Program Director – Communications – Chicago / Midwest

June 1, 2021


It’s a noisy world out there, and being heard is only half the battle; you’re a creative, curious communications professional with a passion for changing hearts and minds. You’re a quick study, ready to geek out on clean energy or brush up on the latest TikTok trend. You have a nose for politics and don’t mind the occasional rapid response campaign. 

You’re also a persuasive writer. You relish corresponding with reporters to convince them to dive in on a story.  And you enjoy deep research—mining news clips and online conversations for those “aha” moments that spark new outreach and ideas.

Most importantly, you’re a committed team player who’s grounded in equity and justice. Your self-awareness and humility help foster healthy relationships with colleagues and partners.


Resource Media is a nonprofit PR firm working for social change. We provide communications services to a variety of progressive organizations and causes and also operate independently or in coalition when we see unmet communications needs in the field. We work on issues that have an impact on the health of people and the planet, including climate change and clean energy; social and environmental justice; public health; food and farms.

At Resource Media, we know that there is no progress without equity. We embrace and honor differences in age, culture, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity and expression, language, national origin, physical and mental ability, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, veteran status, and other characteristics that make our employees and partners unique. It’s our moral and strategic imperative to build cultural competence and cultural humility and to eradicate oppression in all its forms, both within our organization and in the work that we do.

We commit to:

  • Pursue ongoing learning, self-reflection, candor, and transparency about equity and justice in our organization and in our work. 
  • Build relationships and partnerships that dismantle interlocking systems of oppression and shift power to marginalized communities.
  • Evaluate our decision-making and strategy through the lens of equity and justice.
  • Conduct regular and public assessments of our progress and effectiveness on equity issues.
  • Dedicate two percent of all our revenue to an Equity Impact Program that enables us to respond to more opportunities and needs that arise when working in diverse and historically marginalized communities.


We’re looking for a Program Director in the Chicago area, or elsewhere in the Midwest, to support communications projects mainly in the Central and Eastern time zones. The person in this position can work from home or in a shared office/co-working space; offering the benefit of flexibility and collaboration with Resource Media’s virtual distributed team. “Program” at Resource Media refers to our mission-driven communications work, and this position will support our climate and energy program with room to expand to other issue areas. The Program Director would be instrumental in implementing communications strategies—from media relations and content development to creative social media campaigns—as well as collaborating on functions that we share across the organization: professional development, business development, etc. Although we don’t require prior experience working in the climate and energy space, we are looking for someone who has an interest in or a curiosity about the field and isn’t afraid of a learning curve on technical aspects of this issue area.  

Program Directors at Resource Media are more than just proficient communicators; they’re organized and relational collaborators, always strengthening their resilience for the realities of our work: multitasking, ambiguity, and a world in flux. For all staff, we will invest in mentorship, training, and ongoing support. We’re asking the new Program Director to come in the door with sharp communications instincts, a strong interest in social change, and a willingness to learn and grow.

Here are a few things you will be responsible for:

Communications Support

  • With support from colleagues, develop and execute communications plans and approaches that include messaging, strategy, and tactics for a variety of projects and issues.
  • Produce a wide range of content: messaging, talking points, blog posts, opinion columns, web pages, video and infographic treatments, social shares, press releases and pitches, emails, visuals, backgrounders, handouts, slide decks, paid ads, mini-reports.
  • Execute wide-ranging media outreach strategies, including: story and opinion pitching to media outlets, development and maintenance of media lists and reporter relationships, coverage tracking and reporter follow-up.
  • Conduct media and digital scans to assist colleagues on issue and media landscape assessments and analyses. 
  • Help develop materials and facilitation/presentation for meetings, trainings, workshops, conferences.
  • Maintain and update skills in a changing communications landscape, and share learning and experience via RM blogs, staff meetings, webinars.

Relationship and Project Management

  • Help colleagues coordinate communications activities on campaigns and projects across multiple platforms and partners to ensure work is on deadline and on budget.
  • Communicate regularly and accurately with RM team members on project status updates, identifying problems or successes.
  • Client-facing communication, including facilitating portions of meetings, walking partners through scoping and new business conversations with support from colleagues.
  • Hire and oversee contractors, such as graphic designers, video producers, photographers. 
  • Plan and facilitate meetings, including creating agendas, taking and synthesizing notes and next steps. 
  • Assist on grant proposals and reports, and contribute creative thinking and ideas for future work.
  • Promote Resource Media services and resources through blog posts on Resource Media’s website or elsewhere online.  
  • Network within your issue areas and/or your local community to build relationships and learn. 
  • Serve on and lead Resource Media committees, as needed and so desired.
  • Foster a collaborative and mutually supportive work atmosphere throughout the organization.

