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2024-178 Vice President, Strategic Communications

ABOUT OCEAN CONSERVANCY

Ocean Conservancy works to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create evidence-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it.

POSITION SUMMARY

Ocean Conservancy is the leading voice for the continued and increased sustained health of our oceans against today’s global challenges. We’re seeking a Vice President, Strategic Communications to oversee all communications work – across channels – to advance our conservation objectives, using data insights to oversee the development of overarching narratives, messaging, positioning and content. This includes setting a vision and developing a strategy; overseeing effective implementation of the strategy to achieve conservation impact; managing both the digital and communications teams, individual staff members and budgets; fundraising for Communications work and broader Ocean Conservancy efforts and serving as an external ambassador; and bringing a collaborative spirit to the work.

Reporting to the Chief Communications & Brand Officer, the Vice President serves as a member of the Communications and Conservation leadership teams, and acts as the primary touchpoint between departments, helping drive strategic development and alignment for both. The Vice President works closely with other Executive Team members to provide institutional leadership and strategic direction. Together with the other members of the Executive Team, the Vice President ensures alignment and integration of Ocean Conservancy’s programs and acts as a resource for other Vice Presidents and departments.

Areas of Leadership

Communications Leadership, Vision, and Strategy: As a member of both the Communications and Conservation leadership teams, act as the primary touchpoint between departments, helping drive strategic development, alignment, and implementation for both. In collaboration with key executives, lead the development of a vision and strategy for Ocean Conservancy’s communications, including goals and metrics, that integrates ocean justice and includes partnerships with other organizations or communities. Drive the development and alignment of organizational talking points, messaging, and materials.

Key Qualifications:

  • Senior-level experience envisioning, setting, and driving organization-level communications goals, strategies, metrics, and plans
  • A history of vision, creativity, energy, discipline, and commitment that measurably enhances an organization’s mission and drives messaging cohesion
  • Proven track record of developing and leading impactful national communications campaigns that lead to policy wins
  • Belief in and commitment to Ocean Conservancy’s mission and values, ideally as demonstrated by experience in conservation, and understanding the intersection of conservation and justice

Implementation and Impact: Ensure that the Communications Department plays an early and consistent role in the development and execution of key projects, including conservation and institutional messaging. Implement communications strategy in ways that are consistent with Ocean Conservancy’s commitment to ocean justice. Bring, build, and maintain strong working relationships with key media and coalition allies, including Indigenous leaders, to advance awareness, conservation effectiveness, and impact of ocean-based solutions to global challenges in our geographic priority areas, nationally and regionally. Apprise the Executive Team on potential and imminent public relations crises and manage media crises and public statements on litigation and other sensitive issues. Serve as an important strategic thinker and catalyst for innovation and creativity within Ocean Conservancy. Lead on rapid response to ensure an integrated and institution-wide approach to these moments and opportunities.

Key Qualifications:

  • Track record of timely, effective implementation of communications plans to drive organizational impact
  • Demonstrated experience and existing relationships in the climate/conservation field
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills and demonstrated advocacy skills, the ability to mobilize and manage a diverse partner network and the ability to communicate complex scientific or technical concepts to policy and lay audiences
  • A high-level project manager who remains attentive to details and adheres strictly to deadlines and deliverables while keeping a larger vision in mind
  • Expertise in public relations, crisis communications, and rapid response

Manage Teams and Budgets: Supervise the Digital and Communications teams, as well as the Director of Executive Communications, including directing, managing, and coaching direct reports in their achievement of expected levels of performance in alignment with institutional goals and overall mission. Oversee the development and execution of effective work plans and budgets to ensure success. Support an institutional culture that promotes and strengthens diversity, equity, and inclusion. Ensure integration across all aspects of communications, working closely with other department heads and teams. Proactively support the professional growth and development of team members and other Ocean Conservancy staff.

Key Qualifications:

  • Experience directly building, supervising, developing, and managing strong, cohesive, credible teams, including developing and communicating team and individual goals that are tethered to institutional goals
  • Demonstrated history of creating diverse, inclusive and engaged teams, and managing individuals with diverse identities
  • Strong ability to manage, supervise, and motivate a multi-disciplinary team in achieving concrete and meaningful outcomes
  • Proven budget management and fiduciary experience

Fundraising and Positioning: Work with Ocean Conservancy Conservation staff in the development of funding opportunities, cultivation of new partnerships, and creation of fundraising materials to support program growth and impact. Support Conservation Leadership on developing and advancing their external positioning as key spokespeople to help raise the profile and influence of Ocean Conservancy. Oversee and support the Director Executive Communications, in developing a strategy for the CEO’s public image, thought leadership, positioning, and fundraising efforts. Serve as a public spokesperson for Ocean Conservancy as needed to enhance institutional exposure and brand awareness.

Key Qualifications:

  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with past success in deepening and leveraging the power of partnerships to affect change and build political will
  • Experience acting as a key partner and driver of organizational fundraising initiatives, particularly via digital channels, as well as partnership development
  • Ability to elevation and position organizational leaders as thought leaders and change makers
  • Personable, passionate, productive and focused to support accurate, timely and powerful policy, products, and positions

Collaboration: Take an institutionalist perspective to collaborate deeply with peers and colleagues. Promote and strengthen cooperation, commitment, and trust to help make Ocean Conservancy an employer of choice and to achieve the organizational mission. Ensure an integrated and cohesive approach to Ocean Conservancy’s communications by deepening the alignment and connection across Ocean Conservancy departments. Ensure others in the institution are appropriately consulted with and informed about Communication’s priorities and plans.

Key Qualifications:

  • Outstanding relationship builder, with a track record of building authentic relationships with team members at all levels of an organization
  • Demonstrated appreciation of the benefit of a multidisciplinary team approach
  • Flexible leader with a strong commitment to justice, diversity, equity and inclusion

COMPENSATION, BENEFITS AND LOCATION

Ocean Conservancy is committed to equity in its pay practices and posts expected hiring ranges for each of its positions. Salary range is $180,565 to $225,653. Compensation will be commensurate with the candidate’s specialty skills, years of experience, location, and unique background. We would welcome the opportunity to connect with potential candidates whose salary requirements may be outside of the expected hiring range.

AK, CA, OR, WA preferred; other locations include: DC, FL, MD, VA, TX, WV.

HOW TO APPLY

This search is being managed by Axis Talent Partners, a talent strategy and executive search firm that partners with social impact organizations and centers equity and inclusivity in search. Interested candidates should apply, detailing their qualifications for the position and their interest in Ocean Conservancy’s mission here. 

Equal Opportunity Employer

Ocean Conservancy provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local laws.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

We encourage applicants who have a diverse level and range of relevant skills and experiences to apply. A 100% match is not required. We want to support employees’ career growth and in return, our employees help Ocean Conservancy grow into a stronger, more inclusive organization.

Location

AK, CA, OR, WA preferred; other locations include: DC, FL, MD, VA, TX, WV.

Department

Communications

Reports To

Chief Brand and Communications Officer

Hours

Full Time

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