If you are a journalist with a deep curiosity about how the justice system really works in California — from policing to prisons, from civil liberties to courts — you might be the reporter CalMatters seeks to create a new state justice beat.
Questions about whether the state ensures justice for all or inhibits it for some have recently roiled California, from #BlackLivesMatter to #metoo. We envision our new justice reporter would explore legal issues raised and shaped by the actions of the Legislature and governor, the activities of the state attorney general’s office, a network of state prisons housing adults and youth, approaches to addressing crime, evolving law governing civil disputes, and more. This beat would explore the most important but under-covered of California’s three branches of government, with the state Supreme Court topping a system of courts whose decisions influence almost every facet of daily life.
We are looking for a candidate who is open-minded, scrupulously fair and accurate, and committed to revealing often-complex policy stories through a state lens, vivid human experience and rigorously reported data.
- Report and write longform and short stories and multimedia presentations about California legal issues, including legislation, criminal and civil cases, civil liberties, and trends.
- Think creatively about formats and tools for communicating justice topics to a broad, statewide audience.
- Participate in radio shows, public events and live video.
- Work with our data, visual and social media journalists to create compelling story presentations.
- Be enterprising — capable of seeing potential stories almost everywhere, and entrepreneurial about forging and owning this beat.
These would be a plus:
- There is a preference this reporter be based near Sacramento.
- Experience covering legal/justice issues, with an understanding of how the court system works and how legislation advances.
CalMatters is a media venture devoted to explaining California’s policies and politics to a statewide audience. We are an expanding and collaborative newsroom, successfully developing a new model for sustainable, intelligent, nonprofit journalism. We’re also committed to diversity and especially encourage members of underrepresented communities to apply.
If you’re interested, please provide a resume, a cover letter that outlines how you would approach the job and links to at least six online samples of your work. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org with the job title in the subject line.