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Senior Manager, Media and News Services at American Institutes for Research

Senior Manager, Media and News Services

American Institutes for Research Columbia, MD Full-Time


The American Institutes for Research (AIR) is one of the worlds largest research and technical assistance institutions, driven by its mission to generate and use rigorous evidence to create a better, more equitable world. We are champions for the use of evidence to address some of the biggest challenges facing the world today. AIRs Communications & Public Affairs team is seeking a Senior Manager, Media and News Services to help us share our work and expertise with both industry and mainstream media outlets, and find opportunities for the Institution to be a part of national and international conversations that would benefit from our knowledge and evidence.

We are looking for someone with an eye for the news, experience with the media, and the ability to write and process information quickly. While it is preferred that the position be based in one of AIRs DC-area offices (Arlington, Va., North Bethesda, Md., and Columbia, Md.) remote work and other office locations will be considered for the right candidate.

About AIR:

Established in 1946, with headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, AIR is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit institution that conducts behavioral and social science research and delivers technical assistance to solve some of the most urgent challenges in the U.S. and around the world. We advance evidence in the areas of education, health, the workforce, human services, and international development to create a better, more equitable world.

AIRs commitment to diversity goes beyond legal compliance to its full integration in our strategy, operations, and work environment. At AIR, we define diversity broadly, considering everyones unique life and community experiences. We believe that embracing diverse perspectives, abilities/disabilities, racial/ethnic and cultural backgrounds, styles, ages, genders, gender identities and expressions, education backgrounds, and life stories drives innovation and employee engagement. Learn more about AIR's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategy and hear from our staff by clicking here.


Reporting to the Managing Director of Corporate Communications, the Senior Manager of Media Relations will collaborate with the Communications & Public Affairs team and AIR experts to:  

Media Relations

  • Design and execute a media strategy to elevate and amplify AIR projects, programs, and initiatives, as well as our experts, leadership, and commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Write press releases, pitch stories, maintain media contact lists and develop relationships with both industry and mainstream media journalists, especially those that cover areas of AIRs work (education, health, workforce development, human services and justice, and international development)
  • Write, edit, and place op-eds, blog posts, and letters to the editors, as assigned
  • Facilitate responses to media inquiries and requests and arrange interviews with AIR experts and leadership, as needed. Establish AIR as a go-to source for news media
  • Serve as back-up AIR spokesperson
  • Track media engagement for AIR and competitors and measure the success of AIR media outreach campaigns
  • Manage crisis communications inclusive of scenario planning, incident response, coordination with vendors

News Services

  • Track current events and national and international conversations where AIRs work and expertise is relevant and can contribute to greater understanding and possible solutions
  • Work with AIR experts to quickly develop content aligned with current events that can be shared with the media and the general public through email and AIR digital platforms, including the website ( and AIR social media accounts
  • Work with AIRs digital team to highlight the work and experts that align with relevant current events and conversations


Education, Knowledge, and Experience:

  • Bachelors degree in communications or similar liberal arts major (i.e., journalism, corporate affairs, marketing/PR, etc.)
  • 10 plus years of experience in journalism, communications, media relations or public relations, with at least 5 years of experience as a journalist or working directly with journalists
  • Experience and comfort working in a fast-paced, deadline-oriented environment where work must be completed completely and accurately, also while planning and executing longer-term projects
  • Experience with internal communications platforms, software, and graphic design programs, such as SharePoint, Teams, Adobe, etc.


  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • Ability to write clearly and cleanly, often on tight deadlines (a writing and editing test will be administered as a part of the interview process)
  • A general understanding of the media landscape and a familiarity with tools for media contact and tracking
  • Strong and demonstrated organizational skills with high level of attention to detail
  • The ability to simultaneously juggle multiple projects is a must
  • Demonstrated interpersonal, networking, negotiation, and influencing skills; proven teamwork and collaboration skills
  • A commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion

Desired Outcomes:

  • Building connections with both mainstream and industry media in service of making AIR a go-to resource for journalists and other writers
  • An increase in AIR experts being quoted and sourced in mainstream and industry media outlets
  • Growth of a rapid response mindset at AIR, including the development of both written and visual content that aligns with current events and the news of the day
  • Helping AIR experts and leadership feel more comfortable working with the media and responding quickly to current events


AIR requires all new hires to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or receive a legally required exemption from AIR, as a condition of employment.  AIR will ask candidates to verify their vaccination status only after a conditional offer of employment is made.  Applicants should not provide information about their vaccination status or need for exemption prior to receiving a conditional offer of employment from AIR.

Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the U.S. on a full-time basis. Employment-based visa sponsorship (including H-1B sponsorship) is not available for this position. Depending on project work, qualified candidates may need to meet certain residency requirements.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability.

AIR adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

#LI-AS1 #LI-Remote #LI-Hybrid

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