Director of Strategic Initiatives & External Affairs

Posted on 03/26/2021

Central State University

Wilberforce, OH

Job Summary/Basic Function

Central State University invites applications for the Director of Strategic Initiatives & External Affair. This role is responsible for enhancing the University’s reputation and regional, national and global visibility. This includes developing, cultivating and maintaining relationships with local, regional, and national partners to advance the institution. The director works closely with the Vice-President of Institutional Advancement (VPIA) and other Institutional Advancement team members, to oversee advancement operations in fundraising, alumni, community and media relations as well as event concept, management and execution The director also works closely with fellow team leaders in digital, creative, advertising, and enrollment communications to support content marketing efforts and to ensure consistent messages to internal and external audiences. The director works proactively to improve communications externally/internally for all university stakeholders at all campuses, providing counsel on media relations to the campus leadership and community.

Essential Duties & Requirements:

  • Maintain relationships with corporate and community partners at local, regional and national outlets, as well as high-profile online influencers, in order to generate funds, media coverage to enhance the University’s appeal and prestige.
  • Raise the profile of the University’s initiatives statewide and nationally. Introduce the president and other key leaders to regional and national opportunities.
  • Oversee the creation and maintenance of a University database of subject matter experts and their topics of expertise, for use for media relations.
  • Establish goals for the department by developing comprehensive proposals, content, messaging and article concepts that are consistent with the University’s Strategic Vision and mission, identifying target audiences, key messages and strategies to achieve these goals. Update this plan, as needed.
  • Assist University Advancement as needed, with consistent messaging and key media/news stories, specifically with regards to the university’s comprehensive fundraising efforts.
  • Write and/or manage targeted communications for the President and other executive stakeholders, including a monthly update newsletter and social media posts.
  • Meet regularly with the members of leadership (deans, faculty and students) to ensure a strong internal partnership systems are in place and strategic communications needs are met.
  • Develop and forge integrated engagement campaigns that leverage the power of earned and social media together with marketing and other outreach efforts in ways that strategically advance overall enrollment marketing and communications goals and priorities.
  • Represent the university to critical/strategic external and community organizations, as well as develop relationships with national higher education organizations.
  • Work closely with the Vice President of Institutional Advancement and advancement team members to provide proactive/reactive crisis communications counsel to the President and his cabinet, as well as lead the development of scripts, talking points, letters, background information, etc., as needed.
  • Oversee the implementation of a strategic internal communications program to faculty, staff, and students that builds awareness, understanding and support for university needs and leadership directions.
  • Provide quality control and copy editing on official campus communications.
  • Oversee production of the University magazine.
  • Other duties as assigned to support Institutional Advancement initiatives.

Minimum Qualifications

  • At least seven years of leadership experience in media relations with increasing responsibility.
  • Bachelor’s Degree (Master’s Degree preferred)
  • Significant and progressively responsible public relations experience (7 years).
  • Strong results orientation and a proven track record in setting and achieving ambitious goals.
  • Proven success building relationships with multiple, diverse constituencies.
  • Must be a strong team player with experience to work with a motivated, engaged and collaborative advancement team.
  • Excellent presentation, organizational, interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills.
  • Must be authorized to work in the United States; if you hold a visa, your visa status must allow you to work at the University.
  • Higher education public relations experience preferred.

Special Instructions to Applicants

Applications will be reviewed as they are received, applicant screening will begin immediately. Salary is commensurate with experience.

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