The IFT Scientific Communicator is a local volunteer representative for the Institute's Public Information Activity. This individual is the point of immediate contact with editors, reporters, and radio/TV people in the geographical region who are working on stories related to food science/technology, food safety or nutrition. Qualifications of the Regional Communicator include the following: (1) desire to be a Regional Communicator, (2) professional member of IFT with an advanced degree in food science or closely related discipline; Ph.D. preferred, (3) current academic appointment, and (4) demonstrated competence in teaching, research, and/or extension with interest in communication.
Applicants for the Scientific Communicator position must submit a resume to the Regional Communicator Chairman of the National IFT. The candidate's credentials are reviewed by a committee consisting of chairman of Scientific Communicators, Chair of Expert Panel of Food Safety and Nutrition, Director of Public Affairs, Director of Science Communications, and a Regional Communicator recommended by the Regional Communicator Chairman and appointed by the President-elect. After committee recommendation, the new Regional Communicator will be appointed by the President-elect. The appointment is for 3 years with an option for reappointment following committee review.
1. Serve as the food science/technology resource person for media people in the region. This includes providing additional details on topics of a given summary or providing background for a reporter's projected articles.
2. Disseminating IFT public information materials such as Scientific Status Summaries and other position statements as issued. The IFT office staff will mail such summaries, with their accompanying news releases, to media people within the Communicator's region. These releases will bear the Communicator's names and phone number as a source of further information It is the responsibility of the Communicator to respond to queries elicited by these mailings.
3. Keep the IFT Director of Public Affairs informed of changes in names on the mailing lists as the Communicator becomes aware of such changes. Addition of "influential" people within the region is also requested.
4. The Scientific Communicator must make themselves known to the media people within the area as being available, knowledgeable and understanding of the reporter's needs. This may require (1) personally calling them with offers of assistance and (2) acting as a public relations person for food technology.
5. Submit quarterly reports reflecting media contacts to the Director of Public Affairs.
6. Attend Science Communicator meetings twice a year.
7. Participate in Regional ScienceCommunicator programs and committees.
8. Communicate with the Science Communicator Chairman or Director of Public Affairs on items of interest to other Science Communicators.
9. Participate in communication techniques