Director of Media Relations

Job description

Director of Media Relations Department: Communications Date: 02/14/2019 POSITION VACANCY

Founded in 1813, Colby is one of America’s most selective colleges. Serving only undergraduates, Colby’s rigorous academic program is rooted in deep exploration of ideas and close interaction with world-class faculty scholars. Students pursue intellectual passions, choosing among 58 majors or developing their own. Independent and collaborative research, study abroad, and internships offer robust opportunities to prepare students for postgraduate success. Colby is home to a community of 2,000 dedicated and diverse students from around the globe. Its Maine location provides easy access to world-class research institutions and civic engagement experiences.

In a period of fast-paced progress, Colby is building on its strong foundation while remaining committed to excellence, to supporting students and faculty at the highest levels, and to the College’s deep liberal arts traditions. This new chapter includes the creation of innovative academic initiatives and partnerships, strengthening the connections between the liberal arts and the professional world, revitalizing downtown Waterville, and pursuing significant capital projects for performing arts and athletics. Colby invites applicants to apply for the position of:

Office of Communications

Full-Time, Exempt, Salaried, Administrative Staff Appointment

The director of media relations is primarily responsible for developing and implementing a comprehensive media strategy for the College. This is a senior-level position reporting directly to the vice president for communications and working closely with the other vice presidents. The director of media relations will collaborate with academic departments and programs and key entities throughout campus, including but not limited to the Colby College Museum of Art, the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs, the Center for the Arts and Humanities, the Office of the Provost and Dean of Faculty, the Office of the Dean of the College, DavisConnects, the Department of Athletics, and others to ensure that Colby is effectively telling its story via traditional media outlets in the state and region as well as nationally and internationally.

The successful candidate will show an extraordinary degree of self motivation, a natural tendency toward collaboration, a high level of respect for the kind of learning that happens at liberal arts institutions, and an honest commitment to cementing Colby’s position as one of the leading colleges in the world. We encourage inquiries from candidates who will contribute to the cultural and ethnic diversity of our college.

  • Create and implement a proactive media relations strategy to advance institutional goals
  • Identify and pitch stories to statewide, regional, and national media outlets
  • Cultivate relationships with journalists nationwide (travel required)
  • Use traditional and innovative approaches to promote Colby stories and faculty
  • Write and distribute press releases
  • Write and place editorials
  • Produce briefing materials on media opportunities
  • Manage incoming media requests and serve as College spokesperson as appropriate
  • Develop and maintain Colby’s expert database
  • Work with faculty on writing/editing and placing op-eds as well as media advisories for print and broadcast news
  • Promote faculty research and publications
  • Facilitate journalist and special guest visits
  • Develop communications strategies and messaging platforms
  • Promote Colby’s live video capabilities to major television programs/producers
  • Identify and utilize tools for media outreach, tracking, and analysis
  • Collaborate with project-specific consultants as needed
  • Oversee hometown press release creation and distribution
  • Organize and staff media events and press conferences
  • Provide media training and talking points as needed
  • Promote special events; manage media at events
  • Advise and strategize on paid exposure
  • Assist with crisis communications planning
  • Represent the Office of Communications at College-wide events and meetings
  • Perform additional duties as assigned; duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice
  • Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent in education and experience; advanced degree preferred
  • Five or more years of work in public relations, marketing, or journalism, with a preference for increasing responsibility over that time; agency experience helpful
  • Proven ability to devise successful communications strategies and place national news stories and features
  • Superior written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to write many types of content, from news stories to ad copy
  • Instinct for identifying undiscovered opportunities and developing creative solutions
  • Ability to present ideas clearly and collaborate with colleagues and constituents
  • Excellent command of language, grammar, and ability to adhere to Colby style guidelines
  • Attention to detail and high level of organization
  • Ability to thrive under deadlines and work some nights and weekends as needed
  • Fluency with social media platforms as media relations tools
  • Deep understanding of and affinity for college environment and Colby’s mission, values, and goals
  • Ability to make an impact through work as a member of a team and diverse community
  • Desire to make substantial contributions in a high-functioning, fast-paced environment
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the demonstrated ability to establish and develop productive and collegial relationships
  • Collaboration and the ability to communicate with various constituencies (e.g. staff, faculty, students, managers, and visitors) is needed
  • Ability to interface effectively with senior administrators and College leadership
  • Established network of media contacts preferred
  • Valid driver’s license required and must meet the College’s Fleet Safety Policy requirements
This position has significant interactions with employees and external media, including faculty, senior staff, deans, directors, supervisors, other members of the campus community and outside constituencies.
General open office and campus environment. Position involves sitting, although frequent movement is necessary. Position involves sitting, and frequent computer usage involving repetitive hand/wrist motion is necessary. Ability to move around campus is crucial. Some travel is required.

Interested candidates should apply electronically by clicking the "Apply Now" button on the Colby College website. Please submit a letter of interest including salary requirements, resume, and the contact information of three professional references. Materials should be addressed to:
Director of Media Relations - Search Committee
Office of Human Resources
Colby College
5500 Mayflower Hill
Waterville, ME 04901-8855

If you experience difficulty uploading your documents, you may submit any .doc or .pdf materials to [email protected] Please do not submit duplicate materials.

To apply electronically send to [email protected]. If you choose to apply electronically you do not need to send duplicate copies by U.S. Mail. If your electronic materials are unreadable we will notify you promptly.

A review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Colby is a private, coeducational liberal arts college that admits students and makes employment decisions on the basis of the individual's qualifications to contribute to Colby's educational objectives and institutional needs. Colby College does not discriminate in its educational programs or employment on the basis of race, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, national origin, age, marital status, genetic information, or military or veteran’s status. Colby is an equal opportunity employer and operates in accordance with federal and state laws regarding non-discrimination. Colby complies with Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in an institution’s education programs and activities. Questions regarding Title IX may be referred to Colby’s Title IX coordinator or to the federal Office of Civil Rights. We encourage inquiries from candidates who will contribute to the cultural and ethnic diversity of our college.

For more information about the College, please visit our web site:




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Job No:
Posted: 2/15/2019
Application Due: 7/16/2019
Work Type: