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Director of State Communications

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Marketing & Communications · Full-time
Washington, DC, USA · Remote
125,000 – 140,000 USD per year
Posted on Thursday, March 16, 2023

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) is a nonpartisan research and policy institute that advances federal and state policies to help build a nation where everyone — regardless of income, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, ZIP code, immigration status, or disability status — has the resources they need to thrive and share in the nation’s prosperity.

States and localities collect more than one-third of all taxes in the U.S. and spend half of all domestic public sector dollars. Their policy choices make a crucial difference in our lives and play an important role in determining if long-standing racial and economic inequities are overcome, persist, or worsen. In the next few months and years, state policymakers will face particularly consequential decisions over how to address disparities rooted in racism and other forms of oppression, as well as in the country’s extreme concentrations of power and wealth.

In this high-stakes environment, CBPP and the State Priorities Partnership (SPP) — a network of 42 state-based policy and advocacy organizations we founded and coordinate — advance racial, social, and economic justice, which are among the foundations of a stronger future.

As powerful communications strategies are central to achieving these goals in states, CBBP is seeking a director to lead our state communications team. The Director of State Communications will coordinate helping CBPP and SPP organizations across the country deploy cutting-edge communications strategies, tactics, and tools. For 30 years, SPP has used evidence and analysis to advance policies that give more people the opportunity to thrive. SPP partners equip lawmakers, journalists, advocacy organizations, nonprofit service providers, and the public with unassailable information that is used to help children obtain a quality education, help families secure medical care, and help working people get the assistance they need to build a better life.

The Director of State Communications will be an innovative leader, manager, and coach. They will identify cutting-edge communications strategies, tactics, and tools, help SPP groups develop the communications capacity and skill sets required to improve state policy, and build a community of progressive communicators on tax and budget issues. The individual will lead a team of five communications professionals with a diverse set of skills and encourage each team member’s leadership and experimentation.

The role will also help integrate the Center’s communications strategies focused on federal policies with those geared toward states. As part of this effort, the individual will coordinate rollout strategies for CBPP products focused on state policy issues that align with the Center’s overall communications strategies.


  • Manage the Center’s state communications team and its work with SPP organizations. This includes management of staff on state policy message development, strategy for jointly promoting research with state organizations, creation of template communications materials for partners, and technical assistance on traditional and digital media strategy.
  • Assure that the state communications team facilitates the production of effective, well-written reports, blogs, and other materials by CBPP’s State Fiscal Policy research team; supports policy staff engaged in media interviews, testimony before state legislatures, and other communications-related activities — including by working directly with State Fiscal Policy staff to help them develop stronger communications skills and more persuasively deliver our message.
  • Collaborate with the Center’s communications department to develop and execute integrated communications strategies across federal and state issues, including the development and implementation of rollout plans for CBPP products, creation of communications materials, and engagement with state-based media.
  • Provide individual coaching to state-level executive directors on communications capacity, strategy, and planning, including how to better hire, develop, and support communications staff.
  • Manage communications training opportunities for SPP groups, including annual in-person gatherings, webinars, and online training courses.


  • A bachelor’s degree and seven years of relevant work experience (a master’s degree is preferred and may substitute for two years’ experience).
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, and proven ability to communicate effectively to racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse communities and audiences.
  • Proven capacity to design and implement effective state communications strategies including traditional and digital media strategies, and experience drawing on messaging research to maximize impact. A sophisticated understanding of racial equity and structural racism and a clear grasp of how to employ this analysis to improve state/federal policies.
  • A commitment to the Center’s mission to improve the well-being of low- and moderate-income people and advance racial equity as part of the Center’s work.
  • Experience managing and coaching across lines of difference.
  • Demonstrated willingness to innovate and experiment.

The Center is operating on a hybrid work schedule that includes at least two days per week in-person at our D.C. office. We will consider remote candidates for this position if they are open to regular travel to our office or as needed.

This position reports to the Senior Vice President for State Fiscal Policy and Co-Leader of the State Fiscal Policy Division. Terms of Employment: full-time, exempt Bargaining Unit Status: this is not a bargaining unit position.

Compensation: The salary range is $125k-$140k, commensurate with experience; excellent benefits (including health insurance, vision and dental coverage, life and long-term disability insurance, retirement, MERP, and DCAP), and generous vacation, sick leave, and holiday schedules.

Please upload a cover letter and resume. In your cover letter, please include a discussion of what draws you to the mission of the Center.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is an Equal Opportunity Employer that values and welcomes diversity in the workplace and strongly encourages all qualified persons to apply regardless of race, color, age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, credit information, pregnancy or parental status, family responsibilities, personal appearance, creed, military or veteran status, religion, ancestry or national origin, union activities, disability, or other status protected by applicable law.

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is an equal opportunity employer.