Communications & Narrative Director

Oakland, California, United States | Narrative & Influence | Full-time | Fully remote


Reports to: (incoming) Associate Director (who leads narrative and campaign strategies)

Location: home office in greater East Bay; or Fresno or Los Angeles office (closed currently, however)

Employment Type: Full-Time, Exempt, Staff Position, At-Will

Ideal Start Date: November 16, 2021

Power California harnesses the energy of young voters of color and their families to create a state that is equitable, inclusive and just for everyone who calls California home. We are a growing, statewide, multiracial civic engagement organization dedicated to building the power of young people at the ballot box so that we can reshape California, our democracy, and the systems and policies that harm our communities. Power California is a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) charitable organization with a sibling 501(c)(4) organization, PowerCA Action, and locations in Oakland, Merced, Fresno, and Los Angeles.


Power California is looking for a creative, innovative, and effective leader to oversee our strategies to shift narratives about young voters of color and to advance a more just and equitable California. The Communications & Narrative Director drives communications and cultural strategies to build support for a young people’s agenda and to influence young people across the state, through a variety of channels, materials, and media platforms. The person in this role must be creative, innovative, strategic, flexible, and unafraid of challenges; possess expertise in strategic communications and narrative strategy; and have the relationship management skills to lead the work of building influential narrative strategies and campaigns. This position supervises the Senior Narrative Strategist and the soon-to-be-hired Digital Campaign Strategist, and works closely with the two of them and the former's direct report, the Social Media Coordinator, to ensure that strategic communications and narrative goals and outcomes are achieved.


Narrative and Communications Strategies

  • Leads and oversees the development and alignment of narrative and influence strategies, framing, and messaging for both the 501(c)3 and 501(c)4 entities’ electoral and policy campaigns
  • Builds and directs strong, well-informed narrative and communications strategies that incorporate policy, organizing, and field campaign strategies, working closely with narrative and influence department staff, supervisor, and Deputy Director
  • Drives development of strategic communications plans for campaigns to amplify our message utilizing earned media, digital strategies, cultural strategies and other tools, with the support of the narrative and influence department staff
  • Analyzes media and narrative landscapes, makes meaning of current events, identifies opportunities or challenges to advance narratives, and pivots accordingly
  • Leads research efforts such as polling, surveys, or focus group that lead to strategic messaging relevant to young people of color
  • Ensures strong and relevant digital communications presence and consistent narrative across all our channels, including, but not limited to, email, social media, and other digital arenas
  • Oversees development of digital organizing campaigns and strategies to build membership base, working closely with the organizing department
  • Utilizes and integrates cultural strategies, such as art, pop culture, swag, artist and influencer engagement, as a key a part of narrative work
  • Ensures the development of strategic short-term and long-term narrative and influence department agendas for both entities, working closely with the Associate Directors, Deputy Director, and Executive Director, and in partnership with staff, partner organizations, and youth activists

Branding and Positioning

  • Oversees organizational brand strategies for both Power California and PowerCA Action, primarily to position as political homes for young people of color and to build membership
  • Leads development of swag (T-shirts and other branded products), a central narrative and cultural strategy of the organization
  • Ensures communication of a consistent and relevant brand to young people across our platforms, channels, and materials
  • Ensures visibility of our work in earned media outlets and among funders, donors and allies
  • Works closely with the Development Team to develop messaging and marketing materials for fundraising campaigns
  • Collaborates with supervisor, Deputy Director, and Executive Director to position organization’s narrative and cultural strategies work with funders

Movement Building

  • Ensures 501(c)3 and 501(c)4 narrative strategies are informed and implemented with Power California Alliance partner organizations
  • Builds the narrative and strategic communications skills and capacities of partner organizations through trainings and structured programming
  • Leads and sets the narrative agenda and provides leadership within key coalitions to help drive and align narrative strategies with external allies and partners

Staff Supervision

  • Recruits, hires, trains, and managesthe soon-to-be-hired Digital Campaign Strategist and the Senior Narrative Strategist, and oversees the latter's supervision of the Social Media Coordinator
  • Develops the leadership of the entire narrative and influence department
  • Ensures coverage for critical functions of unfilled directly-reporting positions, consulting with members of the executive team and the leadership team as necessary

Budget Management

  • Plans and manages the communications campaign and marketing department budgets for both the 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) entities, as approved by the Executive Director within the organizational budgets, and working closely with their supervisor and finance staff as needed
  • Reviews and authorizes all communications campaign and marketing department bills for payment, ensuring timely payment and proper accounting coding for accurate budget-to-actual reporting


Communications Qualifications

  • Minimum 5 years’ experience working in the field of strategic communications
  • Significant experience setting communications metrics, goals, and outcomes and directing a team to meet them, including mass communications campaigns reaching hundreds of thousands via email, social media, phone, texting, and door-to-door campaigns
  • Strong experience drafting core narrative analyses, frames, messaging, and talking points and managing relationships to move narratives within local, state and national media outlets
  • Strong experience developing effective digital strategies, including familiarity with digital ad campaigns via Facebook/Instagram, Google ads, YouTube and other digital advertising platforms
  • Familiarity with mass communications platforms, such as EveryAction, and experience with cultural and influencer strategies preferred
  • Strong eye for design and trends relevant to young people of color a must
  • Excellent writing skills and ability to write for mass media platforms, including, but not limited to, digital and earned media publications

Management Qualifications

  • Minimum 3 years’ managerial experience leading and managing a team of at least 2 to 3 staff
  • Experienced coach/supervisor and budget manager/director
  • Strong experience in developing strategy; ability to assess landscape opportunities and drive strategies to seize opportunities; able to troubleshoot and make course corrections as landscapes shifts
  • Ability to simultaneously hold the “big picture” and long-term strategies alongside day-to-day priorities and details for successful implementation
  • Track record of accomplishing organizational goals and employing best strategies to achieve goals

Additional Qualifications

  • Passion for and experience in working with young people of color, especially from an intersectional perspective, including LGBTQIA+ communities
  • Familiarity with 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) structures, and PACs
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Excellent cross-cultural skills, including the ability to communicate with people at all levels and from various backgrounds
  • Excellent verbal communication, presentation, and facilitation skills
  • Excellent cross-cultural skills, including the ability to communicate with people at all levels and from various backgrounds
  • Excellent verbal communication, presentation, and facilitation skills
  • Flexible, team-oriented approach to problem-solving
  • Flexible, team-oriented approach to problem-solving; knows how to lead with a collaborative style to get input and support for strategies from other team members
  • Ability to keep sensitive information confidential, exercise good judgment, stay aware of others’ needs
  • Thrives in a fast-paced environment; independent, proactive and able to work under the pressure of tight deadlines and changing priorities; comfortable with on-the-ground learning
  • Commitment to embodying the change we seek; able to act with integrity, compassion, and openness to feedback
  • Familiarity with grassroots organizing, advocacy and electoral engagement techniques
  • Bilingual or multilingual a plus
  • Ability to adjust work activity as needed and manage multiple projects according to timelines
  • Must be computer-literate, with basic skills in word processing, spreadsheets, web/email applications, graphics/layout programs, and other work-related applications; Macintosh knowledge preferred
  • Some nights and weekends required; during campaign season, it’s frequent
  • Must have a working cell phone with a data plan and a working home Internet connection with adequate speed
  • Ability to travel frequently, within California and nationally, for periods of 1 to 4 days at a time, 5 to 10 times per year
  • Must have unlimited access to a reliable automobile and have the ability to drive; valid California driver’s license and, if driving own car, proof of adequate insurance coverage required
  • Based in or near Oakland, Los Angeles, or Fresno, California (within 25 miles); some telework privileges may be granted
  • Because of the job duties of this position, a criminal background check will be required as a condition of an employment offer

Compensation and Benefits

  • Salary range of $85,000–$95,000
  • Generous PTO
  • Platinum medical benefits: health, dental, and vision, with limited chiropractic and acupuncture
  • Life and AD&D insurance with a modest benefit
  • Robust short- and long-term disability insurance
  • Flexible spending accounts
  • 401k savings plan (no match yet)

Physical Demands

  • Ability to work at a computer, speaking and typing, for extended periods of time
  • Ability to lift and carry up to 20 pounds

To Apply

Please submit your cover letter, resume, 2–3 references, and 2–3 writing samples via the "Apply for this position" button. Although hiring remains open until the position is filled, preference will be given to applications received by September 28, 2021.


Power California is a values-based organization with a deep commitment to building transformative culture and challenging oppression in all its forms. We abide by all city and state “Ban the Box” laws.

We invite all qualified candidates to apply. This includes people with disabilities, with diverse cultural and gender identities, and of African and indigenous descent, who are strongly encouraged to apply.