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Communications Director

Communications Director
Job Description: 

Full-time/Exempt Mountain View, CA

Since 2007, the mission of Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) has been to advance innovative solutions to challenging problems. SVCF has engaged donors, corporations, government and community partners in efforts to make the Silicon Valley region and the world a better place.

Under CEO Nicole Taylor’s new leadership, the organization returns to its community foundation roots, focusing its resources on communicating and collaborating with local leaders and helping philanthropists be their most effective at accomplishing their charitable giving and community investment goals. Despite the area’s great wealth, the region’s residents are challenged by so much – dearth of affordable housing and accessible transit, financial instability and the precarious safety and security of immigrant residents, among other issues. The community foundation addresses these and other challenges, including educating our children and empowering community voices to effect change.

SVCF partners with community and government leaders to address public policy issues, advance the best ideas and direct resources swiftly and strategically toward critical issues. The foundation serves as a resource for nonprofit, civic, government and philanthropic organizations.

The new leadership team is building on SVCF staff’s good work to bolster organizational culture. In a 2018 initiative, staff identified its core values as courage, collaboration, inclusion, respect and accountability – and these form the bedrock of SVCF’s approach to working internally, partnering with donors and collaborating with communities.


Reporting to the Vice President of Marketing and Communications, the communications director has the responsibility for SVCF’s media relations strategy and implementation. The person in this role is also a crucial part of the editorial storytelling team and will develop editorial materials that help convey the breadth of SVCF’s activities, services, products, impact and values. The person in this role is responsible for ensuring that the voice and tone of SVCF marketing and communications efforts are aligned with SVCF’s brand, and that SVCF stories and messages are serving the organization’s goals. 


  • Develop and oversee media relations strategies for telling SVCF’s stories through earned media. Initiate story pitches to pertinent media outlets. Maintain relationships with media outlets and representatives. Craft media releases, advisories and other outreach tactics.
  • Manage media inquiries and work with SVCF partners to develop responses to media. Staff media interviews between staff and journalists. Occasionally serve as organization spokesperson, as needed.
  • Coach SVCF staff on communicating effectively with media representatives in interview and other settings.
  • Monitor SVCF’s presence in media outlets and track results of media outreach efforts.
  • Create periodic reports for department colleagues, executives and board of directors on outcomes of media relations strategies and on SVCF’s presence in media.
  • Provide strategic communications advice and guidance to other departments and staff as needed, especially as it relates to promoting SVCF projects and initiatives in the media.
  • Research, write and edit compelling content to be deployed across a wide range of marketing materials, including web-based stories, collateral pieces and podcast. Participate in research and development of editorial content for SVCF publications and communications of all types.
  • As needed, edit content developed by other staff members for a variety of reports, social media messages and blog posts.
  • Actively seek out compelling stories about SVCF donors and develop them for use across marketing channels.
  • Manage freelance writers and editors as needed to produce editorial content.
  • Assist Executive Vice President of Marketing and Communications in developing some executive communications for SVCF’s president and other senior execs.
  • In collaboration with leadership of the Marketing and Communications team, strategize and plan for public events designed to reach SVCF’s audiences and communicate our values.
  • In collaboration with leadership of the Marketing and Communications team, seek out, initiate and leverage opportunities to market the organization and to communicate its stories to pertinent audiences.
  • Other duties and projects as assigned.


  • Minimum of seven years of experience in media relations, communications or marketing, preferably in a nonprofit environment.
  • Undergraduate or advanced degree in journalism, public relations, communications, marketing or equivalent background/experience.
  • Experience acting as a media liaison, developing press releases and managing press activities at public-facing events.
  • Excellent writing and storytelling skills that can be applied to the full range of marketing and communications activities, from event marketing and advertising to donor-facing communications, digital marketing campaigns and communications aimed at general audiences.
  • Excellent communication skills: interpersonal, oral and written.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and priorities in a deadline-driven environment with high expectations and standards.
  • Experience writing and editing on deadline to create clear, useful content.
  • Experience with reporting/researching material for publication to a mass audience is strongly preferred.
  • Experience supervising others is preferred but not required.
  • Experience in events strategy, marketing or programming is preferred
  • Team player with the ability to work with diverse groups.
  • Strong computer skills.