Hearst NewspapersHouston, TX
Full Time Job
The Houston Chronicle's 2022 Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial board is looking for an engaging writer and proven reporter who can hit the ground running on an opinion team dedicated to ambitious journalism that strives to influence lives and policies across Texas and beyond.
In essays, columns, and editorials, such as our prize-winning series on voter suppression, we help readers to make sense of the world – our current moment as well as our history and contemplations about our future -- so they can act on what they read, cast informed votes and hold elected officials accountable.
Our editorial board isn't just content to be part of the conversations on politics or gun violence or climate change, we strive to lead and to influence thought-leaders in finding solutions that will improve lives throughout the region, home to the state's most important economic engine and the nation's fourth-largest city, and its most diverse metropolitan area.
We're looking for a writer who understands the power of story, how it can cut through the noise and hype to illuminate problems, move minds and stir readers to action. Whether writing about a hurricane's aftermath or the process of gerrymandering, the ideal candidate can show work written with confidence and authority, but also flare, perhaps whimsy, and occasionally humor. The work pulls readers in at the headline and first paragraph, then holds them. It makes the complicated clear and the abstract real.
The ideal candidates are curious, skeptical but never jaded, believing that progress and persuasion are possible even in the most vexing areas of public policy. They have an understanding of the science of persuasion, that the best way to connect with readers who disagree with you is to draw a bigger circle, not a smaller one. If you'd rather preach to the choir than duel for the souls of converts, this isn't the job for you. Our opinion journalism is informed by facts, gleaned from documents, observed scenes and perspectives from many sources -- not biases or preconceived notions. We are wed to no ideology nor partisan organization. We follow the facts where they lead and strive to reach a consensus only after careful study and deliberation. At times, editorial board members are asked to write opinions with which they personally disagree.
We're seeking a digger, a builder of trusted sources, an original thinker, a versatile journalist steeped in the tools and mindset of digital-first journalism, able to ace a quick-turn editorial off a breaking news development and then engage with readers on the piece via social media.
This is not an entry-level position. Strong applicants have at least 5 years of experience as a journalist, broad interests, and the collaborative skills of a team player. They should be comfortable on camera, hosting a town hall or candidate debate. The board regularly hosts meetings with community leaders, public officials and advocates. We interview scores of candidates and make recommendations in each election cycle. Engagement and outreach with our readers and our community are vital parts of this job, and writers are expected to embrace the power of social media platforms to elevate their own work and the board's.
Our board is led by a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Opinion Editor Lisa Falkenberg, a former metro columnist who is passionate about giving writers both the space and intense editing they need to grow, innovate, and always find meaning in the vital journalism we produce. Editorial writers are encouraged to amplify and explore their unique voices rather than drone on in an institutional tone. Writers are expected to observe the highest standards in ethics, professional integrity and mature dialogue across social media platforms and elsewhere.
Just as Houston is diverse, so is the board you'll be joining. Fluency in Spanish is a plus and we especially encourage women and persons of color to apply. We firmly believe that our board should make every effort to reflect the vast range of perspectives in our city.
Houston is arguably the greatest news town in America, a microcosm of urgent national issues from immigration to climate change, and a proving ground for America's demographic destiny. It's also a fun city, with lush, sprawling parks, lower-than-expected cost of living, a nationally recognized culinary mecca, four major league sports teams, and endless cultural offerings including museums, opera, theater, ballet and the symphony. It's a center of the space industry and a 45-minute drive to the beach.
As part of its continued efforts to maintain a safe workplace for employees, Hearst Newspapers requires that all employees who receive a written offer of employment be fully vaccinated (as defined by the CDC) against the coronavirus by the first day of employment as a condition of employment, to the extent permitted by applicable law. Hearst Newspapers will consider requests for reasonable accommodations due to medical, including pregnancy or a pregnancy-related condition, and/or religious reasons on an individual basis in accordance with applicable legal requirements.
Pay is competitive for a large market and Hearst Corp., a private, family-owned company, offers excellent benefits. If you're interested in joining our team, please send the following materials to Lisa.Falkenberg@chron.com: a resume, five work samples, a one-page cover letter telling us what you could bring to our board, and the names and contacts of three references.