Job Description: LEAD EDITOR
Fair Punishment Project / Responsible Justice Project
About the Fair Punishment Project / Responsible Justice Project
The Fair Punishment Project is helping to create a fair and accountable justice system through research, legal action, public discourse, and educational initiatives. Our current areas of focus include prosecutorial accountability, bail reform, juvenile life without parole and direct file, drug reform, the criminalization of poverty, and the death penalty. FPP is a joint initiative of Harvard Law School’s Criminal Justice Institute and the Accountable Justice Collaborative at The Advocacy Fund. A number of individual and institutional donors support our work, including Open Philanthropy Project and Vital Projects Fund.
FPP’s journalism wing supports compelling, original journalism and commentary that educates and inspires journalists, advocates, academics, officials, and others interested in criminal justice reform. The journalism wing’s articles are housed at In Justice Today and are often produced in collaboration with other publications.
About the Position of Lead Editor
The Fair Punishment Project seeks an experienced, creative, and highly organized Lead Editor to edit articles produced by FPP’s journalism arm, which are featured on In Justice Today and are sometimes co-run with other publications. The Lead Editor reports to the Director of Journalism.
S/he will be asked to:
- Help develop article ideas in line with In Justice Today’s aims of (1) lifting up local justice stories that hold officials accountable and contextualizing those stories within in the national criminal-justice debate, (2) highlighting cutting-edge and under-reported criminal justice issues, and (3) providing sophisticated analysis on the pressing problems facing our justice system.
- Supervise articles from the beginning to the end of the production process, including overseeing staff journalists, freelance journalists, writers in residence, and academic contributors as they do reporting and write initial drafts.
- Supervise editorial staff. Coordinate the fact check and copy edit process.
- Mentor staff journalists. Ensure that their work product meets the highest standards of journalistic excellence and adheres to journalism ethics.
- Edit articles, including sculpting the frame on the front end and providing high-level edits and line edits at the back end.
- Perform additional tasks as identified by the Director of Journalism and the Executive Team.
The ideal applicant will have:
- At least 7 years’ experience in the journalism field (with preference for candidates with 10+ years of experience), with 5 years’ experience as an editor.
- Outstanding communication skills, written skills, organizational skills, and high attention to detail.
- Willingness to work in a creative, start-up environment and to help IJT grow in its first year as a publication.
- High work ethic and dependability, including demonstrated ability to work independently. Much of the staff works in a virtual office environment.
- Experience collaborating with a team and supervising and mentoring journalists.
- Deep background knowledge of the criminal justice system. Excitement about working at the axis of journalism and criminal justice reform. Commitment to the importance of accountability through excellent journalism.
- Commitment to cultivating diversity and lifting up unheard voices.
- Experience with leveraging social media to increase readership.
- Willingness to work nights and weekends when necessary, and travel occasionally.
- FPP welcomes applicants from diverse backgrounds or applicants who have been personally impacted by the criminal justice system.
Salary, Hours, & Location
- FPP offers highly competitive salaries and excellent benefits.
- The position is full time.
- The Lead Editor may live anywhere in the U.S., however preference may be given to individuals based in the Austin, Houston, SF Bay Area, or Boston areas.
Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and contact information for three professional references to firstname.lastname@example.org, with “Lead Editor” in the subject line. Preference will be given to applications submitted before January 15, 2018, but the position will remain open until filled.