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Programs & Communications Manager

Cave Canem Foundation, Inc.

Nov 2012

Original Post

Posted on:
September 30, 2019
Posted in:

Job Posting: Programs & Communications Manager

Status: Full-time/Exempt

Salary Range: Competitive

Reports to: Executive Director

Cave Canem Foundation, Inc. is the premier institution for supporting the many voices of Black poetry: the home of the nation’s largest collection of Black writers. Formed in 1996 as a response to the lack of support and resources for poets of African descent, Cave Canem has become the national leader within the poetry community moving toward greater racial diversity, inclusion and accessibility in the field. The organization is entering a pivotal moment in its history and future as we prepare to celebrate our 25th Anniversary. In 24 years, Cave Canem has become an influential movement with a renowned faculty, high achieving national fellowship of over 400 and a workshop community of 950 plus.

Cave Canem has had a dynamic impact on poetry in the U.S. and on the lives and careers of poets in the diaspora. An NEA study published in 2018 found that poetry readership has doubled in the past five years, with people of color now reading poetry at the highest rates. The American Academy of Poets has listed Cave Canem and several of the culturally-specific poetry organizations modeled after our programming as one of the primary drivers of this increased engagement. As we approach our 25th anniversary in 2021, our primary goal is to sustain and expand our structure and programming to meet this demand, while continuing to make the poetic landscape more accessible for those who are turning to it most.



Program Manager

Plan, oversee and implement all elements of Cave Canem programming.

In collaboration with the Executive Director, maintain, develop, expand, set goals and outcomes for Cave Canem’s programs.

Ensure programs meet set goals, objectives and deadlines.

Ensure adherence to program budgets.

Set timetables and develop agendas for discussion of programs with Executive Director (ED), consultants and designated advisors.

Administer contracts, invoices and correspondence with faculty, guest speakers, prize-winners, vendors and others.

Manage logistics of site-specific programs: schedule coverage; supervise assistants, volunteers, interns and working fellows; coordinate book vending.

Serve as program-related spokesperson at public events.

Evaluate programs, track attendance and other outcomes. Identify and report programming challenges and successes on an ongoing basis.

Prepare program-related narrative reports for grants and other institutional needs.

Position programs to strategically advance fundraising and cultivation efforts.

Perform program-related administrative tasks as needed.

Stay abreast of industry trends and constituency feedback.

This position requires some travel throughout the year.



Oversee all internal and external communication for Cave Canem programming, ensuring messages are consistent and engaging.

Develop copy for and proactively promote events, opportunities and organizational and

stakeholder achievements via social media, iContact, website, press releases, electronic calendar postings and outreach to media and selected funders.

Develop copy for and implement submittable online system documents, writable forms and other electronic documents as needed.

Create and disseminate electronic and print materials.

Assist in producing an annual report.

Identify and cultivate media relationships and cross-promotional opportunities.

Maintain digital photo and A-V recordings, databases and archives.

Supervise design projects as needed.

Perform communications-related tasks as needed.



Bachelor’s degree required.

A minimum of two years professional experience in a non-profit organization or the literary arts

or communications industries.

Working knowledge of African American poetry and the literary community.

Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal.

Strong interpersonal skills.

Ability to prioritize, work independently, be flexible and handle multiple projects at one time.

Exceptional organizational skills; attention to detail and deadlines.

Mature judgment and diplomacy; respect for and understanding of confidentiality.

Availability to work weekends and evenings as needed.

Facility with web maintenance, including WordPress; Microsoft Office product suite, including

PowerPoint Access, Excel, Word and GSuite; desktop publishing software; and Photoshop.

Preferred Qualification: Facility using HTML.



Send a cover letter and resume to:

Sandra Bowie

Interim Executive Director

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