|Date Posted||June 23, 2022|
|Job Status||Not Specified|
GENERAL ASSIGNMENT REPORTER, FEDERAL COURTS REPORTER
The Houston Chronicle seeks a versatile journalist to become our go-to reporter covering federal court cases and federal agencies (Homeland Security, DEA, FBI, etc.), while also handling a variety of assignments, from politics and City Hall coverage, to events and breaking news.
This reporter will be part of the Chronicle’s new Public Safety & Accountability Team, which will elevate our paper’s profile with expanded coverage of criminal justice, crimefighting trends and strategies, state and federal courts, and pollution and the environment -- with an eye toward spotting trends and holding power accountable. The Public Safety & Accountability Team will work closely with a new Breaking News, Engagement & Enterprise Team that also will include General Assignment reporters.
Under the public safety team’s structure, a lead editor will track federal court dockets and assign stories not only about the courts, but all federal agencies. This is a different approach to the federal beat, freeing up this reporter to flex reporting and writing muscle on a variety of subjects.
When it comes to court coverage, this reporter will tackle not only criminal cases, but also a variety of cases on the civil side, including police accountability, voting rights and wrongful death cases.
Court reporting experience – and having sources within the U.S. Attorney’s office and FBI – is preferred but not required. The successful candidate will work a Sunday through Thursday shift to help bring continuity to weekend staffing, further underscoring the need for this individual to pivot quickly and pitch in on a variety of assignments across departments.
- Work collaboratively with editors, other reporters (including beat reporters when applicable), photographers, the digital desk and the data visualization team to tell impactful stories across platforms that engage and retain local subscribers and other readers
- Produce a steady drumbeat of stories of varying lengths
- Work alongside editors to determine what stories are worth pursuing -- and formulating plans for pushing them forward, including alternative story formats that provide different points of entry into a topic
- Familiarity with social media, both in terms of creating content and engaging audience. This means posting short “starter versions” of stories on HoustonChronicle.com before Tweeting them or promoting them on other social platforms
- Write with clarity and authority, avoiding the urge to repeat jargon
SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE
- 3-5 years of experience as a reporter and/or digital producer
- Proven track record of federal court reporting, including sources within the U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI preferred
- Understanding of federal and Texas open-records law preferred
- Ability to work collaboratively in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment
- Ability to go anywhere and do anything, from City Halls to courts to disaster scenes to Metro feature assignments
- Work collaboratively with others, share bylines when applicable, communicate with editors
This is a full-time job based in Houston and is not eligible for remote work.
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 to 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 on an individual basis in accordance with applicable legal requirments.
About Houston Chronicle:
The Houston Chronicle is the largest daily newspaper in Houston, Texas, United States.
Houston Chronicle is committed to growing and retaining a more diverse workforce that better reflects the communities we serve. We strongly encourage all people of working age, who are traditionally underrepresented in the media to apply, including women, people of color, applicants with disabilities, those from the LGBTQ+ community and veterans.