The Communications Specialist will assist MCSP Communications Team Leader and larger communications team in the execution of MCSP’s strategic communications plan and strategy to promote USAID’s flagship Maternal and Child Survival program (MCSP). This includes seeking opportunities to highlight MCSP leadership, country programs, initiatives, products and results through featured articles, collateral, web and social media mediums to include high-visibility domestic and international events, meetings and conferences. This position has a strong emphasis on events management, outreach and advocacy, and media.
MCSP is a global, USAID Cooperative Agreement to introduce and support high-impact health interventions with a focus on 25 high-priority countries with the ultimate goal of ending preventable child and maternal deaths within a generation. The Program is focused on ensuring that all women, newborns and children most in need have equitable access to quality health care services to save lives.
• Plan high-level internal and external events, meetings and conferences both based in US and in international settings. Typical duties associated with event planning include, but are not limited to: identifying venues, liaising with partners and technical teams to manage agenda and program, drafting high-level invitations, managing RSVPs, booth and exhibition planning, and developing key communications collateral, etc.
• Provide on-site management and coordination of events, including: logistics support, flow-of-show management, setting up promotional materials and displays, coordinating booth staffing, ensuring attendee check-in, staffing high-level speakers, day-of social media support as needed, coordinating A/V and webcasting, etc.
• Oversee administrative duties of part-time Administrative Coordinator associated with event planning, to include: managing requests for proposal, selecting vendors, overseeing contract processes and deliverables from vendor contracts, ordering catering, materials shipment in US and internationally, promotional materials management and ordering, ensure invoice payment, etc.
Outreach Strategy & Thought Leadership
• Create and execute a strategy for using events and professional conferences to advance MCSP’s thought leadership among target audiences
• Organize and oversee the success of MCSP speaking opportunities, conference communications, events, and exhibits; Manage relationships with key donors and partners in the global health and development community; utilize partnerships to design events and collaborative communications strategies
• Demonstrate leadership in Washington, DC and global health and development communications and public affairs by representing MCSP in coalitions and partnerships in addition to high-profile events and conferences (Global Maternal Newborn Child Health Roundtable, Every Woman Every Child advocacy working group, USAID’s Civil Society Engagement Communications and Advocacy working group, 1,000 Days Advocacy Working Group, MCSP communications working group, etc.)
• Conduct primary research on MCSP intervention areas and global health landscape and work with technical colleagues to prepare background for senior leadership for high-level speaking engagements (e.g., identify goals and talking points, provide background on attendees, analyze the current relationship, and summarize opportunities)
• Collect and disseminate information to MCSP staff globally about up-coming events and conferences relevant to our work. Disseminate monthly newsletter with abstract submission deadlines to said conferences
• Assist in tracking and promoting MCSP staff presentations and posters at conferences both in advance of and during the conference and liaise with web manager for promotion as part of dissemination efforts
• Work to increase coverage of MCSP through traditional media platforms and further our reach to intended audiences by creating a media strategy
• Work with the larger team to help ensure timely preparation of high quality communications materials including but not limited to press releases, op-eds, fact sheets, website content, blog posts, speeches, and talking points
• Coordinate stand-alone and partnered event-related media opportunities, such as advocacy and media campaigns
• Increase the capacity of field staff to support global conferences and to run their own presence at local conferences and events through mentoring field staff on-site at global conferences, creating and maintaining procedure manuals and resources for events, and providing guidance to field staff as required (to include developing a “how to” kit for event planning rolled out to country programs along with associated BBL)
• Work with Communications Coordinator and part-time Administrative Coordinator to manage and recruit team interns
• Provide surge support as needed, assisting with a variety of other communications tasks as requested by Communications Team Lead
• BA with 5-7+ years’ related experience in communications, event planning, public relations or marketing
• Demonstrated ability to plan and execute successful events and manage projects; experience in planning events in international settings highly desired
• Ability to multi-task
• Strong written oral and presentation skills
• Familiarity with and interest in international health environment
• Familiarity with federal government and related agencies and experience in tactical and strategic PR and media outreach
• Knowledge and experience using Flickr, Mail Chimp, Canva, Twitter, Facebook, Microsoft products, Adobe Creative Suite, and other social, digital, media, and design platforms strongly preferred
• Ability to meet deadlines under pressure, build consensus and work with diverse groups of people
• Ability to travel domestically and internationally up to 30%, if needed
• Ability to handle budgets and produce within these set parameters