Supervisory Public Affairs Specialist (Public Affairs Director)
Department Of Agriculture - Boston, MA

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The mission of the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is to increase food security and reduce hunger in partnership with cooperating organizations by providing children and low-income people with access to food, a healthy diet, and nutrition education in a manner that supports American agriculture and inspires public confidence.

This position is located in the Northeast Regional Office, Office of Public Affairs. FNS provides excellent opportunities for specialized training through its own facilities and outside resources. Career guidance and on- and off-the-job training programs are tailored to an individual employee's needs. If you want to apply your knowledge and skills to food program activities that seek to strengthen America, there is a challenging and rewarding career waiting for you with FNS!

Key Information:
Relocation and Recruitment incentives may be available.

FNS offers alternative and flexible work schedules.

Click "Print Preview" to review the entire announcement before applying.


As a Supervisory Public Affairs Specialist, you will:
Provide oversight and leadership of the Public Affairs Staff in the Region. Responsible for all aspects of first-line supervision of the Public Affairs Staff in the Region.

Serve as senior advisor to regional management on public affairs activities and programs. Based on the needs of the region, develop policies and make recommendations for use region-wide regarding the dissemination of information to correct misperceptions and enhance public understanding.

Use a variety of methods and techniques in achieving communication goals such as arranging media interviews and speaking opportunities for VIPs, planning special events with agency partners, and using tools including news releases, radio and television scripts, feature articles, personal appearances, news conferences; exhibits, brochures, pamphlets, etc.

Establish relationships and answer questions of representatives of the media, the public, and public officials concerning news releases, public reaction, and agency programs. Use judgment in responding to questions from the media, advocacy groups, and the public.

In order for your application to be considered, you must meet the following requirements by the closing date of this announcement:

Basic Requirements:Minimum Qualification Requirement:
Specialized Experience:
You must have one year of experience at a level of difficulty and responsibility equivalent to the GS-12 grade level in the Federal service. Experience for this position includes identifying communications needs; developing informational material; planning or evaluating the effectiveness of information and communication programs in furthering an organization's goals; AND providing oversight and leadership of a Public Affairs staff.
Notes: The experience may have been gained in either the public or private sector. One year of experience refers to full-time work; part-time work is considered on a prorated basis.


Your application includes your:

Responses to the online questions, and

Required supporting documents.

We use a multi-step process to evaluate and refer applicants:
1. Minimum Requirements : Your application must show that you meet all requirements, including the education and/or experience required for this position. You will be found "not qualified" if you do not possess the minimum competencies required for the position. If your application is incomplete, we will rate you as ineligible.
2. Rating : Your application will be evaluated in the following areas:

Ability to direct, plan, organize, and coordinate the functions of a group of employees within a branch that support one or more segments of the Division’s mission.

Knowledge of communication principles, methods, practices, techniques, and interpersonal relations practices.

Ability to develop press releases, speeches, talking points, and newsletters consistent with agency policies and style requirements.

Ability to present information on a wide variety of subjects using the full-array of written and oral presentation formats and techniques.

We may lower your rating if your responses to the online questions are not supported by the education and/or experience described in your application. Category Rating will be used to rank and select eligible candidates. If qualified, you will be assigned to one of three categories, Best Qualified, Well-Qualified or Qualified depending on your experience and education related to this position. Veterans' preference is applied after applicants are assessed. Preference-eligibles will be listed at the top of their assigned category and considered before non-preference-eligibles in that category. Qualified preference-eligibles with a compensable service-connected disability of 10% or more will be listed at the top of the highest category.

3. Referral : If you are among the top qualified candidates, your application may be referred to a selecting official for consideration and possible interview. If you are a displaced or surplus Federal employee (eligible for the Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP)/Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP)), you must be assigned to the Well Qualified category or higher to be determined as well qualified to receive special selection priority.

We recommend that you preview the online questions for this announcement before you start the application process.
To preview questions please click here .

Our comprehensive benefits are some of the most generous. Explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees at:

We may select from this announcement or any other source to fill one or more vacancies.

This is a non-bargaining designated position.

Creditable Service for Annual Leave Accrual: Newly-appointed employees or employees reappointed after a break in service may be eligible to receive credit toward annual leave accrual based on prior work experience. FNS may grant service credit for prior non-Federal work experience or active duty uniformed service that is directly related to the position being filled. Creditable service must be determined prior to the effective date of the employee's entry on duty. For more information, contact the Human Resources Specialist listed under "Contact Information."

To file a complaint of discrimination, within 45 days of notification, write USDA, EEO Counselor, FNS, Office of Civil Rights, 12th floor, Alexandria, VA 22302-1500, or call (703) 305-2195. USDA is an equal opportunity employer.

FNS has contracted with the Treasury's Bureau of the Public Debt (BPD) to provide certain Human Resource services to its organization. BPD's responsibilities include advertising FNS' vacancies, accepting and handling applications, and extending job offers.

CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT: If selected for this position, you will be required to:

Complete a one-year supervisory or managerial probationary period (unless already completed).

Complete a Declaration for Federal Employment to determine your suitability for Federal employment.

If you are a male applicant born after December 31,1959, certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System or are exempt from having to do so.

Have your salary sent to a financial institution of your choice by Direct Deposit/Electronic Funds Transfer.

Go through a Personal Identity Verification (PIV) process that requires two forms of identification from the Form I-9 . Federal law requires verification of the identify and employment eligibility of all new hires in the U.S.

Travel locally and/or overnight approximately 40% of the time.

Obtain and use a Government-issued charge card for business-related travel.

File a Confidential Financial Disclosure Report within 30 days of appointment and annually from then on.

Successfully complete a background investigation.

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