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Events Production Director (One-year Contract)

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute

Washington, DC, USA
Posted on Thursday, October 12, 2023

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment

Program Description:

The Communications and Marketing Department creates compelling content to elevate and position the Aspen Institute as a values-based organization that ignites human potential through dialogue, leadership, and action to build understanding and create new possibilities for a better world. The department also serves as an in-house agency that provides communications and marketing support to the Institute’s 40+ programs, initiatives, public events, fundraising efforts, and the president’s office. Learn more at

We function on the foundation of 5 values: Collaboration, Learning, Excellence, Accountability and Respect or CLEAR. These attributes and behaviors are how we work. Upholding our department values is of paramount importance as they guide us to thoughtfully engage with our colleagues whilst performing at the highest level.

Basic Function:

The Events Production Director oversees all communications-related aspects of Institute HQ events, including in-person, virtual, and hybrid gatherings. As the primary liaison between 40+ programs, the Communications and Marketing Department, and the in-house A/V vendor, they ensure seamless execution and outstanding production quality. Additionally, they collaborate with the editorial team to identify event content for promotion on our main social channels, aligning with the department's editorial strategy.

This one-year contracted position reports directly to the Managing Director, Communications & Marketing. The expectation is for this role to be in our Washington D.C. office a minimum of 2x a week to collaborate with colleagues. The salary range for this one-year contracted position is $143,000 - $159,000.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Project Planning & Coordination

  • Work with the Managing Director and Content Strategy Director to define project objectives, success criteria, and measurable outcomes.

  • Develop project plans, including defining project scope, deliverables, and required resources.

  • Create and manage project schedules, ensuring timely completion of tasks and adherence to deadlines.

  • Coordinating with internal and external stakeholders and partners to ensure the holistic success of the event. This includes but is not limited to:

    • Using the project management tools to track and assess the complexity of event support being requested by programs.

    • Coordinating with the enterprise editorial team to identify opportunities that support strategic priorities.

    • Putting together SOW (including budget) for the event and sharing with programs.

Team Management

  • Manage external AV firm to ensure seamless event production and ensure all deliverables are met within scope and budget.

  • Manage internal Aspen Institute staff tasked with event production support by providing mentorship, feedback, and support to enhance their skill set.

  • Collaborate with internal teams, leaders, and programs to gather insights and information for continuous improvement of events-based services offered by the Communications and Marketing department.

  • Work closely with the Creative Services and Media Relations teams to ensure consistent event experiences across programs.

  • Participate in regular pitch and assignment meetings, contributing creative ideas and insights.

Pre-Production Liaison

  • Collaborate with our diverse programs and their event staff to understand the unique requirements of each event.

  • Act as the primary point of contact for programs to translate their event needs into specific communications and A/V requirements.

  • Facilitate discussions with program teams to identify communications and A/V services that align with our department’s standard support.

  • Ensure holistic communications support for all events.

  • Organize and conduct technical rehearsals for events, including virtual and hybrid events, to identify and address any technical issues in advance.

  • Coordinate with the A/V team to thoroughly test all equipment and systems before events.

  • Based on program needs, discuss and recommend premium services, such as highlight reels, special graphics packages, accessibility services, etc.

  • Facilitate smooth communication and collaboration between different departments involved in event planning and execution, including Workplace and Conference Services.

  • Be a strategic partner with the enterprise editorial team to produce events with an eye toward content creation and strategic brand positioning.

Day-of Production Management

  • Supervise and coordinate the A/V team and vendors during event setup and execution to ensure smooth operations.

  • Respond promptly to any A/V issues or technical challenges during events.

  • Possess the ability to step in and act as the master of ceremonies, if necessary, providing announcements or guiding attendees through the program.

  • Develop contingency plans and protocols for handling A/V-related emergencies or technical failures during events.

  • Coordinate with other communications team members supporting events, including media relations.

  • Remain calm under pressure and lead the team in resolving any critical issues.

Post-Production Collaboration

  • Work closely with our editorial team to identify event content ideal for promotion on our main Institute social channels.

  • Coordinate with the A/V team and vendors to access and review post-production materials for distribution and archiving.

Budget Management

  • Collaborate with the Sr. Operations Manager to create and manage budgets for A/V services for various events.

  • Ensure cost-effective solutions while maintaining high-quality A/V standards.

  • Track expenses and provide regular budget reports to relevant stakeholders.

Event Reporting and Improvement

  • Maintain detailed records of A/V requirements, event setups, and equipment used for each event.

  • Prepare post-event reports, including feedback and performance metrics, to assess event success and identify areas for improvement.

  • Stay abreast of industry trends, emerging technologies, and best practices in event production and A/V management.

  • Continuously seek opportunities to enhance event production quality and efficiency.

Knowledge, Education, and Experience:

  • Bachelor's degree in event management, media production, communications, or a related field.

  • At least 7 years in event production, focusing on audiovisual management, ideally in a fast-paced environment.

  • Familiarity with the technical aspects of A/V equipment and knowledge of the latest event production trends and technologies.

  • Strong communication skills to effectively liaise between program teams, A/V vendors, and internal stakeholders.

  • Exceptional organizational skills to manage multiple events simultaneously, adhering to strict timelines and budgets.

  • Ability to troubleshoot A/V issues quickly and efficiently during live events.

  • Creative problem-solving skills and a keen eye for detail to ensure top-notch event production quality.

  • Proficiency in collaborating with cross-functional teams and delivering successful outcomes in a collaborative work environment.

  • Experience in managing virtual and hybrid events, leveraging various platforms and technologies, is preferred.

  • Familiarity with event streaming services, webcasting, and video conferencing tools.

  • Knowledge of video editing software and post-production processes.

  • Project management certification or related training will be considered a plus.

  • The ability to move easily between strategy and execution.

  • Curiosity, empathy, hustle, and grit.

  • Comfort with ambiguity, uncertainty, and change.

The Aspen Institute offers a generous benefits package including health, dental, vision, and prescription benefits, retirement benefits, and paid leave.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.