July 7th, 2021

Director of Communications

Website ncldorg The National Center for Learning Disabilities

National Center for Learning Disabilities
Headquarters: Washington, DC
1220 L. Street, NW
Suite 100, Box #168
Washington, D.C. 20005

Reports to: Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Team: Communications Team
Status: Full Time

The Mission and Vision
The National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) improves the lives of one in five of us who struggle with brain-based learning and attention issues related to reading, math, writing, focus, organization and more. As the leading programming, research and advocacy organization for learning and attention issues, NCLD empowers parents and young adults, transforms schools and creates policy and advocacy impact. We envision a society in which every individual who struggles to learn possesses the academic, social and emotional skills needed to succeed in school, at work and in life.

We are seeking a creative, strategic, and passionate communicator. We need an innovative problem solver, not just to design and implement a great communications program, but to help us change the way people think about learning disabilities and attention disorders (LD/ADHD). Specifically, we need a Director of Communications who can help us transform thought processes — from current assumptions that people with LD/ADHD only have limits and deficits, to more accurate understanding that assumes and emphasizes individual strength and difference. Our goal is to transform mindsets and change systems, primarily the education system, so all individuals with LD/ADHD thrive. Communication is essential to everything we do. 

Core Responsibilities:
The Director of Communications is responsible for crafting and implementing communications strategies that increase awareness of NCLD’s initiatives and inspire partners and other targeted audiences to take action in support of our mission.
The Director will help steward our brand, enhance our public profile and our campaigns, engage audiences through earned and paid media, and generally, advance the issues of the LD/ADHD community in the public dialogue. The Director will oversee day-to-day activities and assist NCLD’s Leadership Team in building external relationships with some of the organization’s constituencies, including media and funders. 

Specific goals & activities will include, but are not be limited to the following:

Developing and Implementing a Comprehensive Communications Strategy: The Director will build a communications program that includes strategies and tactics that use a variety of communications channels: earned media, owned media, paid media, and digital/social media. This will involve:

  • Planning: Develop, implement, evaluate and optimize a comprehensive communications plan to support NCLD goals and initiatives;
  • Messaging: Drive awareness and action through messaging that is clear, compelling and tailored to a diverse set of constituencies, including individuals with learning disabilities, parents, educators, employers, policymakers, and funders; 
  • Collaborating: As a member of the Leadership Team, the Director will collaborate and engage with NCLD’s leadership and key staff to develop strategies that support organizational goals;
  • Evaluating: Evaluate, analyze, and report on campaign performance against KPIs in order to evolve and optimize communications strategies;
  • Development: Oversee, expand and continually improve a suite of communication tools targeted to specific audiences, for both internal (talking points, FAQs, briefs) and external (one-pagers, infographics, emails, FAQs, campaign), audiences; and
  • Overseeing Media Relations: Develop, implement, and oversee media relations and launches in alignment with overall communications strategy. Cultivate and inform a dedicated database of reporters and bloggers who follow topics relevant to policy and advocacy, K-12, higher education, and disability.

Elevating Thought Leadership:

  • Design NCLD’s public conversation about learning and attention issues and our community, while reaching new audiences and promoting intersectionality, including issues of race and equity in our movement; and
  • Develop and promote thought leadership for executive communication from the CEO and members of our Professional Advisory Board, including outreach to NCLD Board, funders and thought leaders in policy and academia.

Supporting Fundraising: 

  • Work closely with the Development team to ensure communications support, especially regarding foundation outreach and the acquisition and retention of individual donors; and
  • Provide insight into the most effective methods for amplifying fundraising efforts for major campaigns, such as NCLD’s Annual Benefit

Managing a Communications Team: Manage a small internal team, external vendors and consultants. Set KPIs and work plan targets for growing our audiences.

  • Serve as a thoughtful manager, mentor and supporter to the Communications Specialist

Requirements Qualifications & Skills:

  • Ideal candidate will have a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, Journalism, Communications, Public Relations or related field required; Master’s degree preferred
  • At least 7+ years of relevant work experience
  • Excellent writing and verbal communication skills
  • Demonstrated record of success in advancing organizational goals and messages by communicating effectively and strategically
  • Significant professional experience designing and implementing integrated communications strategies across a range of platforms including traditional and digital media
  • Experience creating campaigns and crafting messaging that will resonate with our audiences
  • Strong working knowledge of social media and media relations
  • Experience in writing, editing, proofreading, and oral communications; writing, editing and producing press releases, opinion pieces, speeches, presentations, etc.
  • Experience working with journalists across various media channels (print, digital, and broadcast)
  • Demonstrated skills preparing senior leadership to interact successfully with media during press conferences, editorial board sessions, panel interviews or one-on-one interviews
  • Experience overseeing and adhering to budget requirements
  • Strong commitment and interest in the advocacy-based communication that prioritizes plans and strategies for diverse audiences
  • Ability to lead, model, and embed equity, diversity, and inclusion principles within the organization
  • Strategic thinker with strong analytical and project management skills and the ability to think ahead, problem solve, engage proactively and take initiative
  • Sense of humor

Additional Skills and Knowledge:

  • Experience with platforms and tools such as: WordPress, Google Analytics, Mailchimp, Hootsuite (or other social media management tools), Voter Voice, Asana, Cision, Buzzsprout
  • Experience managing and working with an external PR consulting firm

Please note that only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. 

Salary Range: $100,000 – $110,000

Please send your resume and cover letter to jobs@ncld.org with the subject line “Job Application: First Name Last Name, Director of Communications”.

COVID-19 considerations: Remote work temporarily due to COVID

The National Center for Learning Disabilities is an equal opportunity employer and considers all applications without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, national origin, age, disability, marital or veteran status, sexual orientation, or any other legally protected status.

For additional information on the organization, please visit​ w​ww.ncld.org​.

To apply for this job email your details to jobs@ncld.org

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