Arlington, Virginia
$57,387.20 - $104,748.80 Annually
Aug 13, 2021
Aug 27, 2021
Full Time
Position Information
The Arlington County Department of Public Safety Communications and Emergency Management is seeking a Communications and Engagement Specialist to work as a member of the Public Affairs team. The Communications and Engagement Specialist will develop and implement community engagement and communications campaigns for the Department's diverse programs, initiatives, events, engagement opportunities and activities, including Emergency Management and Emergency Communications programming.

The Specialist will ensure that the department sustains strong community-based partnerships, builds equity-focused programming into its work, and communicates effectively and proactively to ensure the public's trust. This position serves as the back-up Public Information Officer, during steady-state and activations, when the primary departmental spokesperson is unavailable.

For more information on the Department of Public Safety Communications & Emergency Management, visit our website .

Responsibilities include:
  • Establishing and maintaining partnerships with key stakeholder groups, including diverse and under-represented communities to build strong relationships and promote public safety and community resilience;
  • Planning, developing, publicizing, and conducting community outreach and engagement opportunities;
  • Identifying, collecting and analyzing population data to drive programmatic and policy decisions;
  • Designing, drafting, and editing digital and print communications materials including fact sheets, infographics, flyers, posters, talking points, frequently asked questions (FAQ), presentations, press releases, and supporting materials;
  • Conceptualizing and producing compelling content for use across a variety of communications channels;
  • Creating, writing, editing, and publishing content for the public website and social media;
  • Developing presentation strategies and assisting with the preparation of materials for public meetings;
  • Preparing and presenting written reports, verbal presentations, and other forms of communications tailoring the information to the needs and requests of different audiences;
  • Serving as the back-up departmental spokesperson and participating in crisis communications activities including emergency activations, providing media briefings and responding to media inquiries; and
  • Deploying to emergency activations with little notice.
The ideal candidate will have excellent communication skills to engage community members both verbally and in writing; ability to think creatively to promote the department and engage with the community; awareness of community trends, interests, and current events; strong time-management skills to balance workloads, meet deadlines, and coordinate efforts across a large organization; and the ability to work on projects independently with minimal direction and contribute to a collaborative team environment.

Selection Criteria
  • Bachelor's degree in Communications, Public Relations, Public Information, Journalism, Marketing, Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Emergency Management, Public Administration or related field; and
  • Two years of significant experience in the communications, public engagement or public relations field, specifically in a community engagement and outreach environment.

Substitution: Additional qualifying experience may substitute for the education requirement on a year-for-year basis. A Master's Degree in a related field may substitute for one year of experience.

Desirables: Preference may be given to candidates with experience in one or more of the following:
  • Community engagement project planning, design, and construction;
  • Facilitating community conversations and building consensus amongst diverse community groups;
  • Cultivating relationships with underrepresented community groups;
  • Designing and implementing equity-focused engagement programming;
  • Serving as a spokesperson and responding to media inquiries;
  • Composing web content, fact sheets, e-newsletters, social media, press releases, graphics, flyers, and digital and print presentations;
  • Using OpenCities, or similar website content management system;
  • Using social media management tools such as HootSuite or SproutSocial;
  • Formatting photos and graphics and/or
  • Working in an emergency operations center or emergency response environment;
  • Speaking, reading and writing competency in languages in addition to English.
Special Requirements
Note: An online application must be submitted.

The applicant must complete and maintain the Training in Incident Command Structure (ICS) including FEMA ICS courses 100, 200, 700, and 800. ICS 300 and 400 must be completed within six months of hire.

A valid motor vehicle operator's license from the applicant's place of residence. The applicant must authorize Arlington County to obtain, or the applicant must provide a copy of the applicant's official state/district driving record. Any offer of employment may be contingent upon a favorable review of the applicant's driving record.

This position requires a federal background check.

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