Since our founding in 1825, B’nai Jeshurun (BJ) has been at the forefront of the American Jewish experience. As we approach our third century, our vision is focused on the spiritual work of transformation and on the creation of a Jewish spiritual path that is authentic and profound, and helps every member seek and live their purpose to the fullest.
Our spiritual leaders and our nearly 1,800 member families share a vision of a diverse, dynamic, and welcoming community that offers many paths to Jewish religious life, while supporting one another in their spiritual quests. We are committed to honoring tradition while re-imagining and innovating our practices and programs to create a vibrant Jewish life for the 21st century.
Our community is led by Rabbi Rolando Matalon, together with a senior leadership team that comprises Rabbi Felicia Sol, who oversees all programs, and Executive Director/COO Colin Weil, who oversees advancement, communications, finance and administration, and operations. BJ has a staff of approximately 40 full-time and 10 part-time employees.
BJ is moving into a pivotal phase of evolution, following a successful five-year strategic plan, which prioritized:
• Strengthening Community Connections and Building a Shared Sense of Belonging
• Prayer, Music, and Spiritual Practice
• Responding to the Prophetic Vision through Social Justice and Hesed (caregiving)
• Engaging and Supporting 21st Century Jewish Families in their full diversity
• Embracing multi-faith individuals and families, and developing the tools and rituals that are needed to fully engage and support them.
BJ launched an all-new visual identity and website in early 2020. As the Covid pandemic unfolded in early March, BJ pivoted to become a fully virtual institution, successfully serving our more than 3,000 members remotely, and building a new circle of thousands of friends and supporters who regularly tune in to our prayer, programming, and community. In order to build upon this momentum and to unfold BJ’s expanding strategic vision beyond our local membership, we recognize the importance of strengthening BJ’s communications and raising our voice dynamically across all touchpoints: in-person and online; locally, nationally, and internationally.
The Director of Communications will provide strategy, leadership, planning, and management to ensure that BJ’s now larger, more robust and dynamic brand, programs, and services are present, accessible, and compelling to existing and new audiences. With the support of the Executive Director/COO and the Board of Directors, particularly the Communications Chair and committee, the Director of Communications will design and implement a multi-year, coordinated communications and messaging program to complement the programmatic, engagement, and financial goals established by BJ’s leadership. This is a newly created position that will report to the Executive Director/COO, and be part of the Senior Staff.
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES (ONGOING)
• Provide leadership, including strategy and hands-on management of BJ’s Communications department, including three additional full-time and multiple part-time staff. BJ Communications oversees web, email, and social media platforms, PR, as well as digital media and content production and management.
• Build and execute an integrated, strategic communications plan that supports BJ’s programmatic and engagement vision.
• Create an internal framework, process, and system for communications to streamline messaging.
• Create a plan (with Advancement) to convert casual connectors to known friends (collect emails and data).
• Set goals, monitor work, and evaluate results to ensure Communications objectives are met.
• Develop communications data aspects of BJ’s CRM system for more effective data information flow and sharing as well as impact analysis.
• Elevate BJ’s brand and amplify BJ’s voice by developing special campaigns, including strategic deployment of the BJ rabbis and BJ’s music beyond the BJ community in Jewish and social justice spaces.
• Develop BJ’s voice and that of its leaders through excellent writing.
• Lead, inspire, and coach the Communications team as well as staff across BJ to foster a culture of collaboration and transparency by ensuring that BJ’s systems and procedures support clear and compelling communications internally and externally, across all mediums and at all times.
• Partner with Advancement team to develop a compelling and comprehensive communications plan to support High Holy Days and membership renewal periods.
• Be available to work evenings and weekends as needed as well as on major Jewish holidays (generally virtually now, on-site post-COVID).
• Collaborate with Lay Leadership, especially the Communications Chair of the board.
• Coordinate Communications efforts with other Senior Staff members and act as a proactive thought partner in the annual program planning process.
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES (ONE-TIME)
• Assess and move forward internal communications and collaboration processes and systems which enable the Communications function within the department and across the institution.
• Complete the UX assessment and revision initiative on the website, which has recently begun, to enhance the online experience for regulars and newcomers alike.
• Develop a website development road-map in collaboration with the senior team.
• Develop a digital media production, post-production, and content management plan, identify staff training and deployment needs to support the plan, train staff, and implement the plan.
QUALIFICATIONS, SKILLS, AND EXPERIENCE
• Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree preferred
• Minimum 7-10 years of experience in communications, marketing and digital media positions
• At least 5 years of supervisory experience with successive leadership responsibilities
• Strength in developing and executing complex and integrated strategic communications and branding efforts. Major repositioning experience a plus
• Experience working with volunteers, particularly board members, as well as managing and collaborating with external vendors
• An effective team leader with the ability to collaborate and delegate
• Ability to extract and analyze data to make effective, efficient decisions about resource allotment
• Excellent interpersonal and team-building skills
• A skillful and proactive communicator committed to timely, transparent, and responsive communications with board, staff, and membership
• Ability to work in a fast-paced environment, under pressure, remaining flexible, resourceful and efficient, with a high level of professionalism and confidentiality
• Willing and able to become a recognized presence in the BJ community – available, accessible, and approachable
• Knowledge of CRM practices, experience with Salesforce a plus
• Knowledge of and experience within the Jewish communal sector a plus
A competitive salary and excellent benefits will be offered to the right candidate
COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION
B’nai Jeshurun (BJ), in recognition of our values, commitment to social justice, and responsibility to our spiritual leaders and staff, congregants, and the communities within which we live and work, is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBTQIA+ applicants.