Jobs & Opportunities

COMPASS Coordinator

Silver Spring, Maryland

COMPASS seeks motivated candidates with strong attention to detail, organizational and event planning skills, and an interest in science, society, and environment for the position of COMPASS Coordinator. COMPASS is a distributed organization, and this position is located in Silver Spring, MD with the Director and Assistant Director of Science Policy Outreach. 

The Coordinator reports to the Director of Science Policy Outreach and works closely with all COMPASS staff involved in policy events and other engagement activities designed to bring scientists into direct dialogue with decision makers. Events will include policy briefings, workshops, and trainings for as few as two and as many as 100 participants. Tasks are administrative in nature, and we encourage innovation and independence in creating improved systems. This position also works closely with the Operations Manager, based in Portland, OR.

Position Description
The Coordinator will divide his or her time between:

  • Planning, logistical and administrative support for COMPASS policy engagement activities and a variety of COMPASS events
  • Providing administrative support for the Director of Science Policy Outreach, and occasionally other COMPASS staff
  • Supporting the Operations Manager in the development and implementation of organization-wide systems (e.g., for workflow, planning, reporting, budget and finance)
  • Managing the facilities, furnishings, and machinery for an office of 3-5 staff, including liaising with landlord, vendors, and service providers
  • Providing other administrative assistance to COMPASS programs

The essential duties, supporting the above goals, include but are not limited to:

1. Event planning, such as:

  • Scouting and overseeing food, lodging, and venues
  • Managing correspondence
  • Data entry to track logistics of events
  • Coordinating contracts
  • Procuring supplies, making nametags, placards, etc.
  • On-site event coordination and support

2.    Scheduling:

  • Provide scheduling support, primarily for the Director of Science Policy Outreach, and occasionally for other COMPASS staff

3.    Accounting and finance tracking:

  • Process day-to-day financial forms, including requests for reimbursement and coding credit card expense reports for COMPASS staff and partner institutions
  • Assist the Operations Manager and other staff to track expenses against budgets

4.    Travel coordination:

  • Arrange travel for select COMPASS events (for COMPASS staff and invited participants as needed)

5.    Other support as needed, such as:

  • Trouble-shooting office technology needs
  • Working with other operations and administrative staff, supporting the organization as a whole, and identifying solutions to internal workflow challenges
  • Coordinating and monitoring event timelines and ensuring that deadlines are met


COMPASS welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional attention to detail, strong organizational skills, and excellent interpersonal skills.

The ideal candidate must have:

  • Desire to support the design and implementation of highly professional meetings, workshops, briefings, trainings, and other events
  • Interest and ability to learn new processes, technologies, and tools quickly
  • Strong organizational skills, ability to manage multiple projects and deadlines
  • An aptitude for organizing people and generating effective workflows and systems
  • Ability to work in an environment that requires a proactive approach and fast turn-around times
  • Ability to remain calm under pressure
  • A work style that combines tenacity, creativity and the ability to quickly solve problems
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills and ability to give and receive direct feedback
  • High proficiency with office productivity software including, but not limited to, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint), iWork (Pages and Keynote), creating and merging PDFs, and calendaring
  • An undergraduate degree

In addition, the ideal candidate will have:

  • Previous event coordination experience
  • Proficiency with Mac systems and programs, including Pages and Keynote
  • Proficiency with online communication and file sharing tools such as Skype, DropBox, Google Documents, and Evernote
  • Appreciation for COMPASS’ mission and desire to help scientists make their science matter


Compensation and Location
COMPASS offers a competitive benefits package and salary commensurate with position and experience. This position will be based in Silver Spring, Maryland (co-located with the Director of Science Policy Outreach). Some travel required (attending select COMPASS events to provide on-site support and/or experience them first-hand, as well as an annual staff retreat). 

How to Apply
Interested candidates should submit a cover letter addressed to Erin Moomey, a resume, and contact information for three professional references as one single PDF titled ‘Last Name, First Name – COMPASS Coordinator’ to [email protected]. Please note in your application email or materials where you first saw this posting. Priority consideration will be given to applications submitted before Monday, March 31, 2014. COMPASS will not contact your references without your permission, and will keep your references’ contact information confidential. We would like someone to start as soon as possible after the conclusion of the hiring process.

COMPASS is dedicated to helping scientists connect themselves and their science to the wider world. By giving scientists communication and leadership skills, and by bridging the worlds of science, journalism, and policy, COMPASS works to ensure that scientists are better connected to, and engaging with, society. We are leading science communication practitioners. We are coaches, connectors, and conveners. We help scientists as individuals and as a community more effectively bridge the gaps between science, the public dialogue, and policy. COMPASS predominantly works with scientists from across North America, connecting them to leading media and journalists and transformative policy dialogues (in Washington, D.C. as well as at the state and regional levels). Our reach occasionally extends internationally, particularly through our trainings and media work. While we were founded over a decade ago to support ocean scientists, we now support science/scientists working at the intersection of people and the environment. 

COMPASS’ staff members are distributed across the country in Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado, and the District of Columbia. Our organization is growing. Our team is innovative, intelligent, dedicated, hardworking, supportive, and fun. We strongly support the professional growth of members of our team, and offer opportunities for staff to take on increasing responsibilities over time. We are all passionate about COMPASS and the role of science – and especially scientists – in society. We are looking for individuals to join our team, help us grow, and grow with us. Please visit our website, and or our blog,, for more information about our staff and our work.

Equal Opportunity Employer
Because COMPASS uses the Tides Center as a fiscal sponsor, the Tides Center is the legal employer of this position. Tides Center is an equal opportunity employer. We strongly encourage and seek applications from women, people of color, including bilingual and bicultural individuals, as well as members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities. Applicants shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, medical condition (cancer-related) or conditions Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related conditions (ARC). Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified disabled applicants may participate in the application process. Please advise in writing of special needs at the time of application.