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Director of Communications

State Bar of Wisconsin

State Bar of Wisconsin is partnering with QTI Executive & Professional Search to hire a Director of Communications due to an upcoming retirement. The Director of Communications will be responsible for advancing the mission of the State Bar of Wisconsin through overall management of the Communications Team to assure the organization’s communications and public relations efforts effectively educate, support, and promote the organization and the legal community.
  • Lead the organization's content development and strategic messaging including the monthly publication Wisconsin Lawyer magazine, the bi-weekly e-newsletter InsideTrack, the blog aggregator WisLawNOW, as well as other member and internally generated content. The director is also responsible for oversite of the State Bar's social media and public relations programs.
  • Develop, manage, and lead an effective, efficient and creative team that is a partner and solution source for the State Bar and to assure best practices in fulfilling the Communications Team functions
  • Encourage an inclusive and welcoming work culture that values differing perspectives, life experiences and the unique individual contributions that work together in support of our mission
  • Develop and manage a unit plan that supports the strategic goals of the State Bar
  • Oversee a robust public and media relations program that advances the State Bar’s mission and raises its profile as a thought leader, improving stakeholder and community understanding of the organization, legal profession, and our justice system
  • Establish and manage sound, effective, and aligned editorial style standards and guidelines across all departmental publishing activities
  • Evaluate internal processes related to the communications function to assure customer satisfaction and organizational effectiveness and meet the ever-changing needs of internal and external customers
  • Manage the day-to-day flow of communications through and across departments ensuring the successful and timely completion of projects within established schedules
  • Maintain quality budgetary control while delivering on a high impact strategic plan that is both forward-looking and actionable
  • Build collaborative relationships with members and customers, State Bar volunteer leaders, sections, colleagues, other bar associations (including local & affinity bars), legal entities, and others
  • Contribute to the overall management and operation of the State Bar through positive participation in the director and management teams
  • Embrace the cultural and managerial attributes of the organization and assist the management team in expanding those attributes across the entire organization, including building a diverse and inclusive workplace
  • Support the mission, vision, and values of the State Bar by modeling integrity, teamwork, quality, ownership and displays a commitment to inclusion and diversity
  • Serve as leader of the internal Strategic Communications Team
  • Manage independent projects and initiatives as directed
  • Fulfill role of liaison to committees as assigned
  • Write editorial and other copy as needed
  • Participate in cross-functional teams as appropriate
  • Bachelors degree in journalism, communications, public relations or related field 
  • 5 years management experience
  • Prior experience in organizational communications, public relations, and/or other relevant information delivery field  
  • Experience developing print and/or digital publications 
  • Experience managing and executing across several communications channels
  • Strong people management skills including the ability to effectively build, lead and manage a team 
  • Ability to conceptualize, design and implement new and effective ways to engage, educate and inform
  • Proven experience functioning as a member of a successful management team
  • Prior experience with strategic business planning
  • Ability to establish priorities; set and accomplish goals through structured tasks, plans, and objectives
  • Oral and written communication skills and techniques with the ability to present and express information effectively and clearly, to include public speaking 
  • Excellent writing and editing skills; ability to critique/evaluate written material; ability to write and edit for a variety of media
  • Strong technical understanding of publishing technologies and prepress production; print and electronic design
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Innovative and flexible with respect to changing and challenging business environments
  • Able to make credible, effective decisions in a timely fashion
  • Knowledge of general financial principles including budgeting; expense management and forecasting
  • Ability to analyze operational information and adopt best business practices
  • Willingness and ability to travel
  • Familiarity with the legal profession, legal concepts, and/or legal research
  • Knowledge of challenges to and needs of the legal community 
  • Proficient with MSOffice
  • Prior association experience
The State Bar values diversity and diverse candidates are encouraged to apply.