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Riverdale Country School
Bronx, NY, United States
12 days ago
Riverdale Country School
Bronx, NY, United States
12 days ago


Reporting to Dominic Randolph, head of school, and serving as a member of his leadership cabinet, the director of strategic communications (director) shares broad responsibilities to advance the mission, reputation, and capacity of Riverdale Country School in fulfillment of its strategic priorities across all three divisions—lower school, middle school, and upper school. Along with Riverdale’s senior leadership and external consultants, the director will manage and elevate the school's brand through strategic planning, market insight, and trend analysis, and consumer feedback to provide strong cohesion across the school’s activities. The director will oversee strategic planning and processes that yield integrated school-wide communications and marketing that support the school’s mission; convey its commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging with authenticity and sophistication; meet the needs of multiple constituencies and departments; and advance Riverdale’s standing in the local community and the independent school community nationwide.

This senior leader will collaborate with the admission office to ensure that the school’s overall and division-specific messaging effectively communicates the value of a Riverdale education to prospective families while partnering closely with the development office to ensure that the communications for fundraising and alumni connections appropriately reflect the school’s mission and voice and support the office’s objectives. Additionally, they will collaborate closely with the head of school, senior leadership team, and board of trustees on the school’s public relations approach. This includes managing media contacts and requests while working with the head of school on communications to proactively promote the school and safeguard its reputation in moments of crisis.

The director will build, coach, and manage a high-performing communications team that is equipped to meet the needs of a dynamic and evolving school, including digital strategy, social media, print publications, brand management, and media and public relations. In addition to leading the work of the Riverdale communications team and external resources (brand consultant, WordPress developers, freelance photographers, and video production specialists), the director will have an opportunity to hire an additional staff member to ensure all needs are met.


This position is an exceptional opportunity for an ambitious and equity-minded leader who is a big-picture thinker with a track record of innovation, collaboration, and mission-driven leadership. Minimum qualifications include a bachelor’s degree (advanced degree preferred) in marketing, communications, public relations, journalism, education, or a related field, and seven years of progressive, full-time experience in strategic communications and/or public relations, with at least three years of experience managing a communications team. Preference will be given to candidates with experience in strategic communications for independent schools, colleges or universities, or social impact organizations.

Additional qualifications include experience and demonstrated success in the following areas:

  • Sophisticated utilization of social media, web, digital, print, and multimedia strategies in support of organizational mission, values, and priorities;
  • Exceptional writing, editing, and oral communication skills and proficiency in communicating and engaging effectively with a wide range of constituencies, including senior leadership, faculty, board members, parents, staff, alumni, and students;
  • Creating and leading integrated communications campaigns, brand awareness, and media strategy with a relevant portfolio of proven outcomes;
  • Knowledge of trends and best practices in brand management and public relations, as well as communication technologies;
  • Proactive integration of diversity, equity, and inclusion into communications and brand strategies;
  • The ability to develop and implement strategic campaigns and research-based communications plans;
  • Expertise in making presentations and communicating with the media and key stakeholders, especially in a crisis or controversial situation; and
  • Managing complex projects in a fast-paced organization with multiple stakeholders.

Leaders at Riverdale Country School are expected to show competence in all domains outlined in the R+ Leadership Capacities. In this position, the following capacities are prioritized: commitment to the mission of Riverdale Country School; effective communication in all forms; collaboration while leading teams through change; working purposefully; and valuing and cultivating a diverse community.

Application and Nomination

Riverdale has retained the services of Spelman Johnson, a leading national executive search firm, to assist with leading this search. Review of applications will begin Monday, August 9, 2021, and continue until the position is filled. A resume with an accompanying cover letter that addresses the responsibilities and requirements described in the position summary must be submitted via the Spelman Johnson website at Nominations for this position may be forwarded to Michel Frendian at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Riverdale Country School website at

It is the policy of Riverdale Country School to provide equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, national and ethnic origin, citizenship, marital status, disability, military status, or any other basis protected by applicable law to all qualified employees and applicants for employment.

Job Information

  • Job ID: 57806655
  • Location:
    Bronx, NY, United States
  • Position Title: Director of Strategic Communication
  • Company Name: Riverdale Country School
  • Industry: Communication
  • Job Function: Communications
  • Job Type: Full-Time
  • Job Duration: Indefinite
  • Min Education: BA/BS/Undergraduate
  • Min Experience: 7-10 Years
  • Required Travel: 0-10%
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