Report for America attempts to revitalize local news by deploying extraordinary emerging journalists. But local journalism will not survive without the involvement—and the leadership—of thousands of established journalists, editors and teachers who have significant experience and wisdom.

We are now issuing a call to experienced reporters, editors and teachers to help revitalize local news by working with emerging journalists and innovative newsrooms. We offer a range of opportunities from short-term volunteer efforts as judges to modestly compensated positions as trainers. All of them are crucially important.

We view the experienced journalists who take on these assignments as ambassadors in a broader sense. For instance, last year our judges played a crucial role in spreading the word to prospective candidates—reaching out to emerging journalists or colleagues in the profession.

The time commitments vary depending on the role. In general, we can use whatever time you can spare. Most of these roles have no financial compensation. There are some exceptions. The judges who go beyond application review and do video interviews of finalists get a small stipend. We provide travel expenses for trainers and recruiters. And, of course, swag for everyone.

Judge

Our judges are central to the success of Report for America. We only succeed if we pick great corps members and news organizations—and that will only happen if outstanding judges help us (as they’ve done in the past). Next year we intend to field 300 corps members, and we will need judges to assess both reporters and newsrooms. We expect the time commitment to be roughly seven hours. Newsroom judging will take place mid-September through mid-November. Corps member judging will take place in February and early March. Check out our FAQ for judges.

Mentor

We want each of our corps members to benefit from the wisdom and guidance of an experienced mentor. In some cases, it will be someone who has covered the same beat as the Report for America corps member. In other cases it might be someone who has comparable career experience. And in other cases it might be someone who is in the same state or region as the reporter. We’re asking mentors to make a commitment of at least four calls or meetings per year for one year.

Trainer

Do you have a special expertise (or background) that would be useful to our corps members or a special sub-section of our corps members (e.g. health care reporters, Native American journalists, etc)? Our training efforts have two main tracks. We gather the entire  corps for intensive training at the beginning of each service year, in June. Then we also have monthly virtual gatherings (and some in-person ones). Would you be a good guest speaker? Or a trainer for June, 2021? Some of these are for the full corps, some are for smaller groups.

Fundraiser

For Report for America to achieve its goal of getting an extra 1,000 reporters in the field by 2024, we’ll need to raise the money to make it happen. Might you be interested in establishing or joining a state or regional fundraising committee? Mobilizing these resources yourself?

Recruiter

Would you like to represent Report for America in communities or universities near you? Let us know.

Report for America is a national service program that places emerging journalists into local newsrooms to report on urgent under-covered issues and communities. It is an initiative of The GroundTruth Project, an award winning, independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit news organization dedicated to supporting the next generation of journalists.


Report for America is a dynamic, rapidly-growing answer to America’s crisis in local news reporting. This year Report for America will expand from roughly 225 corps members to 300 as part of an ambitious plan to ensure that every American county has regular access to excellent local news. Our reporters and photojournalists work at newspapers large and small, public radio stations, TV stations, digital publications, wire services and investigative nonprofits. They will be in more than 200 newsrooms across 49 states, plus Puerto Rico, Guam and Washington, D.C.


Report for America runs two competitions, one for corps members and one for newsrooms.  Finding and selecting excellent candidates is one of the most important tasks we perform. That task will become even more important and complex as we scale. This year we fielded 300 corps members. Our goal is 1,000 by 2024.

The Director of Admissions for Report for America is in charge of both the admissions and selection processes. This position is full-time and can be performed remotely reporting directly to the Senior Vice President of Report for America and works closely with the Director of Recruitment.

Responsibilities

  • Leading our efforts to identify and select outstanding newsrooms and corps members
  • Working with the Director of Recruitment to establish relationships with a wide variety of professional organizations, universities, newsrooms and other sources to ensure that RFA attracts applicants who are diverse in terms of geography, ethnicity, viewpoints, and backgrounds.
  • Working with the Director of Recruitment to design and implement a recruitment strategy that attracts exceptional reporter candidates who are diverse in terms of geography, ethnicity, viewpoints, and backgrounds. That includes both finding current working journalists and building, growing and fostering a pipeline of talented undergrads and recent grads not yet experienced enough to join the Corps but who will be in a few years.
  • Working with the Director of Recruitment to design and implement recruitment strategy that attracts a wide range of exceptional newsrooms;
  • Improving the application forms submitted by reporters and newsrooms to better ensure that we select the ideal candidates;
  • Developing a scalable, high-quality system of judging (including finding and training outside judges);
  • Developing a scalable, high-quality system of selecting the right candidates and making the best matches between reporter and newsroom;
  • Managing the interaction between Report for America and the newsrooms, which currently make the final selections based on a slate of candidates provided by our program;
  • Research and recommend an optimal cycle for Report for America admissions, including the possibility of rolling, and/or twice-a-year admissions;
  • Working with the Directors of Operations and Technology to research and select the best technology platforms for managing admissions;
  • Managing the Report for America Talent Network which helps connect newsrooms with talented candidates who were not selected;
  • Working collaboratively and well with other directors and staffers;
  • Serving as an important spokesperson for Report for America as part of the recruitment process.

Experience:

  • Several years experience working in an admissions operation, ideally one of significant scale
  • Familiarity with newsroom cultures and the journalism profession
  • Familiar with Salesforce, Submittable, Google Suite, MS Office Suite preferred
  • Must be willing to travel
  • Good listening and observation skills
  • Quality problem solver who can also help others to navigate solving problems
  • Steward of diversity
  • Familiarity with online communication tools such as Twitter, Facebook, Workplace, etc.

About The GroundTruth Project
Our mission is to restore journalism from the ground up by supporting the next generation of journalists through field reporting that serves under-covered corners of the United States and the world.

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 status.


Interviews will be conducted via video conferencing.

The Rebuild Local News Coalition is an effort to shape public policies to build a stronger, more inclusive local news system.  It focuses especially on ensuring that public policy helps locally-grounded newsrooms, including nonprofit, diverse and family-owned news organizations.

The coalition is housed at The GroundTruth Project, and is chaired by Steven Waldman, the President of Report for America, which is also an initiative of the GroundTruth Project.  Report for America is a national service program that places exceptional journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered topics and communities.

The coalition includes the premier national organizations representing: nonprofit newsrooms, weeklies, Black newspapers, Hispanic newspapers, independent local news sites, family newspapers, philanthropic institutions and other groups advocating for local news. Together, we represent more than 3,000 local newsrooms.  The Coalition has already produced one of the most comprehensive plans for rebuilding local news, and has advised numerous congressional staff on other ongoing efforts.

The Public Policy Associate will have two roles: providing administrative support to Waldman (in his role as both President of RFA and chair of the coalition) and do research, policy, advocacy, logistical and administrative work on behalf of the coalition.


Responsibilities include:

  • Conduct research on legislative activities and policies
  • Handle the logistics of coalition meetings and interactions (including Zoom meetings, collective document editing, information sharing)
  • Help coordinate grassroots mobilization
  • Handle scheduling and other administrative tasks for the RFA President/Coalition Chair

Experience

  • Degree in public policy or political science, or experience working on Capitol Hill or DC based political advocacy groups
  • Strong communications and writing skills
  • Well organized, strong attention to detail, and strong organizational and logistical skills
  • Knowledge of and passion for journalism and its critical role in democracy.

About The GroundTruth Project
Our mission is to restore journalism from the ground up by supporting the next generation of journalists through field reporting that serves under-covered corners of the United States and the world.

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 status.

Interviews will be conducted via video conferencing.