Seeking Communications Manager

Hiring Organization: Center for Regional Food Systems
Employment type: Full-Time
Job Location: East Lansing
Application Deadline: August 16, 2022

The communications manager will provide creative and innovative communications leadership for the highly collaborative food systems work that CRFS engages in both statewide and nationally.

The Michigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems (CRFS) is seeking applications for a Communications Manager I (AP). 

This person will engage all CRFS outreach specialists, including the CRFS Communications Director and principal investigators of projects, to strengthen and maintain outreach strategies and partnerships and elevate the knowledge of CRFS programs across Michigan, the United States and the world.

This position is an exciting opportunity for a self-motivated, energetic, outreach-minded, resourceful and committed candidate to bring creative vision to an existing strong foundation of food systems partnerships, programs, relationships and learnings to support and shape CRFS’s work and reputation into the future. People of color are encouraged to apply. 


Salary: $50,500 - $53,000 Commensurate with experience

Applications will be accepted until 11:55 pm E.T. on August 16, 2022 

If you have questions about the position or search process, you may contact Jude Barry, Associate Director ( 

 Position duties include, but are not limited to: 

  • Develop communication strategies for CRFS as a whole and for different CRFS programs through engaging with CRFS specialists and the relevant networks led by CRFS, partner organizations, and appropriate professional organization
  • Maintain an engaging CRFS website that attracts partners and audiences in communities in Michigan and nationally, through updating, creating and building website content for project areas as needed
  • Grow interactive social media accounts by strategically curating posts and graphics, scheduling all social posts, and engaging on all social platforms (sharing partner organization’s content and active monitoring
  • Regularly engage all CRFS audiences in our work (including communities, partners, funders, MSU departments and others), through writing, formatting and publishing newsletters, news releases, stories, emails, podcasts, and other organizational content; managing contacts and listserv subscription
  • Monitor and report progress and adjust strategies through tracking, analyzing, and reporting on website, social media, and email analytics
  • With CRFS Communications Director, develop MSU and MSU Extension communications partnerships, collaborations and opportunities to strengthen the collective outreach work of MSU, Extension and CRFS
  • Co-author and when necessary copy edit selected CRFS publications
  • As needed, support funding and project proposals
  • Manage professional services contracts with consultants and other service providers for publication copyediting and layout, graphic design, communications projects, and other grant activities
  • Actively participate in CRFS staff and strategic meetings and stay current on CRFS projects, activities, resources and publications as relevant to this work. Organize, document, and share activities internally within CRFS
  • Represent projects and initiatives of CRFS in a professional manner in all forms of outreach and communication
  • Document and share project work and accomplishments; maintain regular internal and external communication about project activities; write grant reports; develop and report on an annual plan of work
  • Help to foster, facilitate and maintain the CRFS culture of anti-racism, trust, support and accountability 

 Unit Specific Education/Experience/Skills:

  • Knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing a four-year college degree program in English, communications, marketing, professional writing, Journalism, telecommunications, public relations or related field 
  • 1 to 3 years of experience creating web-based outreach communications, particularly through websites, social media, and email marketing programs
  • Excellent writing, editing, and verbal communication skills; experience using a broad range of communications tactics
  • High degree of knowledge of and comfort with using technology in completing job requirements including Microsoft Office suite, Adobe Creative Suite (including InDesign) or similar, Constant Contact or other contact management systems, web-based search and information systems, electronic survey software and phone/web conferencing systems 

 Desired Qualifications:

  • Ability to effectively engage diverse stakeholder groups (in Michigan and nationally) such as university faculty and staff, nonprofit, academic, and governmental organizations, funders, food and farm businesses, community organizers and food systems practitioners and supporters
  • Demonstrated project leadership, resourcefulness, self-motivation and ability to problem-solve and think critically
  • Ability to self-direct and balance multiple simultaneous projects and a wide range of tasks and to easily shift between working independently and as part of a team
  • Strong commitment to anti-racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Experience with dotCMS
  • Experience with food systems, agriculture, sustainability, or related field
  • Experience with graphic design and publication layout/formatting
  • Additional qualifications in communications strategy and design 

 This is an off-date position is through August 31, 2023 that is expected to renew contingent on funding and performance..  


About Michigan State University 

Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges. 

About MSU Center for Regional Food Systems 

The vision of the Center for Regional Food System (CRFS) is a thriving economy, equity, and sustainability for Michigan, the country, and the planet through food systems rooted in local regions and centered on Good Food: a food system that promotes equity, health, sustainability, and thriving economies. CRFS’s mission is to engage the people of Michigan, the United States and the world in applied research, education, and outreach to develop regionally integrated, sustainable food systems. Five values are key to achieving this mission and vision: collaboration, shared vision, place, equity, and accountability.