Equity and Justice 

  • Commitment to equity as the cornerstone of progress toward a just and sustainable world.
  • Support and participate in equity and inclusion work in the organization, including participation in relevant committees, trainings, and caucuses. 
  • Demonstrate a keen understanding of one’s own race, culture and identity and how it fits into the staff and client environment and landscape, as well as the world at large. 
  • Model vulnerability and accountability.
  • Comfortable giving and receiving feedback.
  • Model a sensitivity toward dynamics between white mainstream audiences and the needs and priorities of diverse communities, as well as the ability to manage work within and for a number of different identities, both internally and externally.
  • Demonstrate an ability to communicate across differences.

To be successful in this role, these minimum qualifications are essential: 

Five to seven years in communications, public relations, media, nonprofit communications, community-based advocacy, political or election campaign work; OR an equivalent combination of study or lived experience.

  • Demonstrated experience in digital media platforms and strategy, from e-newsletters to Instagram.
  • Basic understanding of public policy and the role of communications in building support for social change.
  • A commitment to social justice, racial equity, and intersectional practice with experience executing those values through your work.
  • Demonstrated skill in persuasive writing for both media and funder audiences.
  • Sufficient technological abilities/aptitude to use software for daily office work and comply with business processes and procedures.
  • A willingness to learn on the job and be flexible with the fast-paced nature of campaigns and client work. 
  • Ability to manage details and track work with multiple teams with shifting priorities and timelines.

 Additional skills that we value, but do not require:

  • Experience in a complementary field, such as organizing and community outreach, political or electoral campaigning, advertising and other creative fields, event management or public affairs.
  • Familiarity with one or more media research tools, such as Cision, Meltwater, LexisNexis, Radian 6, or Crimson Hexagon.
  • Visual storytelling technical skills (e.g. Canva, ESRI story-maps, Wochit) and background.
  • Ability to facilitate and/or write persuasively in a language other than English. 
  • Experience with multicultural communications, culturally specific media outlets and digital platforms.

Salary and Benefits

We want to be able to attract the best and make sure they keep getting better. Therefore, our employees enjoy benefits that make them productive and contribute directly to their professional and personal development. This is a full-time, exempt position with a salary range of $61k – $89,500.

You would ideally be based in the Central time zone and have some familiarity with the cultural and political dynamic of the Upper Midwest. Comfort working in a virtual, dispersed work environment is a must. 

Resource Media offers a lively, spirited, intellectually-stimulating, and geographically diverse workplace. We are committed to the health, wellbeing and work-life balance of our team, so we’ve also added:

  • Flexible, family-friendly work schedules
  • Generous employer contribution to benefit premiums of approximately 90 percent for employees, spouses/partners and their dependents
  • Support for the rest and regeneration of our employees through offering generous paid time off, which includes three weeks of vacation to start; sick days, personal days, eight holidays, as well as an end-of-the-year winter break
  • Cellphone subsidy
  • Transit subsidy
  • 403(b) plan with company match
  • Support for professional development
  • Mostly virtual/remote working environment,
  • Access to mentoring and coaching support
  • Trainings and learning opportunities focused on racial justice, trauma and self-care
  • Leadership opportunities through participation in committees that manage distributed decision-making across the organization


  • Please submit your resume and something to show us who you really are! It’s your choice – that could be a written summary or a video cover letter, or whatever showcases your passion for the work you’d be doing. Using the subject line “Midwest Program Director,” send those materials to  Please include your name on your attachments. No phone calls, please.
  • Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, and the position will be open until filled.
  • We will review resumes through mid July and anticipate conducting phone interviews before the end of the month. Shortly thereafter, those selected to advance in the hiring process will be invited to a one-hour video interview with our panel. Finalists will be invited to a second one-hour interview with the Director of Operations and additional Resource Media staff.
  • This position would ideally start in August.

Resource Media prioritizes an equitable and inclusive workplace. We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to engaging the skills and leadership of people of color; LGBTQIA+, transgender and gender non-conforming people; people of different abilities and neurodiverse identities; and other individuals from diverse backgrounds. People from these and other historically marginalized backgrounds are encouraged to apply. If you require assistance or accommodation due to disability, please email us at