The Senior Director of Communications and Public Relations is responsible for providing strategic and operational leadership of key communications for Pepperdine. This position will oversee major university communications and outreach platforms in print, web, and social media. The director will partner with the VP and CMO to develop, implement, and manage integrated marketing communications and public relations best practices for the University.
Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) is directly tasked with supporting the University's mission and strategic plan by building brand equity, elevating the University's national reputation, providing strong and consistent institutional message leadership, and implementing effective integrated marketing and communication strategies. The Senior Director of Communications and Public Relations fulfills a central role in helping the department accomplish its goals.
- Communications Strategy & Team Leadership - Develop strategy, direction, coordination, and assessment for communications initiatives. Mentor and lead the Communications team in IMC. Partner with schools and central departments to achieve branding, recruitment, and affinity goals.
- Public Relations - Strategically lead and coordinate public relations, media outreach, and crisis response. Serve as a University spokesperson and critical support personnel in the event of an emergency.
- Messaging & Editorial - Refine core university messaging to ensure organizational consistency and effectiveness. Deliver brand messaging, communication and content marketing plans, writing guidelines, brand stories and taglines, and web content. Work with the digital team to implement an SEO content strategy that engages audience segments and leads to measurable action.
- Social Media - Oversee the development, implementation, and assessment of Pepperdine's social media engagement strategy.
- Research - Closely monitor communications and public relations trends and best practices in higher education and other industries.
- Perform other duties as assigned.
- Uphold University mission through work performed.
The above information has been designed to indicate the general nature and level of work performed by employees within this classification. It is not designed to contain or be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications required of employees assigned to this job.
Skills and Qualifications
Required: Bachelor's degree in Communications, Journalism, Public Relations, English, or related fields. 5+ years of experience in integrated communications, media, or PR environment with on-camera experience, or 5+ years experience leading print & digital spaces including websites, social media, blogs, interactive content, or other online platforms; demonstrated success developing, implementing, & measuring proactive PR & crisis communications programs across print, web, broadcast & social. Exceptional written and verbal communication skills; ability to develop and execute multi-platform communications strategies; strong project management skills; strong collaborator with demonstrated experience in successfully working with peers and leadership; demonstrated success at working under deadlines with tight time frames. Professional appearance. Personal computer, and proficiency with Google Docs, Microsoft Office, Social Media Analytic Software, Media Analytic Software.
Preferred: Master's degree; experience in higher education preferred. On-camera experience aligning communications to support lead generation and conversion in the areas of recruitment, fundraising, and third-party endorsement. Membership in professional associations. 3+ years of experience in leading teams and/or managing and developing staff to achieve desired results. Demonstrated experience developing plans to identify and mitigate potential enterprise reputation risks. Understanding of key trends and issues facing Los Angeles. Comprehensive awareness and interest in new trends, platforms, and technologies for the emerging digital landscape. Proficiency with Project Management Software, Adobe Creative Suite, Apple Keynote.
Qualified individuals should be able to articulate a strong commitment to diversity, and have the ability to work effectively with individuals from different backgrounds.
Offers of employment are contingent upon successful completion of a criminal, education, and employment screening. Qualified individuals with criminal histories will be considered for employment in compliance with applicable laws.
This is a Regular, Exempt, 40 hour per week position.
Expected Pay Range: $106,250 - $125,000 per year
The above pay range reflects what Pepperdine University reasonably expects to pay for this position at time of posting. Actual compensation may vary based on relevant factors such as work experience, market conditions, education/training, and skill level. In addition to base pay, Pepperdine offers a robust and highly competitive benefits package.