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Director, External Communications

Requisition #


Physical Location

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Posted Date


Dept. Name

External Communications and PR

Hours Per Week





Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 12 hospitals, 16 pharmacies, specialty care centers and specialty medical services that provide home care, senior transitions, hospice care, home oxygen and medical equipment, and emergency medical transportation services. Allina Health is a vibrant, growing organization with opportunities to suit your professional skills and a diverse work environment to match your specific interests. We believe employees are our greatest asset and are dedicated to helping you develop and maximize your professional skills.

The Commons, located in Minneapolis, is the headquarters of Allina Health, a not-for-profit health care organization serving patients and communities. Approximately 1,600 corporate and administrative service employees work at offices within Midtown Exchange, the site of the historic Sears retail complex at Chicago Avenue and E. Lake Street. This community landmark, adjacent to the campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital, part of Allina Health, is the second largest building in Minnesota and includes offices, an internationally themed public market and residential units.



Req ID: 53748

At Allina, our mission is to serve our communities by providing exceptional care, as we prevent illness, restore health and provide comfort to all who entrust us with their care. We live our mission by doing what’s right for our patients and our future and by creating a culture of Whole Person Care—an approach that recognizes all factors impacting health are connected – mind, body, spirit and community.

Whole Person Care represents what our caregivers have always provided when we are at our best. Bringing Whole Person Care to life for our patients relies on us bringing Whole Person Care to life for our employees. Our strategy, then, is all about making it possible for every employee to be at their best. Our investment in Whole Person Care for US is to cultivate engaged, high-performing employees and an optimal patient experience founded on strong relationships with self, colleagues and those we serve.

When life gets complicated, we are striving for a reality where, only at Allina Health, people are surrounded with all the care needed and feel loved. We are creating a system of excellence that allows our patients and employees to experience care seamlessly. Our approach will be one that allows us all to benefit from the strength of our system and the talent we all bring.

Position Purpose
The Director of External Communications is responsible for all initiatives related to external communications, public relations and crisis communications on behalf of Allina Health. This role oversees a team that develops proactive communication strategies to bring Allina’s mission to life across various platforms, as well as responding and reacting to crisis media/public relations activities. The director will partner with Marketing, Internal Communications and various other stakeholders to drive Allina’s purpose and mission through multiple channels.

Strategic Planning

  • Provide leadership and strategic direction on all external communications and public relations for the organization
  • Ensure strategies leverage optimal distribution methods and that plans and messages across all functions are clear and aligned to Allina’s overall mission
  • Ensure the overall deliverables of the corporate communications department are in alignment with measurable, organizational brand strategies and priorities

Lead communications & media/public relations; advisory to Executive Leaders/Stakeholders

  • Build and promote Allina’s brand reputation in the marketplace through proactive/coordinated marketing efforts
  • Support the Executive Leadership; write messaging for and advise executives on content and external distribution for critical messages
  • Facilitate and advise on executive involvement in external opportunities within the community (keynote opportunities, conferences, PR interviews, etc.)
  • Developing and execute on executive/leadership external visibility plans
  • Directly work with key stakeholders, including public policy, external communications/public relations, marketing, compliance, community benefit and engagement, etc., on reputational messaging opportunities
  • Serve as the primary spokesperson for major system wide reputation issues; supports manager on sites’ regulatory issues, as needed
  • Invest in building strong relationships with key media contacts

Crisis Management/Communications

  • Oversee communications strategies and crisis management messaging for sensitive and complex issues. This includes organizational changes, reputational/risk issues and major negotiation efforts.
  • Lead media relations and crisis management efforts with external communications teams/team members
  • Team Leadership
  • Work with leadership to ensure the appropriate level of support is designated to communications needs and to ensure alignment with measurable, organizational strategies and priorities
  • Manage agency relationships and identify when external support needs to be retained for issues and projects
  • Provide direction and feedback to the team on deliverables and performance


  • Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Communications, Public/Media Relations or related field. Master’s preferred.


  • Minimum 10 years of experience in internal communications, public relations and public affairs
  • Minimum 5-8 years of experience managing a communications team and communications team assignments
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills and business acumen
  • Proven ability to influence executive leaders and manage challenging and sensitive topics or situations
  • Capable of building and directing communication and public relations plans that meet business objectives, are measurable and balanced appropriately within other organizational and communications priorities
  • Demonstrated aptitude for driving individual and team performance by coaching, modeling behaviors and providing constructive feedback
  • Able to constructively collaborate and build positive, productive relationships with internal and external stakeholders that build trust and credibility
  • Possess a creative vision for building culture and bringing strategies to life in ways that are meaningful to and trusted by all stakeholders (internal and external)
  • Ability to serve as a trusted and poised public spokesperson, particularly in times of pressure
  • Experience managing budgets, external vendor relationships and able to negotiate and maintain contracts
  • Proven track record managing multiple projects and tight deadlines; highly motivated and creative self-starter
  • Ability to listen, earn trust, and give/accept direct feedback while building strong, positive relationships

Work Schedule

Generally days, but evenings and weekends as necessary for this leadership role.

Location/Community Information

Minneapolis boasts being both cosmopolitan yet small enough that you can find a place to call home whether on a lake, golf course, or in an adjoining suburb. With the fast pace of activity there are professional sports, theater, or enough parks for a quiet walk. The area has numerous schools and colleges, both public or private, and enough teams for all weekend athletes to join.

  • Located in Minneapolis
  • Population = 380,000
  • Service Area = 2,882,245

Community Resource Links:

Community Information School Digger

Explore Minnesota MN Dept of Education

Minneapolis St. Paul MagazineSt. Paul Pioneer Press

Twin Cities Living MagazineStar Tribune


If you are interested in becoming part of our award winning team of professionals, please apply online today. Allina Health is committed to providing Equal Employment Opportunities to all employees and applicants. EO M/F/Disability/Vet Employer.

Requisition #

Executive / Mgmt / Supervisory, Marketing / Comm / Foundation