Press and Communications Strategist
Reports to: Communications Director
About the ACLU of Louisiana
At the ACLU of Louisiana, we envision an equitable Louisiana that upholds the rights, dignity, and safety of all people and courageously acknowledges and endeavors to repair historical injustice that continues to harm marginalized communities. Our team seeks to protect the civil rights and civil liberties of all Louisianians by working to dismantle systems of oppression that harm the most vulnerable members of the community, specifically Black, Brown, Immigrant, and LGBTQ+ communities.
Our work reflects the ideals of peace, justice, and love.
We fight for change through a vigorous legal, policy, and community-centered strategy dedicated to ending white supremacist policy and law. We are engineers for real social change. We steep ourselves in a thorough understanding of Louisiana and American history to free ourselves of bias and ignorance.
It has been said that the fight for civil liberties never stays won; as cynical as that may sound, the ACLU of Louisiana remains confident that we—and justice—will prevail.
Currently, our team includes 15 individuals that are deeply passionate about doing the work and embodying the values of our organization each day. We invite individuals who have experience in and share our passion for social justice to join our team.
The Press and Communications Strategist is a team player who advances the media relations work of the ACLU of Louisiana by securing news coverage and influencing how our issues are framed in print, radio, television, and online media.
The Press and Communications Strategist will report to the Communications Director and collaborate with the entire Communications team to lead earned media efforts — such as developing media lists, building relationships with and pitching to reporters, coordinating proactive and reactive media interviews, preparing talking points, drafting press statements/advisories, writing op-eds and tracking successful media hits. The Press and Communications Strategist will work across all departments to support the key issue areas of the ACLU, including police accountability, criminal legal reform, voting rights, immigrants’ rights, and rapid response issues that arise. The Press Strategist will also bring new ideas that generate “media buzz” to accomplish advocacy and brand earned media goals.
The Press and Communications Strategist will also assist with social media and other digital communications efforts.
The position is based in New Orleans, but may require periodic travel throughout the state.
- Drafting press releases, media alerts and advisories, emails, social media posts, position statements, talking points, and other media materials according to AP Style, industry, and ACLU standards
- Proactively developing relationships with reporters and influencers in key issue areas, pitching ACLU of Louisiana story ideas in alignment with reporters’ beats and areas of interest
- Responding quickly to breaking news and opportunities to get ACLU of Louisiana included in the news cycle
- Helping to coordinate and prep staff/spokespeople for media interviews through key message development and serving as a media resource to all ACLU of Louisiana staff
- Supporting in press events and live or virtual press conferences
- Tracking and measuring earned media impressions/reach to use data for continuous improvement
- Managing and updating the database of media contacts (Cision)
- Managing and tracking press and media mentions (Meltwater)
To be successful in this role, the candidate will have:
- A commitment to racial justice, civil rights and liberties, and the work of the ACLU with an understanding of structural, institutional, and interpersonal racism
- A bachelor’s degree in mass communications, journalism, public relations, or related field; extensive work experience and/or alternative educational preparation in the competencies listed below may be substituted for formal education
- At least three years of experience working with the press, including creating digital content and curating social media presence, e.g. in a newsroom setting, PR agency, nonprofit environment, or related field
- Professional experience in a combination of the following areas: media, strategic communications, journalism, social media, content creation, digital communications (email, newsletters), and public relations
- Strong media and press strategy acumen
- Ability to communicate persuasively and professionally, in writing through op-eds and blog posts, and to communicate verbally to a wide variety of media, political, stakeholder, and influencer audiences.
- Proven experience exercising judgment in breaking news and rapid response environments
- Experience working on issue-based advocacy and public awareness campaigns, and in communicating complex issues to a variety of targeted audiences
- Experience working with the media and cultivating relationships with print, radio, television and online journalists
- Experience in web and media analytics
- Excellent communication, relationship-building, and pitching skills
- Excellent writing and editing skills, including knowledge of AP style and the ability to produce clear and compelling prose on a wide range of topics in a timely manner
To stand out from the others, you will have:
- Experience in executing communications strategies for political advocacy, law/civil rights, public education/mobilization, philanthropic giving, and/or research
- Ability to learn from mistakes and view them as opportunities for growth
- Ability to stay organized, meet deadlines, and follow tasks through to completion while managing multiple priorities requiring a close attention to detail
- Ability to meet new projects and challenges with a can-do attitude and creativity
- Solution-oriented approach, with the ability to take personal initiative while working both independently and as a team member
What else should you know?
You are welcome here! The ACLU of Louisiana is proud to provide a workplace environment that is representative of the communities we serve. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We encourage and eagerly anticipate applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, previous criminal conviction and/or veteran status.
The salary range for this role is $55,000-$65,000. The ACLU of Louisiana offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, including medical, dental, and vision insurance, a 401K plan, paid holidays, vacation, and sick leave, and professional development opportunities.
Applications may be submitted via this link and should include a cover letter explaining your specific interest in working for the ACLU of Louisiana and a resume. Please note that we will only be able to follow up with those candidates under consideration. Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.
This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required. It does not represent a contract of employment. The ACLU reserves the right to change the job description and/or posting at any time without advance notice.