Los Alamos National Laboratory Media Relations Specialist (Communications Specialist 2) in Los Alamos, New Mexico


Job Title Media Relations Specialist (Communications Specialist 2)

Location Los Alamos, NM, US

Organization Name CPA-CO/Communications Office

What You Will Do

Reporting to the Division Director, the Media Relations Specialist is responsible for a wide range of strategic and tactical communications programs, roles and initiatives designed to promote the Laboratory’s national security science mission and multi-disciplinary scientific capabilities, and advance the Laboratory’s agenda, to national science, national security and other media outlets – national, regional and local.

  • Represent Los Alamos National Laboratory to the press by, among other things, having the authority and responsibility to speak on-the-record with members of the media.

  • Execute a wide variety of media relations outreach and supporting activities, including pitching, that achieve valuable media placements and other measurable or tangible benefits for the Laboratory.

  • Identify and help develop new outlets, digital platforms and techniques for reaching key audiences with messages about the Laboratory’s national security mission, scientific research and technology development for national science, national security and national media outlets.

  • Increase the visibility of the Laboratory as a leading international science institution by attending appropriate conferences and events and undertaking other travel as directed.

  • Maintain and strengthen relationships with reporters, editors, and social media influencers in coverage areas relevant to the Laboratory mission by, among other steps, monitoring coverage, engaging reporters and, where appropriate, traveling to meet and pitch reporters in person.

  • Help identify, target and develop new relationships with media outlets and reporters that reach key audiences with messages about the Laboratory’s national security mission and scientific research and technology development.

  • Attend and support approved interviews by media with Laboratory scientists, officials and employees, both in-person and by phone, providing messaging and guidance on rules of the road for engaging with the media.

  • Help secure placement for Laboratory-generated science and national security-related articles, videos, op-eds, blog posts, infographics, and other content with national science, national security-related and general audience media outlets.

  • Engage in enterprise journalism within the Laboratory to seek out and report on newsworthy mission-and-science related developments for targeted external audiences and media.

  • Develop responses to media inquiries and questions for approval.

  • Participate in emergency and crisis communications preparedness and execution.

  • Contribute to managing vendor relationships, monitoring press coverage and preparing analytical reports.

  • Remain open, able and willing to continually develop as a media relations professional by engaging in skill development and training as directed by the supervisor.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

  • Experience working as a journalist or communications specialist, preferably in the areas of science or national security.

  • Working knowledge of national security or science basics.

  • Working knowledge of the media landscape, including national, national security or scientific outlets.

  • Experience working with editors, reporters and producers to pitch and place articles.

  • Ability to translate scientific, technical, national security and other complex concepts into compelling external communication products for multiple audiences, including science, media, national security and the public.

  • Ability to help execute communications strategies that are aligned with organizational goals and objectives.

  • Strong written, oral, interpersonal, and interviewing skills.

  • Ability to work as a member of a team and take guidance and direction from more senior colleagues.

Desired Skills:

  • Political acumen or aptitude for science, national security, government and policy communications.

  • Ability to conduct media analysis and prepare reports on the results.

  • Ability to translate an institution’s mission, strategy and plans into messages that reach target audiences.

  • Ability to analyze the content, audience, and bias of media outlets as prospects for placing articles on Laboratory science.

  • Experience covering science or national security-related issues for a national or top regional media outlet as a bylined reporter, editor, producer, or freelance contributor.

Education: Bachelor’s Degree in journalism, communications, or related degree and a minimum of 5 years relevant experience or the equivalent combination of education and experienc e.

Additional Details:

Clearance: Q (Position will be cleared to this level). Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements

  • for access to classified matter.

  • Eligibility requirements: To obtain a clearance, an individual must be at least 18 years of age; U.S. citizenship is required except in very limited circumstances. See DOE Order 472.2 for additional information.

New-Employment Drug Test: The Laboratory requires successful applicants to complete a new-employment drug test and maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing.

Regular position: Term status Laboratory employees applying for regular-status positions are converted to regular status.

Internal Applicants: Please refer to Laboratory policy P701 for applicant eligibility.

Equal Opportunity: Los Alamos National Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer and supports a diverse and inclusive workforce. All employment practices are based on qualification and merit, without regards to race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or preference, marital status or spousal affiliation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, pregnancy, status as a protected veteran, genetic information, or citizenship within the limits imposed by federal laws and regulations. The Laboratory is also committed to making our workplace accessible to individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations, upon request, for individuals to participate in the application and hiring process. To request such an accommodation, please send an email to applyhelp@lanl.gov or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.

Where You Will Work

Located in northern New Mexico, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a multidisciplinary scientific research institution engaged in national security science. LANL enhances national security by ensuring the safety, security and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, physics, environment, materials, infrastructure, health, and global security concerns.

The Communications and Public Affairs (CPA) Division represents and promotes the Laboratory to a range of stakeholders, including employees, the national security and scientific community, the media, and neighboring communities. Our mission is to promote understanding of the Laboratory and build relationships with employees and stakeholders to advance Los Alamos as the premier national security science Laboratory. CPA is comprised of three offices: the Communications Office (CO), the Community Partnerships Office (CPO), and Communication Arts and Services (CAS).

Appointment Type Regular


Minimum Salary 66600

Maximum Salary 105700

Contact Details

Contact Name Salyer, Reyna Linda

Email reyna@lanl.gov

Work Telephone

Req ID: IRC71201