Work for RFA

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NATIONAL DIRECTOR

The crisis in journalism threatens democracy – which is why we need a dramatic new approach to reinvigorating journalism, especially at the local level.  Report for America is a privately-financed national service program for journalists.  Its mission is to call an emerging group of journalists to serve as local reporters in communities around the nation.

The program was co-founded in September 2017 by journalist/entrepreneurs Steven Waldman and Charles Sennott as an initiative of The GroundTruth Project. It is backed by the Google News Lab, the Lenfest Institute for Journalism, the Knight Foundation, the Galloway Family Foundation and others.

We seek a National Director to help run this ambitious and crucially important program. The position will report to the President of Report for America, Steven Waldman. Report for America is based in Brooklyn, NY.  The GroundTruth Project is based at WGBH in Boston.   

RESPONSIBILITIES

The National Director will initially work on many facets of the program including:

  • Devising the standards, practices, policies and strategies to make Report for America a movement that inspires public service through excellent local journalism.

  • Crafting a high-quality application process for would-be corps members that will allow RFA to grow from a pilot phase to a movement.

  • Creating a professional application process for host news organizations, and working with those organizations to make sure the quality is outstanding

  • Coordinating with GroundTruth staff to implement a world-class training and mentoring system that will allow RFA to build to scale.

  • Helping to shape the brand, serving as an ambassador for recruiting on college campuses, graduate schools of journalism and at public forums where the future of journalism is discussed.

  • Helping with budgeting and financial planning

  • Helping with fundraising

SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

The ideal candidate would have:

  • Entrepreneurial skills and practical experience in public service   

(Public service might include work with or participation in national or community service programs, military service or other non-profit groups. Candidates would ideally have some experience with journalism as well)  

  • Experience as part of a team that has scaled  a startup organization from small to large

  • Great organizational skills, with experience in operations

  • A  passion for the cause of public service and local journalism

  • A sense of humor and ability to collaborate with wide varieties  of people and an understanding of the spirit of a startup

  • Success at recruiting diverse teams, including diversity of ethnicity, gender, economic background and perspective

  • Excellent management abilities, both down and up

  • Commitment to and understanding of high quality, objective, local journalism

(We don’t expect the candidates to be rock stars in all of these skills but this is our ideal!)

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter and resume to jobs@reportforamerica.org with the subject line RFA National Director.

The GroundTruth Project is an equal employment opportunity employer and considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, gender, age, color, religion, national origin, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, or any other protected factor.

 

DIRECTOR OF FINANCE, the GroundTruth Project

The GroundTruth Project is a pioneering and innovative new non-profit organization poised for growth. Based at the flagship PBS station, WGBH in Boston, GroundTruth supports a new generation of journalists to tell stories that matter, and is part of a movement to restore trust in journalism globally, nationally and locally. Over the last five years, GroundTruth has earned a reputation as an award-winning news organization and supported more than 150 journalists, or reporting fellows, around the world and across America. Now GroundTruth is taking on its biggest and most bold challenge to date by launching a new and ambitious initiative called Report for America, which over the next five years seeks to place 1000 reporters in newsrooms to cover under-reported corners of America. We believe this initiative will stir a new movement to serve local communities, restore trust in journalism and, to put it simply, save our democracy at at a time when it genuinely feels in crisis. We’re looking for someone who wants to join that movement and who has the skills and vision to help GroundTruth take Report for America to scale.

BROAD SCOPE OF THE POSITION: Based in Boston, the Director of Finance will oversee the financial strategies and operations of GroundTruth and its initiative, Report for America (based in New York). S/he will be a key thought partner and part of a leadership team implementing the strategic vision for GroundTruth. S/he will report to the Chief Executive Officer and work closely with the directors of all GroundTruth initiatives to organize and coordinate budget processes. The Director will oversee all relevant communications with funders  (foundations and individuals) including gift acknowledgement and related systems, serve as a main liaison for financial and operational matters with a seven-member  Board of Directors and organize and facilitate the Board Finance and Audit Committee meetings.

RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Oversee and manage financial operations to achieve strategic goals identified by the CEO and the Board of Directors.

  • Prepare detailed reports and presentations for the Board and for its Finance and Audit committees that offer clear analysis and details of existing and near term finances.

  • Advise senior leadership on growth and strategic planning from a financial standpoint.

  • Work closely with accountants and auditors to ensure fiscal health of the organization.

  • Provide a controller function in organizing restricted and unrestricted grants, and work closely with project directors on accounting for deliverables.

 QUALIFICATIONS:

We are looking for a recent MBA graduate with three to five years of prior experience in financial management who possess a familiarity with non-profit accounting.  S/he will have worked in either a non-profit organization, a startup or have been part of a new initiative within a corporation.  In addition, the ability to work with senior leaders (Staff and Board) and manage outside service providers and junior colleagues is essential.  Knowledge of financial systems software and management systems in general is key. Most of all we are looking for someone who is hungry to learn and who has the energy to help us grow to scale.

EXHIBIT THE FOLLOWING LEADERSHIP SKILLS:

  • Team player

  • Creative thinker

  • Transparent

  • Reliable

  • Sense of humor

  • Entrepreneurial  

  • Open and collaborative style

  • Discrete regarding financial and personnel matters.

  • Strong written and oral communication skills

  • Presentation skills

 

ABOUT GROUNDTRUTH:

The GroundTruth Project is a pioneering and innovative non-profit new organization poised for growth. Based at the flagship PBS station, WGBH in Boston, GroundTruth supports a new generation of journalists to tell stories that matter, and is part of a movement to restore trust in journalism globally, nationally and locally. GroundTruth, headed by Founder and CEO Charles Sennott,  has made a name for itself in recent years, winning top journalism awards and widespread recognition for its role in addressing the crisis in journalism by offering opportunities to emerging journalists to do important, in-depth reporting on social justice issues around the world and across the United States. We curate the work on our website and place it with editorial partners, including PBS FRONTLINE, the NewsHour, PRI The World, Atlantic magazine and others. Over the last five years, GroundTruth has supported more than 150 journalists, or reporting fellows, around the world and now GroundTruth is taking on its biggest and most bold challenge to date by launching a new initiative called Report for America.

ABOUT REPORT FOR AMERICA:

Report for America (RFA) is a call to service for emerging journalists to dedicate a year of service to local reporting on communities in what are known as ‘news deserts,’ forgotten and under-covered corners of America overlooked by the mainstream media. The reporters are embedded into host newsrooms at local news organizations. Report for America has cornerstone support from the Google News Lab and the Knight Foundation and we are planning to scale the operation up from a pilot year in 2018 and our goal is to have 1,000 reporters dispatched into local newsrooms across America over the next five years. We are already seeing overwhelming interest in our initiative with more than 250 emerging journalists applying to be RFA corps members (yes we call them a ‘corps’ like the Peace Corps or Marine Corps because they are a team dedicated to service) applied for just three positions in host newsrooms in Appalachia. And more than 85 host newsrooms have so far applied for the opportunity to be part of our initiative which offers a unique and sustainable funding model.