Director of Communications
National Legal Aid and Defender Association

The National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA), America’s oldest and largest nonprofit association devoted to excellence in the delivery of legal services to those who cannot afford counsel, seeks a Director of Communications.  For more than 100 years NLADA has pioneered access to justice at the national, state, and local levels through the creation of our public defender systems, groundbreaking legislation, and the creation of institutions from the Sentencing Project to the Legal Services Corporation. A leader in the development of national standards, NLADA also provides advocacy, training, and technical assistance to public defense and civil legal aid programs across the country.

The Director of Communications will be responsible for leading NLADA’s communications strategies. He or she will develop and implement a comprehensive communications plan that raises the organization’s visibility and engages the full staff in advancing key messages.  The plan will include strategic use of traditional press vehicles and a proactive approach to media relations; of online tools, including a new website and social media vehicles such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn; and of speaking engagements.  The job also entails:

Close coordination with programmatic staff on content development and maintenance;
collaboration with the Director of Membership Services to develop strategies for recruiting new members;
overseeing, in concert with other NLADA staff, publication and dissemination of NLADA’s publications, reports, brochures, manuals, and promotional materials, with particular emphasis on editing for quality and thematic congruity;
development of style and branding guides;
reviewing and editing grant applications and reports; and
leading marketing for the organization’s conferences and trainings.

This position reports to the NLADA’s President and CEO. 

  • Qualified candidates must have a minimum of eight years of progressive experience in communications.
  • Experience in nonprofits is desirable, particularly with a membership-based organization with a varied range of constituencies.
  • Familiarity with civil legal services and defender communities is important, as is an understanding of the legal system in general.
  • A graduate degree in journalism, communications, or marketing preferred, and a four-year undergraduate degree is required.
  • A demonstrated ability to enhance an organization’s identity/image is essential, and entrepreneurial experience in increasing value of organization’s products and services is important.  Experience using social medial tools and services, including database-driven websites and the training of staff in content development and posting.
  • Also required is proven leadership/project management/organizational skills and the ability to manage multiple competing priorities, as well as excellent oral and written communications skills, with particular dexterity in communicating with multiple audiences.   A good candidate will be able to write speeches and identify speaking opportunities for the CEO and other NLADA staff.  A strong commitment to the mission and goals of NLADA and a thorough understanding of its work is necessary.

NLADA has a highly collaborative, professional office environment where employees take pride in effectively leveraging resources and fully engaging to deliver excellent results.  We value service, creativity, and thought leadership.  We are conveniently located near MetroRail (Blue, Orange, and Red lines).

To apply for this position send a resume and cover letter to hr at nlada dot org with the subject line “NLADA JOBS:   Director of Communications

NLADA is an equal opportunity employer (EOE).

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