Strategic Communications Lead


The Strategic Partnerships Division leads engagement of partners in Canada’s health system and broader cancer community who are key to implementing practice and policy changes that deliver on the priorities of the 2019-2029 Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control. The division works with the Partnership’s program teams and system partners to develop work plans, monitor progress, and regularly assess new and evolving work to ensure it aligns with the eight priorities of the Strategy. The division also leads communications activities to strategically support and profile the work of the Partnership in driving forward the priorities of the Strategy across partners, stakeholders and the public. The division also oversees a special agenda of working alongside First Nations, Inuit and Métis to drive forward People-specific priorities and actions, outlined in the Strategy, by co-developing and implementing solutions to improving cancer care for those in these communities.

The Strategic Communications Lead supports the Strategic Partnerships Division in carrying out projects and initiatives to achieve organizational priorities.  Reporting to the Manager, Corporate Communications, the incumbent coordinates and provides support to deliver on program/project objectives.  As a highly organized professional with strong time management skills, this position delivers on the tasks of the job while contributing to CPAC’s overall vision to reduce the burden of cancer on all Canadians. The Strategic Communications Lead will work closely with the Digital Project Lead (recruitment underway) to ensure alignment across the team.

Core responsibilities and activities

  • Lead the development and implementation of strategic communications projects across the organization.
  • Act as strategic communications lead to program teams to understand communications objectives and ensure projects are delivered on strategy and are aligned with business
  • Lead the development and implementation of strategic media relations plans to effectively position and manage the reputation of the Partnership:
  • Plan and initiate media coverage, leverage news cycle to identify opportunities for the Partnership, and respond in a timely manner to media inquiries. Make appropriate referrals to the Partnership’s spokespeople and subject-matter experts
  • Support media training, message development and interview preparation for the Partnership spokespeople (including patient advisors) and subject-matter experts
  • Draft and maintain organizational key messages and position statements for emerging issues and news topics relevant to the Partnership’s work and mandate
  • Maintain ongoing media contacts lists, tracking journalist interests, coverage of the Partnership
  • Track key performance indicators for the Partnership’s media relations strategies on a quarterly basis as well as performance metrics for specific communication campaigns
  • Support communications activities at the Partnership by writing and editing clean, clear copy such as annual report content, web copy, speaking notes and presentations for the CEO and members of the Executive team
  • Ensure the patient experience is considered and featured in strategic communications working with the Partnership’s patient family advisors and cancer charities
  • Seek opportunities to collaborate with the Partnership’s partners (e.g. Cancer Communications Network, Canadian Cancer Society) and include partners in the Partnership’s communications campaigns
  • Maintain and promote the Partnership’s Expert Centre and monitors topical issues and trends in cancer and the broader health care system to identify opportunities to engage and provide insights from the Partnership’s key opinion leaders
  • Support the Manager, Corporate Communications, Director, Communications & External Relations and Vice President, Strategic Partnerships as needed
  • Perform other duties and ad hoc projects as required


The Partnership’s core competencies are a key element to reviewing performance. While the duties and responsibilities of a position tell you the “what,” the competencies tell you the “how.”  We have developed five universal competencies which we expect to be exhibited by all employees regardless of level or position, as well as five leadership competencies which we expect to be exhibited by staff in people management positions.

Universal competencies

  • Inclusive – values diversity and applies an equity lens; consciously thinks about who needs to be included
  • Agile – is constantly adapting to partners, priorities and outcomes; is committed to continuous learning and improvement; promotes new ways of doing things
  • Collaborative – partners and builds strong relationships; works effectively with team members, focusing on delivering individual contributions to meet collective outcomes
  • Outcomes-focused – focuses on the ultimate impact, priorities work with a focus on underserved groups
  • Systems-thinking – connects the dots between their work and the broader system, has political acuity

Experience and qualifications

  • University Undergraduate Degree in Communications, Public Relations, Journalism, or other relevant discipline, or an acceptable combination of education and experience
  • Minimum 5 years’ experience, preferably in the non-profit or healthcare sector. Education or experience with First Nations, Inuit and Métis is an asset
  • Experience leading strategic communications planning
  • Experience building media relationships and securing media coverage
  • Ability to write clean, clear copy to deadline
  • Proficient in Microsoft 365 (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, Teams, OneDrive)
  • Bilingual in both English and French is an asset

Apply now

To apply, please forward your CV and cover letter combined in one file in Word or PDF format to:

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer thanks all applicants; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted. If contacted for an interview, please inform us should accommodation be required.

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer has a diverse workforce and is an equal opportunity employer.

Position Details

Reports to:

Manager, Corporate Communications


Downtown Toronto (work from home until the expected return to the office in 2022)

Employment category:


Job level:


Posting date:

May 31, 2021

Closing date:

June 14, 2021


Competition is closed; screening and interviewing is underway