Communications Associate

The Landscape Architecture Foundation


The Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) seeks an enterprising, highly-organized, results-oriented Communications Associate to join our small, dynamic, and collaborative team. Candidates must be a strong writer with a demonstrated ability to coordinate and implement communications strategies across a range of channels and organizational functions.

The Communications Associate leverages the power of public relations and communications to build community and propel the landscape architecture discipline forward while supporting LAF programs, events, and fundraising efforts. There is no incumbent in this position so the successful candidate will have significant influence in shaping LAF’s burgeoning communications area. This position offers a unique opportunity to grow with the organization, develop and test ideas, and demonstrate leadership skills while helping to build a strategic, data-driven marketing and communications program. The full-time, 40 hour/week position is located in Washington, DC and requires occasional travel within the U.S.

LAF is a national, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that invests in research, scholarships, and leadership initiatives to increase the influence and impact of landscape architects to create a more sustainable and equitable future. The size and prominence of the 50-year-old organization has grown substantially in recent years, and the Communications Associate joins a passionate and forward-thinking team that is engaged with the leaders and next practices of the landscape architecture discipline.


Primary Responsibilities


This position is responsible for the creation and dissemination of content across native and social media platforms, through media partnerships, and utilizing earned media. The Communications Associate will develop, write, design, and edit effective materials and messages that serve as the voice of LAF and are tailored to LAF’s key audiences, which include landscape architecture practitioners, academics, and students; donors; partner and funder organizations; and built environment professionals.


Core responsibilities include managing LAF’s various cyclical communications about programs and events, leading short-term campaigns, tracking coverage, working with media partners, and analyzing communications data to provide actionable insights. This role also supports LAF’s development and fundraising efforts through storytelling, infographics, and other content to showcase impact and influence.


This position reports to the Director of Programs & Communications. As staff in a small organization, the Communications Associate also serves on an integrated team providing input and support to LAF’s programmatic, event, outreach and partnership initiatives, as well as operations and strategic planning.


Planning and Strategy

  • Work with the Director of Programs & Communications to develop strategies to build and hone LAF’s overall brand and messages.
  • Develop and implement quarterly communications plans to support annual program, event, and fundraising objectives and long-term goals.
  • Monitor communications and media trends to identify new opportunities.
  • Conceptualize and develop short-term campaigns to achieve specific goals.
  • Analyze communications data on a regular basis to make data-driven strategic decisions.


Digital Communications

  • Create content (copy and images) to update LAF website regularly. (New website coming in fall 2018.)
  • Write cyclical program and event announcements and disseminate them through digital channels.
  • Conceptualize stories, do research, and conduct interviews to craft compelling messages and stories about the impact of LAF and landscape architecture.
  • Create integrated media materials, including press releases, articles, blog posts, pitch letters, and social media messages to distribute to media contacts.
  • Lead the production of monthly e-newsletter and digital annual reports, including writing, editing, and formatting.
  • Copyedit and format communications pieces written by guest authors.


Social Media

  • Manage and grow LAF social media accounts including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

·        Develop plans and benchmarks for increasing followers and engagement.

  • Develop event- and initiative-driven social media campaigns.
  • Create dynamic sharable content to drive engagement and ongoing conversations.
  • Monitor, share, and engage on topics of interest.
  • Use analytics and social media listening tools to develop data-driven strategies.


Media Relations

  • Identify, cultivate, and maintain ongoing relationships with key media outlets, organizations, influencers, and journalists.
  • Steward existing and cultivate new media partnerships.
  • Manage and update media contact lists, including social media accounts.
  • Pitch stories and LAF events to diverse media, including traditional reporters, bloggers, nonprofit organizations, and digital influencers.


Data Analysis, Tracking and Reporting

  • Monitor and measure the effectiveness of overall communications and individual campaigns.
  • Track media coverage and mentions on digital and social media channels.
  • Monitor website and newsletter analytics and produce quarterly reports, including audience engagement reports.
  • Determine methods to collect and present data and analyses to leadership and supporters.
  • Analyze and interpret data to develop insights and recommendations for LAF communications, programs, and other initiatives.


Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing, public relations, or related field
  • Minimum 2 years of experience and demonstrated success in communications, preferably with a nonprofit or social impact organization or company
  • Exceptional writing and editing skills, including the ability to develop press releases, social media posts, and inspirational stories of impact
  • Strong attention to detail and an eye for design
  • Ability to plan, manage competing priorities, track and meet deadlines, and execute a variety of tasks and responsibilities
  • Strong computer skills and tech savvy, including proficiency in MS Office Suite and image manipulation software
  • Experience with email marketing platforms (e.g. Constant Contact) and customer relationship management platforms (e.g. Salesforce)
  • Demonstrated experience with social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), communities, dashboards (e.g. Hootsuite), and best practices for content creation, sharing, and engagement
  • Familiarity with website content management systems (e.g. WordPress, Drupal)
  • Love of data and analytics
  • High initiative and self-motivation, with consistent demonstration as a successful, high-level performer


Preferred Qualifications

  • Subject matter expertise or strong interest in sustainable design, green urbanism, and equitable development

·        Hands-on experience in creating, launching, and managing communication campaigns

  • Skills and experience in graphic design, video editing, photography, and donor-focused storytelling

·        Understanding of SEO and content marketing

  • Experience purchasing social media ads and evaluating return on investment
  • Comfort with Adobe Creative Suite, social and media monitoring platforms (e.g. Meltwater), and editing to follow style guides (e.g. Chicago Manual of Style)



LAF provides a comprehensive benefits package, including health insurance, vacation/sick pay, and an employer-matching 401(k) program.


Level of Language Proficiency

English, native language proficiency

Professional Level

Entry level

Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

The ideal start date is February-March 2018. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Application Instructions

Submit letter of interest, resume, and three references to with the subject line “Communications Associate position.” Please indicate how you found this opportunity. No phone calls please.

Washington, DC
Due Date: 
Wednesday, February 28, 2018
Posted by Mary.Fichtner on January 26, 2018 - 7:43pm