National Radio Astronomy Observatory
Help us share the story of some of the worlds most productive ground-based telescopes! The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) is seeking an experienced science public information officer (PIO-NM) to join our Public Information and News Team to lead media relations for NRAOs presence in New Mexico and promote interesting scientific results from NSFs Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) and the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA).
Under the direction of the Public Information & News Manager, the PIO-NM is responsible for the production of communications products including press releases, image releases, announcements, and other assigned content, and effectively distributing this content. This position will liaise closely with scientist users of the VLA and VLBA, and their institutional PIOs to stay abreast of scientific developments and upcoming publications, and to craft exciting and newsworthy press releases. The PIO-NM will offer media training, press presentation support, and press conference support for scientists attending major conferences, and will work with the News Manager and other PIOs to develop conference strategies. Additionally, the PIO-NM will work in tandem with the Director of New Mexico Operations to manage logistics for and support VIP visits for the media and government officials, and filming/photography requests, and will handle incoming questions and concerns from the public regarding observatory operations.
The PIO-NM will be expected to understand the nuances and rumblings of local and state government, the local community, and the scientific user community, and have the ability to navigate between these groups with ease. The position requires on-site time at the VLA for VIP tours and the execution of major filming and photography requests, as well as travel to major US astronomy conferences and a presence at community/government meetings held in New Mexico.
The VLA consists of 27 radio antennas situated on the Plains of San Agustin at 7000+ feet in elevation in New Mexico that, depending on configuration, create an interferometer, or virtual telescope, extending to roughly 22 miles across. The VLBA consists of ten antennas spread across the United States from Hawaii to St. Croix.
In addition to competitive pay, NRAO provides excellent paid time off benefits (vacation and sick leave). Medical, dental and vision plans are effective first day of employment. NRAOs retirement benefit contributes an amount equal to 10 percent of a qualified participants base pay. No contribution is required of the employee; we also offer an optional supplemental, tax-deferred plan for employee retirement contributions.
Our preference is that this position be based in either Socorro, NM or Albuquerque, NM. However, hybrid and teleworking arrangements may be negotiable. The NRAO Science Operations Center is located in Socorro, NM, on the campus of New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (www.nmt.edu). Socorro is a small, historical city in the Rio Grande Valley, 75 miles south of Albuquerque. With over 300 days of sunshine each year, Socorro offers ample access to outdoor recreation.
Job Duties Summary
Under the direction and guidance of the Public Information & News Manager, the duties of the PIO-NM may include the following as a contributor on the News Team:
- Develops and executes, in collaboration with the NRAO EPO media team publicity and media campaigns, and advises EPO management on media and public-relations matters
- Researches, develops, writes and coordinates NRAO media materials, including press releases, brochures, fact sheets and backgrounders
- Develops and provides input and support for Web-based information resources
- Writes articles for outside publications such as newspapers, magazines, and websites
- Develops and maintains strong working relationships with internal information sources, with news media personnel, with NRAO's funding agency public affairs staff. Coordinates with NRAO media team staff, supervises temporary employees and public information interns.
- Assists NRAO management and other staff in preparing lectures and public presentations
- Answers queries from the news media, educators and the general public about the NRAO and astronomy
- Conducts facility tours for news media personnel, and, under AUI/NRAO management direction, elected public officials and their staff members
- Coordinates filming and commercial photography at NRAO sites
- Represents the NRAO at public events and professional meetings
- Provides media training to NRAO scientists and management as required
- Proactive compliance with NRAO and government safety policies and procedures in own work area is expected;
- Other duties as assigned.
Work is typically performed in a research or development environment; will be required to stand and sit, and perform fine hand manipulation.Must be able to operate a personal computer. Must be able to interact with many personality types. May occasionally work at high altitudes. Travel will be required. This is not a management or leadership position.
Bachelor's degree in a physical science, or in journalism or communications with significant coursework in physical science
Advanced degree in journalism or communications with significant coursework in physical science
Five years of demonstrable experience in journalism, public relations or communications, preferably in connection with a scientific or technical organization required.
Seven or more years of demonstrable experience in areas listed in Minimum Experience plus:
- Must possess demonstrated writing ability, including writing on short deadlines, demonstrated public-speaking ability.
- Must have an understanding of astronomy, the research process, and the scientific community. Must possess an understanding of print and broadcast news media, including news cycles, newsroom organization and production processes.
- Must have a basic understanding of scientific principles, the research process, and the scientific community;
- Must possess an understanding of print, online, and broadcast news media, including news cycles, newsroom organization, and production processes;
- Experience using Eurekalert, Newswise, Meltwater or similar, Google Drive, Sharepoint, and Trello or similar, is required.
The Observatory requires staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to access our facilities. An offer of employment will be considered contingent until the selected applicant provides proof of vaccination. A selected applicant may request consideration for an accommodation for a disability or for a sincerely held religious belief.
Click the Apply button below. You will need to upload your current CV/Resume and a letter of application describing interest and suitability for the position. In your letter of application, please provide links to at least one but no more than four science or technology writing samples.
Job Close Date:Applicant consideration will begin immediately, open until filled.
Equal Opportunity Employer Statement:
AUI is an equal opportunity employer. Women, Minorities, Vietnam-Era Veterans, Disabled Veterans, Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities are encouraged to apply. To view our complete statement, please visit http://jobs.jobvite.com/nrao/jobs. If you require reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process due to a disability, you may submit your request by sending an email to email@example.com. PM20
The NRAO is an equal opportunity employer (M/F/D/V)