Chief Communications Officer

Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech Published: May 16, 2017
Philadelphia , Boston, New York
Job Type


Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech has launched a search for a Chief Communications Officer (CCO), to be based out of its Boston, Philadelphia or New York City location. Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer, the CCO is responsible for the development and leadership of strategic communications and marketing that is consistent with Clarke’s vision and core values.

The CCO must be a clear thinker, speaker and writer capable of acting with strategic intent and sound judgment to lead the development and dissemination of communications and materials supporting the organization’s strategic objectives and fundraising/development initiatives. S/he will employ a wide range of communications tools and tactics to ensure information reaches target audiences with measurable impact. The CCO will lead an internal team working closely with all departments and staff at five locations to ensure fast, effective flow of information within the organization and externally with the press, donors, families and alumni. The CCO will work closely with the Chief Development Officer and upholding the view of the Development Department as the primary customer. Must be able to work within a multistate/multi-campus organization with diverse needs and cultures.




Communications Strategy

  • Support and advise the Chief Executive of Clarke, the executive leadership team and the Board of Directors.
  • Develop and execute a forward-looking, comprehensive communications, marketing and public relations strategy that elevates awareness of Clarke and leads to greater philanthropic support. Provide perspective and guidance on current and emerging opportunities and challenges, which influence Clarke’s ability to fulfill its mission and meet its goals.
  • Develop marketing and communications plans supporting high-priority initiatives, build consensus within the executive leadership team and Board of Directors and execute plans accordingly.
  • Manage, guide, develop and coach communications team members.


Media Relations and Issues Management

  • Cultivate relationships with and proactively pitch the media. Oversee Communications Team to ensure widespread distribution, follow-through and responsibility for campaign success. Oversee the media list and the development of tracking mechanisms to chart effectiveness of initiatives and campaigns.
  • Develop key messages, identify, coach and train media spokespeople, including the CEO and other staff, trustees and key volunteers. Serve as the primary public spokesperson for the organization.
  • Occasionally will need to lead a rapid response, including the quick assimilation of large volumes of complex material and rapid development and execution of response strategies and messaging.
  • Responsible for the drafting, editing and ownership of statements, FAQs and all public information materials.


Supervise monitoring and sharing of stories and trends

  • Ensure that the Communications Department acts as a central clearing house supporting a diverse set of communications addressing a varied constituency and the general public.
  • Oversee and guide the staff in the development and publishing of print materials, management of social media portals, blog posts, video and other collateral.
  • Support timely publishing of communication plans and accompanying FAQs that uphold Clarke’s commitment to our mission



  • Responsible for Clarke’s overall brand positioning and brand management Clarke including media, marketing and collateral materials. Guide design and display decisions that support fundraising collateral.
  • Oversee design and production of key materials and support conception and production of additional collateral materials to promote brand awareness and events.




Clarke seeks a senior-level strategic thinker with significant experience working in fast-paced organizations, movements or networks. The successful candidate will have led communications for non-profit organizations involved in child advocacy work or education. He or she will have a proven track record of building consensus among a diverse set of staff and stakeholder groups and will have existing relationships with key members of the media, nationally or regionally. This role requires political deftness, intellectual curiosity and a passion for Clarke’s mission. Qualified candidates should have:

  • A minimum of 5 - 10 years of strategic-level communications experience and management/supervisory experience
  • A clear, effective communications style, both verbally and written
  • Experience speaking on the record for major organizations
  • Experience writing and producing signature organizational collateral including annual reports or journals
  • Experience conceiving and producing marketing videos
  • Experience with electronic media including comfort with related concepts and tasks
  • Ability to quickly absorb and understand large volumes of complex information;
  • A strong track record of effectively partnering with thought leaders and executives;
  • The ability to work in a fast-moving, complex environment, while effectively prioritizing and leading a variety of activities;
  • A savvy, visual aesthetic with experience overseeing design
  • Bachelor’s degree; Master’s degree preferred


How To Apply

Send resume, cover letter, salary requirements and supporting materials to Note: supporting materials MUST include original written work developed for professional purposes, links to online projects, blogs, community involvement etc. A writing or presentation exercise will be given to finalist candidates. Documents received in formats other than PDF will not be considered.

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