Fostering collaboration is one of the key strategic pillars of Free Press Indiana, because we believe that when we work together, we can reach more audiences more effectively. Central to that effort will be a managing editor for partnerships and special projects.
This editor will work closely with more than a dozen newsroom and university partners who are eager to team up to expand the breadth and depth of local news. The editor will support these partners in frequent collaboration and will spearhead ambitious cross-newsroom investigative efforts and other special projects. They will also help coordinate coverage of major news events, putting together comprehensive coverage plans in which each partner focuses on angles and formats in their wheelhouse and cross-promotes content.
We are looking for an excellent editor who is passionate about helping Indiana’s news ecosystem thrive. This senior role will report to the CEO of the Indiana Local News Initiative.
The mission of the organization is to strengthen Indiana’s communities and preserve its democracy. The organization will fill information gaps with original, community-based non-partisan local reporting and work collaboratively with the Indiana news ecosystem until every Hoosier has the information they need.
Free Press Indiana Initiative approaches its work through three key strategies:
In 2021, a steering committee of local journalism, community and business leaders worked with the American Journalism Project to conduct a comprehensive statewide research study, working with 27 community ambassadors around Indiana and collecting input through text messaging and online surveys, interviews, and focus groups. Through the study, more than 1,000 Hoosiers across 79 counties said they needed more unbiased, fact-based information about their communities.
Out of those findings, a coalition of organizations in and around Indiana, local community leaders, and the American Journalism Project, partnered to launch the Indiana Local News Initiative, a new nonprofit organization with a mission to fill information gaps in the state. The coalition, which is supported by a growing list of more than a dozen philanthropies, has raised almost $10 million for the organization so far, and has formed search committees that are conducting an open search for a founding leadership team.
The organization, which will be governed by a board that is representative of Indiana’s diverse communities, inclusive of race and ethnicity, gender, and political perspectives, is beginning by launching a robust, 25-person news organization in Central Indiana, facilitating investments in journalism outlets around the state, and fostering collaboration among Indiana outlets to amplify local journalism for all Hoosiers, especially underserved communities. It will have an innovative, community-focused structure, and work directly with residents to report on and elevate voices and stories from their own communities in addition to providing much-needed accountability and service journalism across critical topics. It will also house Indianapolis Documenters, a program that will train and pay residents to participate in news gathering. It will be sustained by a combination of philanthropy, membership, and sponsorships.
Information produced for communities by the Indiana Local News Initiative will be free to access, and is available for republishing. Its newsrooms will work in partnership with a growing list of outlets to amplify and increase the volume of relevant, original local reporting available to all residents.
Consider applying if you have some of these skill sets:
We’re committed to building an inclusive organization that represents the people and communities we serve. We encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, veterans, LGBTQ+ people and people with disabilities. The Indiana Local News Initiative is dedicated to equal employment opportunities for all applicants and employees. We encourage people of all races, colors, national origins, ancestries, creeds, religions, genders, ages, disabilities, veteran status, sexual orientations, and marital statuses to apply.
What to expect in the hiring process
We hope to fill this role as soon as possible, though the hiring process can typically take from a few weeks to a few months. We will do our best to communicate with you about timing expectations throughout the process.Candidates who advance to later rounds of this process can expect several interviews, including with a panel of community members. Semi-finalists will be asked to complete a written assignment designed to help us understand your thinking and approach to the role, and you will be offered an optional prep session to ask any questions that will help you put your best foot forward in this process. We aim to truly get to know you, to help you fully understand the role you’re applying for.