Job Opening: Communications Associate, Van Andel Institute

Job Description:

(Click here to apply)

This is not an entry level position; it does require 4 to 9 years of post-graduate professional work experience.

Van Andel Institute is currently inviting qualified candidates to apply for a Communications Associate II position, within our Department of Development, Marketing & Communications (DC&M). This person will provide communication support to VAI’s Development Office which is focused on expanding the national profile of VAI to produce sustaining private financial support for cancer and neurodegenerative research and science education.

As a Communications Associate II on our team, you will be involved in:

• Researching, writing, and disseminating news releases, feature stories, photo releases, calendar announcements and story pitches to appropriate news media outlets.

• Drafting, developing, and distributing pitch letters, media advisories, press releases, photo captions and other forms of media correspondence.

• Directing, coordinating and developing strategic and tactical plans for consideration including confidential and sensitive topics.

• Managing project interface with web designer to ensure proper positioning and treatment of relevant communications and marketing website content and graphics on VAI internal and external websites.

• Identifying, acquiring and managing content; building and branding social media sites; and monitoring conversations and activity for new business or fund development initiatives.

• Responding to media inquiries and making appropriate arrangements for interviews with VAI staff.

• Supporting daily public relations activities, such as updating media lists, writing and distributing press materials, distributing media coverage reports, fielding incoming media inquiries.

• Ensuring message consistency across all materials and proofread content for proper grammar usage, typographical errors, and content accuracy; utilize skills in the area of writing, editing, and proofing of different types of content (web, email, print).

Required Skills

Qualified candidates will have:

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills including thorough understanding of correct grammar and public speaking presentation skills
  • Ability to work well under pressure and deadlines and be flexible and adaptable to unexpected changes
  • Significant experience in an online/Web-based communications environment required, including digital marketing and communications and search engine marketing and optimization, i.e. templates, CMS, and Word Press.

Required Experience

To join our team you will need to have at least:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Public Relations, Communications, English, or Liberal Arts; MBA or Master’s degree in Communications and APR or PCM accreditation preferred;
  • 4 to 9 years of post-graduate professional work experienc
  • Demonstrated experience with media (print, television, radio, digital) and in media relations
  • Demonstrated experience in writing news releases, feature stories, pitch letters, statements and talking points and ability to create targeted messages for a variety of media outlets
  • Non-profit and life sciences/research experience preferred

This full-time, exempt position includes the following benefits:

  • Medical, dental, and vision
  • Employer sponsored Life and AD&D insurance
  • Additional voluntary term Life and AD&D insurance for employees and dependents
  • Short-term and long-term disability insurance
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Flexible spending accounts for medical and dependent care expenses
  • 401(k) retirement savings plan with employee/employer contributions
  • Paid vacation, personal days, and holidays

To apply for this position, submit a resume and a cover letter outlining your degree and your relevant post-graduate professional work experience.

VAI is EEO Employer/Female/Minority/Vet/Disability

Job LocationGrand Rapids, Michigan, United StatesPosition TypeFull-Time/Regular

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Job Opening: Marketing Manager

The Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance is hiring for a marketing manager at their Holland office. Information including how to apply is below. 


Responsible for development, execution and measurement of all of the Diversity Alliance’s marketing, communication, and public relations activities to enhance the organization’s image and position in Michigan, promote services and support the growth of the organization. Takes the lead in maintaining website information, utilizing social media, developing our monthly e-newsletter, creating brochures and print media, marketing special events and coordinating overall public relations efforts. Reports to the Executive Director.


Marketing, communications and public relations

  • Provide technical assistance and develop resource materials to successfully market Diversity Alliance programs, special events and fund development opportunities in West Michigan and beyond.
  • Write and edit engaging copy, select powerful graphics and design formats for all of the Diversity Alliance’s marketing materials and communication initiatives. Publish and distribute final products.
  • Maintain consistent branding in all of the Diversity Alliance’s print and electronic materials, internally and externally.
  • Regularly update all marketing materials and make sure marketing materials are organized and accessible.
  • Develop, manage and execute a vibrant content plan for monthly e-newsletters and regular e-blasts.
  • Update Diversity Alliance websites regularly with relevant and inspiring material.
  • Ensure the Diversity Alliance has an active and compelling social media presence.
  • Establish and maintain working relationships with local media. Reach out and interact with media as necessary. Respond to media requests.
  • Oversee online registrations for programs and special events.
  • Assist with, or lead, special projects as assigned.

Organizational strategy

  • Execute the marketing/communication strategy as established by the Diversity Alliance’s Marketing Strategy Committee.

