Harvard University — Executive Director, Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy

Harvard University

Executive Director, Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy
Harvard Kennedy School

Duties & Responsibilities
The Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy is a research center at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. The Center analyzes the power and impact of media, in all its forms, on public policy and politics. The Center seeks a strategic, creative, and results-oriented leader to fill the role of Executive Director.

The Executive Director reports to the Center Director and is responsible for the strategic administrative and financial management of the Center, including oversight of annual expenditures of over five million dollars, a 12+ person administrative staff, and all daily operations. The Executive Director works in concert with the Center Director on implementing overall strategy and goals of the Center, including research initiatives, curriculum development, fundraising, high-profile events, recruiting visiting fellows and faculty, journalism awards and lecture programs.

The Executive Director must have the background, knowledge, interest, and presentation skills to effectively manage Shorenstein Center activities and also connect to national and global audiences in all sectors (academic, public, non-profit and private) regarding the mission and operations of the Center. The Executive Director must have the capacity to work with faculty, other HKS staff, university colleagues and the very highest level leaders across sectors.

Responsibilities include:

  • Hires and manages program staff, ensuring a high level of professionalism, teamwork and focus on customer service and excellence. Assigns workload and oversees staff performance. Assists in the professional development of new and more junior staff.
  • Develops strong working relationships with Center faculty and fellows; keeps faculty informed of all major program related activity and/or decisions.
  • Directs Center operations, including all aspects of logistics and programmatic development; takes the lead in anticipating and resolving issues in collaboration with Center staff.
  • Establishes the overall timeline for the Center’s multiple programs, coordinating the efforts of staff, faculty, and fellows.
  • Exercises financial management and oversight of all Center programs.
  • Oversees the Center’s communications strategy on several active websites, social media, newsletters, research reports, and promotional brochures.
  • Collaborates with faculty, staff and student groups on all events.
  • Reads, comments and/or writes drafts and final versions of all Center publications including reports, grant proposals, communications for the Director, Fellows research papers.
  • Works closely with the Center Director to oversee and develop research initiatives including the Journalist’s Resource website, the single-subject news project, the misinformation project, and the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting.
  • Will handle sensitive situations and confidential information with discretion and problem-solving efficiency.

Basic Qualifications
Bachelor’s degree and at least 10 years relevant work experience managing complex projects and organizations.
Additional Qualifications
Experience in in higher education administration is an advantage. Excellent oral and written communication skills with a strong editing background. Superior organizational skills, able to prioritize, excellent attention to detail and ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously. Strong interpersonal skills, demonstrated leadership background, ability to work with minimal supervision, excellent judgment. Strong interest in media, technology, politics and public policy is a plus; general curiosity about everything is also an advantage. Demonstrated proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint as well as major social media platforms and management tools. Some travel is required. Experience with budgets, sponsored research grants and University processes would be helpful.
Additional Information
Harvard University requires pre-employment reference and background checks.
Harvard University is committed to supporting a healthy, sustainable learning and working environment.

Job Function
General Administration

Sub Unit

USA – MA – Cambridge

Shorenstein Center

Time Status

00 – Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Salary Grade

Pre-Employment Screening
Credit, Criminal, Education, Identity

EEO Statement
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law.


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