Communications Specialist



Classification Title:

Communications Specialist

Job Description:

The Communications Specialist will serve as an integral member of the Principal Gifts & Strategic Initiatives team. Reporting to the Associate Director of Communication for Principal Gifts & Strategic Initiatives, the position is responsible for producing development writing and messaging, including Advancement leadership correspondence and stewardship materials. The position will support donor event planning efforts independently or in conjunction with Donor Relations, Strategic Communications and Marketing or other representatives and coordinate closely with the Principal Gifts & Strategic Initiatives Research team and the Manager of Board Relations to provide strategic support for priority communications projects. The Communications Specialist will often collaborate with the Strategic Communications and Marketing team and have frequent contact with University constituents, including faculty and staff, as well as University, and UF Advancement officials and staff as assigned.

Role and Responsibilities:

Principal Gift Communications

  • Facilitate communications projects.

  • Conceptualize, create, develop and write proposals and projects to support donor stewardship and cultivation.

  • Assist the Associate Director of Communications in developing highly customized communications pieces including: executive/presidential briefs, leadership correspondence, impact and special reports.

  • Develop and edit concept papers, case statements and proposals for fundraising initiatives.

  • Interact closely with development staff to obtain and organize information and materials to best write, edit, research and design quality reports tailored to each donor or prospect.

  • Coordinate and collaborate with Strategic Communications and Marketing, and assist other related departments/unit at the direction of the Associate Director of Communications.



Strategic Projects

  • Assist with strategic direction for special projects, including donor events (provide engagement, stewardship and cultivation ideas and materials).

  • Develop, initiate and execute action plans for projects.

  • Ensure that project goals and timelines are met in a timely fashion.

  • Track project activities and results.

  • Assist the Associate Director of Communications in the formulation of policies and procedures as they pertain to the unit.

  • Attend and participate in planning and strategy sessions about UF's top donors and prospects.

  • Assist research team in editing and fact-checking VP briefs with information from ADVANCE and from the web, and serve in a strategic support role to the Associate Director of Communications.

  • Facilitate/coordinate communication projects that arise from strategy sessions.



Strategic Communications & Marketing Collaboration

  • Collaborate with the Strategic Communications and Marketing team, with guidance from its AVP and Executive Director, to coordinate and direct the production of collateral materials, and produce and write marketing materials.

  • Assist this team by editing draft letters and other written material for correct grammar, clarity and proper use of language.

  • Strategize with this team on communication materials for the capital campaign—and the stewardship and engagement activities following the campaign—that would impact PG and Presidential prospects/donors.



Donor Relations Collaboration

  • Collaborate with the Donor Relations team, with guidance from the Associate Director of Communications, to produce strategic and high-quality stewardship materials for PG and Presidential prospects/donors.

  • Assist this team with projects related to PG and Presidential prospects/donors. For example, edit letters and other written material for sensitivities, correct grammar, clarity and proper use of language.



Tracking and Administrative

  • Manage and maintain archive of proposals, concept papers and stewardship reports.

  • Assist in tracking communications projects (number requested, number completed, and outcomes of requests) to measure performance in this area.

Expected Salary:

Salary commensurate with education and experience.

Minimum Requirements:

Bachelor’s degree in an appropriate area and one year of relevant experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Preferred Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will possess:

  • Four years or more of university development experience in the communications field preferred.

  • Excellent technical, persuasive writing and verbal communication skills.

  • Demonstrated journalistic writing abilities and professional publications or editorial experience preferred.

  • Must possess a proficiency in communicating effectively with diverse audiences in conversations and through documents

  • Must be an outstanding communicator and possess excellent written and verbal communication skills; interpersonal skills; and the ability to work collegially and interact effectively with a diverse constituency.

  • Knowledge of advancement philosophy and practices; higher education or strategic communication experience preferred.

  • Ability to problem-solve, using investigative research and analytical skills to develop and implement creative solutions.

  • Skill requiring judgment to take initiative, accurately establish priorities, complete complex assignments in a timely manner, and adapt quickly to changing needs and in dealing with people who present conflicting challenges.

  • Strong computer skills in these areas: Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, internet browsers, preferably Internet Explorer, and Outlook. Working knowledge of a donor database, contact management and tracking system is highly preferred.

  • Off campus travel may be required. A valid driver license and good driving record are essential.

  • An appreciation for and support of diversity in the workplace in all its forms; proven success working with organizational leadership and stakeholders, both internal and external; project management skills; experience in a data-driven environment; organizational skills; and the ability to lead, influence and motivate others are required.

Special Instructions to Applicants:

In order to be considered, you must upload your cover letter, resume, and three references.

Application must be submitted by 11:55 p.m. (ET) of the posting end date.

A valid Florida driver license is required.

Health Assessment Required: No

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