Communications Officer

Job Title: Communications Officer (Full-time, Exempt)

Job Number: 17-01-1700R

The Communications Officer works in partnership with program teams to prioritize and identify opportunities to utilize strategic communications to advance program goals. This role participates, contributes, and leads toward the development of communications strategies and executes a variety of communication work.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation (Foundation) is guided by the enduring business philosophy and personal values of Lucile and David Packard, who helped found one of the world’s leading technology companies. Their approach to business and community participation has guided our philanthropy for over 50 years. Today, their children and grandchildren continue to help guide the work of the Foundation. The Foundation makes grants at the local, state, national, and international levels.

The Foundation works on the issues their founders cared about most, which are improving the lives of children; enabling the creative pursuit of science, advancing reproductive health; conserving and restoring the earth’s natural systems, and supporting and strengthening an array of local nonprofit organizations.

A staff of 120 conducts the day-to-day operations of the Foundation and a Board of Trustees oversees the work of the Foundation. For 2017, the Foundation expects to make grantmaking awards of over $300 million. David and Lucile Packard passed onto the Foundation the following core set of values: integrity, respect for all people, belief in individual leadership, commitment to effectiveness, and the capacity to think big.

Communications Department Description and Responsibilities

At the Foundation, strategic communication efforts focus on intentionally using our grantmaking, voice, and profile to increase program impact. When the Foundation communicates in a clear, consistent, and compelling way about the work and goals we collectively seek to achieve, we are better positioned to support our grantees, strengthen fields, and inspire long-term change.

 

The Foundation developed a five-year framework to guide our strategic communications efforts. The framework includes three communications priorities to:

  • Build grantees’ communication capacity and amplify their voices to strengthen their collective impact.
  • Communicate with grantees and partners in a clear and transparent manner.
  • Selectively and intentionally use its voice and profile when it augments grantees’ efforts and strengthens the fields in which we work.

 

The Communication Officer proactively guides and oversees the development of communications strategies and targeted initiatives within their assigned program areas.  The officer demonstrates an understanding of the dynamic landscape of strategic communications, how to use strategic communications to influence social change, and a willingness to experiment to reach new audiences. The Communications Officer is both a leader and coach to Foundation staff as the Communications Team continues to expand how and what we communicate to our grantees, partners, and others. This position reports to the Communications Director.

 

Specifically, s/he will:

  • Provide strategic communications support and counsel to guide program communications strategies and activities that contribute to achieve programmatic goals.
  • Serve as the primary communications contact for assigned team(s) to provide general communications support as required.
  • Identify and oversee communications consultants, design firms, and other strategic communications vendors on behalf of program and other Foundation staff.
  • Work with Communications Director and program staff to monitor and responsibly oversee the communications budget.
  • Create high quality, compelling content, including content for social media, presentations, documents, and reports, that inspires key audiences.
  • Monitor policy developments and news related to program areas and stay abreast of developments in the nonprofit and philanthropy sectors.
  • Ensure the Foundation’s identity and values are consistently reflected and implemented in all external and internal communications efforts and adhere to established style and branding guidelines.
  • Contribute to communications activities that facilitate the Foundation’s ongoing engagement of employees.
  • Support program staff and grantee requests related to questions about how to communicate about the Foundation.
  • Ensure that the communications team operates in a professional, responsive, and strategic manner.
  • Manage and take on communications projects and other initiatives as needed.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Strong writing skills and ability to present compelling and persuasive information
  • Knowledge and interest in current events, particularly in the Foundation’s issue areas and public interest communications
  • Excellent interpersonal and collaborative team skills; ability to establish effective working relationships with a sensitivity and respect for diversity
  • Excellent time and project management, budget management familiarity a plus
  • Knowledge of the philanthropy field welcome, but not essential, although the expectation would be to develop expertise and knowledge of the sector

Physical Requirements

Candidate must have the ability to communicate via voice telephone, read and understand written communication, and generate written communication manually and using a computer. Candidate must also be able to work at a desk for long periods of time (2-3 hours), lift and move documents and supplies (not to exceed 25 lbs.), and bend to file or retrieve documents.

Education and Experience

Bachelor’s degree or equivalent education and related work experience; and at least 7 years of work experience in issue-related and social-change communication, philanthropy, or a related field

Benefits and Compensation

The Foundation offers an excellent benefits package and a salary that is commensurate with experience. The position is located in downtown Los Altos, CA. and is full-time and exempt.

To Apply

Please email your resume and one-page cover letter explaining your interest in the position referring to job number 17-01-1700R in the subject line to jobs@packard.org.

No phone inquiries, please.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes a diverse candidate pool.

The Foundation uses an outside firm to check the accuracy of information supplied by applicants.

Principal applicants only.