Sr. Director Public Affairs

Bethesda, soon to be Ablelight!

Bethesda, soon to be Ablelight, provides services and support to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities find a sense of community and belonging. From community-based homes and at-home life skills development, to job placement and coaching, to behavior support, community engagement and day programs, we help people live meaningful and fulfilling lives.

Position Details

Sr. Director Public Affairs
Southeast Wisconsin
Brookfield, WI

Put your heart to work at Bethesda, soon to be Ablelight!

At Bethesda, soon to be Ablelight, people are the heart of everything we do. Our mission, vision and values reflect a commitment to people. As an organization, we are aligned, inspired and driven toward a common goal - believing that together, the best life is possible!

The Senior Director of Public Affairs will provide strategy, counsel, support, and implementation for communication activities that are focused on public relations, reputation management, executive communications, key partnerships, and internal communications for Bethesda, soon to be AbleLight. This key role will ensure company-wide initiatives have robust communication support and all key audiences are fully engaged and informed. The successful incumbent will embody our values of Mission First, Excellence Always, and Team Together to support key communications initiatives assigned by supervisor.

What you will be doing:

Public Relations:

  • Works closely with key leaders to develop public relations strategies, including messaging, media relations pitches, social media, issues management, and the general promotion of the company’s service lines and subject matter experts.
  • Actively manages the reporting of analytics around PR, social media, and internal communication programs.
  • Adjust strategies based on analytics and findings.
  • Lead the writing and distribution of press releases, bios, fact sheets, backgrounders, messaging and talking points, media FAQs, presentations, and bylines; identify storylines and trends; develop and extend media pitches; creative content development, including blogs, infographics, social media posts, and etc.

Reputation Management:

  • Primary contact for key situations happening throughout the organization that could result in negative press or reputational risk.
  • This includes topics related to family/guardian issues, employee issues, litigation or other situations that have risk associated with the situation.
  • Provide appropriate communication support and alignment of key messages/approach throughout the organization.
  • Lead efforts for recognition of corporate and executive accomplishments through awards, recognition opportunities.

Internal Communications:

  • Develop and lead employee communication programs including the development of an integrated strategy to build employee engagement, increase use of technology to reach employees, foster stronger employee feedback on key initiatives and ensure employees are well informed on company operations/progress.

Executive/BOD Communications:

  • Responsible for key executive communications including quarterly strategic plan update, CEO communications and outreach strategy and BOD updates.
  • Advise corporate leaders and product team members on best way to communicate major corporate news (new product launches, product milestones and changes, geographic expansions, etc.).

Thought leadership strategy:

  • Identifies, develops and executes strategies to position Bethesda, soon to be Ablelight as a thought leader in the I/DD space.
  • Includes identifying high visibility speaking engagements opportunities for executives, event participation, research and development of op-eds, white papers, etc. 
  • Provides ongoing scans of the industry and key trends and items of interest that could impact Bethesda’s current/future operations.

Leverage Key Partnerships:

  • Identifies, cultivates and maximizes key industry relationships and other centers of influence.
  • Working closely with Chief Mission Officer and Regional Directors, works to identify communication and joint promotion opportunities with like-minded organizations.

Serves as a company spokesperson:

  • Responds both proactively and reactively to developing news, stories, and items of media interest.
  • Develops appropriate speaking points, backgrounders, and prep as necessary. Ensures all corporate events are well planned, on budget and well-executed.

What we want to see from you:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Communications, Journalism, Public Relations, or relevant field required. Master’s degree highly desirable.
  • 10-15 years of progressive communication, public relations, or public affairs experience.
  • Effectively managing crisis communications including messaging for both internal/external audiences, media relations, and key message development.
  • Experience with external engagement and outreach strategy to both public, private, and nonprofit sectors.
  • Ability to build collaborative and mutually beneficial relationships.
  • Demonstrated record of working effectively with executive leaders and building effective communication plans/outreach.
  • Demonstrated experience building strategic partnerships with COI’s.
  • Experience in working with media relations, spokesperson responsibilities and building relationships that advance corporate interests.

What we offer to you:

  • Comprehensive health and wellness options (medical, dental & vision plans).
  • Generous PTO accrual beginning the first day of work.
  • Retirement plan, 403b with up to 3.5% matching.
  • Flexible work environment with the ability to commute into the Brookfield, WI office and opportunity to work remotely from your home office.
  • Competitive base salary.
  • Ability to work with a mission driven organization.

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