The Director of Executive Communications (DEC) advances the university’s brand and objectives by developing concise, impactful communications that reflect our brand, core values, and the distinctive voice of its president. As part of University Marketing and Communications, the incumbent is responsible for developing, organizing, coordinating, and executing multi-channel communications and activities on behalf of the President and other senior leaders. Areas of significant work include but are not limited to event preparation, speechwriting, social media, high-profile correspondence, and campus messaging. The incumbent ensures articulation of the President’s goals and objectives for the university’s mission, values and strategic direction in all communications and media. The Director of Executive Communications works closely with senior leadership, and departments such as Development, Alumni Relations, Advancement, Athletics and multiple colleagues in University Marketing and Communications.
- Under the direction of the Senior Associate Vice President for University Marketing and Communications and the Senior Director of Media Relations prepare the president and other senior executives for interviews and other interactions with news media, including editorial board visits and crisis communications situations.
- Research, draft, and refine communications including preparing formal speeches, informal remarks, talking points and presentation decks based on institutional priorities and specific event and audience parameters.
- Ensure appropriate placement of presidential and other executive communications across internal and external message platforms, including social media, campus-directed messages, and event appearances.
- Support, in collaboration and consultation with the Senior Director of Media Relations, the creation of talking points and other content supporting interactions by the president and, as appropriate, other senior executives with news media, public officials and other influencers.
- Develop executive communications in written, video, and digital formats, working with others in the department to obtain, organize and refine content and assets as needed, and independently creating assets when necessary.
- Develop ideas, information and analyses for speeches and statements on major issues. Advise on content, approach, tone and other aspects of communication.
- Input Key Responsibilities
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
- Familiarity with and expertise in translating concepts and themes—often complex and nuanced—into clear, persuasive communications
- Knowledge of interview techniques and the ability to define and deliver messages; ability to interview, research and write for web, print and social media
- Expertise understanding a subject’s “voice” and effectively applying knowledge and insights into effective messaging for delivery through multiple channels
- Knowledge of methods for researching and identifying communication needs and target audiences through knowledge of web communication techniques, vehicles and formats; ability to effectively use web technology to achieve communication goals
- Collaborative and open to input and new ideas; comfortable working in a rapid-response, team environment
- Interpersonal communication skills to work effectively with a wide range of audiences -- including faculty, students, leadership, staff, alumni, community groups, donors, and elected officials
- Ability to work in a deadline-driven writing environment of multiple projects and quick turn-around requirements
- Ability to present information that meets the requirements of the media and publications involved and that is designed for audiences for varying interests
- Knowledge or ability to quickly learn University infrastructure, policies and procedures
- Excellent customer service experience requiring a high level of diplomacy and professionalism
- High standard of ethical and confidentiality in dealing with internal and external constituencies
- Excellent organizational and time management skills
- Familiarity with way to post on social, from use of native platforms as well as scheduling tools such as Buffer or Hootsuite
- Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Public Relations, Communications, English, or related field
- Five to seven years of professional experience writing executive or legislative communications for public or private sector senior executives
- Experience with voice and message strategy
- Experience using different media including web, social media, and traditional formats to communicate
- Experience in an institutional/educational environment utilizing a customer-oriented and serve-centered attitude
- Experience working effectively with a wide range of audiences—including faculty, students, leadership, staff, alumni, community groups, donors, and elected officials
- Master’s degree in Journalism, Public Relations, Communications, English, or related field
- Experience as an executive speechwriter
- Experience working within an academic setting
- Demonstrated excellent written communication skills
- Experience with social media, digital, in-person and traditional environments to communicate with various audiences
Classification: Administrator II
Anticipated Hiring Range: $10,285/month - $11,592/month CSU Salary Range: $4,583/month - $14,713/month
The final hiring salary will be commensurate with experience.
San José State University offers employees a comprehensive benefits package typically worth 30-35% of your base salary. For more information on programs available, please see the Employee Benefits Summary.
Click Apply Now to complete the SJSU Online Employment Application and attach the following documents:
- Letter of Interest
All applicants must apply within the specified application period: February 14, 2023 through March 1, 2023. This position is open until filled; however, applications received after screening has begun will be considered at the discretion of the university.
CSU Vaccination Policy
The CSU requires faculty, staff, and students who are accessing campus facilities to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus (including all booster doses of an approved vaccine for which an individual is eligible per current CDC recommendations) or declare a medical or religious exemption from doing so. As a condition of employment, any candidates advanced in a currently open search process should be prepared to comply with this requirement as well as with other safety measures established on the campus. The system wide policy can be found at https://calstate.policystat.com/policy/9779821/latest/ and questions may be sent to email@example.com.
Satisfactory completion of a background check (including a criminal records check) is required for employment. SJSU will issue a contingent offer of employment to the selected candidate, which may be rescinded if the background check reveals disqualifying information, and/or it is discovered that the candidate knowingly withheld or falsified information. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the continued employment of a current CSU employee who was offered the position on a contingent basis.
The standard background check includes: criminal check, employment and education verification. Depending on the position, a motor vehicle and/or credit check may be required. All background checks are conducted through the university's third party vendor, Accurate Background. Some positions may also require fingerprinting. SJSU will pay all costs associated with this procedure. Evidence of required degree(s) or certification(s) will be required at time of hire.
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Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act and Campus Housing Fire Safety Notification:
Pursuant to the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, the Annual Security Report (ASR) is also now available for viewing at https://www.sjsu.edu/clery/docs/SJSU-Annual-Security-Report.pdf. The ASR contains the current security and safety-related policy statements, emergency preparedness and evacuation information, crime prevention and Sexual Assault prevention information, and information about drug and alcohol prevention programming. The ASR also contains statistics of Clery crimes for San José State University locations for the three most recent calendar years. A paper copy of the ASR is available upon request by contacting the Office of the Clery Director by phone at 408-924-1501 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pursuant to the Higher Education Opportunity Act, the Annual Fire Safety Report (AFSR) is also available for viewing at https://www.sjsu.edu/clery/docs/SJSU-Annual-Fire-Safety-Report.pdf. The purpose of this report is to disclose statistics for fires that occurred within SJSU on-campus housing facilities for the three most recent calendar years, and to distribute fire safety policies and procedures intended to promote safety on Campus. A paper copy of the AFSR is available upon request by contacting the Housing Office by phone at 408-795-5600 or by email at email@example.com.
Equal Employment Statement
San José State University (SJSU) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of age, ancestry, citizenship status, color, creed, disability, ethnicity, gender, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, race, religion or lack thereof, sex, sexual orientation, transgender, or protected veteran status consistent with applicable federal and state laws. This policy applies to all SJSU students, faculty and staff programs and activities. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and certain other federal and state laws, prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in all education programs and activities operated by the university (both on and off campus).