CLS News
September 16, 2021

If you’re looking to make your next move, or to make your foray in Washington PR and public affairs, CLS Strategies may have the role you’re looking for. CLS Strategies is a privately-held, bipartisan strategic communications firm with a client success history that spans over 25 years working with many household names and Washington associations. We help our clients manage complex, high-stakes challenges across a wide variety of sectors and issues, including those that are regulatory and legislative, and we develop and execute integrated issue advocacy campaigns that help our clients win. While public affairs is a big part of what we do, so too is crisis and legal communications, and we can offer this candidate an opportunity to gain experience in those exciting and growing fields as well.

What we’re looking for:

  • 5+ years experience in communications, public relations, or in a policy or public affairs role. This includes work on political campaigns.  
  • Strong writing (Q&A, messaging, online content, op-eds), research, and media relations skills
  • Strategic thinking to help write and develop campaign plans
  • Digital fluency (reaching and engaging audiences online)
  • Someone who can help manage client relationships and assist in the daily work for multiple client teams
  • Versatility – Because we don’t operate in practice groups, this candidate should thrive in an environment where she or he works across sectors
  • A team player – You will manage team members who support your work, and manage up as well, to the agency’s leadership and clients

What we offer:

The CLS work model is hybrid and flexible. Because we appreciate the advantages of both work-from-home and in-person collaboration, we operate a hybrid work environment that includes a state-of-the-art office in downtown DC with a gym and rooftop that colleagues can use as they wish when they aren’t working from home or elsewhere. Because we don’t believe in anemic retirement savings plans, we offer a 401(k) plan with a generous company match, along with other terrific benefits, such as health insurance plans that come with a free Pelton subscription,   up to 12 weeks of paid maternity leave and paid paternity leave.

Every account at CLS is led by one of the agency’s principals or members of senior management, and we work closely with our team members to teach them, help them grow, and ultimately lead parts of the work. This is important, because our company’s success depends on your success. 

This position does not need to be based in Washington, DC.  Candidates outside DC who are interested in being a member of our remote team are encouraged to apply. Please email your resume and cover letter to with “MA – Public Affairs” in the subject line.


CLS News
September 16, 2021

CLS Strategies is a Washington, D.C.-based strategic communications firm with a 25+ year track record of helping clients manage complex, high-stakes environments. We specialize in crisis and litigation communications as well as public affairs both in the U.S. and worldwide.

Notably, CLS offers a hybrid working environment. Starting in early October, we plan to re-open our Washington, DC-based office for in-person collaboration while allowing staff the flexibility to work remotely when needed or preferred.

We are looking to hire an energetic, hardworking and organized individual for the Managing Associate position to support the firm’s crisis and litigation clients. Ideal candidates will have five to eight years of experience in  crisis communications involving high stakes matters and a strong desire to do more. Litigation-related work is a plus.  Experience with a diversity of legal matters – e.g. product liability, securities, antitrust cases – and proven ability to work with litigation counsel is strongly desired.

Candidates must possess strong writing skills, experience in managing media relations, and ability to formulate effective and successful communications strategies and messages in a highly adversarial and fast-paced environment. Candidates who have worked closely with outside legal counsel and managed the development of materials that balanced legal and reputational interests will be especially strong candidates for this role.

Responsibilities for this mid-level position include:

  • Lead strategic planning and account execution for multiple clients facing crisis issues
  • Manage client business relationship
  • Oversee and/or draft content needed to support client and communicate its story
  • Lead efforts to pitch stories, and manage coverage as appropriate
  • Help build the firm’s crisis communication practice through thought leadership activities and business development
  • Support firm through active engagement in such activities as staff recruitment, training, mentoring.

If you thrive on the challenge of finding solutions to complex challenges and want to join our team, please apply by emailing your resume and cover letter to with “MA – Crisis & Litigation” in the subject line.

CLS offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, life, short-term and long-term disability insurance plus a 401(k) retirement savings plan. For more information about the company, visit

CLS Strategies. We don’t just raise the issue. We raise the game.


CLS News
September 14, 2021

Are you eager to design compelling online visuals or produce videos viewed by millions? If so, then you should apply to join the CLS team. In this hands-on position, you would help produce creative solutions at the intersection of politics, public policy and communications.

We are looking for a creative, self-motivated individual to join our team as a Digital Design & Production Associate. This is an opportunity to be a crucial part of our team by:

  • Designing ads, website properties, social media graphics and more
  • Creating campaign branding
  • Working on multiple projects simultaneously
  • Creating quality deliverables in a fast-paced work environment
  • Communicating and collaborating with a team
  • Assisting with the day-to-day operations of the digital team

Candidates for this position should have 1-2 years of professional experience and an interest in creative services and public affairs, with an emphasis on graphic design. Candidates who have the following skills are a good fit:

  • Proficient in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign
  • Video editing software
  • Extremely detail-oriented and well-organized
  • Familiar with current design trends
  • Can provide a portfolio of recent design samples
  • Experience with HTML/CSS and various content management systems (CMS)

If you are eager to learn, enjoy coming up with creative solutions, and want to get real-world design experience with political and non-profit clients, you may be the right candidate! Interested applicants should apply by clicking the button below. Be sure to include a copy of your resume and design portfolio (or link to your online portfolio) in the email. 

