Position Summary

The Knight First Amendment Institute defends the freedoms of speech and the press in the digital age through strategic litigation, research, and public education. Through our work, we promote a system of free expression that is open and inclusive; that broadens and elevates public discourse; and that fosters creativity, accountability, and effective self-government.

Since its establishment in 2016, the Institute has filed precedent-setting litigation, undertaken major interdisciplinary research initiatives, and become an influential voice in debates about the freedoms of speech and the press in the digital age. Its active litigation docket includes cutting-edge cases relating to transparency, surveillance, and social media. Through its research program, the Institute has hosted leading thinkers as visiting scholars and published influential essays focused on emerging threats to the system of free expression. It has also hosted public events on issues including new technology and public discourse, data journalism and the law, the First Amendment and inequality, national-security journalism, and the implications for public discourse of economic concentration in the technology sector.

Reporting to the Communications Director, the Coordinator will carry out a broad range of communications and operational responsibilities, including maintaining the Institute’s website and communications databases, helping to plan and execute events both inside and outside the university, and coordinating and contributing to a range of research and communications projects,including publications and multimedia productions. The Communications Coordinator must be organized, resourceful, detailed-oriented, willing to learn new skills, able to work both independently and collaboratively, and enthusiastic about the Institute’s mission.  


  • Schedule and coordinate meetings for the Communications team.
  • Working closely with communications staff, assist with posting content to the Institute’s website and social media platforms, manage online content production, and maintain the Institute’s growing online document and image archives, including its Digital Asset Management account.
  • Work with the Media and Social Media Manager to assist with dissemination of Institute press releases and other press materials.
  • Work closely with Research Program staff members to coordinate publication and event planning processes.
  • Maintain e-lists and draft and coordinate regular Institute communications with supporters, contributors, and funders, including working with Mailchimp and EventBrite interfaces.
  • Develop and maintain press databases, track press clips and media reach, prepare coverage and analytic reports.
  • Maintain Communications Manual and procedural guides to preserve institutional memory and consistency across platforms.
  • Liaise with vendors for events and other communications services, including printers, designers, and developers.
  • Coordinate all aspects of Institute-sponsored public events at Columbia University and in outside venues, including event logistics, participant support, event promotion and publicity, and press relations.
  • Assist with event production, including video recording, livestreaming, and post-production as needed.
  • Manage event volunteers and undergraduate communications interns.
  • Perform related duties and responsibilities as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent and 0-2 years of relevant experience required.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, judgment and tact in dealing with confidential information.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong computer skills, including proficiency with Microsoft Office and Outlook.
  • Flexibility and ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently while working proactively and cooperatively in a team-oriented, start-up environment.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Facility with Microsoft Word and Excel.
  • Experience with Word Press, Mailchimp, EventBrite, InDesign, and PhotoShop a plus.

Other Requirements

To apply, please submit the following materials through the Columbia website here

  • Cover letter explaining your interest in the position, including a description of any relevant life or work experience
  • Resume
  • Two writing samples

Additional information may be requested during the application process.