Communications Manager - Colby College Museum of Art
The communications manager will serve as a key member of the Museum team, managing and executing communication strategy, media relations, and print and digital outreach efforts for the Colby College Museum of Art and the Lunder Institute for American Art. In this new position at the Museum, the communications manager will be responsible for developing and managing a diverse portfolio of marketing and communications projects that promote a dynamic roster of exhibitions and programs, world-class collections, innovative scholarly and creative initiatives, and forward-looking advancement efforts to multiple audiences. This position will coordinate communications efforts and workflows across the Museum and will work closely with the Colby College Office of Communications.
Founded in 1959, the Colby College Museum of Art is a teaching museum, destination for American art, and a place for engagement with local and global communities. Located on the Colby College campus in Waterville, Maine, the Museum holds more than 10,000 works of art and offers more than 38,000 square feet of exhibition space. Major works by American artists including Albert Bierstadt, Winslow Homer, James McNeill Whistler, Mary Cassatt, and William Merritt Chase form the core of the historical collection, along with significant holdings of American folk art. The modern movement is represented by artists including John Marin, Marsden Hartley, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jacob Lawrence, Joan Mitchell, Isamu Noguchi, and Alma Thomas. The museum also maintains a significant collection of contemporary American art including works by Alex Katz, Agnes Martin, Sol LeWitt, Maya Lin, Kara Walker, Elizabeth Murray, Martin Puryear, Terry Winters, and Julie Mehretu. Other principal areas of the collection include Greek and Roman antiquities, European prints and drawings, and early Chinese art.
Works in the collection strengthen the Museum’s mission to offer Colby students new perspectives on their classroom studies and expand their understanding of diverse subjects through art. The recent donation of more than 1,500 artworks from Paula and Peter Lunder expands that scope, and the creation of the Lunder Institute for American Art enhances the Museum’s engagement with scholarly and creative production. The Museum welcomes more than 3,500 Maine school children each year and offers a vibrant calendar of family and public programs that are free and open to all. In addition, the Museum serves as a key contributor to the revitalization of downtown Waterville through its membership in Waterville Creates! and its active participation in the programmatic initiatives of Colby College.
Established in 2017, the Lunder Institute for American Art supports innovative research and creative production that expands the boundaries of American art. The Lunder Institute invites visiting artists, scholars, and fellows to engage across disciplines with Colby faculty and students, the College’s network of institutional partners, leading experts, and other creative collaborators. Through incubator grants, fellowships, and symposia addressing regional and global concerns, the Lunder Institute amplifies marginalized voices, challenges convention, and provides a platform for generative dialogue through art and scholarship.
The Colby Museum is deeply committed to strengthening diversity, inclusion, and equity across all strategic and programmatic areas of the Museum, actively building a multiplicity of perspectives and backgrounds represented on our staff and Board of Governors, outreach to diverse audiences, inclusive exhibitions and programs, and a broad-based, expansive collection. We encourage inquiries from candidates who will contribute to the diversity of our college, including its cultural and ethnic diversity.
ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Design and implement a strategic communications plan for the Museum and Lunder Institute, incorporating digital technologies, audience engagement strategies, and multi-platform content distribution for regional, national and international audiences and for the Colby community
Working closely with the College’s Office of Communications, develop a proactive media relations strategy, identifying and pitching stories to statewide, regional, and national arts and general media outlets and cultivating relationships with journalists locally and nationwide
Identify priorities, develop strategies, and manage budget for paid media exposure and targeted advertising
Develop, produce, and proofread print and digital communications and marketing materials
Write and distribute press releases targeting national and local audiences
Manage incoming media requests and serve as Museum spokesperson as appropriate
Promote programs and special events and manage media at events as needed
Oversee staff management of Museum website, ensuring that exhibitions, programs, and collection resources are featured prominently and that content is dynamic
Manage brand identity and consistency of style and graphic standards across platforms
Maintain partnerships with campus communications colleagues, external vendors, design firms, production companies, and mail houses to ensure successful content integration, development, and delivery
Develop internal processes for applying best practices and data-driven assessment to future marketing and communications initiatives
Participate in implementing strategic initiatives of the Museum
Perform additional duties as assigned; duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice
Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent in education and experience
At least 3-5 years of experience in marketing, communications, or a related field, with experience developing communications content for various audiences
Experience in an arts and/or higher education setting preferred
Outstanding oral and written communication skills
Experience writing for multiple platforms including print, email, web, and social media
Excellent editing, proofreading, grammar skills, with meticulous attention to detail
Working knowledge of editorial style standards and copywriting techniques
Experience utilizing qualitative and quantitative data to inform strategic planning and decision-making
Proven experience independently overseeing complex projects and programs
Excellent organizational skills; ability to balance multiple deadlines in a complex, fast-paced and team-oriented environment
Must possess creative initiative, a capacity for storytelling, flexibility, and high energy
Proven ability to work independently and as a member of a team, exercise discretion, and work collaboratively as a member of a diverse community
Reporting to the Museum’s deputy director, the communications manager works collaboratively with Museum leadership and staff from all teams (curatorial, education and academic programs, collections, Lunder Institute, administrative, and advancement) to achieve strategic objectives, as well as with Colby faculty, staff, and a diverse array of external constituents. The communications manager works closely with members of the administrative and advancement teams and the Lunder Institute to ensure strategic coordination of communications efforts, and with the Barbara Alfond manager of exhibitions and publications, Mirken senior coordinator of programs and audience engagement, and Mirken fellow in museum practice to manage content production, workflows, and timelines. The communications manager will also work in strategic alignment with Colby College’s Office of Communications to coordinate communications and marketing initiatives across multiple platforms.
WORKING CONDITIONS/PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS:
General open office and campus environment. Position involves sitting, although frequent movement is necessary. Computer usage involving repetitive hand/wrist motion is also necessary.
Interested candidates should apply electronically by clicking the "Apply Now" button on the Colby College website. Please submit a letter of interest including salary requirements, resume, and the contact information of three professional references. Materials should be addressed to:
Communications Manager (Colby College Museum of Art) - Search Committee
Office of Human Resources
5500 Mayflower Hill
Waterville, ME 04901-8855
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