Communications Officer 2
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Scope of Search
Executive Director of Executive Communications
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Executive & Senior Level Leadership
VP University Relations
At VCU, we Make it Real through learning, research, creativity,
service and discovery — the hallmarks of the VCU experience. A
premier, urban, public research university nationally recognized as
one of the best employers for diversity, VCU is a great place to
work. It’s a place of opportunity, where your success is supported
and your career can thrive. VCU offers employees a generous leave
package, career paths for advancement, competitive pay, and an
opportunity to do mission-driven work.
Position Primary Purpose and General Responsibilities
With an emphasis on strong organizational experience and
collaboration, the Executive Director
of Executive Communications plays a vital role in creating and
executing a ONE VCU integrated
communications strategy focused on national prominence.
This position develops and leads a strategic communications plan
for the President and leads
a team that supports key executives with institutional
brand-building opportunities that
engages internal and external audiences by aligning communications
and marketing strategies
that 1) advance the President’s vision and priorities and 2)
strengthen the institution’s brand.
The Executive Director is will manage both short-term work and
anticipate and address long-
term strategic opportunities and issues in support of the
The Executive Director of Executive Communications will:
- Lead the strategic development of presidential messaging, as
well as related C-suite content designed for both internal and
external audiences, and high-level event planning for the President
- Develop and oversee messaging and ensure the authenticity of
the President’s voice and message across all communications
platforms. This includes speeches, blog posts, talking
points, op-eds, social media content, video scripts and more.
Conceive, direct and implement
executive communication messages for other senior executives (when
they have institutional
brand-building opportunities) and supervise staff in support of
- Identify opportunities for the President and other key
university executives, such as the Provost or VCU Health System
CEO, to tell VCU’s story to a national audience and execute a
thought leadership plan that promotes the President and select
cabinet members as leaders in areas of strategic interest,
leveraging their strengths and expertise with key
- Monitor and maintain constant awareness of major issues that
impact (or have the potential to impact) the university/President
and provide crisis communications and issues management strategies
and tactics to elevate the university/President’s position and
interests in a way that assures a positive place in the public and
- Lead a team of communications professionals, including
potential new positions, that support
these goals. Provide strategic leadership and guidance to the
events team, which is led by the
Director of Special Events, that is responsible for implementing
presidential, university relations and key institutional events.
Ensure the team works closely with University Marketing to develop
- Work in collaboration with the Director of Executive and
Enterprise Communication at VCU
Health and the Senior Advisor to the President in the Office of the
President to align executive
- Collaborate with communications and marketing leads in
University Relations and across
campus to amplify the President’s messages, particularly among
internal audiences, and
identify meaningful engagement opportunities.
- Partner with university leadership to develop proactive
strategies, positions and messages on
key policy issues and help communicate those messages to critical
- Represent the University at internal and external events,
meetings and other functions as
needed. Some public speaking required. Serves on University
committees and work groups.
- Handle confidential information with high levels of discretion
and good judgment.
- Responsible for day-to-day operations of the Executive
Communications office, including
budget, data integrity, work flow and best practices in business
- Special projects as assigned.
Minimum Hiring Standards
Master’s degree in English, Communications, Journalism or related
field and/or other
comparable training and work experience at a level that equates to
an advanced degree.
Minimum seven years of experience writing and editing speeches,
copy ads, reporting and/or
event planning. Experience in higher education, including academic
health sciences or
Experience writing for and working with senior executive-level
Demonstrated record of expertise in executive communication
strategy, tactics, and
Knowledge of the academic environment; appreciation for the academy
and its needs and
Comfort in the C-suite, outstanding representative of the
university and its senior leadership.
Strong interpersonal and communication skills and ability to
interact effectively across all levels
of the organization.
Exceptional work ethic. Attention to detail. Self-starter and
energetic; adept at working
independently, as well as collaboratively. Consistently meets
deadlines; demonstrates flexibility.
Ability to think strategically and develop executive communication
plan that will help meet
Presidential and University goals.
Demonstrated proficiency in targeted in-depth research for upcoming
events, audiences and pertinent statistical data.
Demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse faculty,
staff, and student environment or commitment to do so as a staff
member at VCU .
Preferred Hiring Standards
Supervisory experience strongly preferred. Ability to supervise and
lead team members with
clearly focused vision, compassion, and decisiveness.
Experience in a university setting
Required Licenses/ Certifications
Anticipated Hiring Range
Commensurate with experience
Application Process/Additional Information
Monroe Park Campus
Normal Work Days/Hours
Job Open Date
Posting will close on or before
Open Until Filled
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Is this position eligible to participate in alternative work
Posting Specific Questions
Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).
Optional & Required Documents
- Cover Letter/Letter of Application
- Other Document