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Job Openings at Watchdog and Franklin Center

While we thank all applicants for their interest in these positions, we are able to contact only those to whom we can offer an interview. No phone calls, please.

Open Positions

Director of Communications

Director of Development

Vermont Bureau Chief

Denver Education Reporter

*****  DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS  *****

The Franklin Center, an organization dedicated to supporting and training investigative journalists to advance transparency, accountability, and fiscal responsibility in local government, and to spotlighting free-market, pro-liberty solutions to difficult public policy challenges, seeks a Director of Communications and Media Relations.

After previously working with an external public relations firm, the Franklin Center is bringing this role in house in an effort expand our media reach and impact. The Director will have the opportunity to build a communications department to expand the reach of Watchdog.org’s investigative content. The role will have two major components: 1) develop relationships with outlets of all varieties – TV, radio, print, and online outlets – in order to pitch the Center’s reporters, and 2) build content distribution arrangements with strategic news partners in order to encourage legacy media outlets to run our work. This includes outreach to local publications needing more state-based content, as well as issue-based outlets that align with the organization’s mission.

This unique opportunity will allow for extensive outreach and travel to meet with news partners and ensure mutual goals are being met. Qualified candidates will have existing media relationships, a strong understanding of the newsroom process, an entrepreneurial attitude, and demonstrated success in results-based outreach.

The Director of Communications and Media Relations can be located in Franklin’s Arlington, VA headquarters or in a virtual office.

ESSENTIAL RESPONSIBILITIES:
• Build relationships with bookers, producers, and editors of local and national news outlets
• Pitch Watchdog reporters to media, tracking metrics
• Assist with op-ed writing on an as-needed basis
• Develop comprehensive list of existing and potential news partnerships, identifying and soliciting news publications that could benefit from Watchdog content
• Manage news partner relationships to retain and expand content sharing
• Develop and manage distribution agreements, establishing and implementing content sharing guidelines for news partners to follow
• Create a tracking system to measure value and reach of partnerships using a database like Salesforce
• Coordinate with outreach, journalism, and marketing departments to ensure content needs and special requests are met
• Identify new partnership opportunities outside of content sharing to further Watchdog’s exposure and reach

QUALIFICATIONS:
• 4+ years of political and/or grassroots communications experience required
• Existing media relationships
• Strong understanding of the newsroom process
• Entrepreneurial attitude
• Demonstrated success in results-based outreach
• Ability and enthusiasm to network with a wide variety of people
• Detail-oriented and organized with strong attention to detail
• Exceptional communication skills, both written and oral
• Proven ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously
• A passion for promoting a free market society

TO APPLY:
Interested candidates should submit the following materials in one PDF document:
• Résumé
• Cover letter detailing salary expectations and an explanation of the applicant’s philosophical interest in the mission of the organization
• List of 3-5 references

Email materials in one PDF document to Claire Kittle Dixon, executive director of Talent Market, who is assisting with the search: claire@talentmarket.org.

While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview. No phone calls please.

*****  DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT  *****

The Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity seeks a highly-motivated Director of Development to lead its national fundraising and donor relations efforts.

The Franklin Center supports and trains investigative journalists to advance transparency, accountability, and fiscal responsibility in local government, and to spotlight free-market, pro-liberty solutions to difficult public policy challenges. As a dynamic nonprofit journalism organization, the Franklin Center has significant growth objectives over the next five years. Meeting these goals will require generation of new resources through long-term, mutually-beneficial partnerships with individual, foundation, and corporate donors from across the country aligned with Franklin’s mission.

If you have a passion for liberty, are motivated by success, and are ready for an exciting opportunity to shepherd a national, high-impact organization into its next phase of growth, please consider joining our team. After all, we’re on a mission from Ben (Franklin, that is).

The Director of Development will ideally be located in Franklin’s Arlington, VA headquarters. We will also consider a virtual office for the right candidate with a proven record.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
• Develop and implement a cohesive fundraising strategy for the Franklin Center, including strategies for high-dollar individual donors, foundations, and corporate donors
• Work closely with the President to implement the fundraising strategy, including making recommendations on how the President’s time can be most effectively utilized in a fundraising capacity
• Lead high-performing team toward set of shared goals
• Identify and develop relationships with key donors and donor prospects
• Develop, cultivate, and secure major gifts for the Franklin Center’s work
• Interact with donors through telephone calls, one-on-one meetings, and written correspondence to keep them informed of the Franklin Center’s work
• Gather and analyze data related to effectiveness of various aspects of the fundraising strategy
• Begin the development of a planned giving program
• Contribute, in a results-focused environment, new strategies that maximize opportunities and accomplish fundraising goals
• Support the President and senior leadership team in creating and carrying out the strategic plan and vision of the Franklin Center
Qualifications:
• Demonstrated ability to raise significant funds for a nonprofit organization
• 4 to 7+ years of experience in nonprofit fundraising
• Entrepreneurial spirit and ability to be a self-starter
• Notable relationship-building skills, and an outgoing, friendly personality
• Knowledge of free-market donors and national network a major plus
• Superb story-telling and communication skills
• Experience in leading and managing teams
• Strong and demonstrable persuasive writing skills
• Strong project management skills and ability to organize, multi-task, set priorities and follow through
• Committed to the Franklin Center’s mission and a strong commitment to the principles of free enterprise and the role of journalism in a free society
• Ability to travel regularly, up to 50%+ of your time
• Personable, self-motivated, and professional
• Experience with database and basic Microsoft Office products, including Word, Excel, Power-Point, and Outlook
• Bachelor’s Degree

The position’s salary will be commensurate with the experience, expertise, and skills of the person who takes the position.

