Communications Specialist

Brookfield Zoo Chicago

An exciting new chapter at Brookfield Zoo Chicago has begun with the creation of a new Guest Experience and Operations (GXO) division: a strategic initiative aimed at optimizing attendance and revenue growth, enhancing our brand and reputation, and delivering a world-class experience. As part of this transformative change, we are expanding our team across various departments, including Marketing, Communications, and Guest and Membership Services as an investment in delivering our mission in more ways to more people. This unified approach brings together diverse expertise under one cohesive framework, ensuring that every aspect of our experience is elevated to the highest standards. Join us in shaping the future of one of the nation's premier zoological institutions!

Position Details

Communications Specialist
Chicago Illinois
Brookfield, IL

The Communications Specialist will provide essential support to the Associate Vice President (AVP) of Communications in executing day-to-day public relations and communication initiatives aimed at promoting the zoo's events, programs, and conservation efforts. In addition to external communication responsibilities, this position will also provide crucial support for internal communications writing and activities, ensuring consistent messaging and engagement across all channels.


Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential job functions.

  1. *Provide writing support for various communication channels. 
  2. *Assist with internal communications platforms and initiatives, including drafting newsletters, emails, posts, and announcements to keep staff, volunteers, and stakeholders informed and engaged with zoo activities. 
  3. *Conduct research on relevant topics, gather data, and prepare reports to support public relations strategies and initiatives. Conduct competitor analysis to understand and share insights on the current market landscape, identifying opportunities for differentiation and improvement. 
  4. *Support and lead individual projects within the department from start to finish, ensuring successful implementation and alignment with overarching goals. 
  5. *Support the Director of Public Relations as needed with drafting press materials and the coordination and staffing of press conferences, media tours, exhibit openings, media requests, interviews, and onsite visits. 
  6. *Oversee media monitoring and data collection for the team, tracking media coverage and relevant news stories to develop PR results and analytic reports using media monitoring software. 
  7. *Develop and maintain strong relationships with external partners and stakeholders, as well as build internal networks with zoo staff to identify media-worthy stories and opportunities for promotion. 
  8. *Maintain messaging materials, lists, fact sheets, biographies, and other resources--such as the online press room --ensuring accurate and up-to-date information is readily available. 
  9. *Work with the AVP to proactively identify and secure speaking opportunities, awards, recognitions, and nominations opportunities. 
  10. *Assist and support the Director, AVP, and Senior Vice President, as assigned, and undertake additional duties and responsibilities as needed. Other related duties as assigned.

* Denotes Essential Job Function(s)


  • Bachelor's degree in Public Relations, Communications, Journalism, or related field. 
  • Strong writing and communication skills, with the ability to craft compelling and accurate content for diverse audiences. 
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and media monitoring software. 
  • Excellent organizational skills with the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously and meet deadlines. 
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to build relationships internally and externally. 
  • Passion for wildlife conservation, environmental education, and promoting positive change through effective communication. 
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality of information. 
  • Strong ability to prioritize workload, multi-task effectively, and work efficiently and responsibly with minimal supervision. 
  • English fluency at a professional working proficiency. 
  • Cultural competency; experience and/or ability to work and interact effectively with a diverse, multicultural audience. 
  • Valid driver’s license required at time of hire. Illinois residents must possess a valid Illinois driver’s license or obtain one within 90 days of hire. Valid out-of-state driver’s license is required for out-of-state residents.


  • Multilingual ability, Spanish fluency a plus.

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