Japanese American National Museum
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Communications Writer

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The Communications Writer has core competencies and broad understanding of development and marketing communications and promotional strategy across multiple applications. Reports directly to the Director of Marketing and Communications, while also collaborating with other key external relations staff members to develop concepts and write copy for a wide variety of marketing and development initiatives that deliver on strategy and are appropriate by audience and applications. The Communications Writer also works directly with the President/CEO on recurring and special assignments as requested. The Communications Writer must possess the ability to move efficiently and comfortably between multiple projects while ensuring the highest-quality finished product, often under tight deadlines. Position is regular, full-time for 40 hours per week with a regular schedule of Monday thru Friday. Four hours per week are specifically designated to support the museum’s Discover Nikkei website.


  • 1. Writing and editing of a wide range of material including letters, brochures, flyers, advertisements, e-mail blasts, press releases, talking points, website copy, exhibition materials, development communications, departmental reports, board reports, publications, and other collateral that support business goals and effective communication with target audiences.
  • 2. Rapidly produce original and persuasive copy that sells the museum’s mission, membership benefits, and/or core programming, with effective, response-driven calls-to-action.
  • 3. Support museum’s annual Gala Dinner fundraising event with content creation, updating, and post-event feature writing.
  • 4. Act as editor and principal writer of the JANM blog. Update and maintain editorial calendar of weekly blog posts that promote various areas of museum activity, highlight community partnerships, and explore Japanese American history and culture. Research, write, and publish blog posts. Procure guest contributions from staff and volunteers.
  • 5. Comply with all company brand, formatting, and quality standards, with minimal errors.
  • 6. With Director of Marketing and Communications, establish and maintain consistent, contemporary style guidelines.
  • 7. Learning, listening, asking, prioritizing, and translating marketing, public relations, and development goals and key messages into strategic creative concepts and copy.
  • 8. Ensuring consistent and respectful communication to target audiences, in keeping with overall brand standards.
  • 9. Solving complex communication needs by organizing and architecting information into concept and copy solutions that are thoughtful and compelling.
  • 10. Consultation with lead internal staff teams on tactical and creative approach.
  • 11. Ability to work with creative team and other marketing and development staff on a regular basis to brainstorm copy ideas and possible concepts/angles surrounding communication and copy.
  • 12. Must be able to work in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment. Must be able to receive and utilize feedback from multiple channels, and have a strong command of the English language with an eye for detail in order to catch errors. Must have excellent communication and project management skills.
  • 13. Other duties to be assigned as needed to support External Relations unit functions.
  • 14. Staff members must be able to work with visitors of all ages to support the various events sponsored by the National Museum. At the discretion of the Communications Writer’s supervisor, the person in this role may be asked to work at as many as three museum-wide events each year: a) National Museum’s Gala Dinner and Silent Auction- (off-site) typically held in the Spring (April-May) b) National Museum’s Family Festival Day- Oshogatsu Festival (January) or Natsumatsuri Festival (August) c) JANM Family Free Days – Free Admission Family Days typically held on the 2nd Saturday of selected months.

This list is not exhaustive and may be supplemented as necessary. Incumbent will perform related duties as assigned.


Qualification Requirements: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education: Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, English, Communications or a related field.

Experience/Knowledge: Minimum of 5 years of customer-focused experience in a creative services position, preferably including prior employment with a non-profit, museum, or corporate marketing department. Superior understanding of advertising, marketing, development, and direct response principles. Proven ability to solve problems, architect information and work effectively in a dynamic, fast-paced environment with tight deadlines. Strong relationship management skills. Ability to foster collaboration and value other perspectives. Strong writing and editing skills. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Background in direct-to-consumer marketing. Museum or non-profit industry experience a plus. Demonstrate commitment and flexibility at all times in order to ensure high quality service. Ability to adjust and provide appropriate action when unanticipated need arises. Knowledge of Japanese American history and culture a plus, sensitivity to issues of diversity and ethnicity is essential.

Communication: Excellent verbal and listening skills. Must be able to provide courteous and effective service to co-workers, volunteers and the general public. Ability to read and comprehend documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. Ability to write routine reports and correspondence. Ability to effectively present information in one-on-one and small group format.

Computer: Advanced Microsoft Word skills and experience using a corporate e-mail system are required. Intermediate Microsoft PowerPoint and basic Excel skills are also required.

Math: Ability to calculate figures and amounts such as discounts, interest, proportions, percentages, and area. Ability to apply concepts of basic algebra and geometry.

Reasoning: Act on own initiative. Must be able to comply with institutional policies and procedures. Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral, or diagram form. Perform successfully when juggling and re-prioritizing multiple assignments in a fast-paced, changing work environment. Reliable follow-through on assigned projects in a complete, well-conceived, and timely manner.

Physical: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to use hands to finger, handle, or feel objects, tools, or controls. The employee frequently is required to talk or hear. The employee is occasionally required to stand, walk, sit, reach with hands and arms, climb or balance, and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 20 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus.

Environment: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those the employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.


Reports to: Director of Marketing & Communications
Positions supervised: None

The Japanese American National Museum reserves the discretion to change this job description at any time.The Japanese American National Museum is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to their race, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, genetic information, disability, marital status, domestic partner status, or medical condition.



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