We’re doubling down on our investigative coverage of the federal government and its impact on people’s lives. And we’re adding a member to our award-winning engagement reporting team to do it.
What do we mean by covering the federal government? There’s an enormous amount of news coming from Washington. We’re not particularly interested in the fights or the tweets. Instead, we are going to be digging into what’s really happening inside the halls of power that affects the lives of Americans. We’re looking for a journalist who will mobilize communities — constituents, employees, voters, taxpayers and more — around civic issues they care about. We’ll turn the community’s input into stories holding officials to account.
This is just a start. We know there are any number of possibilities for engagement work around politics and government. We’re looking for someone with enthusiasm, creativity and reporting chops to do more of it, alongside the other reporters and editors joining our team covering Washington.
Excited? Us too. You should apply if:
You have experience organizing communities and activating people around civic issues — either digitally (think Facebook groups, social media, web forms) or in real life (events and forums). Ideally, this would be in a journalistic context, but we’d love to hear about any work you’ve done along these lines.
You have journalism experience, either locally or nationally, especially doing stories that shed light on injustices. You don’t need fancy bylines, but you will want baseline reporting chops.
You’re a thoughtful writer who can adjust your style to the occasion. You understand the difference between messaging the moderator of a Facebook group and emailing a PR person for comment. And you’re excited by the challenge of making tax policy interesting.
You use data and analytics (you know, actual evidence) to do things better.
You believe in the power of inclusiveness. You think it’s important to collaborate with communities and your colleagues. You’re committed to being a respectful human being.
You’re at home on the internet. You think reading the comments can be fun. You appreciate the occasional spicy back-and-forth.
We know there may be great candidates reading this who may not fit into what we’ve described, or who have alternative skills — anyone from community organizers to subreddit mods to event planners — who could bring a lot to this position. There also may be candidates who psych themselves out of applying even if they would be great at this job. If any of that describes you, please don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself. There’s space in the application to tell us everything you bring to the table, and we look forward to reading it.
What you should send us: We cannot emphasize this enough: Great projects are the most important part of the application.
The application form will allow you to send us three projects from your portfolio, as well as give you the space to walk us through your own contributions to those clips. Take advantage of this to tell us everything you did, from behind-the-scenes wins you’re proud of to how you helped your colleagues. Let us know how your engagement and outreach work shaped the output. Don’t be shy — tell us what succeeded (numbers and evidence of impact welcome) and how you’d do it differently next time.
Make sure to read the section above ("You should apply if") because it’s also our evaluation criteria for the position, and use your application to show us how you’ve got the skills we’ve listed, or why the skills you have are the ones we actually need.
We are dedicated to improving our newsroom, in part by better reflecting the people we cover. We are committed to diversity and building an inclusive environment for people of all backgrounds and ages. We especially encourage members of underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people and people with disabilities. (Here is a breakdown of our staff.)
This job will be based in either our new Washington office or New York. It’s full time and includes benefits.