Employment Opportunities

Chief Executive Officer

The CNT Board of Directors is seeking a new CEO. The Board is looking for an exceptional leader who can build on CNT’s long history of successful innovation to create sustainable cities. Please visit www.cnt.org/executivesearch for details on this exciting opportunity.


Communications Director

The core task of the Communications Director is to position CNT, both nationally and locally, as a leading source of strategies, tools, and policies that promote urban sustainability and equity. 

CNT’s Communications Director is a strategic thinker adept at communicating with a range of key audiences, including policy makers, practitioners, local officials, industry leaders, and the media, at the local, regional and national levels. The Communications Director will help CNT shape key messages and position the organization and its strategies with target audiences. Working with the CEO and senior staff, the Communications Director is responsible for raising the visibility of CNT as a thought leader and effective practitioner in its program areas, and assist program managers in achieving their communications objectives. 

The Communications Director supervises a Communications Coordinator and Graphic Designer. S/he will work closely with CNT’s Development Team and program staff to implement communications and fundraising strategies. 

Duties and Responsibilities 

Communications Strategy 

  • Position CNT as a national source of innovative and effective urban sustainability strategies that simultaneously promote for economic inclusion and mitigate climate change
  • Work with the board and staff to frame CNT’s core messages and ensure their broad understanding and adoption
  • Raise awareness locally and nationally of CNT’s urban sustainability work in multiple regions around the country
  • Help program managers advance their specific programmatic goals through strategic communications planning and guidance; identify target audiences for each program area; develop and implement a communications strategy for each major program initiative
  • ​Monitor and evaluate news, trends and events, with an eye toward opportunities to communicate CNT’s work

Organizational Voice 

  • Provide editorial and messaging support to CNT program staff on all communications materials, as well as communications training/coaching for program staff to build skills and capacity
  • Edit and write blogs, speeches, talking points and presentations for senior leadership

Media Relations 

  • Increase CNT’s national media visibility and thought leadership recognition
  • Build relationships with reporters, bloggers, etc.
  • Manage communications for the launch of new programs, products and reports

Print and Electronic Publications 

  • Oversee the drafting, editing, design, publication, and distribution of written products, including annual report, research reports, newsletters, and other institutional publications and materials

Web Presence and Social Media 

  • Develop content for and maintain CNT’s web presence and social media channels – keeping abreast of trends and technology and making improvements when necessary
  • Build capacity of staff to engage with audiences on social media as subject matter experts
  • Work with staff to improve the usability of our web-based information tools

Minimum Qualifications and Skills 

  • Five or more years of experience in a senior communications and/or policy role, or related fields such as journalism or public affairs
  • The ability to think strategically and to position issues and ideas within the public debate
  • Superb writing, editing, and verbal communications skills
  • Solid organizational and interpersonal skills
  • The ability to collaborate with others and work in diverse effective teams
  • Success in planning and implementation of communication strategies aimed at policy change
  • Track record of producing communications products that are clear, persuasive and suitable for their target audience

Desired Qualifications 

  • Established relationships with Chicago-area and/or national media
  • Electronic media expertise in web development and social media
  • A working knowledge of urban, environmental, and economic policy, community development, urban planning, housing, energy and/or environmental studies

Personal Characteristics 

This position requires a person of intelligence and integrity who is highly motivated and team-oriented, enjoys organizing and coordinating projects and processes involving many people and issues, has demonstrated a commitment to CNT’s goals and mission, can work under deadlines and maintain a cooperative spirit in a demanding work environment, and has a sense of humor.

This is an Exempt position. Salary is commensurate with experience.

To Apply

Please send cover letter, resume, and salary history to:

Center for Neighborhood Technology
Human Resources – Communications Director
2125 W. North Avenue
Chicago, IL 60647
Email to: Careers@cnt.org

No phone calls please.


Internship Opportunities

CNT welcomes interns as an expression of our educational mission.  Internships are designed to expose students to various aspects of urban sustainability:

  • Public policy, research, and advocacy
  • Data and information access
  • Demonstration projects

Internships are individually crafted to reflect the interests of the student.  Prospective interns should get to know CNT in depth through our website prior to contacting us so that you know what programs and/or roles meet your current educational and experiential needs.

CNT works closely with interns to ensure that they receive academic credit for internships, whenever possible. Interns should not expect a job at CNT at the end of their internship.

CNT offers periodic brown bag seminars for interns which focus on different aspects of urban sustainability.   Some seminars may include recommended reading materials. Participation is voluntary, but encouraged.

Specific internship opportunities are posted below; internships in other areas of CNT’s work are also possible.

Unless specified below, please contact Stephen Perkins at steve@cnt.org to discuss opportunities.


Communications Intern

CNT seeks an intern to support the communications team.  Working with the Communications Director on projects that span internal and external communications, the Communications Intern will directly support CNT’s outreach efforts and contribute to CNT’s expansion of its influence.


As a Communications Intern, you will help CNT market its message, and help turn those interested into supporters of the organization.

  • Creating materials for outreach events and for online communications
  • Editing documents for funders and for media outlets
  • Provide social media support 
  • Supporting special events activities
  • Adding value to all our efforts based on your experience, desires, and skills

We are looking for a confident self-starter, with the ability to take direction, complete projects—and challenge our own assumptions and goals with bigger, better, brighter ideas. Interns should be comfortable working in a fast-moving, innovative, fun environment.  As a member of a small team, you will have the chance to experience and learn more about CNT’s efforts to create resilient cities and communities. You’ll be exposed to senior leadership, and exciting ideas. You will have the chance to join staff meetings and relevant external workshops and discussions.  This is a chance for you to learn, and to begin creating your career path.

Internships are unpaid.  We look for a minimum commitment of 15 hours per week – ideally longer.  Caffeine available in steady high doses as needed.

Contact Steve Perkins, Senior Vice President, CNT, at steve@cnt.org with inquiries.


RainReady Interns

CNT seeks interns to support our national RainReady initiative. Rain Ready helps individuals and communities work together to find solutions to the problems of too much or too little water within the context of global climate change. Launched in July 2014, the program is expanding rapidly to communities in the Chicago region and beyond.


We are looking for multiple interns who are confident self-starters. We particularly welcome skills in:

  • Community planning, facilitation and public engagement strategies
  • Economic analysis
  • Engineering and landscape design
  • Writing/photography/film
  • IT, including PowerPoint, Excel, photo editing, GIS, etc.
  • Work planning and project management


You will help us expand the program. Activities will be wide-ranging, including:

  • Creating online guidance and materials (such as factsheetsvideos and photos)
  • Carrying out economic analysis and developing risk models
  • Conducting online and telephone property surveys and analysis
  • Facilitating community events
  • Preparing community maps and other outreach materials
  • Expanding our social media outreach


Internships are unpaid and you would need to commit to a minimum of three days per week – and ideally more – for a minimum of 8 weeks. We are looking for people who are available to start work immediately.


The work environment is fast-moving, innovative, and fun. As a member of a small and diverse team, you will have the chance to experience and learn about our innovative approach to promoting change – from legislation to tools and support to demonstration. You will be provided with a desk and computer and will have the chance to join staff meetings and relevant external workshops and discussions.

How to Apply

Please send your resume to Harriet Festing, Director of CNT’s Water Program, at hfesting@cnt.org.