Job Announcement ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties Senior Communications Strategist
The ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLUF-SDIC) is seeking a skilled, full-time Senior Communications Strategist.
The ACLUF-SDIC is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 civil liberties and civil rights organization working to advance equality, freedom and justice. The ACLUF-SDIC affiliate covers the length of California’s border with Mexico. We have 38 staff members, 23 board members, and an annual budget of $4.8 million. The ACLUF-SDIC is also part of the ACLU Foundations of California, a collaboration of the state’s three ACLU affiliates. The ACLU’s California offices are located in San Diego, El Centro, Los Angeles, Orange County, the Inland Empire, Fresno, San Francisco and Sacramento. Together, the three affiliates have more than 300,000 members and 200 staff people. In addition, we work collaboratively with our sister affiliates along the U.S-Mexico border and value partnerships and collaboration with community organizations and groups across the state and in the border region.
The ACLUF-SDIC utilizes an integrated approach to confront unjust policies that threaten individuals’ civil rights and freedoms and to defend the progress we have made as a nation, state and region. We have a proven track record of success combining and leveraging our litigation, policy advocacy, legislation, research and analysis, public education, strategic communications and community organizing expertise to achieve meaningful social change. Our work is accomplished in conjunction with our 501(c)4 organization, the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego & Imperial Counties. Both organizations have the same overall mission. Two separate corporate entities allow us to conduct a broad range of work to protect and advance civil liberties.
Position Overview The Senior Communications Strategist translates the ACLU’s advocacy, public education and legal work into powerful written content and other communications products across our many platforms in order to broaden our reach and impact and mobilize support for our mission.
This individual creates value-based messages, employs traditional and cutting-edge communications approaches, and spearheads effective communications campaigns. S/he informs and inspires multiple and diverse audiences about ACLU issues and focus areas. S/he works cooperatively with ACLU colleagues (in this affiliate, other affiliates and the national office) and external allies. The Senior Communications Strategist reports to the Communications Director.
Specific Responsibilities:
Strategic Communications

  • Develop and implement effective (long and short-term) communications plans that are wellbranded, employ disciplined, culturally competent and persuasive messaging over a variety of platforms, and provide quality news and information.
  • Acquire profound insight into the ACLU-SDIC’s different audiences and create targeted narratives and messages as needed.
  • Work with staff to become more effective messengers.
  • Work with community partners and other allies to cultivate authentic messengers that speak to our shared visions and values.
  • Work with the Communications Director to refine and update the Communications Department guiding processes and protocols about best practices in strategic communications.
  • Other communications projects as assigned by the Communications Director.

Writing and Editing

  • Compose and edit press releases, talking points, testimony and articles.
  • Create and manage a regular calendar of blogs.
  • Ghostwrite and edit blogs, Op-Eds and LTEs.
  • Craft email action alerts and participate in email action network strategy.
  • Draft and edit other written materials as assigned by the Communications Director.

Online Communications

  • Compose and edit SEO-rich content for website publications.
  • Develop content for the affiliate’s social media calendar
  • Work closely with the New Media Strategist to maintain an up-to-date and compelling website.
  • Work closely with New Media Strategist to identify social media opportunities to promote ACLU-SDIC’s work and resources, and to help reach goals for increased reach and engagement on ACLU-SDIC’s social media platforms, email action networks, and website.

The ACLUF-SDIC encourages candidates with relevant professional and lived experience and backgrounds to apply. An individual joining the Communications Department team as a Senior Communications Strategist must be committed to teamwork and have an exceptional ability to stay organized, manage time effectively, and possess keen attention to detail.
Additional required skills and qualifications include:

  • Bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, political science, marketing or English and ten years of relevant experience required. Relevant experience can include professional communications work, journalism or public relations.
  • Strong commitment to the mission, vision, and goals of the ACLU.
  • Excellent writing skills in a number of different styles/tones.
  • Strong editing and research skills.
  • Strong proficiency with social media platforms and Creative Cloud applications.
  • Avid consumer of news and information with ability to analyze and synthesize quickly and cogently.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, time management skills, and ability to manage multiple projects on a daily basis.
  • A willingness to be flexible and adapt to quickly changing priorities.
  • Professional and personal credibility.
  • Willingness and availability to work evenings and weekends, and travel when necessary.
  • Ability to both work independently and as a team member in a busy office with personal enthusiasm, optimism and a sense of humor.
  • Proficiency in Spanish preferred but not required.

Reporting & Supervision
The Senior Communications Strategist reports to the Communications Director.
Salary commensurate with experience. Benefits include generous health, dental, vision and life insurance plans, as well as a matching 401(k) plan and ample vacation and sick leave and liberal holiday schedule.
Application Procedure
Applicants should submit a resume and a cover letter describing, in particular, the applicant’s interest in working for the ACLU and his or her qualifications for the position described above. Please also include three references and two writing samples (up to 300 words) indicative of the applicant’s persuasive storytelling ability. Please put “Senior Communications Strategist – your name” in the subject line of your email. If possible, please include the cover letter and resume together in one PDF file.
Electronic applications are preferred. Please email to
However, hard-copy applications can be mailed to:

ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties ATTN: Deputy Director PO Box 87131 San Diego, CA 92138-7131

Deadline for submitting applications is August 31, 2018.

The ACLU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals, veterans, and people with arrest records and/or convictions.