Vice President, Communications and Partnerships

Company: SMASH
Job type: Full-time

About Us and Our Philosophy:
The Level Playing Field Institute is now SMASH! SMASH Academy, a program that US News and World Report called Perhaps the most ambitious program to encourage African American and Latino students in STEM fields is heading into its 18th summer this year. SMASH is an organization committed to eliminating the barriers faced by underrepresented people of color in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and fostering their untapped talent for the advancement of our nation.
The education focus area of the Kapor Center [ and founded in 2001 by Freada Kapor Klein, SMASH is an Oakland-based nonprofit organization that operates the SMASH Academy, a national STEM-intensive academic and residential program that serves underrepresented high school students. In tandem, SMASH conducts research examining inequity in access and opportunity across K-12, higher education, and workplace contexts in order to improve the outcomes for underrepresented students in STEM fields.
SMASH Academy is a five week, three-year Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) residential academic acceleration program for motivated, high school students from underrepresented populations (African-American, Latinx/Hispanic, Southeast Asian and/or Pacific Islander, and Native American), who have demonstrated an aptitude for science and math.
Upon promotion from SMASH Academy, scholars begin their senior year of high school and officially become a part of the SMASH Alumni Program. The alumni program places a strategic emphasis on college access and success, internship preparation, peer networking and STEM professional mentorship.
Working at SMASH is about fast growth, personal commitment and the tenacity to challenge the status quo. This is not for the faint of heart. But if you think you have what it takes to dare to change the face of STEM. Join us.
The Opportunity:
SMASH is at a pivotal time as it continues to scale and reimagine its education programs for national impact. Toward that goal, SMASH is investigating how to reach more students using technology and partnerships, the expansion of its alumni and internship programs and increased brand recognition to increase funding and partnership opportunities.
This is a unique opportunity for someone looking to use strong strategic relationship management, marketing and communication skills to further SMASHs work and as part of a dynamic and progressive technologically enriched organization.
Position Description:
Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), the Vice President, Communications and Partnerships will be a critical member of the SMASH senior leadership team, working cross-functionally as an organizational leader, and will play a key role in partnering with the SMASH CEO, COO, Kapor Chief Development Officer and Vice Presidents of Programs to bring SMASH into its next chapter of growth and innovation. The Vice President will be responsible for functions critical to the organizations success, including oversight of marketing and communications, fundraising and partnership initiatives, ensuring that we create and maintain relationships with stakeholders, communicate effectively with internal and external partners, garner resources in pursuit of our mission, and steward our brand in a way that honors and celebrates the experiences of our scholars, families, staff and communities.
The Vice President, Communications and Partnerships oversees the implementation of the partnerships, marketing and communication strategy for SMASH and leads work to define and deliver on organizational vision and goals. The Vice President will identify and support the management of a full service marketing agency, manage Kapor shared marketing and communications team members; and work closely with all key stakeholders to ensure SMASHs successful impact, sustainability, and growth.
Key Responsibilities include:
Partnerships
* Scope and lead implementation of university and college partner acquisition and relationship cultivation strategies
* Develop and oversee corporate engagement strategy and regional/national partnerships with aligned organizations to support programming, enrichment opportunities, and strong community ties
* Identify and anticipate internal organizational needs and mobilize third-party partners to even more effectively support scholars and deepen SMASH impact
Marketing and Communications
* Ensure successful implementation of long-term approach for strategic communications, messaging and marketing materials differentiated by audience (e.g., families, teachers, donors, alumni)
* Implement an internal communications strategy that promotes a unified brand and messaging
* Oversee brand positioning, crisis communications and public relations
* Ensure SMASH is represented accurately and with integrity across diverse audiences
Development
* In partnership with the CEO and Chief Development Officer, annually fundraise to support SMASH daily operations and growth plans
* Partner with the CEO, Chief Development Officer and COO to determine revenue goals in alignment with annual budgetary and endowment needs
* Partner with SMASH Development to support fund development operations that drives donor cultivation, solicitations, and stewardship for a breadth of individual, institutional and corporate donors
* Participate in solicitations and support the management of a portfolio of major donors/funders through meetings, events and networking opportunities
Leadership and Team Management
* Serve as an exceptional organizational leader, manager, and coach with a high degree of emotional intelligence who develops strengths in others and models effective and transparent decision making
* Work with leaders to ensure alignment across functions and drive cross-functional initiatives
* Serve as an ambassador and spokesperson for SMASH, and articulate our mission to external constituents, partner organizations, and potential funders
* Participate in Board meetings and on relevant Board committees to provide updates and solicit input on organizational goals
* Collaborate with the Chief Development Officer and Chief Operating Officer to develop and produce regular analytic reports for the senior leadership team and Board that synthesizes the financial, marketing and partnership progress and trends of key organizational activities
Requirements
Profile of the Ideal Candidate:
SMASH seeks a seasoned professional who is a strong leader and manager, an effective external communicator and committed to the core principles of racial justice and education equity. S/he will be a relationship builder and have a track record of extensive strategic communications experience to grow and further amplify the results of proven programs that have already made significant impact. The successful candidate will partner with the CEO, Chief Development Officer and COO to develop an integrated marketing, communications and fundraising vision and achieve aggressive funding and partnership growth goals.
The ideal SMASH VP, Comms + Partnerships will have:
* Minimum BS/BA degree (Masters Degree preferred) with at least 5-7 years of experience and a track record in senior-level development, external affairs, marketing, and/or communications leadership with track record of success and progressive responsibilities
* Proven track record, both as a manager and peer, of navigating complex issues, managing multiple stakeholders, making decisions, and driving strong results
* Track record of effectively leading in a direct service organization with an array of programs with the ability to leverage strengths across program areas; measurably effective partnership and branding strategies
* Leadership experience in public relations strategy development and implementation
* Exposure to fundraising and transferable experience with any of the following aspects of development, including institutional giving, planned giving, annual giving and event management; strong knowledge of how marketing, communications and public relations can further fundraising efforts and success using these tools to improve and optimize development outcomes
* Strong strategic planning competence in marketing, communications and fundraising goal setting
* Experience working in and sharing affirming, asset-based stories of Black, Latinx, and/or marginalized communities
* Strong written and verbal communication skills; a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent public speaking skills.
Ideal SMASH VP, Comms + Partnerships will also demonstrate:
* Energetic, action-oriented, entrepreneurial, flexible, and innovative approach to marketing, communications, partnership acquisition and relationship management.
* Passion, humility, integrity, positive attitude, mission-driven, and self-directed.
* A deep respect for colleagues, staff, and ability to lead a team of diverse individuals, with a flexible, growth mindset.
* Deep and authentic commitment to our organizational values:
* We Close Gaps, Open Doors, and SMASH Barriers
* We Value Tech as a Tool to Scale Social Impact
* We Lead with Racial Justice and Reflect the Communities We Serve
* We Honor Distances Traveled, Not Just Finish Lines
* We Challenge with Urgency, Respect, and Purpose
* We Dont Just Talk. Positive Intent Must Lead to Positive Action
Benefits
SMASH provides competitive compensation commensurate with experience, and an excellent benefits package including medical, dental, vision, life/disability insurance, paid time off, 401k, volunteer time and flexible spending accounts (i.e. parking, transit, medical and dependent care). Our collaborative office is located in Oaklands dynamic Uptown District.
We are seeking candidates with a personal commitment to fairness, social justice, and innovation--values that are embedded in our culture. We are committed to representation and inclusion, and we welcome applicants with diverse perspectives and backgrounds.

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