Communications Manager

Design Trust for Public Space Design Trust for Public Space Employer:
New York, NY, USLocation:
Mon, Oct 18 '21Posted on:

October 18, 2021

Communications Manager

Job Description 

Design Trust for Public Space is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the future of public space in New York City. Our projects bring together city agencies, community groups and private sector experts to make a lasting impact –through design – on how New Yorkers live, work and play. For 26 years Design Trust has been a leader in the public space movement. Native New Yorker Andrea Woodner founded the Design Trust in 1995 to bring design expertise and systems thinking to the public realm, when public space was often considered an afterthought. Design Trust’s work can be seen throughout all five boroughs and has inspired other cities. 

Our current and upcoming projects include: Design Trust RFP: The Restorative City, a call for projects dedicated to exploring how public space and the built environment can be used as a tool to advance health equity; Opening the Edge, a resident-led process to design a new public space at the Lillian Wald Houses and serve as a model for NYCHA citywide; Neighborhood Commons, working with NYC Small Business Services we will provide place-based organizations (such as BID’s) and small businesses with the tools to recover as key community anchors; Turn Out NYC, a project to increase access to arts and culture in public spaces across the city, in partnership with SITU and the Mellon Foundation; and Alfresco NYC, a multi-stage, coalition-led effort to define the future of Open Restaurants and outdoor dining for New York City.  Find out more at

The Design Trust works to create a better New York City and believes that building a strong internal culture is key to doing. We create spaces, opportunities, and resources for communities to actively engage with each other, their neighborhood, and their city. We take a listening and learning posture. Similarly, our team represents the most important tool we have to achieve our goals. This position will be a key part of culture.

Position Summary 

The Design Trust for Public Space seeks a highly motivated full-time Communications Manager to advance the organization’s thought leadership and reputation in unlocking the potential of New York City’s public spaces. A part-time position is possible for a qualified candidate.

The Communications Manager takes a lead role on all communications, outreach, and event planning, under the guidance of the Executive Director. The Manager, working with the Executive Director, Program Director, Development Director, is responsible for developing and implementing an effective overall communications, media, and outreach strategy that raises awareness of the organization, its projects, programs and policy recommendations. Sharing our passion about public space and our mission, the Manager will also be responsible for planning and organizing events and programming for media, supporters, and the public.

Responsibilities include:

Communications Strategy – Working with the Executive Director to develop and implement an effective organizational communications, media, and outreach strategy, including long- and short-lead plans, campaigns, media briefings, talking points about the Design Trust, its projects and programs, and project launches, identification of new opportunities and cultivation of media outlets.

Branding and Identity Working closely with the Executive Director and Design Trust staff, oversees branding and identity for the organization, ensuring recognizable brand in all materials and public outreach and timely dissemination of information on Design Trust activities. Conducts communications assessment and update style guidelines, information decks, brochures, letterheads, and all other communication templates.

Public Relations – Serves as liaison to media, project partners and policy makers, including developing and maintaining media contacts, outreach to key media outlets, arranging briefings with media for Executive Director, Board and staff, and serving as press liaison at events. Leads preparation and distribution of communications materials about organizational activities and updates to target audiences, including messaging through print and online materials for Design Trust; tracking press coverage and a press clippings archive; and maintaining a database of communication vendors (printers, video, production houses, agencies, designers).

Media Development - Oversees all owned media, including website, blog, e-newsletter and, social media—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn. Actively updates our social media accounts to expand and engage a broad audience of key stakeholders.

Website Management – Create and implement content production for the Design Trust website, and all project specific websites, including photographic documentation of Design Trust activities. Seek to increase web traffic. 

Special Events - Working closely with the Director of Programs and Design Trust staff to plan, coordinate and execute special events, such as press announcements, including developing a work plan, organizing and directing events to ensure successful execution with all event consultants, vendors, communications, website management and messaging, maintaining media and contact database. 

Documentation - Document each event through photography and A/V coverage including social media update and web content for each event, feedback collection and developing final reports to evaluate each major event. Create a photo and video library to provide the Development and Programs department easy access to media for grant proposals and presentations.

Required Background, Skills and Qualifications:

·       Bachelor’s degree and at least 3 to 5 years of communications experience in-house and/or PR/marketing agency, experience in the non-profit, design, and social service sectors preferred

·       Strong editorial media placement and native content creation skills

·       Experience in website management highly preferred

·       Strategic and creative thinker with ability to gather and synthesize complex information into compelling messages for target audiences

·       Ability to work independently while comfortable as part of a multi-disciplinary team of diverse groups, including staff, donors, community groups, and public agencies

·       Interest and preferably experience in the design and/or cultural industries and/or public policy, working with community-based organizations, nonprofits or public agencies

·       Excellent written and oral communication skills and organizational skills

·       Experience in coordinating events

·       Team player and thrives in a small-office environment

·       Enthusiasm, sense of humor and positive attitude essential

·       Experience with Microsoft Office, Photoshop, InDesign, social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn)

·       Experience in Content Management Platforms and Contact Database Systems


The Design Trust offers a competitive salary based on experience and an excellent benefits package (health, dental, vision, and 401(k) with an employer match). In addition, Design Trust employees receive ample vacation and sick time, enjoy a flexible work environment, and work with a talented team of individuals on public space projects that have a real impact on New York City’s urban environment.

How to Apply 

Applications will be accepted via email only and will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Only complete applications will be reviewed. Due to the volume of applications, only those candidates short-listed for the first round of interviews will be notified. No phone calls or office visits please.

To apply, send the following as one complete PDF file: 

1. A cover letter explaining your qualifications for the position, with salary requirements

2. Your resume (2 pages maximum)

3. Writing samples (3 communications-related samples maximum)

Name your PDF file “lastname_firstname.pdf” and send your complete application to: with “Communications Manager” written in the Subject Line.

About the Design Trust for Public Space 

Design Trust for Public Space is a nonprofit organization that brings design innovation to New York City’s public space. Design Trust is an equal opportunity employer and encourages people of all abilities, ethnicities, genders, national origins or ancestries, socioeconomic statuses, races, formerly incarcerated statuses, religions, and sexualities to apply. Design Trust is also committed to accessibility and to working together with you to develop an accessibility plan.  Find out more at


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