Associate Director of Communications
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute - La Jolla, CA

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Reporting to the Vice President of Communications, the Associate Director of Communications will collaborate with the communications team to communicate the scientific research achievements of the faculty and scientific staff of Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham).

The Associate Director will establish strong working relationships with Sanford-Burnham faculty to facilitate the communication of research findings; independently evaluate the Institute’s scientific publications and develop appropriate communication strategies in support of Institute goals; research, write and distribute press releases, op-eds and blog posts; write scientific content materials aimed at both experts and lay readers; will maintain relationships with local, state, and national media; will use social media to develop a network of reporters and bloggers interested in relevant medical research; and enforce content standards and scientific accuracy of print publications, web copy and social media.

The Associate Director will serve as one of the Institute's spokespersons on a variety of issues with local and state media and will also serve as the Institute’s point-of-contact for scientific media requests.

Will be a senior member of the Communications team and help develop strategies and execute projects aimed at a variety of audiences, including scientific, lay and donor communities.

Will perform other related duties and tasks as required or assigned and will supervise the efforts of the Senior Communications Specialist and freelance writers.

Required Skills

Required Experience

Requires a Ph.D. in a biological science or a related discipline, and a minimum of 2 years of directly-related professional-level writing experience; or an equivalent combination of education, training and/or experience from which comparable knowledge, skills and abilities have been attained. A minimum of 2 years of supervisory experience is required.

Management level decision making experience is strongly preferred. Must demonstrate sound judgment when representing the Institute to both internal and external parties.

Must have excellent professional scientific writing skills, demonstrated experience translating complex scientific research findings into concise language for a lay audience, the ability to mentor/train others on how best to communicate scientific information, and a proven ability to manage the workflow for a team, including freelance writers.

Requires previous experience and success utilizing social media platforms, demonstrated experience writing blog postings, and the ability to review and assess new social media tools. Requires a professional demeanor and strong analytical and organizational skills along with excellent verbal/written communication and interpersonal skills. Must be able work independently and multi-task while prioritizing multiple conflicting tasks. Must have professional proficiency in Microsoft Office and the ability to learn other department-specific computer systems as needed. Basic HTML and image editing skills are desired.

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