The Manager of Government Relations will work directly with the Vice President of Communications and Public Relations to maintain and cultivate strategic relationships with local and state elected officials, agencies, boards, commissions, civic organizations and other critical stakeholders to help advance Shedd’s mission.
Duties & Responsibilities:
- Demonstrate commitment to Shedd’s vision, mission and values.
- Develop and enhance Shedd Aquarium’s relationships with elected officials and stakeholders, including the Mayor’s office, Museums in the Park, Alderman, Governor’s office, Chicago Park District and more.
- Generate clear and accurate communications tailored for various civic audiences about Shedd Aquarium.
- Serve as a primary liaison, providing information to external offices and supporting staff about Shedd’s mission-based programs and initiatives.
- Ensure Shedd Aquarium is responsive to Chicago civic priorities as appropriate.
- Communicate regularly on behalf of Shedd Aquarium and Executive Leadership to Chicago civic leaders and stakeholders.
- Plan and implement special projects and initiatives, community partner activities, speaking engagements and special meetings.
- Attend public and civic meetings, conferences, standing committees, business and civic luncheons, fundraising and network opportunities and other events as determined.
- Provide day-to-day administration and planning support. Perform topical research on various subjects. Monitor news, trends and key developments.
- Communicate with internal Shedd staff and departments – prepare briefings and provide regular reporting to various teams and leadership.
- Represent departmental and institutional interests at internal and external meetings.
- Other duties as assigned.
- Bachelor’s degree in communications, public relations, political science or related field.
- Minimum 5 to 7 years of experience in political or civic organizations, with an emphasis on communication and relationship management.
- Experience with key Chicago public offices strongly preferred.
- In-depth understanding of local government operations, policy and protocol.
- Demonstrated ability to interact with government officials and senior executives.
- Must be available 24/7 via cell phone (with exception of scheduled vacations.)
- Must be able to work flexible hours including early mornings, nights and weekends as necessary
- Great attitude! Interest in conservation, zoo/aquarium, non-profit, cultural institutions and strong desire to excel in this industry.
- Must be comfortable with the rigor and demands of the fast-paced government relations field.
- Strategic thinker with excellent written communication skills, strong interpersonal skills, attention to detail, and strong public speaking skills.
- Self-starter with the ability to work independently and bring projects from start to finish.
- Bilingual in Spanish is preferred.