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Wikimedia Foundation
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Communications Director

Post Date:Apr 02, 2019Type:Full time
Start Date:Salary:
Location: United States - California - San Francisco Job Reference:
Job Description:





Location: San Francisco, CA or Remote

Apply here:


The Wikimedia Foundation seeks a dynamic senior-level media professional to elevate and amplify the voices and stories of the knowledge equity movement.

You will expand capacity for the communications team and create and leverage public relations messages, speeches, opinion pieces, social media and other related tools to consistently articulate the Wikimedia Foundation’s mission through engaging storytelling.

This is a highly collaborative global role, with regular opportunities to develop content, lead rapid response, serve as a spokesperson and execute communications campaigns in close partnership with peers and colleagues in the Communications team, across the Wikimedia Foundation, volunteer community members, organizational partners, movement leaders and other figures working in partnership toward Wikimedia’s mission of free knowledge for all.

Ideally you are:

  • An adaptive and growth-oriented senior leader who can imagine and implement compelling communications strategies that connect with global audiences, expand the voice of the Wikipedia community and extend the vision of the Wikimedia Foundation.
  • A motivated self starter who can leverage communications tools and strategies to proactively create momentum for our messaging to raise awareness and scale the influence, tone and voice of the Wikimedia Foundation around the world in a mission-aligned manner.
  • A highly collaborative manager and vibrant team player committed to continuous learning, who can work closely with department colleagues, develop and cultivate emerging talents on the team, recruit and build support for shared visions, and integrate into a dynamic Communications department to collectively execute a singular and unique strategy.
  • A focused networker who holds strong relationships with journalists around the world -- particularly with global development, technology, education and public policy media -- and can build systems to expand and deepen media relationships, lead engagement with influencers and journalists on behalf of the organization and who ensures that our partners are continuously informed on our movement.
  • An impactful verbal and written communicator who can connect and weave strong storytelling opportunities with meaningful engagement to our community and external audiences.

You will join a growing team of highly collaborative and adaptive media, creative strategists, marketers, writers and designers working to champion free information and knowledge around the world.

You are accountable for:

Designing and leading and key strategic communications initiatives, including:

  • Leading and supporting the development of global, targeted regional, and national PR campaigns that generate significant earned media coverage of major milestones, launches, and strategic initiatives by the Foundation and Wikimedia’s global community of volunteers and affiliates.
  • Shaping and managing strategy and systems to ensure external and internal communications channels are in alignment with our brand’s voice and tone and assist in the development of content to advance our strategic initiatives and goals.
  • Serving as an effective on-the-record spokesperson in international media and public speaking, as necessary.

Developing and executing global media outreach:

  • Developing and sustaining critical media relationships with key media outlets around the world, crafting strategic messaging for pitching media, and ensuring that our story is told consistently across a variety of formats.
  • Managing and supporting development of market-specific media engagement and brand awareness campaigns for key growth opportunity markets, including Nigeria, India, Mexico, Brazil, Indonesia, and Egypt.
  • Spearheading and cultivating outreach to prioritize for media engagement, ensuring necessary coordination with our internal teams progresses to ensure that they are prepared and well resourced for media interviews, speeches, talking points, and other external media relations materials.

Collaboratively supporting Communications department efforts:

  • Organizing and sharing outcomes that reflect the impact of media engagements on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. The Director of Communications will also be in charge of day to day media planning and auditing on top of providing media management counsel to our executive leadership in order to ensure positive and well rounded coverage for the organization.
  • Supporting the professional growth, cultivation and development of emerging talents on the communications team, design and build scalable workflows, systems and infrastructure reflective of a growing communications team that works in a global context.
  • Model leadership that cultivates a collaborative and respectful team culture, serve as a collaborative thought partner and sounding board.
  • Work collaboratively with other Foundation departments (e.g. product, legal, community engagement, fundraising, etc) to support their communications needs.

Skills and experience

  • Minimum of 7 years of communications experience.
  • Experience creating and implementing a communications strategy and a successful track record in developing and driving media outreach strategies that reach or influence global audiences.
  • Experience acting as an on-the-record spokesperson with media.
  • Demonstrated experience leading rapid response for emerging events and producing content under deadline.
  • Demonstrated experience managing a growing and adaptive team, as well as experience working with and managing external vendor or agency relationships.
  • Knowledge of global media trends, behavior and products.
  • Experience managing diverse stakeholder relationships, leading partnerships and stewarding collaboration.

Qualities that are important to us as a team

  • Resilience—we work on new and interesting problems in public and collaborative ways
  • Being open, curious, and inquiring in our work
  • Internal motivation and high standards
  • Working together for outcomes, and being willing to let go to scale or change course
  • Sharing a culture of constructive criticism and respect


  • Experience working with global nonprofit, media or technology service organizations is a plus
  • Fluency or familiarity with languages in addition to English is a plus

The Wikimedia Foundation is... 

...the nonprofit organization that hosts and operates Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. We believe that everyone has the potential to contribute something to our shared knowledge, and that everyone should be able to access that knowledge, free of interference. We host the Wikimedia projects, build software experiences for reading, contributing, and sharing Wikimedia content, support the volunteer communities and partners who make Wikimedia possible, and advocate for policies that enable Wikimedia and free knowledge to thrive. The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive financial support from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts. The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

The Wikimedia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer, and we encourage people with a diverse range of backgrounds to apply

U.S. Benefits & Perks*

  • Fully paid medical, dental and vision coverage for employees and their eligible families (yes, fully paid premiums!)
  • The Wellness Program provides reimbursement for mind, body and soul activities such as fitness memberships, baby sitting, continuing education and much more
  • The 401(k) retirement plan offers matched contributions at 4% of annual salary
  • Flexible and generous time off - vacation, sick and volunteer days, plus 19 paid holidays - including the last week of the year.
  • Family friendly! 100% paid new parent leave for seven weeks plus an additional five weeks for pregnancy, flexible options to phase back in after leave, fully equipped lactation room.
  • For those emergency moments - long and short term disability, life insurance (2x salary) and an employee assistance program
  • Pre-tax savings plans for health care, child care, elder care, public transportation and parking expenses
  • Telecommuting and flexible work schedules available
  • Appropriate fuel for thinking and coding (aka, a pantry full of treats) and monthly massages to help staff relax
  • Great colleagues - diverse staff and contractors speaking dozens of languages from around the world, fantastic intellectual discourse, mission-driven and intensely passionate people

*Eligible international workers' benefits are specific to their location and dependent on their employer of record

More information

Wikimedia Foundation website

Wikimedia Foundation blog

Annual Report - 2017

Wikimedia 2030

* Indicate you saw this position on when applying.

Contact Information
Wikimedia Foundation
Lisa Hiraide
1 Montgomery St
San Francisco, CA
United States

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