Job Posting: Chief Communications and External Affairs Officer

Governor's Office of Planning and Research

Chief Communications and External Affairs Officer

$6,825.00 - $9,310.00 per Month

Final Filing Date: 6/25/2021

Job Description and Duties

The Chief Communications and External Affairs Officer (CCEA) is a full-time, executive-level, exempt position that leads and oversees the Communications and External Affairs unit across the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) and the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC). In general, the CCEA is responsible for raising the profile of, and increasing access to, OPR and SGC’s programs, resources, and projects by collaborating with internal staff and external partners to lead the development and oversee the implementation of organizational and programmatic communications and external affairs plans, strategies, processes, and procedures ensure meaningful public and stakeholder engagement and to ensure high-quality, consistent, on-brand communications.

The CCEA is a dedicated communications and external affairs professional with a strong commitment to serving California’s diverse communities and geographies and creating a work environment that celebrates diverse backgrounds, cultures, and personal experiences. The incumbent must have an ability to travel up to 15% of the time and occasionally work on evenings, weekends, and holidays. All travel requirements will be modified to reflect California Department of Public Health guidance regarding COVID-19.

Please see attached duty statement for additional information. 

You will find additional information about the job in the Duty Statement.

Working Conditions

Occaisonal overtime and travel may be required.  Telework available during the global pandemic.  

Minimum Requirements

This position does not have a Classification Specification. Requirements and qualifications for this position can be found in this announcement. For additional questions, please contact the hiring department listed below.

    Position Details

    Job Code #:
    Position #(s):
    Working Title:
    Chief Communications and External Affairs Officer
    $6,825.00 - $9,310.00
    # of Positions:
    Work Location:
    Sacramento County
    Job Type:
    Exempt Executive Assignment - Non Tenured, Full Time
    Work Shift:
    Regular Work Hours
    Work Week:
    Monday - Friday

    Department Information

    The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) and the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) are both Cabinet-level State organizations. 

    OPR serves the Governor and his Cabinet as staff for long-range planning and research and constitutes the comprehensive state planning agency. OPR operates a variety of programs and initiatives, hosts tools and clearinghouses, and leads a range of activities related to land use and community planning/development, climate adaptation and resilience, sustainable economic development, and long-range research.

    SGC coordinates and works collaboratively across state government and with public agencies, communities, and stakeholders to achieve sustainability, equity, economic prosperity, and quality of life for all Californians.  SGC programs include Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC), Sustainable Agriculture Lands Conservation (SALC), Transformative Climate Communities (TCC), Climate Change Research (CCR), Community Assistance for Climate Equity (CACE), and Health and Equity Program (HEP), which is part of a multi-agency Health in All Policies (HiAP) Initiative. SGC also leads several collaborative policy initiatives to support sustainable, equitable community development and conservation practices in California. OPR and SGC are fast-paced, creative work environment that require staff to have strong collaboration skills, an ability to quickly respond to changing policy needs, and a positive attitude and sense of humor.

    Department Website:

    Special Requirements

    • Demonstrated strong political instincts and sound judgment; demonstrated ability to operate effectively in a high-level political environment. Discretion around potentially politically sensitive topics  
    • Expert ability to coordinate and build collaboration across multiple programs, teams, staff (at all levels) to advance policy and programmatic goals and objectives through communications and external affairs activities.
    • Expert writing and editing skills, including an ability to synthesize complex or technical information and ideas into clear and digestible content and to teach others to do so
    • Experience working State, Federal, or local government, particularly in – or closely with – the executive branch.
    • Bachelor’s degree (strongly preferred) and Master’s degree (preferred) in communications, media studies, journalism, public policy, political science, or other relevant discipline(s).
    • Demonstrated interest in climate change, planning and community development, sustainability, social equity, or public health preferred. 
    • Proven commitment to creating a work environment that celebrates diverse backgrounds, cultures, and personal experiences. 
    • Ability and flexibility to travel and effectively participate in site visits, public workshops, and meetings up to 15% of the time. 
    • Willingness and ability to work occasionally on evenings, weekends, and holidays. 
    • Bilingual in English and one of California’s most spoken languages (Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Korean) 

    Application Instructions

    Completed applications and all required documents must be received or postmarked by the Final Filing Date in order to be considered. Dates printed on Mobile Bar Codes, such as the Quick Response (QR) Codes available at the USPS, are not considered Postmark dates for the purpose of determining timely filing of an application.

    Final Filing Date: 6/25/2021

    Who May Apply

    This is a non-testing Classification, therefore, anyone meeting the Minimum Qualifications listed on the Classification Specification may apply for this position. Individuals in specific programs, such as the Welfare to Work Program, are encouraged to apply and will be given priority according to the applicable Laws and Rules. Please note on your application your current participation in these programs. Individuals who are eligible to be appointed to this Exempt Position by the State of California.

