Communications and Marketing Director

Website Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum

Vesterheim seeks a full-time Communications and Marketing Director to lead the organization’s communications and marketing efforts. This Communications and Marketing Director will use creativity, vision, and strategic thinking to lead the organization’s communications and marketing efforts. A key emphasis of these efforts will focus on how the museum can successfully reach out to new audiences while still serving its traditional base of support.

In looking at these new audiences and how the museum’s facilities and programs will need to adapt, Vesterheim has also just completed a site master plan with the assistance of the international architectural firm Snøhetta. This master plan sets out a path for future development of Vesterheim’s properties, and also includes an institutional branding plan. The Communications and Marketing Director will be a key staff person in using this master plan, especially its branding component, as a resource to carefully communicate next steps to Vesterheim’s audience and to develop a new brand and visual identity for the organization.

The Communications and Marketing Director will also head our Communications and Marketing Team in its web, social media, advertising, and publications work. The Communications and Marketing Director, supported by this team, will also provide guidance to all museum departments by collecting institutional analytics, evaluating and developing marketing strategies, planning and coordinating marketing efforts, communicating the marketing plans to those involved, and building awareness and positioning for our organization’s brand.

Reports to:

President / CEO.

Duties and Responsibilities:

As the organization’s Communications and Marketing Director, the successful candidate will:
● Provide leadership in the areas of communications and marketing strategy and evaluation and serve as a department head in Vesterheim’s senior leadership team.
● Serve as the primary staff liaison for Vesterheim’s Communication and Marketing Committee, working closely with the committee’s Chair.
● Create and implement marketing and communications strategies aligned with Vesterheim’s vision, mission, and values.
● Follow the institutional brand, promote brand awareness, and expand organizational reach, while providing evaluation of results.
● Communicate the marketing plan internally to staff, volunteers, and board, and oversee the correct use of our organization’s brand and style guide. Attend other department meetings for communication of marketing goals.
● Ensure the development of institution-wide tracking processes, including the collection and interpretation of institutional analytics, including surveys.
● Provide market and competitor analysis to inform marketing strategy.
● Work with staff to develop marketing strategies for promotions and campaigns.
● Ensure that appropriate approvals and licenses are obtained and that messaging is compliant with 501©3 by-laws and local regulations (CAN-SPAM, CASL, GDPR, etc. Along with the President / CEO and Chief Financial Officer, work to create and defend Vesterheim-registered properties and copyrighted material.
● Participate in professional organizations related to nonprofit institutions and the communications and marketing profession.

As Communications and Marketing Department Head, the successful candidate will:
● Hire, direct, support, and evaluate the work of the Communications & Marketing team.
● Supervise staff in the production of high-quality and consistent communication/promotional materials and collateral, including all publications, advertising, social media, and web efforts.
● Oversee departmental budgets.
● Help develop and manage the organization’s advertising campaigns.
● Answer press questions and requests and arrange interviews.
● Lead department staff meetings.
● Represent the department staff at board-related functions.
● Meet with individual board members to discuss policy developments and to troubleshoot.

Minimum Requirements:

A bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, or business, with high competency in marketing plans, research, and strategies. A Master’s degree in a related field is preferred. Proven experience in running a marketing team and marketing campaigns. Five years applicable experience preferred.

Skills and Knowledge:

● Experience in marketing and overseeing a marketing team.
● Proven marketing campaign experience.
● High competence in marketing plans, research, and strategies.
● Effective time management skills and the ability to multitask.
● Strong copywriting and editorial skills.
● Attention to detail.
● Proven ability to manage budgets.
● Professional and proactive work ethic.
● Excellent interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills.
● Competency in Microsoft and Adobe applications.


To apply, email a letter, resume, and the names of three references to and

Or mail to Chris Johnson, Vesterheim President/CEO, and Marcia McKelvey, Director of Administration, Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum, P.O. Box 379, Decorah, IA 52101.

Applicants are reviewed on a rolling basis. Position is open until filled. Vesterheim is an EOE/AA.

Find information about Vesterheim benefits here (pdf).

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