Planning and budgeting

  • Prepare an annual budget request to fund the resources needed to achieve marketing, communications and public relations goals and objectives.
  • Ensure that evaluation systems are in place to measure the effectiveness of strategies, marketing materials and communications initiatives.
  • Monitor trends and developments in marketing, communications and public relations fields.


  • Maintain a climate that attracts, retains and motivates top quality personnel – paid and volunteer.


  •  Previous experience in a marketing/communications role, demonstrated track record of supporting high-impact communications and marketing strategies.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work collaboratively.
  • Excellent writing skills, including strong copy editing and proofreading skills.
  • Solutions-oriented; the ability to effectively problem solve and rebound from setbacks.
  • Experience designing and producing print materials and publications as well as maintaining web content.
  • Up-to-date knowledge of social media marketing and the ability and willingness to stay current with trends.
  • Computer literacy in Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), Google platforms, desktop publishing, website design, photo editing, event management and donor management software.
  • Ability to execute multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Experience developing and managing budgets.


3-5 years preferred of progressively responsible experience in marketing, communications, or public relations, including at least one year in marketing in the nonprofit sector.


Bachelor’s degree in marketing, journalism, or public relations.

Position will be open until filled.

Please send resume with a compelling cover letter to:

For more information on the Diversity Alliance, please visit

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Job opening: Marketing Project Coordinator

Gentex is seeking a Marketing Project Coordinator. Details for the position are below. Interested candidates are encouraged to apply online at


  • Product marketing initiatives to include:
    • Help produce sales tools and related product training materials
    • Help coordinate trade shows, customer technology expos and special events
    • Help update Gentex web sites
    • Help conduct market, product and competitive intelligence, benchmarking and analyses
    • Help coordinate and conduct marketing research projects
    • Help maintain and update customer presentations and related distribution/content management systems
    • Act as a resource to foreign sales offices with marketing needs
  • Support other corporate departments and functions with communications needs:
    • Help coordinate social media tool usage
    • Help support financial and shareholder communications, public relations and news dissemination as necessary
    • Support human resources recruiting and internal employee communications
    • Help develop technical communications (i.e. owners manuals, products instructions, etc.)


  • Provide administrative assistance to department heads as necessary
  • Help monitor the correct usage of the company’s brand identity elements
  • Provide benchmarking activities necessary to improve feature packaging and take rates
  • Help coordinate photo shoots, video productions, etc.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in marketing, communications, public relations or related field preferred
  • Excellent communications skills — written and oral — as well as strong project management abilities; computer literacy and graphic design skills helpful
  • Entry-level experience (2-5 years) in related marketing or communications field preferred


  • This person must maintain confidentiality on critical company information
  • This person must maintain a high level of company loyalty, confidentiality, honesty, and integrity
  • Requires a person who is creative, resourceful, and highly self-motivated with excellent people skills and personality suited for a fast-paced, innovative environment


This position reports to the Director of Marketing.

Please apply online at

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Job Opening: Truscott Rossman- Senior Account Executive, Health Care Specialist

Truscott Rossman is seeking an experienced communications professional to serve as a counselor and consultant for our clients in the health care industry. Position details are below and interested candidates can submit information to


  1. Formulate and implement strategies developed to meet the public relations and image management needs of our clients, with an emphasis in the health care field.
  2. Develop messaging and collateral materials to communicate clients’ messages to target audiences
  3. Create and monitor communications strategies and tactics for clients to ensure their messages will be effectively received.
  4. Build relationships of trust with clients, representatives of the media, and governmental officials.
  5. Manage issues impacting clients; develop and adjust strategies that will place clients in the

best possible position to achieve their goals.

  1. Proposal writing in support of the firm’s business
  2. Other duties as

Abilities and Skills:

  • Excellent writing skills
  • Strong understanding of public relations strategies and tactics
  • Ability to develop relationships with key journalists and media outlets
  • Outstanding interpersonal communication skills
  • Able to prioritize, meet deadlines, and handle multiple tasks effectively
  • Robust knowledge of social media best practices, tools and tactics
  • Strong computer skills – especially word processing and presentation Knowledge of graphic design and video editing software a plus.
  • Analytical thinking and creative problem solving

Minimum education:

Bachelors degree in public relations, journalism, advertising, communication, or related field .

Minimum experience:

Two to five years experience in public relations, communications , marketing, journalism, or other related experience, with an emphasis in health care.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Upcoming Event: Why APR?

