Communications Specialist

Help shape debate over civil liberties and civil rights in this time of historic challenges. The ACLU of Wisconsin, which has recently quadrupled its statewide membership, seeks a communications specialist to focus on managing traditional print and broadcast media relations, and to assist with online and other communication with ACLU supporters.

We invite candidates with these required and desired skills, experience, and trainable interests to apply.

 

Traditional Media

Required: Experience handling media inquiries and coordinating responses from experts; helping teams produce and distribute talking points, news releases, op-eds, and letters to the editor; understanding of the importance of communications to fundraising and organization-building; experience as a fact-checker, copy editor, or proofreader to ensure accuracy and consistency. We need someone who can see the big picture as well as spot almost every typo.

Desired: Journalism experience and contacts; fluency or high-level proficiency in Spanish; experience with FileMaker or similar database software.

 

Email & Web Production

Required: Experience with HTML tagging, and good general technical skills.

Desired: Working knowledge of content-management systems (we use Joomla and Drupal), and constituent-relationship management systems (we use StrongView and Capwiz); SEO; design samples; experience with Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop or similar software, and photography, podcasting, and video production and promotion.

 

Social Media

Required: Ability to make ACLU work engaging and keep people clicking, with fresh, lively language and images, every day; experience building loyal professional followings on social media platforms, especially Facebook and Twitter, and others you'd like to see us use.

Desired: Knowledge of one or more Wisconsin geographic or other communities, particularly communities of color; public speaking experience.

 

 

General requirements include:

  • good problem-solving skills, flexibility, determination, and good humor;
  • demonstrable interest in ACLU issues;
  • strong collaboration skills for working with other staff—in a small, close-knit office of around 10 people, including lawyers, fundraisers, organizers, plus board members, volunteers and others—to actively promote ACLU impact;
  • availability to work beyond 9–5 as needed and a flexible schedule to ensure coverage;
  • ability to work daily in our Milwaukee office, and to travel regularly to other parts of the state, particularly Madison;
  • understanding of the state legislative process and other policymaking;
  • commitment to the mission and principles of the ACLU.

 

Regular tasks for the Communications Specialist include:

  • handling media inquiries, and coordinating responses from ACLU experts and clients;
  • balancing key internal priorities with external developments that give us ways to inform and engage our audiences;
  • preparing talking points;
  • editing, proofreading, and fact-checking news releases, op-eds, blogs, and other content;
  • coordinating letters to editors on ACLU priorities;
  • daily social media posts and responses;
  • other writing and editing;
  • building and maintaining web pages, particularly about recent media coverage;
  • maintaining aclu-wi.org and carrying out production of emails and other online content;
  • monitoring basic metrics to track success of communications efforts, and producing reports for staff and board;
  • monitoring for urgent media inquiries or developments after hours and on weekends;
  • organizing press conferences;
  • other projects as required.

 

About the ACLU of Wisconsin

The ACLU of Wisconsin—a private, nonpartisan organization with more than 20,000 supporters across the state—is an affiliate of the national ACLU. For decades, we have worked daily in courts, in the legislature, and in communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution, Bill Rights and laws of the United States and the State of Wisconsin.

Our affiliate has critical legal challenges underway against Wisconsin’s voter ID law; against Milwaukee police practices that lead to tens of thousands of stops and searches each year without reasonable suspicion; and against the State of Wisconsin for issues such as the cruel treatment of children in state detention facilities, as well as the denial of necessary health coverage to transgender state employees. Our highly successful organizers conduct community engagement work that includes “Know Your Rights” trainings and providing legal observers for demonstrations and protests. Learn more about the history of the ACLU of Wisconsin, the range of issues we cover, and the national ACLU’s work and history at aclu-wi.org.

 

Compensation

Compensation for this full-time, salaried position depends on experience but will start at $32,000 per year. Benefits include paid vacation and sick leave, medical and dental coverage, life insurance, short- and long-term disability insurance, and a 401(K). We hope to have someone start by Sept. 15, 2017.

 

How to Apply

By or before July 20, please send a resume, cover letter, writing sample, and two or three professional references to jobs@aclu-wi.org, with "Communications" in the subject line. No phone calls or faxes, please. The Communications Specialist will report to our Associate Director.

The ACLU of Wisconsin & ACLU of Wisconsin Foundation are equal opportunity/affirmative action employers and encourage applications from all qualified individuals including women, people of color, people with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals.