Community Relations Manager

POSITION: Community Relations Manager
DEPARTMENT: Administration
RESPONSIBILITIES: The Whatcom County Library System (WCLS) seeks a proactive and innovative Community Relations Manager to provide strategic leadership in developing and executing the Library’s marketing, communications, digital strategy, and special project plans to meet the WCLS mission, goals and objectives; supervise Community Relations staff; and serve as a member of the management team. The Community Relations Manager is responsible for:
Executive leadership: Plan, develops and manage communications, marketing, and governmental affairs strategies to strengthen key relationships, identify public issues of interest and concern to WCLS, increase understanding and support of WCLS, and advance the library’s mission, vision, and goals. Lead the development, recommendation, and implementation of system-wide goals and objectives for community relations activities. Lead Library’s strategic communication activities to build and develop Library brand. Develop annual budget for the Community Relations department.
Market research: Identify needed research to better understand the needs of staff and patrons; develop and execute surveys and/or qualitative research; analyze research, compile statistics, prepare reports, and present findings.
Workflow: Receive, evaluate, and assign Community Relations work requests; determine feasibility, appropriate media, approach, and timelines for completion of work; work with external vendors as appropriate. Lead development and implementation of special projects.
Key relationships: Serve as liaison and fosters relationships with WCLS Friends Groups and Foundation. Serve as primary contact with the media. Participate in, and represent the Library at local and regional events.
Supervision: Hire, train, and supervise Community Relations staff; evaluate and make recommendations on staff development needs, staffing allocations and other personnel matters.
QUALIFICATIONS: You are a positive and enthusiastic leader and manager with a strong understanding of the full range of community relations activities and a passionate commitment to library service. You have excellent marketing and communication skills and a proven track record of building internal and external relationships to influence and build support for an organization or cause. You are knowledgeable about principles and procedures, best practices, trends and developments related to marketing, communications, graphic design, and copywriting. Requires the ability to speak, understand, and write English clearly and concisely. Requires a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Communications, Journalism, Public Relations, Marketing or a related field, five or more years’ recent, progressively responsible, and professional experience related to the duties of the position, including at least two years of supervisory experience, and possession of a value driver’s license with a clean driving record. Any combination of experience and training that would provide the required knowledge, skills and abilities will be considered. New employees are subject to a CRC (criminal records check) per RCW 43.43.832.
THE LIBRARY SYSTEM: WCLS has been sharing stories in Whatcom County since 1944, currently through ten branches, a bookmobile and outreach services. With a reputation for exceptional customer service, innovation, and fiscal accountability, WCLS holds a collection of more than 411,000 items and has implemented services such as downloadable eBooks, e-magazines, e-music and e-audiobooks, music streaming, chat reference service, text messaging, and a mobile app. WCLS strives to provide top-notch library services in an energetic environment that fosters professional growth, creative problem solving, collaboration and an appreciation for humor.
Community Relations Manager 01/17/2019 Page 2 of 2

LOCATION: Primary work location at WCLS Administrative Service Center, 5205 Northwest Drive, Bellingham, WA 98226. Perennially recognized by the national media as one of the best places to live in America, Whatcom County is a place that truly has something for everyone. With magnificent natural scenery, skiing and snowboarding at Mt. Baker, hiking, arts and theatre, and charming communities, Whatcom County is a unique area of Washington State. Located 90 minutes from Seattle and within an hour of Vancouver, British Columbia, the County is the perfect mix of friendly rural communities with the amenities and attractions of large cities nearby.
POSITION: FLSA exempt management position with 40 regular scheduled weekly hours; some evening and weekend hours may be necessary on an occasional basis. Successful candidates may be required to adapt to future schedule changes depending on library needs.
COMPENSATION: Hiring salary range between $82,975 and $ 87,954 annually (negotiable based on qualifications), with excellent benefits including paid vacation and sick leave, 12 paid holidays, employer-paid medical, dental, vision, and long-term disability insurance, Public Employees Retirement System, Employee Assistance Program (EAP), deferred compensation plan and supplemental benefits available, and a fun and innovative work environment that values the contributions of our employees.
POSTING DATES: Thursday, 01/17/19 to Friday, 02/15/19
APPLICATION: Submit a completed WCLS Application Packet* by 5:00 pm on Friday, 02/15/19 to:
Christina Read, Human Resources Manager Whatcom County Library System 5205 Northwest Drive Bellingham, WA 98226 Phone: (360) 305-3607 Email to:
* APPLICATION PACKET MUST INCLUDE:  Completed WCLS Employment Application (available at the address above, any branch library, or online at  Résumé and cover letter that illustrates your relevant professional experience in marketing and community relations, and how it would help you meet the demands of this position.  Answers to supplemental questions (available on
JOB BEGINS: As soon after hiring as possible.
SELECTION: Selection criteria may include the contents of the application, oral interviews, public presentation, and skills testing. Selection of applicants for further consideration and/or possible testing will be determined by the information supplied by the applicants on their applications and accompanying documents. It will be the responsibility of the applicant to supply sufficient information and detail on the application to permit WCLS to properly determine the applicant’s qualifications, abilities and attributes as they relate to the listed position. Interviews will be scheduled ONLY with best qualified applicants, based upon applications, résumés and other documents received, and test results. Applicants who need accommodation during the application, testing or interview process should contact Human Resources.


Please enclose your responses to the following questions with your cover letter, résumé, and WCLS Employment Application Form when applying for the position of Community Relations Manager for the Whatcom County Library System.

Please limit your responses to no more than one page per question.

1. Some people say that public libraries are dying and no longer relevant. What is your response to this?

2. Talk about a time when you have talked to the media in your professional career. What was the message? How did you prepare and make sure the information was accurate? What did you do to ensure your points were heard? What follow-up was required?

3. The Community Relations Manager is a complex position, combining strategic leadership with dayto-day tasks and managing a team. Describe how you balance these roles and the specific tools you have used to keep organized and communicate deadlines and responsibilities to your team members.