Public Citizen

Press Officer

Communications - Washington, DC - Full Time

Public Citizen’s Communications Office is seeking a Press Officer to join a creative, energetic, and fast-paced team.  The Press Officer will be responsible for publicizing and generating media attention for our cutting-edge work on health care policy, democracy, money in politics, and more. We seek someone bright and nimble, with a passion for public interest work and a solid knowledge of the political news landscape. We need someone who has strong writing skills, pays keen attention to detail, can work in a fast-paced environment, and enjoys collaborating with others. This person will be part of a communications team that works closely together to coordinate media outreach with social media, email activism, and communication to Public Citizen members. This position reports to the Director of Communications and works closely with the Deputy Director of Communications.
  • Identify journalists who cover our issues, develop relationships, and connect them with the appropriate policy experts. 
  • Respond to reporter inquiries by directing them to the appropriate experts, setting up interviews, and providing message guidance where needed.
  • Craft and execute comprehensive strategic communications plans for specific campaigns and issues to meet short-term and long-term goals, with minimal oversight.
  • Write and edit press blog posts, op-eds, letters to the editor, press releases, press statements, media advisories, notes to reporters, editorial board memos, quote sheets, talking points, fact sheets and other written materials as needed. Materials should require only minimal editing.
  • Distribute press releases, notes to reporters, editorial board memos, media advisories and other materials to the media using our electronic distribution system (Cision).
  • Assist in planning and executing press conferences and teleconferences, media briefings and other press events, including preparing press kits and media lists, and calling journalists.
  • Keep up with breaking news and other news about our issues and engage daily in rapid response, identifying media opportunities to get out our key messages – e.g., search for and pursue op-ed, talk radio, local TV, LTE and other opportunities.
  • Post Public Citizen news releases and other documents on the web.
  • Conduct media training for policy experts when needed.
  • Build, maintain and update press lists.
  • Take photos and videos at Public Citizen events.
  • Provide digital media staffers with topline messaging from press releases, statements and other press materials.
  • Work with interns to compile and distribute a weekly media hits report to the organization.
  • Manage interns’ workflow when needed.
  • Write stories for Public Citizen News, the organization’s award-winning membership newspaper.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Education:  Bachelor’s degree in a related field.
Knowledge:  Must be familiar with how newsrooms work. Must have general knowledge of national current events, particularly relating to issues involving money in politics, health and safety, government accountability, and other major issues of the day. Familiarity with Cision, Wordpress, and other similar platforms is a plus. 
Skills:    Strong writing and editing abilities; comfortable with frequent on-background communications with reporters over phone and email; organized and conscientious. Ability to juggle many tasks simultaneously and under deadline pressure, and work with a wide range of people. Must enjoy working in a fast-paced and demanding environment.

SALARY AND BENEFITS:  Competitive salary between $69,391 and 112,645 dependent on relevant experience and qualifications and generous benefits package. Public Citizen staff are represented by SEIU Local 500 and our salaries are set according to our collective bargaining agreement.  Public Citizen does not negotiate salaries.  
  • Great medical and dental coverage, including full coverage for children
  • Three weeks paid vacation for new employees, plus five personal days
  • 401K plan with a 5% contribution from PC after one year of employment
  • 12 weeks of paid parental leave after one year of employment
  • Sabbatical after 10 years of employment
  • Student loan reimbursement program

TO APPLY:  Send cover letter, resume, and references to Omar Baddar at [email protected]. Please include your last name and the position for which you are applying in the subject line of your email and in the filenames of attachments.  Preferred start date June 1, 2024.

Public Citizen is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, LGBTQ+ candidates are encouraged to apply. Public Citizen employees are proud members of SEIU Loc al 500.
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