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AAS Informational Email 2009-09

AAS Announces Open Recruitment for Press Officer and Education and Outreach Coordinator

Kevin B. Marvel

The AAS announces an open recruitment for the full time position of Press Officer and Education & Outreach Coordinator. A job announcement is now available on the AAS Job Register and the description is included here.

AAS members are encouraged to distribute this information to potential candidates.

Job Title: Press Officer and Education & Outreach Coordinator

The American Astronomical Society seeks an individual to serve the Society as a Press Officer and Education & Outreach Coordinator. This full time position will be responsible for both the press and media activities of the Society as well as coordinating the education & outreach activities of the Society.

The Press responsibilities include interacting with, answering questions from and providing expert referrals to journalists, selecting and overseeing the work of volunteer Deputy Press Officers and AAS meeting press room volunteers, managing the AAS press release distribution system, selecting submitted abstracts for press conferences at AAS meetings and coordinating these press conferences. In addition, the selected person will provide advice and guidance to AAS divisions related to press and media relations, assess the media impact of the Society's activities, prepare press releases on Society matters as needed and a variety of other minor responsibilities related to the promotion of the Society generally.

Additionally, the successful applicant will serve as Education & Outreach Coordinator by interacting with the Education Board to develop attainable education goals, interacting with the education community as the AAS representative for education-related issues, serving on advisory or liaison committees as appropriate to external bodies, managing the AAS Education web pages and creating materials related to education or careers in astronomy as necessary as well as coordinating the various outreach activities of the Society carried out by its various outreach committees (Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy, Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy and Employment Committee). It is also required that this individual report orally and in writing to the AAS Council on a regular basis on both the press and education activities of the Society.

The position requires a college degree in astronomy or a closely related science with a graduate degree strongly preferred with ten years minimum experience in journalism and education activities, including direct interaction with the media and students. The individual must be an expert user of normal office software and have the ability to learn how to use new tools as necessary. Excellent oral and written communication skills are required, including demonstrated editing experience, production of promotional or educational materials and preparation of materials suitable for publication in normal media outlets (e.g. writing articles for a newspaper or magazine). Finally, the successful candidate must be able to execute their responsibilities with minimal supervision and possess excellent time management and organizational skills.

This position may be based in the AAS Executive Office or remotely, depending on the candidate's qualifications and will report directly to the AAS Executive Officer. A complete job description is available upon request. The salary level will be set commensurate with similar positions in the non-profit sector and the actual experience level of the applicant. Travel expenses to all AAS meetings and appropriate education or media gathering will be covered and a small budget made available for press, education and outreach activities.

Applicants should submit a resume detailing their experience, especially that required for the position, a brief strategy paper (no more than 3 pages) outlining their approach to this unique position and the names and contact information for three personal references. Send all application materials by June 1 to Kevin Marvel, Executive Officer, Kevin.Marvel at, or via postal mail to the AAS Executive Office.

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