Careers at the Aspen Institute
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Aspen Institute employees come from a wide range of backgrounds and possess a unique blend of education, skill, and policy experience. We recognize that our people are our vital resource and we value their knowledge, enthusiasm, and commitment. At the Aspen Institute we offer competitive salaries and a wide variety of benefits to our employees and their families.

If you would enjoy working in a dynamic environment and are looking for an opportunity to become part of a stellar team of professionals, we invite you to apply online today.

Digital Communications and External Affairs Senior Associate (Ocean & Climate)

Department: EEP
Location: Washington, DC
Salary: $78,000 - $90,000

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment.

Program Description:

The Aspen Institute Energy and Environment Program (EEP) explores significant challenges with diverse thinkers and doers to make a more prosperous, equitable, and sustainable society for all. We address critical energy, environmental, and climate change issues through non-partisan, non-ideological convening, with the specific intent of bringing together diverse stakeholders to improve the process and progress of policy-level dialogue. This enables EEP to sit at a critical intersection in the conversation and bring together diverse groups of expert stakeholders. In addition to energy and environmental policy, which the program has been addressing for several decades, EEP is now actively and purposefully engaging in climate change policy – mitigating the effects of climate change, adapting to the inevitable impacts of climate change, and the international cooperation needed to achieve these goals.

Basic Function:

The Communications and External Affairs Senior Associate is a key member of the Energy and Environment Program (EEP) team working across projects in the Ocean & Climate team portfolio, specifically on the Cargo Owners for Zero Emission Vessels (coZEV) initiative, the Zero Emission Maritime Buyers Alliance (ZEMBA), and engagement in maritime and climate change policy discussions at the U.S. and international levels. The Senior Associate will support communications across all projects, preparation for and deployment of successful in-person and virtual events, tracking contacts and correspondence, managing logistics, coordination, and preparation activities, communicating and conducting outreach, and identifying and developing partners. This role is operational in nature, and ideal for an individual who has robust organizational, communications, and event planning skills as they’ll be part of a team that co-convenes and participates in major events and makes public announcements requiring careful messaging and media engagement.

All EEP team members contribute to the program’s DEI&B journey, including working with the leadership team to build a culture of inclusion and belonging with the team, focusing on diversity and inclusion efforts throughout EEP’s work, and continuing to contribute to projects that move the environmental movement toward better DEI&B outcomes.

This position reports to the Senior Program Manager for Ocean & Climate. The salary range is $78,000- $90,000 per year based on experience. This position is located at the Aspen Institute’s Washington, D.C. office and is expected to work from the office at least 40% of the time. This role has a guaranteed term length until December 2025 with the potential for an extension based on funding and management approval.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:


· Coordinate closely with Ocean & Climate and EEP leadership to develop, refine, and execute a communications strategy specific to the Ocean & Climate team with clear goals, target audiences, and tactics;

· Develop Ocean and Climate-specific content for EEP social media channels (with a focus on LinkedIn);

· Draft and edit multiple forms of content, including website, newsletters, O&C’s biweekly news service, press releases, blogs, op-eds, website content, social media posts and other digital media, fact sheets, and other materials for stakeholder engagement;

· Support media and press engagement related to Ocean & Climate work, including research into appropriate media contacts, relevant trade publications, and opportunities to grow the audience for this work; and

· Help manage collaborative working relationships with graphic designer, web developer, and other contractors.

Event Planning

· Support development of slide decks, talking points, runs of show, annotated agendas, and other preparatory materials for hosted and invited speaking engagements;

· Identify, negotiate, and secure sites, meeting space, meals, lodging, participant travel, ground transportation, and/or AV requirements for convenings;

· Schedule and facilitate coordination calls and other preparatory activities in advance of speaking engagements, panels, webinars, and other events;

· Support identification of panelists and speakers for EEP-convened events;

· Develop and maintain a central system for tracking accomplishments and lessons learned from events and speaking engagements attended;

· Lead process for vetting speaking invitations, follow-up with event organizers, and making recommendations to the team about appropriate and productive venues for participation;

· Provide on-site logistical support for senior staff when necessary; and

· Support and eventually lead team planning, preparation, and logistical coordination for major international events (e.g., UNFCCC COP and other similar high-level events).

Relationship Management

· Track and maintain external contact lists for major announcements and other public communications; and

· Represent EEP and Ocean & Climate team in meetings, calls, correspondence, and other forms of communications.

Knowledge, Education, and Experience

A successful candidate will have:

· Bachelor’s degree in communications, public relations, international relations, public policy, or related field and 3-5 years work experience in communications and/or event planning.

· Experience planning, coordinating, and executing workshops, panels, or other in-person events.

· Ability to distill complex information and communicate effectively and succinctly through written and verbal means, with knowledge of best writing and messaging practice for marketing and social media a plus.

· Ability to manage time effectively, including meeting tight timelines, work autonomously and with a small team, and manage multiple processes and projects at the same time.

· Strong professional and diplomatic interpersonal skills (experience working with high-level individuals preferred).

· Strong customer service and solution-focused orientation – a “Yes, and” attitude.

· Proficiency with Microsoft Office suite (experience with Canva, Final Cut, Cision or similar media relation tool preferred).

· Willingness and ability to travel, as much as 10-30% of the time during certain times of the year.

The Aspen Institute offers a generous benefits package including health, dental, vision, and prescription benefits, retirement benefits, and paid leave.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

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