Have you ever thought about earning your PR Accreditation? As a PR Pro and member of WMPRSA, you are invited to join us for an informal event to learn how you can Craft Your Flight for a 2015 APR Journey. Mix and mingle, have a flight of craft beer on us, and learn more during an informal Q&A session at 6 pm.
When: Tuesday, April 14 5:30-7:00 pm
Where: Grand Rapids Brewing Company, private room, 1 Ionia Ave., downtown Grand Rapids
Cost: Only what you’d like to consume beyond the first flight.
Questions: Contact Christine Hoek, APR, WMPRSA APR Chair,
RSVP by Monday, April 13.
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Why Accreditation? Six Reasons to Consider in Gaining APR

By Dr. Patrick Bishop, APR

“All excellence things are as difficult as they are rare,” so goes the old adage. The process of gaining Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) isn’t easy, but with some hard work, good direction, and persistence, you can succeed. Here are six reasons you should consider adding APR to your list of credentials.

  1. Continuous Learning

The process to become Accredited in Public Relations is thorough and multi-faceted. Successful candidates must demonstrate core competencies of public relations in a variety of categories including research, ethics, communication theory, business literacy, and media relations, just to name a few. Going through the APR process is an excellent way to brush-up existing skills or gain more PR knowledge. There are many resources to help you along the path, including a sample test, online study course, recommended texts, and a comprehensive study guide that outlines all the information you’ll need to know. Maintaining APR requires some minimal upkeep, which signifies your commitment to lifelong learning within your field of expertise.

  1. APR is a Symbol of Excellence

Accreditation in Public Relations was established in 1964 as a way to “recognize practitioners who have mastered the knowledge, skills and abilities needed to develop and deliver strategic communications” ( Similar to an accountant becoming a CPA, gaining APR status is an important distinction signifying your PR excellence. It offers credible, external proof that you not only create and implement high quality PR tactics, but you understand the strategic importance of public relations.

  1. Higher Pay & More Job Opportunities

Credibility and responsibility come with Accreditation. Research has shown that APRs earn more money, report to higher-levels of management, and engage in more strategic discussions than their non-accredited peers.  Additionally, gaining APR can significantly help your career advancement, opening doors for promotion and new job offers. In a 2010 research study of upper-level PR managers in Grand Rapids, an interesting finding was the advancement opportunities for those who gained accreditation.

  1. APR is Quicker, Cheaper & More Applicable than a Master’s

Accreditation costs are approximately $400 and the process must be completed within one year; many candidates complete it less than six months. A master’s degree typically takes at least two-years, with minimum costs around $600 per credit hour (30 credits = $18,000; not including books & supplies). Accreditation is a relatively quick, and significantly less expensive, way to increase competency and earn a credible designation of skill and excellence. Plus, Accreditation is focused on practical PR within the framework of the business-world. A master’s degree is a great option, but, in addition to taking more time and money, many master’s programs are typically more focused on theory versus real-world application.

  1. Personal Satisfaction

According to the field of psychology and social sciences, most of us do things because it feels good. Gaining APR is an accomplishment that feels great. Yes, it does require some ongoing maintenance, but gaining APR is fulfilling and it’s a designation you can have for the rest of your life.

  1. Advance the Profession

Spin doctors, buzz agents, and flash-in-the-pan promoters have given PR a bad name. In the ethical code of conduct for PRSA members, we are required to advance the profession of public relations. One way to do this is by gaining Accreditation. In becoming accredited, you are doing your part to ensure our profession not only gains respect in the public realm, but also gains credibility within the E-suite.

Are you ready to make an investment in yourself, your future, and your profession? West Michigan PRSA has a large number of accredited professionals ready to help. To pursue your APR, contact Christine Hoek, WMPRSA APR Committee Chair, at You can also find a variety of APR resources at

Dr. Patrick Bishop, APR, is Professor and Program Champion of Ferris State University’s nationally certified PR program. You can contact him at

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Job Opening: Davenport University, Assistant Director of Alumni Communications & Development

Davenport University is looking for an Assistant Director of Alumni Communications & Development.

The Assistant Director of Alumni Communications and Development is responsible for the development and implementation of a comprehensive communication plan for alumni. An equally important aspect of the position is the management of a portfolio of donors and prospective donors numbering approximately 50-75 persons and organizations. This position is responsible for building relationships with alumni to identify, analyze, solicit, and cultivate donors to increase funds raised that support the University’s students, programs, and capital projects. These responsibilities are performed in an ethical manner consistent with the University’s mission, vision and cultural values. The position assists in meeting the twin goals of strengthening alumni bonds through communication and increasing financial support for the university. Please read full job description for more details and to apply.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment