scientists backpacking through terrain

Current Employment Opportunities with Panthera

Panthera's Background
Unlike any other conservation organization in the world, Panthera’s sole mission is the range-wide conservation of the world’s 38 species of wild cats. We are the largest wild cat conservation organization in the world in terms of global outreach, funding to the field, and staff expertise. Panthera is a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization founded in 2006.

Panthera’s core strategies are grounded in rigorous scientific research, political engagement with heads of state and national land-use agencies, and education and outreach activities for local communities living in areas with big cats. Our large-scale initiatives with tigers, lions, jaguars, and snow leopards currently involve more than 50 countries and span three continents. We not only fund cat conservation initiatives, but act as a conservation think-tank that supports innovative people, programs, and ideas across the conservation spectrum. Much of Panthera's work is based in a spatial context and the Landscape Analysis Lab is central to Panthera's overall goals and day-to-day operations.

Position title:  Director of Communications                                            

Location:  Panthera’s Headquarters, New York, NY                           

Reports to:  Chief Operating Officer

The Organization

Panthera, founded in 2006, is devoted exclusively to the conservation of wild cats and their ecosystems. Utilizing the expertise of the world’s premier cat biologists, Panthera develops and implements global conservation strategies for the most imperiled large cats – tigers, lions, jaguars, snow leopards, cheetahs, pumas and leopards. Representing the most comprehensive effort of its kind, Panthera works in partnership with local and international NGOs, scientific institutions, local communities and governments around the globe. For more on Panthera, visit

Summary/Position Overview

Panthera seeks a communications leader to build a brand and greatly expanded constituency as the organization enters its second decade in 2016.

The Director of Communications will lead an initial team of six (6) and coordinate Panthera’s overall communications strategy while contributing to the organizational strategic planning process. 

The Director of Communications will develop a world-class communications plan, directly managing communications activities that promote, enhance, and protect Panthera’s brand. He/she will be responsible for the development, integration, and implementation of a broad range of public relations and marketing activities relative to our strategic direction and positioning.

Reporting initially to the Chief Operating Officer, the Director of Communications will work collaboratively with senior leadership to advance the organization's position with relevant constituents, as well as to drive broader awareness and donor support for the organization through media channels. The Director of Communications is responsible for developing and implementing external communication strategies, organizational messaging, online appeals and campaigns, celebrity engagement, marketing, and public engagement activities. 

Principal responsibilities and duties

Communications Strategy, Vision and Leadership

  • Develop and implement an integrated strategic communications plan to advance Panthera’s brand; broaden awareness of its programs and priorities; and increase the visibility of its programs across key stakeholder audiences
  • Create marketing/public relations strategy that will allow leadership to cultivate and enhance meaningful relationships with targeted, high-level external audiences, including the media and key influencers
  • Develop and determine Panthera’s celebrity engagement strategy for engaging high profile luminaries in a way that best serves the organization’s overall interests and broader strategy
  • Identify challenges and emerging issues faced by the organization. Work with the leadership team and staff to recognize communications opportunities and solutions, and define and execute appropriate strategies to support them
  • Serve as communications counselor to Panthera’s leadership
  • Oversee development of all print communications including the annual report, marketing collateral materials and electronic communications including Panthera’s website and new media
  • Exercise judgment to prioritize media opportunities, and prepare talking points, speeches, presentations and other supporting material as needed
  • Oversee and actively engage and cultivate press relationships to ensure coverage of Panthera’s programs, special events, public announcements, and other projects
  • Manage relationships with associated vendors
  • Oversee the day-to-day activities of the communications function including budgeting, planning and staff development
  • Manage a communications team to support the development and execution of the communications strategy
  • Promote a culture of high performance and continuous improvement that values learning and a commitment to quality
  • Mentor and develop staff using a supportive and collaborative approach on a consistent basis
  • Establish and manage staff performance and development goals, assign accountabilities, set objectives, establish priorities, conduct performance appraisals, and administer salary adjustments in alignment with Panthera’s procedures and processes

Communications Operations

Team Development/Management

Qualifications and experience required

The ideal candidate has the following skills, educational training, and qualities:

  • Bachelor's degree in journalism, communications, or related field is required, an advanced degree is preferred
  • Minimum 7 years’ experience in a management role either in-house or with an agency
  • Demonstrated experience managing a comprehensive strategic communications, media relations, and marketing program to advance an organization's mission and goals
  • Innovative thinker, with a track record for translating strategic thinking into action plans. Ability to work at both a strategic and tactical levels.
  • Demonstrated skill and comfort in proactively building relationships/partnerships with top tier reporters and editors, and in successfully positioning an organization’s issues with the media to achieve high-impact placements
  • Working knowledge of the conservation field highly desirable
  • Creative and thoughtful on how new media technologies can be utilized to advance our mission
  • Demonstrates a high degree of professionalism, teamwork, excellent judgment, and creative problem solving skills. Anticipates future needs and is results-oriented
  • Excellent and persuasive communicator; solid writing and editing skills
  • Ability to work in a changing environment and strive for clarity while Panthera scales its operations; responsive to staff and team needs
  • Excellent management skills; ability to influence and engage direct and indirect reports and peers; experienced building, mentoring and coaching a team of communications specialists
  • Has the stature, gravitas, and confidence to gain the credibility and respect of high-performing donors, constituents, and Board of Directors
  • Passionate about Panthera’s mission