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Thank you for your interest in the American Bar Foundation. Please see below for our latest position openings:

Part-Time Communications Associate

The American Bar Foundation (ABF) invites applications for a creative, enthusiastic, and driven entry level communications professional to add to its communications staff.  To receive consideration, please send a cover letter, résumé, and a brief writing sample to with the email subject line: Part-Time Communications Associate. 

About the ABF

Located in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood, the American Bar Foundation is a nonprofit, independent international research institute committed to empirical, interdisciplinary research on law, legal institutions, and legal processes. The ABF offers a rich intellectual community of scholars with expertise in a wide range of disciplines, and staff members have ample opportunities to interact with both in-residence and visiting scholars and attend pertinent research presentations on both current and historical socio-legal topics, such as our long-standing weekly Wednesday seminar series hosted by leaders in their respective fields. Our varied academic community ranges from leading scholars and emerging researchers in their fields along with next generation scholars from our competitive fellowship programs.  

About this position

As a member of a three-person Communications team, the part-time Communications Associate will assist in creating and disseminating content to news media, donors and other funders, the academic community, and other stakeholders.  This professional will help tell the story of the American Bar Foundation and the relevant and timely research we are producing. The Associate reports to the Communications Manager and will work cooperatively with members of the communications, development, and academic affairs staff and take direction from senior management. This is a great opportunity to join an established nonprofit with a team-focused culture.

Primary Responsibilities

  •          Create, develop, and update written program materials;
  •          Update ABF website content including publications, news updates, and events;
  •          Build and maintain communications files;
  •          Coordinate and develop mass email communications;
  •          Manage ABF social media;
  •          Assist in planning and managing special events to highlight ABF research, book launches, conferences,                 etc.;
  •          Assist in the creation of video content;
  •          Other communications-related duties as assigned.

Required Education, Skills, and Experience

  •          Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Communications, English or related field preferred, or an equivalent                 combination of education and experience may be considered;
  •          Outstanding written and verbal communication skills;
  •          Proficiency in AP-style writing;
  •          Strong editing and proofreading skills;
  •          Ability to master and translate complex research projects and programs to lay audiences;
  •          Ability to quickly comprehend a wide range of academic or technical information and synthesize it for a               general audience;
  •          Experience writing and developing content for newsletters, social media, websites, and other channels;
  •          Strong attention to detail;
  •          Ability to manage competing priorities and to meet deadlines;
  •          Knowledge of communications information sources;
  •          Strong contributor in team environments and able to collaborate successfully with faculty and staff;
  •          Intellectually curious and creative thinker;
  •          Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite: Word, PowerPoint, Excel;
  •          Must be reliable and punctual and understand standard operating office procedures.

Preferred Competencies

  •          Basic graphic design experience;
  •          Proficiency with mass marketing/communications utilities: Constant Contact, Hootsuite, Meltwater, etc.

Work Environment

This job operates in a professional office environment.  This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, filing cabinets, and fax machines.

Physical Demands

This is largely a sedentary role; however, some filing is required.  This would require the ability to lift files, open cabinets, and bend or stand as necessary.

Position Type and Expected Hours of Work

This is a part-time non-exempt position with a maximum of 20 hours/week. Part-time work is flexible, but work should fall during the ABF’s office hours of Monday – Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Occasional work outside of these hours is expected in connection with Foundation events, such as participation in Board meetings. This is not a remote position; Illinois residency is required. However, until further notice, work will be performed in a remote environment.

Other Duties

Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. 

EEO Statement

The ABF is firmly committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all qualified persons. All decisions regarding the terms, privileges, and/or conditions of employment, including but not limited to hiring, classification, grading, recruitment, discharge, discipline, compensation, selection for training or apprenticeship, placement, promotion, transfer, renewal of employment, tenure or terms, and benefits, will be made without unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, order of protection status, marital status, disability, military status, unfavorable discharge from the military, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender, gender identity, housing status, parental status, source of income, certain arrest or criminal history records, genetic information, protected activity (such as opposition to or reporting of prohibited discrimination or harassment), or any other status or classification protected by applicable federal, state, and/or local laws. The ABF prohibits discrimination, retaliation, and harassment of individuals on any of the bases listed above and any other basis protected by applicable federal, state and/or local law.

The ABF will reasonably accommodate qualified employees with disabilities to allow them to perform the essential functions of their jobs unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship. The ABF also will reasonably accommodate employees' sincere religious beliefs and practices unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship. All requests for reasonable accommodation should be made to Patricia McCarty, Manager of HR Operations.

Any violation of the equal employment opportunity policy must be reported immediately to Molly O’Donnell, Associate Director. If you have any questions regarding discrimination or this policy, please contact Patricia McCarty, Manager of HR Operations.

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