Developmental Disabilities Institute

Smithtown, NY

Director Of Communications and Government Relations

$83,000-$107,000 / YEAR


Developmental Disabilities Institute, DDI, is one of the largest providers of care to children and adults with Autism, developmental disabilities and other special needs. DDI has been a part of Long Island for over 50 years serving over 1,500 children and adults with Autism, other developmental disabilities and special needs. DDI provides innovative and expansive services to our population through various educational settings, residential services, day habilitation programs and vocational services.

The Director of Communications and Government Relations is a role essential to executing the agency’s communications and responsible for agency-wide strategic and annual planning. They will report directly to the Executive Director and serve as a member of the senior management team. They will be joining a new and emerging communication’s department with a base foundation that needs to be built out, and will have the purview to bring on the assets needed to develop strong internal and external communications and advocacy strategies for the future.

Job Requirements


  • Responsible for conceptualizing and overseeing the execution of DDI’s communications on all fronts including media outreach, digital and social media, internal communications, fundraising efforts, events and publications.
  • Lead the development, implementation and evaluation of DDI’s communication and marketing strategies, objectives and projects to advance the agency’s mission and increase DDI’s visibility amongst key stakeholders, including media, policymakers and donors.
  • Coordinate agency-wide communications and public image efforts to differentiate DDI from other providers in the eyes of all stakeholders in ways that reinforce commitment to our values.
  • Build and enrich relationships with federal, state and local officials and their staff and lead the advocacy efforts for the agency.
  • Engage directly with elected officials and their staff to discuss public policy issues and legislation and provide guidance and mentorship to staff advocacy efforts.
  • Implement measurement tools and metrics to ensure that internal and external communications efforts build meaningful engagement and broaden DDI awareness and ensure they are meeting/exceeding targets. Working with the Communications Committee of the Board, reevaluate plans regularly to check progress and ROI, and adjust as necessary.
  • Collaborate with executive and senior leadership and the Board of Directors to develop communications strategies and channels that will broaden programmatic reach and deepen impact.
  • Manage and facilitate the generation of online website, social media, intranet and print content that engages target audiences and advance DDI’s brand identity.
  • Develop relationships with members of the media, government and peer networks to create new opportunities for DDI.
  • Ensure the organization’s vision, purpose, and values are appropriately reflected in all communications.


  • BS/BA Degree in Communications and five or more years of management experience with a similar human services organization.
  • 10 years of proven successful experience in communications, marketing and public relations.
  • Experience developing and implementing communications strategies across all forms of media. Excellent writing/editing and verbal communication skills.
  • A strong track record as an implementer who thrives on managing a variety of key initiatives concurrently.
  • Relationship builder with the flexibility and finesse to “manage by influence.”
  • High energy, maturity, and leadership with the ability to serve as a unifying force to position communications discussions at both the strategic and tactical levels.
  • Highly collaborative working style with all constituent groups, including staff, board members, donors, program participants, and other supporters.
  • Self-starter, able to work independently and entrepreneurially;
  • Ability to create and implement new initiatives.
  • Strong commitment to the agency’s mission, purpose, and values.

DDI is committed to providing an environment of mutual respect where equal employment opportunities are available to all applicants and employees without regard to actual or perceived race, color, sex, pregnancy, reproductive decision making, gender expression or identity, national origin, disability, military status, creed, religion, age, sexual orientation, marital status, genetic information, status as a victim of domestic violence or any other group protected by federal, state or local law. We are committed to creating a deep sense of belonging and a culture where all applicants and employees feel welcomed, valued and respected. We are people inspired by purpose.