Senior Vice President External Affairs, American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE)


The American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) is a membership-driven nonprofit organization established in 1977 as an independent voice on energy matters on behalf of the interests of Black people. Membership in the AABE is open to employees and owners of energy-related businesses and members of ancillary professions and organizations serving the energy industry. This includes consultants, educators, trade associations, local government and regulatory agencies, and students.

AABE’s mission is to provide direct input into the deliberations and developments of energy policies, regulations, emerging technologies, and environmental issues.

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This position will report directly to the President and Chief Executive Officer.


The Senior Vice President External Affairs is responsible for proactive, reactive, and crisis communications programs targeting the professional media, social media channels, and professional associations and think tanks. The SVP External Affairs is also responsible for budgeting, reporting, analyses, recommendations, and other management responsibilities pertaining to the assigned role.

Specific duties will include, but not necessarily be limited to:

  • Develop and execute immediate and long-term strategies to ensure that a broad spectrum of stakeholders and constituencies understands, values, and amplifies AABE’s mission and impact.
  • Oversee the development of messaging and positioning platforms in collaboration with the President and CEO and executive team members to ensure consistency and discipline in all outbound communications.
  • Establish communications and thought leadership programs that proactively tell AABE’s story, communicate the unique value, clearly articulate accomplishments, and build support for the mission.
  • Ensure programs of outreach and education are developed and executed that promote bipartisan support among elected officials and ensure continued funding.
  • Ensure the development of “customer service-oriented” systems that enable highly responsive communication between stakeholders (individuals and organizations) and AABE’s professional media to get the support they need for their work.
  • Develop emergency and crisis communications plans to enable AABE to respond nimbly.
  • Work closely with the President and CEO and other executives on the leadership team to provide preparation, staffing, and support for thought-leadership events, public testimony, speaking engagements, listening tours, press interviews, and other public relations activities.
  • Establish transparent tracking and reporting mechanisms to show progress against stated objectives, including budget performance of the External Affairs programs.
  • Develop strategy for the management and use of third-party contracts, including government relations, media relations, public relations, and/or analyst relations.
  • Support cross-functional efforts to assess AABE’s impact, innovation, and influence on all those the Association serves and seeks to serve.
  • The SVP External Affairs is responsible for recruiting, training, development, work assignments, and appraisal of their direct reports as defined in AABE’s org chart.


  • Minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible related experience required.
  • Contribution to team efforts by participating in assignments that may not be included in or part of this position description, serving on program teams as assigned, and achieving related results as required.
  • Knowledge of strategic planning principles and practices.
  • Knowledge of advanced mass communications best practices and strategies.
  • Knowledge of project management best practices and principles.
  • Knowledge of political and legislative processes, applicable laws, statutes, initiatives, policies, regulations, and other outcomes of legislative processes.
  • Knowledge of basic business applications including G Suite, MS Office, Slack, video conferencing, and Asana.
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills, and especially story-telling abilities.
  • Skills in supervision and interpersonal relationships.
  • Ability to read, analyze, and interpret complex documents.
  • Ability to respond effectively to sensitive inquiries or complaints in a written and/or spoken manner.
  • Ability to effectively present information to top management, public groups, or boards.
  • Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, draw valid conclusions, and present/explain in a concise
  • Previous experience in an academic, governmental, nonprofit, and/or venture-backed start-up with state and federal contracts a plus.
  • Relevant bachelor’s degree (BA/BS) or equivalent required; master’s degree preferred.


Compensation will be commensurate with experience including a competitive base salary, bonus opportunity, and competitive benefits package.


Gregory Lynn Tennent