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Capitalizing Job Titles

9/5/18 Capitalizing Job Titles


Capitalizing job titles can be tricky because they aren’t always capitalized, but it seems like a lot of people want to see their title capitalized whether it should be or not.
We are talking about job title such as vice president, sales director, chairperson, mayor, and emperor.
In general, titles that come before names are capitalized, and titles that come after names are lowercase.

  • The thing you have to figure out is whether the word is part of an official title (in which case it is capitalized) or just describing someone’s role (in which case it is lowercase).
For example, imagine that John Smith is class president. If you write:
We invited President Smith to dinner.
you capitalize president because that’s his official title and it’s right before his name.
But if you write:
Smith, the class president, came to dinner.
president is lowercase because it’s after his name and it’s just descriptive. You’re describing his role instead of using “president” as his official title.
  • If there is no name, the title is usually lowercase. For example, if you write:
The president came to dinner.
“president” is lowercase.
  • Sometimes a title may come directly before the name but still be lowercase because it’s simply describing someone’s role. For example, if you write:

Our class president, John Smith, came over for dinner.
“president” is lowercase.


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