IRP Communications Director

University of Wisconsin - Madison


The Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) advances the understanding of the causes and consequences of poverty and inequality by producing rigorous research, training scholars, engaging with policymakers and practitioners, and widely disseminating evidence.


Policies and practice are informed by evidence and lead to the reduction of poverty and inequality in the United States.

Position Details

IRP Communications Director
Southwest Wisconsin
Madison, WI

This position directs communications strategic planning and execution for the Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP), a nonpartisan research institution dedicated to producing and disseminating rigorous evidence to inform policies and programs to combat poverty, inequality, and their effects in the United States. IRP is the nations only federally funded poverty center and leader of the U.S. Collaborative of Poverty Centers. Its mission is accomplished via the orchestration of a national research, training, and dissemination agenda grounded in extensive collaboration among researchers, policymakers, and practitioners. This position also provides approval and guidance for communications including staffing and budgetary planning in support of IRPs communication goals, and contributes content to various IRP communications efforts and publications.

Principal Duties:

  • 35% - Develops, implements, and monitors strategic, multi-channel communication initiatives (e.g., print, social media, webinars, podcasts, and website content) for designated audiences and internal stakeholders to maximize engagement and strengthen collaboration efforts.
  • 25% - Plans, writes, and edits content for various internal and external stakeholders.
  • 15% - Exercises supervisory authority, including hiring, transferring, suspending, promoting, managing conduct and performance, discharging, assigning, rewarding, disciplining, and/or approving hours worked of at least 2.0 FTE or equivalent employees.
  • 10% - Identifies, establishes, and directs media relationships and partnerships with internal and external sources.
  • 10% - Audits and directs day-to-day operational plans to align with strategic initiatives and to meet established objectives.
  • 5% - Identifies, proposes, and implements new or revised operational policies and procedures.


  • Bachelors Degree
  • Preferred Minimum; preference for degree in journalism, communications, marketing, public policy or related field


  • At least three years of communications experience, including demonstrated writing experience, public relations, marketing, work with media, print and digital publishing.
  • Outstanding writing, editing, proofreading, and layout and design skills.
  • In-depth understanding of and experience applying current social media technologies, industry trends, and audience engagement tactics.
  • Ability to analyze and translate data, technical, and scholarly works into accessible language for multiple audiences.
  • Demonstrated success collaborating with teams and the ability to manage and prioritize numberous projects in a fast-paced environment.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite as well as other publishing and digital media applications.
  • Knowledge of social policy, poverty-related issues and research preferred.

Minimum: $44,748 ANNUAL (12 months). Depending on Qualifications.

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