Church World Service (CWS) is a not-for-profit organization working to eradicate hunger and poverty and to promote peace and justice around the world. CWS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability or veteran status in employment or in the provision of services.
The Media Associate will join the CWS communications team at an unprecedented time. This is a pivotal moment in rebuilding the U.S. refugee admissions program and strengthening the laws and policies designed to protect refugees, asylees and other vulnerable populations. As the world continues to grapple with the horrific toll of the coronavirus pandemic--and as climate change makes disasters worse and more frequent--humanitarian response and sustainable livelihood programs are critical.
The Media Associate will work with CWS program and advocacy staff to raise the profile of the organization’s policy objectives and programmatic work to support refugees and asylum seekers, respond to emergencies and overcome hunger and poverty. The Media Associate will also seek opportunities to gain press attention for CWS fundraising campaigns.
The Media Associate will maintain and build strong relationships with both traditional and new media outlets, will assist in writing and producing relevant educational materials and represent the communications team on external coalition calls.
The ideal candidate will thrive in a fast-paced environment and be prepared to collaborate on rapid response messaging, think creatively under pressure and craft inclusive messaging that is both timely and relevant. They should have a strong understanding of the media landscape and best practices for engaging with members of the press.
- Develop and maintain relationships with reporters from local and national media outlets covering immigration, refugee resettlement, humanitarian assistance and global development
- Draft and send press releases, media advisories, editorial board memos and media availabilities
- Proactively pitch and place news stories, feature stories and rapid response mentions about CWS programs and events
- Draft, pitch and place opinion editorials and letters to the editor in local, national and online publications on behalf of senior staff, faith leaders, refugee leaders and other key validators
- Lead media strategy around public events and teleconferences, prepare and brief spokespeople, including national leaders, promote events within CWS networks
- Collaborate with the Director of Media to structure press plans, develop and maintain communications calendars, create press resources and draft talking points
- Prepare CWS spokespeople for media interviews
- Collaborate with the Social Media Manager and the press team to develop proactive digital strategies and content harnessing breaking news and current events
- Translate advocacy and policy documents into one-pagers and other resources for consumption by the general public that promote social change, public awareness and education, and grassroots organizing
- Coordinate with CWS partners to link grassroots campaigns and policy positions with media opportunities
- Along with the Director of Media, lead media relations trainings for program staff, community organizers and refugee leaders
- Develop and nurture relationships with CWS partners to build communications capacity and increase market presence
- Facilitate website updates on the CWS website for advocacy content and priorities
- Collaborate with policy and grassroots staff in preparing action alerts and resources
- Other duties as assigned
- Minimum of a B.A./B.S. in communications, marketing, or public relations; academic experience in communications or public relations; or significant comparable professional experience
- Three to five years of experience working in media relations, advocacy communications or related field
- Experience proactively pitching and placing earned media including opinion editorials in a range of media markets
- Existing relationships with national reporters covering immigration and refugee issues
- Expertise in emerging new media opportunities and knowledge of best practices of engagement
- Experience planning, organizing, and executing press events, including logistics and promotion
- Spanish language skills preferred
- Strong oral and written communication skills, solid organizational skills, sound political instincts, and ability to proactively identify opportunities to advance CWS messaging
- Familiarity dealing with crisis communications planning and situations
- Experience working with diverse coalitions and coordinating extensive short and long-term communications plans and goals
- Ability to work independently and collaboratively, work well under pressure and with tight deadlines, and balance multiple projects
- Capacity to learn quickly, grasp the significance of issues, and explain complex issues clearly.
- Direct experience with Wordpress, Phone 2 Action and email marketing preferred.
CWS offers a competitive benefits package that includes:
• 403 (b) Retirement Plan
• Medical, Dental and Vision Insurance
• Paid Time Off
• Life Insurance and AD&D
• Long Term and Short Term Disability
• Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
• Health Savings Account
• Flexible Spending Accounts
• Commuter Benefits