Job Opportunities

Communications & Engagement Manager

Position Summary

The Sycamore Institute equips Tennessee’s civic leaders with data-driven resources to identify, understand, and solve big challenges. The Communications & Engagement Manager is a critical member of Sycamore’s bipartisan staff responsible for planning, executing, and growing our public and community relations. The right candidate will be a fantastic writer, editor, event planner, and relationship builder.

This is a collaborative but entrepreneurial role that engages diverse stakeholders in Sycamore’s work. The position reports to the Executive Director and is based in Nashville, Tennessee.


  • Develops and implements effective communications strategies to share information with civic leaders, policymakers, donors, and other audiences.
    • Reviews research and analysis products to ensure they match Sycamore’s style, tone, and politically neutral approach.
    • Creates frequent opportunities for print, digital, and broadcast media coverage across Tennessee with strong reporter relationships and compelling press releases, media advisories, op-eds, and pitches.
    • Creates and distributes email marketing and social media content to inform and grow our audience.
    • Maintains and updates Sycamore’s website to keep it current, secure, and user-friendly.
    • Tracks key metrics to measure communications output and performance.
    • Nurtures and protects Sycamore’s reputation as a reliable source of timely, accurate, and impartial information and analysis.
  • Engages and builds strong relationships with people and communities from across Tennessee to further Sycamore’s mission.
    • Leads our efforts to grow, nurture, and convene networks of diverse stakeholders around particular topics, sectors, and/or geographic areas.
    • Fosters productive, respectful dialogue between people who may disagree on a wide range of issues.
    • Plans and manages all aspects of in-person and online events, including content, audience, marketing, travel arrangements, and onsite logistics and support.
    • Solicits actionable feedback from network and event participants via formal surveys and informal conversations.
  • Collaborates with Sycamore’s staff and board of directors to execute our strategic plan.
    • Works with the research team to incorporate brand-consistent charts, infographics, photos, and other images into publications and communications channels.
    • Assists the Executive Director in creating and distributing fundraising materials.
    • Participates in internal staff meetings, trainings, and efforts to improve individual and team performance.
    • Performs other duties as assigned related to Sycamore’s mission.

Required Qualifications

  • Excellent writing, editing, organizational, and relationship-building skills.
  • At least 3-5 years of work experience in communications, marketing, community relations, or a related field.
  • Demonstrated interest in public policy at the local, state, or federal level.
  • Confident and approachable in social situations.
  • Initiative to learn new skills and information to fulfill the job duties, to problem-solve when faced with unexpected obstacles, and to suggest innovative ways to deliver on Sycamore’s mission.
  • Ability to manage a complex workload, balance multiple projects to achieve quality results in a timely manner, and build and sustain good relationships with diverse audiences.
  • Productive both independently and as a member of a small team, and maintains performance and self-control under pressure.
  • Strong personal convictions with an equal desire to understand different points of view.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Significant prior work experience managing an organization’s media relations, email marketing, social media accounts, and website (i.e. WordPress, Google Analytics, SEO).
  • Prior work experience with event planning and database management.
  • Experience translating complex topics and ideas (e.g. public policy or academic research) for an audience of non-experts.
  • Bachelor’s degree (or four years of relevant work experience) in communications, marketing, political science, history, English, or a related field.

Working at Sycamore

As a member of the Sycamore team, you can expect to have an impact on policy areas you care about and work with great colleagues who are fun, smart, and mission-driven. Our internal culture is essential to this work: we embrace collaboration, complexity, intellectual honesty, empathy, and disagreement. We reward skill, innovation, and hard work and provide ample flexibility and meaningful opportunities to learn and grow in ways that benefit both you and the organization.

We offer a comprehensive benefits package that meets employees’ needs during the various stages of their life – including paid time off and parental leave, medical and life insurance with dental and disability options, and a 401(k) matching option. The salary for the Communications & Engagement Manager position ranges from $65,000-$75,000, depending on level of skill and experience.

About the Sycamore Institute

Founded in 2015, the Sycamore Institute is an independent, nonpartisan public policy research center for Tennessee. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit with leadership and staff from across the political spectrum, our mission is to provide accessible, reliable data and research in pursuit of sound, sustainable policies that improve the lives of all Tennesseans. For more information, visit

To Apply

Email a resumé, cover letter, and writing sample of 1,000 words or less to No calls or in-person application submissions please.

The Sycamore Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and welcomes qualified candidates from all backgrounds and experience to apply for this position.

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