Executive Director, Strategic Communications

 •  Washington University in St. Louis Saint Louis, MO

8 - 10 years experience  •  Education

Salary depends on experience
Posted on 08/14/17
8 - 10 years experience
Salary depends on experience
Posted on 08/14/17

Executive Director, Strategic Communications


The Executive Director, Strategic Communications manages the strategic communications of the Executive Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs and Dean, Washington University School of Medicine to ensure that the priorities and initiatives of the Dean are understood and advanced. 

Under the direction of the Associate Vice Chancellor and Associate Dean for Medical Public Affairs, the Executive Director, Strategic Communications is responsible for supporting the Executive Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs and Dean by:


  1. Conducting the full range of activities required to prepare and submit speeches, presentations, briefings, remarks, backgrounders, reports, statements, high-level correspondence, and website content, targeting both internal and external audiences such as faculty, alumni, prospective students, staff, and business leaders
  2. Producing reports, presentations, speeches, and other communication materials that engage donors in meaningful communications to inform and educate them on major research initiatives of WUSM faculty
  3. Providing direction for the effective use of social media, including blogging, as a communication tool
  4. Leading the process to research, conceptualize, write, edit, and proofread dynamic presentations, e.g. PowerPoint, targeting diverse audiences.  This includes interpreting and describing in lay language medical and scientific research programs
  5. Managing information collection and coordination for end-of-year video release, internally and externally, highlighting accomplishments of WUSM faculty and staff
  6. Directing and managing the development of high-end and highly individualized written materials such a white papers, news releases, and scientific articles; provide editorial guidance for same
  7. Liaising closely with departments, centers and offices within WUSM to ensure timely and relevant input into written communications and in other matters of relevance to the Dean
  8. Writing articles and supporting content creation for internal and external communications of the Office of Medical Public Affairs
  9. Performing other duties as assigned

Required Qualifications

Required credentials and experience include a Bachelor’s degree in journalism, public relations, communications or related discipline and minimum 7-10 years of experience.

Preferred Qualifications

  • The ideal candidate will have demonstrated experience as an outstanding speech writer and strategic communicator in a science/research environment, preferably in higher education or another large, complex professional field. 
  • Experience in science/science writing highly preferred.
  • The Executive Director, Strategic Communications must be able to work confidently with staff of all levels, including members of the University’s senior executive team in addition to the Executive Vice Chancellor and Dean. 
  • Demonstrated verbal and written communications skills are a must as are strong organizational skills and the ability to handle and prioritize multiple tasks and manage complex, often competing priorities. 
  • The Executive Director must be able to work under pressure, set deadlines, and collaborate with other team members to schedule workflow accordingly. 
  • Respect for confidentiality and a strong sense of professional ethics with a high degree of diplomacy is essential.
  • Ability to break down science into lay terms.
  • Excellent writing skills.
  • Effective verbal, written and interpersonal communication skills.


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