WE ACT and a strong passion for solving the
climate crisis through environmental justice.
● At least 5 years of increasing responsibility in communications, with a proven track record of
accomplishments designing and executing communications strategies that generate visibility,
credibility and thought leadership.
● Demonstrated experience working across lines of race, class, gender and geography and an
analysis of how climate change and energy-related issues intersect with historically marginalized
● Demonstrated understanding of how organized movements create change and accomplish policy
● Outstanding oral and written communications skills that demonstrate an ability to:
○ Convey a compelling story about WE ACT’s mission and impact;
○ Translate complex data and analysis into persuasive narratives;
○ Communicate WE ACT strategies without jargon;
○ Write, copyedit and proofread, often within a short turnaround time.
● Strong project management abilities to ensure effective collaboration and projects that advance on
time and on budget.
● Social media savvy with understanding of how to integrate social into comprehensive
communications and movement building strategies.
● Strong relationship-building skills with a wide range of diverse external constituencies,
diplomatic abilities and authentic leadership skills that build the trust-based relationships
necessary for stakeholders to buy in and share accountability for our collective work.
● Demonstrated ability to prioritize and be flexible in a fast-paced, constantly evolving and
collaborative environment, where working on a team and working individually are required.
● High fluency with Microsoft Office software, including PowerPoint, and proficiency with digital
communications platforms and media management tools such as Canva, Cision, Hootsuite,
Mailchimp and WordPress.
● Ability to lead through influence in a matrixed environment.
● Background in journalism, public relations, public affairs and/or campaign communications
experience; recent media/journalism experience a plus.
● Local and national media connections including reporters and outlets; preference for experience
working with and pitching reporters in the climate, environmental justice and energy spaces.
● Prior experience and content knowledge in climate, clean energy and/or public policy.
● Experience managing contractors such as graphic designers.
● Experience with graphic design tools such as Audition and Photoshop.
SALARY & BENEFITS
WE ACT offers competitive nonprofit compensation and is committed to justice in salary
transparency and wage equity. The salary range for this position is $85,000 – $100,000, based on
experience and qualifications. WE ACT offers a generous suite of benefits, including comprehensive
health care (medical, dental and vision), flexible spending account, life insurance, pre-tax transit
program, retirement programs and paid holidays and vacation, along with onsite HR support for your
benefit needs. WE ACT follows a 3-2 hybrid work policy, requiring 3 days in the office per
week. All staff are fully vaccinated.
OUR COMMITMENT TO EQUITY, DIVERSITY & INCLUSION
WE ACT is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of
color, women, persons with disabilities and LGBTQ communities. We are committed to transparent
and equitable recruitment, hiring and promotion processes that foster inclusion and belonging. If you’ve
read this job description, are excited by it and can see yourself in this role, we hope you apply. If you
need a reasonable accommodation during the application or interview process, please email David
Hudson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HOW TO APPLY
To apply or nominate a candidate, please send to email@example.com with “Senior Communications
Manager” in the subject line a resume, one brief writing sample and cover email or letter answering the
1) Why are you passionate about environmental justice?
2) Briefly share a communications effort you played a key role in, particularly a lesson learned that
you would apply to WE ACT’s national policy goals.
Submission in a combined PDF or Microsoft Word file is preferred. This position is open until filled and
applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
Job posted: 2022-09-05