Media Relations Specialist

American Academy of Pediatrics

We're 67,000 pediatricians committed to the optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults.

Position Details

Media Relations Specialist
Northern Illinois
Itasca, IL


Support American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) media relations activities, including facilitating interactions between journalists and AAP spokespersons and pitching new stories about AAP child health priorities and recommendations. Research, write, and edit news releases, and other content for various audiences. Participate in development of communications strategy and key messages for various audiences, including parents, members, and the news media.


  1. Respond to media inquiries, including researching and providing information on AAP policies and recommendations. Identify and contact spokespersons; work with staff and experts to develop talking points; and schedule and facilitate interviews as needed.
  2. Create, manage, and update media lists, including identifying journalists covering child health in all media platforms.
  3. Track AAP media coverage and create regular media coverage reports.
  4. Identify opportunities to proactively pitch stories to media. Create and disseminate pitches to individual journalists and work with spokespersons to develop customized outreach.
  5. Research, draft, and pitch op-eds on behalf of AAP leadership. Edit letters, op-eds, and other content submitted by physicians for AAP campaigns and related activities.
  6. Solicit and edit blog posts for the AAP Voices blog. Work with pediatrician authors to craft posts according to blog guidelines for narrative, tone, and voice. Create editorial calendar to manage submissions according to AAP communications priorities.
  7. Interpret medical studies, technical reports, and AAP policies to write materials for the weekly media mailing and other news releases. Assist in scheduling media mailing as needed.
  8. Participate in discussions to develop communication strategy and key messages related to AAP campaigns, policies, news, and other priorities.
  9. Assist in keeping the News Room updated with current news releases and content.
  10. Track media trends to advise on media relations strategies.
  11. Participate in regular discussions on communication strategy related to AAP campaigns, policies, news, and other priorities.
  12. Assist with developing content in response to crisis situations, including speaking points, letters-to-the-editor, press statements, and AAP member and staff communications.
  13. Assist with coordinating media training sessions, including developing interview questions, media clips, and other support documents.
  14. Participate in the selection of newsworthy abstracts and sessions at AAP conferences and edit and draft news releases to highlight them to the media.
  15. Coordinate review and approval of all assigned communications materials.
  16. Assist with assigned team activities, including staffing the press office at AAP conferences.
  17. Perform all other duties as assigned.


Bachelor’s degree in education, journalism, public relations, communications, or related discipline or an equivalent combination of relevant education and work experience required.


At least two years’ related experience writing and editing required, including in journalistic and persuasive writing styles. Experience writing for various audiences, including public and professional audiences required, preferably in the health care field. Knowledge of Associated Press writing style essential. Ability to read/write in Spanish a plus.


Excellent verbal/written communication, interpersonal, diplomacy, decision- making, and time management skills required, as well as journalistic and promotional writing styles. Must be creative, take initiative, pay close attention to detail, be able to work both independently and as part of a team, manage multiple projects simultaneously under tight deadlines, collaborate effectively with various internal and external constituents, and maintain a positive and cooperative team-oriented work environment with a commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion. Strong technical acumen essential with proficiency in MS Office and the ability to learn and apply new technologies; experience with virtual meeting platforms (e.g., WebEx, Teams) and document collaboration platforms (e.g., SharePoint) preferred. Some evening/weekend work and travel may be required.

The AAP offers an excellent work environment, competitive salary, and a comprehensive benefits package. As a reaffirmation to our employee-focused culture, since 2005 the AAP has been named one of the 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work for in the Chicagoland area. Additionally, we are an Equal Opportunity Employer of Minorities, Females, Individuals with Disabilities, and Veterans that values the strength diversity brings to our workplace.

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