MediaPost | Andrew Koneschusky

As artificial intelligence and machine learning advance at breakneck speed, almost no other industry has invested in the technologies as heavily and aggressively as automotive manufacturers. With outlays second only to the tech sector, automakers see AI as a fundamental component of transformation across four critical pillars—autonomous driving, connectivity, electrification and shared mobility—with a projected value of $215 billion by 2025.

And though the auto industry has already spent tens of billions of dollars on AI development, a new survey reveals that this massive investment may be subject to previously unforeseen risks to brand reputation. 

A third-quarter 2018 review by a new industry AI Risk Index developed by the Omnicom Public Relations Group reveals poor stakeholder engagement is driving negative sentiment that will have a direct impact on brand reputation if left unaddressed. While automakers rightly focus on improvements in the technology itself, many are overlooking or undervaluing the importance of a communications strategy grounded in data-driven research and seasoned insights, an oversight that could prove to be extremely costly.

Even the most cursory scan of headlines will reveal the risks of researching and developing these technologies in the spotlight, with no communications policy to support them. From the fatalities caused by self-driving vehicles, to concerns about AI’s impact on jobs, data privacy and the economy, the risks span from the individual to the global.

Whether due to a lack of understanding of the stakeholder landscape, insufficient focus on brand perception or lack of expertise required to effectively address the public’s concerns, the auto industry has done a poor job communicating the benefits and managing the risks of AI adoption.

As a result, the industry has created a void which has allowed media, consumers, activists, legislators and other stakeholders to shape the narrative surrounding these billion-dollar investments. And even when auto companies strive to communicate effectively, their messages are often not received by stakeholders as intended.

The AI Risk Index reflects a substantial gap between what is intended and what is perceived by critical stakeholders. The results are stark—especially in the context of substantial investment and many more years of public scrutiny as AI is improved—and reveal a growing crisis of trust.

Though an average of 62% of Americans are familiar with companies in the transportation industry, only 35% have a positive opinion of them (compared to 43% for non-automotive manufacturing and 41% for retail companies) and only 37% trust them (compared to 44% for manufacturing and retail companies).

Even more concerning is that the transportation companies most heavily involved in AI technology drive this sense of distrust, more so than traditional carmakers. That may explain why only three out of eight transportation companies analyzed during the third quarter of 2018 mentioned advancements in AI at all—indicating that auto companies are either communicating poorly or not communicating at all. Avoiding the conversation  will only compromise the opportunity that automakers have to undo negative sentiment and influence neutral perceptions.

Over the next several years, automakers will have to introduce extremely complex, transformative technologies to a public that is deeply skeptical about the innovations themselves, and even more wary of the companies creating them. Only about one-third of Americans think that companies in the transportation industry are visionary (39%), innovative (41%), create more jobs (38%), will use automation to be more efficient (39%), will use AI to be more efficient (36%), care about people’s safety (41%) and can be trusted with their personal data (32%). Just 39% think that AI generally will have a positive impact on companies in the transportation industry.

That is a tough sell for any industry, much less one that has spent nearly a century associating their products with personal freedom and a defining sense of self expression. As AI is further developed for commercial and consumer automotive use, it is critical that automakers close this chasm of engagement. Like any effective communications strategy, this begins with a deep immersion into data-driven research that maps and contextualizes the relationship between carmakers and their stakeholder audiences to identify gaps and misperceptions. And not only must this communications strategy address perceptions of automakers, it must also gauge sentiment around tech companies, and the alignment of the two industries. It is a communications landscape as complex as the technologies they hope to align and deploy.

Over the past several years, a global audience has grown intensely wary of a technology industry that prided itself on moving fast and breaking things. As automakers increasingly partner with tech companies to realize the benefits of their substantial AI investments, they will need a much more intelligent, informed and insightful communications strategy if they hope to persuade consumers to strap themselves into products that are moving fast. Regardless of how much the auto industry believes in it, without consistent, effective stakeholder engagement, AI could remain a risk most drivers aren’t willing to take.

Client News
February 7, 2019

Wine Enthusiast’s 19th annual Wine Star Awards were held Monday night at the Nobu Eden Roc in Miami Beach. The black-tie gala honored innovators and stalwarts who are shaping the present and future of the wine, spirits and beer industry. The themes of the evening were stewardship of the land and support of women in wine.

An outdoor cocktail reception gave guests the opportunity to taste wines from various winners, as well as jamon brought by European Winery of the Year winner, González Byass, plus a daiquiri and a rum-based Old Fashioned riff by Spirit Brand of the Year winner, Diplomático Rum. The step-and-repeat, poolside setting and beachy backdrop presented plenty of good photo opportunities.

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