    Applications will be screened and only the most qualified applicants will be selected to move forward in the selection process.
    Applicants must meet the Minimum Qualifications stated in the Classification Specification(s).

    How To Apply

    Complete Application Packages (including your Examination/Employment Application (STD 678) and applicable or required documents) must be submitted to apply for this Job Posting. Application Packages may be submitted electronically through your CalCareer Account at When submitting your application in hard copy, a completed copy of the Application Package listing must be included. If you choose to not apply electronically, a hard copy application package may be submitted through an alternative method listed below:

    Address for Mailing Application Packages

    You may submit your application and any applicable or required documents to:

    Governor's Office of Planning and Research
    Attn: Human Resources
    1400 10th Street
    Sacramento, CA 95814

    Address for Drop-Off Application Packages

    You may drop off your application and any applicable or required documents at:

    Governor's Office of Planning and Research
    1400 10th Street
    Sacramento, CA 95814
    08:00 AM - 05:00 PM

    Required Application Package Documents

    The following items are required to be submitted with your application. Applicants who do not submit the required items timely may not be considered for this job:

    • Current version of the State Examination/Employment Application STD Form 678 (when not applying electronically), or the Electronic State Employment Application through your Applicant Account at All Experience and Education relating to the Minimum Qualifications listed on the Classification Specification should be included to demonstrate how you meet the Minimum Qualifications for the position.
    • Resume is required and must be included.
    • Other - Cover Letter - Please submit a cover letter of no more than two (2) pages explaining why you are interested in this position and why you think you are a good fit.
    Applicants requiring reasonable accommodations for the hiring interview process must request the necessary accommodations if scheduled for a hiring interview. The request should be made at the time of contact to schedule the interview. Questions regarding reasonable accommodations may be directed to the EEO contact listed on this job posting.

    Desirable Qualifications

    In addition to evaluating each candidate's relative ability, as demonstrated by quality and breadth of experience, the following factors will provide the basis for competitively evaluating each candidate:
    • Minimum of 5-7 years progressively responsible experience working in communications, external affairs, journalism, or other similar roles, including a minimum of 2-3 years leading organizational communications, external affairs or editorial strategy, including press, digital, social media, and multimedia content along with external and interagency stakeholder engagement. At least one year serving on an organizational leadership team.
    • Minimum of 2-3 years managing effective communications and external affairs teams.


          Compensation and Benefits:

          The State of California benefit package may include:

          • Retirement contributions into the California Public Employees’ Retirement System
          • Vacation and Sick Leave or Annual Leave
          • Flexible work hours with prior agreement from Supervisor.
          • Professional Development Days – two day per fiscal year
          • Medical, dental, and vision insurance
          • Life insurance basic coverage of $50,000 for managers and $25,000 for supervisors, confidential, and excluded employees
          • Voluntary enrollment into a deferred compensation program for Long-term Disability Insurance, Long Term Care Insurance, Group Term Life Insurance, and a Legal Service Plan
          • This position is exempt from Civil Service
          • This position will receive a 9.23% salary reduction starting July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2022.  This reduction is not reflected on the salary range listed above.

                General State Employment Benefits and Protections

                Click here to view more information about the outstanding benefits offered to State employees.

                Contact Information

                The Human Resources Contact is available to answer questions regarding the position or application process.

                Department Website:
                Human Resources Contact:
                Joanna Sledge
                (916) 324-9736

                Please direct requests for Reasonable Accommodations to the interview scheduler at the time the interview is being scheduled. You may direct any additional questions regarding Reasonable Accommodations or Equal Employment Opportunity for this position(s) to the Department's EEO Office.

                EEO Contact:
                EEO Office
                (916) 324-9736
                California Relay Service: 1-800-735-2929 (TTY), 1-800-735-2922 (Voice) TTY is a Telecommunications Device for the Deaf, and is reachable only from phones equipped with a TTY Device.

                Selection Process

                Review and Selection Process:

                Candidates with the most desirable qualifications will be invited for interviews. Interviews will be held in Sacramento, California. This position serves at the pleasure of the Governor and is an “Exempt” position, therefore appointment to this position and the final salary are subject to executive approval.


                How to Apply:

                Please submit application, cover letter, and resume electronically through your CalCareers account at In your cover letter, please explain why you are interested in this position and why you think you are a good fit for it.

                Information about this position

                See attached duty statement for additional information.

                Please note, this positon will receive a 9.23% salary reduction starting July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2022.

                Equal Opportunity Employer

                The State of California is an equal opportunity employer to all, regardless of age, ancestry, color, disability (mental and physical), exercising the right to family care and medical leave, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military or veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religious creed, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), and sexual orientation.

                It is an objective of the State of California to achieve a drug-free work place. Any applicant for state employment will be expected to behave in accordance with this objective because the use of illegal drugs is inconsistent with the law of the State, the rules governing Civil Service, and the special trust placed in public servants.

                Application Methods:
                Electronic (Using your CalCareer Account)
                By Mail