Division Chief For Communications (communications Specialist Iii)

Fairfax, Virginia
$72,190.56 - $120,316.98 Annually
Jan 21, 2023
Feb 04, 2023
Full Time
Job Announcement

Plans, manages, and directs effective communications to support the mission of the Office of Elections. Works closely with the General Registrar/Director of Elections, the Fairfax County Electoral Board, managers in the Fairfax County Office of Elections, the county's Office of Public Affairs staff, and engages with other county staff, the Virginia Department of Elections, candidates, and political party representatives. Independently directs strategic voter communication programs, including departmental website content, telephone services, and outreach programs. Overall responsibility for informational mailings to 750,000 registered voters, and general communication with candidates, government leaders, and other interested parties. Directly supervises and manages staff who are responsible for responding to FOIA and other requests for information, managing candidate services, and providing translations for ballots and other election materials in Spanish, Vietnamese, and Korean. Works under the direction of the General Registrar/Director of Elections.

Illustrative Duties

  • Develops comprehensive strategic communication planning on behalf of the department and the County;
  • Supervises and manages all communication planning and programs for the department;
  • Planning and implementing photographic coverage of events;
  • Plans and implements a Speakers Bureau or plans speaking engagements for department;
  • Makes presentations on behalf of the department to community and County;
  • Plans and implements event and meetings;
  • Writes speeches for presentation to community and County;
  • Develops proposals in support of departmental goals and projects;
  • Coordinates presentations before the Board of Supervisors;
  • Supervises the production of all communication tools (print, multimedia, online) in support of the department’s mission;
  • Implements and supervises the implementation of print production projects;
  • Implements and supervises the implementation of website development and new media projects;
  • Serves as spokesperson for the department with the media;
  • Budgeting and cost control for communication projects that are supervised;
  • Conducts audience / constituent research for evaluation and measurement of communication programs;
  • Leads the department’s communication planning (strategic planning, action planning) team;
  • May interact directly with the Board of Supervisors and County Executive’s Office on behalf of the department.

Required Knowledge Skills and Abilities

  • Ability to supervise the work of others in publication management, multimedia development, community relations or media relations;
  • Ability to write, edit and design for departmental publications;
  • Ability to write for multimedia;
  • Knowledge of photography and planning photography coverage;
  • Knowledge of appropriate standards and formatting for online media;
  • Ability to manage publications and to generate revenue;
  • Ability to use current computer software and email;
  • Ability to design and develop Web sites;
  • Ability to problem solve;
  • Ability to manage projects (including budgeting);
  • Ability to communicate in a crisis;
  • Knowledge of the methods for preparing information to increase the likelihood of its use;
  • Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships with County government officials, regional officials, and potentially national and international dignitaries and government representatives.

Employment Standards

Any combination of education, experience, and training equivalent to the following:
(Click on the aforementioned link to learn how Fairfax County interprets equivalencies for “Any combination, experience, and training equivalent to”)
Bachelor’s degree in communication, business administration or field related to subject matter expertise, plus 6 years of progressively responsible experience in a communication area of specialization, government relations, management or area of specialization in which the department is represented.

  • Direct work experience in communications.
  • Experience managing web-based content.
  • Exceptional writing and editing skills.
  • Strong interpersonal, communication, analytical, and organizational skills.
  • Ability to operate well under pressure and handle a high volume of requests in a small period of time to meet established deadlines.
  • Solid decision-making skills.
  • Experience working with managers and staff of all levels.
  • Ability to collect and interpret data and information.
  • Proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, and Outlook).
  • Demonstrated success as a supervisor, including coaching and training.

The appointee to this position will be required to complete a criminal background check and a credit check to the satisfaction of the employer.

This position is emergency/essential services personnel. (Required to report for duty during inclement weather and/or other emergencies.)

All newly hired employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (two weeks after the last required dose) as a condition of employment or obtain approval of a medical or religious exemption prior to their start date. Proof of an exemption or vaccination status will be required during the pre-employment onboarding process. New employees who obtain an exemption from the vaccine mandate for medical or sincerely held religious beliefs may be subject to a weekly testing requirement. Vaccinated employees and employees with a medical or religious exemption will complete the attestation online on their first day of employment or shortly thereafter.

Work is generally sedentary, performed in a normal office environment. Ability to lift, move, and assemble files and documents. Ability to work extensive overtime hours under demanding conditions. All duties performed with or without reasonable accommodations.

Panel Interview and may include a practical exercise.

The population of Fairfax County is very diverse where 39.8% of residents speak a language other than English at home (Spanish, Asian/Pacific Islander, Indo-European, and others) and we encourage candidates bilingual in English and a foreign language to apply to this opportunity.

Fairfax County Government prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, age, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetics, political affiliation, or military status in the recruitment, selection, and hiring of its workforce.

Reasonable accommodations are available to persons with disabilities during application and/or interview processes per the Americans with Disabilities Act. Contact 703-324-4900 for assistance. TTY 703-222-7314. EEO/AA/TTY.