To Apply: Interested candidates should submit the following materials in one PDF

• Résumé
• Cover letter detailing salary expectations and an explanation of the applicant’s philosophical interest in the mission of the organization
• List of 3-5 references

Email materials in one PDF document to Claire Kittle Dixon, executive director of Talent Market, who is assisting with the search: claire@talentmarket.org. While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview.  No phone calls please.

*****  VERMONT BUREAU CHIEF  *****

Watchdog.org is seeking a bureau chief to lead the Vermont reporting team, responsible for helping Watchdog.org become the recognized leader in state reporting. The Vermont Bureau Chief:

• Is first and foremost a reporter, producing his or her own stories at the rate of 2-3 per week.
• Reports to the Executive Editor.
• Helps to build a positive relationship with donors to the Vermont bureau.
• Recruits, helps to train Vermont bureau reporters, freelancers and interns.
• Manages reporters in the Vermont bureau to established production goals, including story quality and count; pickups in other media; and social-media activity.
• Manages day-to-day functions of the Vermont bureau, including story selection, assignments and editing.
• Works with other team members essential to the success of the Vermont bureau.
• Works with marketing to assure that reporters are given top-level assistance in meeting our ambition to become the recognized leader in Vermont reporting.
• Helps to establish news partnerships throughout the state.
• Is the face of the Vermont bureau in media interactions (e.g., on TV and radio).

REPORTER SUMMARY
All Watchdog reporters are:
• Committed to the Franklin Center’s free-market mission of uncovering waste, fraud, and abuse in government, as well as to the job of highlighting successful free-market solutions to public policy problems.
• Comfortable using standard newsroom equipment, including phones, computers, content-management systems, video cameras, and the like.
• Knowledgeable about their subject area and can work independently.

ESSENTIAL VERMONT REPORTER RESPONSIBILITIES
• Bureau reporters will produce three stories per week with the goal of regularly breaking major stories of government corruption and malfeasance at the local and state levels.
• Reporters must become familiar with the sources in cities and towns who can help them produce game-changing stories.
• They will be expected to work with the Watchdog and Franklin Center marketing teams and to develop relationships and tactics for the widest republishing of their work in other media, including newspapers, websites, social media (e.g., Twitter and Facebook), television and radio.
• Occasionally be called on to collaborate with other reporters in the bureau and in the Watchdog network.
• Become familiar with the WordPress system for filing and editing stories; regularly budget and work with the editors on those stories; and join in regular calls with other members of the Vermont Bureau and Watchdog reporting team.

Qualified candidates should submit the following application materials to John Bicknell at jbicknell@watchdog.org : Resume and cover letter detailing (a) salary requirements and (b) your interest in the mission of the organization. Two to three writing samples demonstrating your ability to write from the point of view of the taxpayer.

*****  DENVER EDUCATION REPORTER  *****

Watchdog.org is seeking an experienced investigative reporter to cover education issues in Denver, and how local education policy affects the national debate.

This position will be part of a state-based team, working with those reporters and editors as well as with the national education team to direct story assignments and identify national education trends in school choice reform.

ESSENTIAL RESPONSIBILITIES:
• Maintain sources that allow her to break new ground on education stories.
• Cover school choice policy and legislation affecting Denver, specifically on charter schools and educational savings accounts.
• Write about personal stories of people helped by choice-based education policy changes across the country.
• Work with the other members of the education policy reporting team to create weekly story budgets.
• Produce three enterprise stories per week, as well as shorter daily items as news warrants.
• Become skilled in the use of Watchdog content-management systems (e.g., Word Press).
• Develop tactics for republishing the work—and the Watchdog name—in other media, including newspapers, websites, social media (e.g., Twitter and Facebook) and television and radio.
• Participate in scheduled training sessions and in regular calls with editing team.
• Work with staff in other bureaus as needed.
• Represent the organization professionally at public events and social gatherings.

All Watchdog reporters are
• Committed to the Franklin Center’s free-market mission of uncovering waste, fraud, and abuse in government, as well as to the job of highlighting successful free-market solutions to public policy problems.
• Comfortable using standard newsroom equipment, including phones, computers, content-management systems, video cameras, and the like.
• Knowledgeable about their subject area and can work independently.

Qualified candidates should submit the following application materials to John Bicknell at jbicknell@watchdog.org :

Resume and cover letter detailing (a) salary requirements and (b) your interest in the mission of the organization. Two to three writing samples demonstrating your ability to write from the point of view of the taxpayer.