Communications Director

  • Full-time
  • Anywhere

Website inn Institute for Nonprofit News

The Institute for Nonprofit News (INN) seeks a Communications Director

INN is seeking a senior cause communications leader with a strategic outlook and hands-on skills to lift awareness and support of a new kind of news media: independent, nonprofit news.

Our cause is the news itself — quality journalism. INN and its members make up a fast-growing network of more than 240 independent, nonprofit news media. Together we are successfully expanding public service journalism across North America and finding new models for news — promising alternatives to the decline of commercial news media and the confusion sown in social media.

These diverse newsrooms range from local to global. Many are rooted in communities, reinventing local journalism, or covering state governments. They hold the powerful accountable through some of the strongest investigative reporting in the nation. And they are providing millions of people with unbiased, informed coverage of the issues that shape laws and lives, including education, equity, climate change, social justice, health and science.

Role and responsibilities

The mission of this job: apply your professional skill and passion about the role news plays in our democracy. Advance INN’s leadership, the work of these nonprofit newsrooms and public support of journalism that matters, in four key areas:

  • Increasing public and philanthropic awareness of news as a young and fast-growing philanthropic field
  • Expanding knowledge of this sector through case studies, the annual INN Index field study, presentations and partnerships
  • Helping the development director & ED build major gift and grant funding for INN and its nonprofit news members
  • Strengthening the field of news as social enterprise through network strategies, partnerships and member communications

In the coming year, the INN Communications Director will lead initiatives including:

  • Creation of a media and presentations kit for use by INN members, directors and partner organizations for public and foundation briefings about news and how communities support high-quality news sources.
  • INN Index, the most comprehensive study of this field, though case studies and the annual Index research release.
  • Outreach campaigns around diversity and leadership, journalism standards, community support and the global movement building independent nonprofit news.
  • Support of new major gift programs for INN and the news field, including materials such as major donor-targeted cases for support, program brochures, highlights in newsletters and websites and the annual report, in collaboration with INN’s development director.
  • PR and marketing of INN events and projects, including INN Days, conference presentations, breakthrough moments, and other newsworthy events for INN and its membership.

The Communications Director is part of the INN leadership and works with the board, external partners as well as INN staff. The director sets writing/editing and visual standards for the organization and manages external communications with the assistance of a staff communications and engagement specialist, regular contractors and, as needed, agencies and vendors. The director has a communications budget and determines what to handle in-house and what to outsource based on staff skills and best use of resources.

The team handles day to day communications including:

  • Updates to INN’s WordPress sites, a YouTube training channel and social media
  • Marketing for INN programs, training, services and products
  • Fundraising and stakeholder communications, including weekly email newsletters and monthly updates
  • Case studies, member profiles, white papers, speaking proposals and presentations, annual reports


  • Has experience setting and implementing a communications strategy, designing and running campaigns that build awareness and support of a cause
  • Is passionate about the role of fact-based news in our democracy
  • Can write, edit and frame multimedia content to the style and standards of national news publications, yet in a way that is accessible to people unfamiliar with the news world
  • Ideally has journalism experience. Business and trade press experience may be especially helpful. INN and its members form an innovation network developing new audience, revenue and business approaches and the director oversees production of case studies
  • In media relations, the ability to build long-term relationships and also quickly seize news opportunities as they arise
  • Self-direction and time management are strengths, as is comfort working remotely with staff and stakeholders in a multicultural environment. The director manages the organization’s editorial calendar, including multiple and simultaneous projects, and sets high standards for communications across the organization.
  • A bachelor’s degree in a relevant field and at least 5 years’ nonprofit or cause communications experience.
  • Practicing knowledge of common social media, WordPress content management (CMS) and tools, and the ability to handle or assign video and photo editing.
  • Continual curiosity and a sense of humor


INN offers a competitive salary and benefits. The position can be based anywhere with strong wifi and ready access to a major airport, in our LA office or co-located with other INN staff or key members. INN is a distributed team. Previous experience working with a remote team would be helpful but we’ll do whatever we can to help and support your transition if this is your first job working with distributed teams.

We value diversity, work in the open and do everything we can to give back to the journalism community (Read more about our team values).

INN is an equal opportunity employer and we seek to increase diversity in our own operation and in the news media. We encourage applications from communities traditionally underrepresented in this field.


Candidates, please send a resume and portfolio to with the subject line INN Communications.

Portfolio requirements: Your portfolio should consist of an executive summary and 5-6 examples of communications materials you have created.

To apply for this job email your details to