Director of Communications and Patron Services

Director of Communications and Patron Services
October 5, 2017

Website Boston Athenaeum

The Boston Athenæum seeks an accomplished Communications professional and deft manager of individuals to develop and manage the organization’s overall communications, and to lead the division of Patron Services, which includes the departments of Membership, Education, Events, and Visitor Services. Communications responsibilities comprise the majority of the role.

The position reports to, and serves as a key thought partner with, the Athenæum’s Stanford Calderwood Director. Two department heads report to the position: Manager of Member Services and Director of Education (who manages three departments: Education, Events, and Visitor Services). An early responsibility of the position will be to define the responsibilities of a new part-time position within Communications, vis-à-vis work performed by external contractors, interns, volunteers, and other staff. As a member of the director’s Cabinet of division heads, the position will participate in developing plans to realize the director’s and Board’s vision for the future of the Athenæum. The position will work routinely and constructively with colleagues from all areas of the organization, including Development, Special Collections, Reader Services, Systems (I.T.), and Finance. The position will make regular reports to trustee committees and to the Board.


  • Develops messaging strategies consistent with the Athenæum’s vision and organizational goals
  • Executes the overall communications plans across digital and print platforms
  • Works to focus communications to different member segments
  • Leads the ongoing effort to refine the brand
  • Oversees the departments of Membership and Programs (see “Reporting Structure”)
  • Oversees media relations
  • Works to heighten awareness of the Athenæum in the regional cultural community
  • Manages advertising and marketing
  • Writes and edits materials of the highest standards
  • Oversees the communications calendar
  • Sets editorial and production timelines for the (bimonthly) print newsletter and (weekly) email blasts, and annual report
  • Manages staff contributors, contract designers, and other vendors
  • Works with other departments to ensures that all organizational materials meet editorial and design standards
  • Coordinates and manages the digital strategy
  • Builds and sustains mutually beneficial partnerships with other cultural institutions
  • Performs other duties as assigned


  • Submit to and pass background check, including criminal history, personal references, employment verifications and Department of Motor Vehicles (if applicable)
  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field required
  • 7-10 years relevant experience required
  • Record of success in institutional communications required, including public relations, brand and digital strategy
  • Experience working in a cultural not-for-profit organization preferred
  • Experience managing membership programs preferred
  • Familiarity with New England’s media landscape required
  • Knowledge of literature, history, and art preferred


  • Commitment to fostering a workplace culture of teamwork and inclusion
  • Experience in budget planning and oversight
  • Strong organizational skills, including the ability to balance multiple projects simultaneously without losing sight of details
  • Self-motivation, dependability
  • Superb writing skills
  • Experience with email campaigns and digital marketing
  • Understanding of best practices in social media marketing and communications
  • Strong proficiency with technology.

TO APPLY: Please submit the following to

    • A cover letter expressing interest and outlining relevant experience
    • A resume
    • Salary requirements
    • 2-3 Brief writing samples
    • The names and contact information of two professional references

The Boston Athenæum is an equal opportunity employer. We encourage individuals of diverse backgrounds to apply and are committed to hiring individuals who value a diverse and inclusive work environment. Retirees welcome.

To apply for this job email your details to