Associate Director, International Media Relations

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK) seeks nominations and applications for a strategic, media-savvy, and proactive Associate Director of International Communications (Associate Director) to play a leading role in CTFK's efforts to improve the quantity and quality of international media coverage of key tobacco control issues and to manage complex communications projects. CTFK is a leading civil society organization dedicated to the fight to reduce tobacco use and its deadly toll in the United States and around the world.

The Associate Director will play a senior role in developing and implementing strategies to generate media coverage of tobacco issues by international and in-country media. The Associate Director will serve as a resource for CTFK staff, international and national NGOs, tobacco control allies, and the media. S/he will develop and implement communications strategies in collaboration with CTFK staff and NGOs around the world in support of both country-specific and international advocacy campaigns.

Qualified candidates will have demonstrated experience proactively recognizing, framing, packaging, and pitching strong stories to the media and effectively responding to developments in the media. The new Associate Director will understand how to utilize the media as a critical component of policy advocacy campaigns and partner with key allies, international NGO networks, and media contacts to advance policy change in pursuit of CTFK’s ambitious goal of preventing the devastating health impacts of tobacco use.

This position is based in Washington, DC and is open to US citizens and other applicants possessing work visas permitting long-term, permanent employment in the US.

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free kids is being assisted in the search by Tracey Welsh and Carolyn Ho of the Nonprofit Professionals Advisory Group.

Organizational Overview

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids is a leading force in the fight to reduce tobacco use and its deadly toll in the United States and around the world. CTFK envisions a future free of the death and disease caused by tobacco. As a non-governmental organization based in Washington, DC, CTFK promotes public policies that have been proven to reduce tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke, including higher tobacco taxes, comprehensive smoke-free laws, comprehensive bans on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship, and graphic warning labels on tobacco products. Internationally, CTFK supports non-governmental organizations and governments in promoting and implementing these policies in low- and middle-income countries where more than 80 percent of tobacco-related deaths will occur in the coming decades.

CTFK has been designated as one of five partner organizations to coordinate activities under the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use. CTFK has active initiatives in low- and middle-income countries around the world where the highest rates of tobacco use are found including Indonesia, China, India, Bangladesh, and Russia, in addition to its longstanding program in the United States. CTFK achieves its goals through close partnership with a team of staff and consultants internationally as well as select grantees charged with specific policy and advocacy goals in target countries.
Global statistics on tobacco-related deaths are astonishing. The worldwide death toll is at more than five million people each year and climbing. Without urgent action, tobacco will kill one billion people in the 21st century. Tobacco use also costs governments an estimated $500 billion each year in health care expenditures, productivity losses, fire damage, and other costs.

Opportunities and Challenges

The Associate Director will report to and work closely with the Director of International Communications in Washington, DC to ensure the effective use of media as a key component in international and country-specific campaigns and initiatives. S/he will primarily be focused on media relations with key areas of focus for the position to include:

  • Developing and implementing media strategies that generate media coverage by international and in-country media on tobacco issues and policy-related topics such as smoke-free places, health warnings, tobacco marketing, tobacco taxes, and the tobacco industry’s tactics to undermine policy progress in countries.

  • Forging and cultivating proactive and strong relationships with the media as the primary media contact and manager for CTFK’s international program, including developing relationships with reporters, pitching the media on story opportunities, and responding to media inquiries in a timely fashion.

  • Serving as a critical member of CTFK working groups developing campaigns on topics and issues including but not limited to industry tactics and interference in the development of strong tobacco control policies, initiatives to address the tobacco epidemic internationally, the benefits to countries of increasing tobacco taxes, and the economic impact of tobacco control policies.

  • Along with CTFK staff and other tobacco control advocates, tracking and proactively developing tobacco-related media opportunities, such as new research, policy developments and trends, industry activities, and periodic Conferences of Parties of the WHO tobacco control treaty.

  • Drafting, editing, and overseeing the production of press releases, social media content, and other communications materials, for use both by CTFK and by international and in-country NGOs.

  • Directly supervising and overseeing one Communications Manager responsible for media relations, technical assistance to partners in-country, media related web content, and media monitoring.

  • Coordinating and monitoring the work of consultants as needed.

Qualifications of the Ideal Candidate

The new Associate Director will be motivated by the opportunity to influence public policy for the betterment of people in middle- and low-income countries and be experienced in the use of media as a component of campaigns to advocate for policy change and implementation. The successful candidate must therefore have a record of success in media advocacy gained by working in government, civil society, or the corporate sector. The ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:

  • Bachelor’s degree and minimum ten years relevant experience in media relations, public relations, and advocacy campaigns.

  • Demonstrated experience in proactively recognizing, framing, packaging, and pitching strong stories to the media and effectively responding to developments in the media when necessary.

  • Excellent skills in writing and editing communications materials including press releases, pitch memos, and social media content such as blogs and tweets.

  • Demonstrated ability to develop and implement media and communications strategies with measurable results.

  • Experience in political or policy-related campaigns and the use of media and story placement to attain campaign goals.

  • High attention to detail and flexibility necessary to handle multiple tasks and work collaboratively in a fast-paced, team-oriented environment.

  • Experience internationally gained through living or working overseas. Facility with language(s) in addition to English is extremely helpful. Willingness and desire to travel internationally as needed.

  • Supervisory experience managing and mentoring staff to maximize their contribution to organizational goals and attain their full potential.

To Apply

More information about the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids may be found at:
Applications including a cover letter describing your interest and qualifications, your resume, salary history, and where you learned of the position should be sent to: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

In order to expedite the internal sorting and reviewing process, please type your name (Last, First) as the only contents in the subject line of your e-mail.

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids is an Equal Opportunity Employer and welcomes applications from individuals who will contribute to its diversity.


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Tobacco by the Numbers

  • 443,000: Annual tobacco-related deaths in U.S.
  • $96 billion: Annual tobacco-related health care costs in U.S.
  • Six million: U.S. kids alive today who will ultimately die from smoking
  • Five million+: Annual tobacco-related deaths worldwide
  • 600,000: Annual deaths worldwide caused by secondhand smoke
  • One billion: Worldwide deaths from tobacco this century unless urgent action is taken