Public Safety and Justice Reporter

The Bradenton Herald / McClatchy

Bradenton, Florida

Date Posted January 10, 2023
Industry Digital Media
Specialty Other
Required Education Bachelor's Degree
Job Status Full-time
Salary 21.63 - 24.04 hr.
Website /


The Bradenton Herald seeks an aggressive, experienced public safety and courts reporter to join its award-winning newsroom in Manatee County, one of America’s fastest-growing communities on the Florida coast.

Join the newsroom that exposed the Piney Point environmental disaster and a local vaccine rollout controversy that involved the Florida governor. At the Bradenton Herald, we put a premium on breaking stories first as well as investing in hard-nosed, accountability journalism that our audience can’t get anywhere else.

Our journalism focuses on our local communities, and in that role we have the ability to spotlight problems, highlight solutions and truly make a difference -- all the reasons you got into journalism. And we are part of McClatchy, a digitally driven company focused on innovation, with newsrooms in 30 communities in the United States.

Located between Sarasota and Tampa, the Bradenton area is one of the fastest growing in the country. With beautiful island beaches and outdoor activities, Manatee County boasts a lively downtown and the second-fastest growing planned community in the U.S.

In our public safety and courts reporter, we’re seeking a versatile and resourceful journalist who is as skilled in public records as she/he/they are in knocking on doors to track down sources.

You’ll need a passion for accountability journalism and the drive to sift through data, dig through documents and cultivate sources.

In this role, you will need to:

  • Focus on stories that build readership
  • Think about audience first and always, with a focus on service and utility journalism
  • Master engaging and innovative storytelling that goes beyond the written word to include interactive and multimedia elements
  • Demonstrate speed, competitiveness and SEO savvy through aggregating and storytelling tools
  • Work well in a team environment.

The successful candidate should meet many, though not necessarily all, of the following requirements:

  • College degree or equivalent work experience
  • 2-5 years of reporting experience.
  • Must have reliable transportation. Must have valid driver’s license and vehicle insurance required.
  • Strong writing skills, excellent news judgment and a demonstrated ability to “see the story” that is going to matter to readers.
  • Unwavering commitment to accurate, ethical journalism.
  • Ability to build source networks and bring a constant flow of story ideas.
  • Ability to work collaboratively to aggressively tackle stories.
  • Comfort with a job that will be demanding, fast-paced and constantly evolving.
  • Facility with data, public records and legal documents.
  • A deep understanding and curiosity of how law enforcement and the court system affects communities
  • Familiarity with the language of legal reporting and potential pitfalls


What we’ll bring: As a journalist at McClatchy, you will join a supportive, flexible, collaborative team. McClatchy strives to be an employer of choice, and our benefits package is made with this goal in mind. With a focus on health, well-being, wealth and daily life, our package options include healthcare coverage for employees and their families, financial protection from expected and unexpected expenses, multiple no-cost wellness resources and even coverage for four-legged friends.

Our overall benefits package also includes a 401(k) with employer match, competitive paid time off and corporate holidays, and a variety of mental health benefits. For more information on McClatchy's benefit plan, please visit  

To apply, include a persuasive cover letter, your resume and four to six examples of your best work.

About McClatchy: Our impact is growing every day. 30 growing markets. Over 65 million monthly readers. 56 Pulitzer Prizes. A strong portfolio of dynamic partnerships and smart investments. Our award-winning journalism, digital reach, and commitment to innovative growth have never been stronger.

As a member of the McClatchy family, you are part of a flexible, empowering, and exciting culture dedicated to creating a work/life balance and consistent opportunities for growth—a place where you have a voice and the ability to impact our future. It’s an exciting time to be here. Our company is experiencing the most transformative period in its history. We’re growing rapidly in the digital space and delivering award-winning journalism in innovative ways.