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Director of Communications

Department: Communications
Reports to: Vice President for Institutional Advancement
Supervises: Media Specialist, Web Producer, Graphic Designer
Pay Grade: F, Exempt, Full-time
Compensation:: $65,000 - $65,818/DOE

Work Schedule:

Monday - Friday; Full-time

Anticipated start date:  6/01/14
Review of applications will begin immediately
Interviews will take place 5/09/14

The closing date for this position is 5/07/14


Develop and manage all college communications for Cornish College of the Arts in order to promote and position Cornish as a leader in arts education at the local, regional and national level.


  1. Leads college-wide internal and external communications efforts by:
    • developing, implementing and evaluating a comprehensive, integrated strategic communications plan
    • serving as a key communications advisor and resource to the President, other College senior staff and faculty and the Board of Trustees
    • supporting all Advancement and Campaign goals by providing strategic communications tools for all constituencies and purposes
    • supporting all Enrollment goals by providing strategic communications tools for prospective students
    • developing and implementing specific strategies and tools for all academic departments and key College programs and initiatives
    • providing counsel and guidance on critical issues that have a communications or media component, and on current issues and developments that might provide communications opportunities
    • provide immediate notification to internal and external constituencies in case of breaking news
    • serving as member of President’s Cabinet and staffing Communications Committee
  2. Develops marketing, public relations and brand identity strategies that help Cornish achieve its enrollment and fundraising goals and successfully deliver information and key messages to the public by:
    • leading the development of all collateral materials in support of enrollment and advancement goals, College performances, exhibitions and general visibility including publications, advertisements, videos, press releases, media kits, and website
    • proactively building and maintaining media relationships, locally, regionally and nationally to promote and achieve visibility for the College by
      1. advancing and facilitating regular feature stories in local and regional print media, radio, and television
      2. establishing an active schedule of media appearances for the College President and other key spokespeople
      3. serving as spokesperson for the College when President is not available
      4. overseeing timely and effective response to media inquiries
      5. identifying, cultivating, and maintaining active media and public relations contacts, as well as marketing relationships and opportunities
      6. developing and pitching stories
      7. providing ongoing media training to the President, members of the senior staff and trustees
    • Establishing and maintaining a consistent public image for the College that reinforces the mission and vision by
      1. managing the Graphic Identity System and standards policy across all College communications
      2. developing and implementing consistent messaging for use in all printed materials, web, interviews, speeches, etc.
    • Ensuring high visibility for the College, including events, productions and stories by
      1. creating strategic vehicles for promoting and publicizing all College activities
      2. managing advertising placement for the College for all purposes
      3. tracking and publicizing student, faculty and alumni accomplishments, awards, and community outreach activities
    • Building and enhancing relationships in the community and promoting awareness and understanding of the College’s mission by
      1. speaking to a variety of groups and organizations throughout the year
      2. serving on community based committees on behalf of the College
      3. Initiating and implementing community partnerships and collaborations
  3. Leads the Communications office and nurtures an effective team by:
    • fostering team work, cooperation and confidence in staff members
    • setting goals, prioritizing activities and resolving issues
    • developing and monitoring annual budget
    • controlling and monitoring expenses
    • taking corrective action when needed
  4. Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree plus five years experience or combination of equivalent education and experience in communications/marketing /public relations
  • Superior communication and relationship development abilities; strong public speaking and executive-level presentation experience
  • Exceptional oral and writing abilities
  • Strategic and analytical skills
  • Ability to take initiative and to work highly self-directed
  • A commitment to multicultural perspectives and ability to relate to diverse target audiences
  • Ability to form and direct creative teams in a collaborative work environment and to create and sustain positive and productive relationships with both internal and external constituencies
  • Strong knowledge of PC based software and Microsoft Office
  • Occasional light lifting

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience working in a higher education, not-for-profit or arts environment
  • Experience with current desktop publishing software

Application Procedures

For consideration please submit cover letter, resume, and completed Cornish Employment Application to:

Human Resources
1000 Lenora Street
Seattle, WA 98121
—or –
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Incomplete applications will not be considered

Equal Opportunity Statement

Cornish College of the Arts is an equal opportunity employer intent on enriching the diversity of its faculty, staff, and students. Our goal is to create an intercultural learning environment comprised of people with varied experiences and perspectives. We strongly encourage applications from members of underrepresented groups for all open positions.

Employment Application

Download the form in your preferred format and provide all pertinent information.

Email inquiries and completed applications to