Status: Full-time, exempt; salary commensurate with experience; competitive benefits package
Location: Denver, Colorado
Background: The Colorado News Collaborative (COLab) is an independent media resource hub that serves all Coloradans by strengthening high-quality local journalism, supporting civic engagement, and ensuring public accountability. Founding partners include 10 tenants of the COLab Newsroom, opening Fall 2020 at Rocky Mountain Public Media’s new Buell Center for Public Media in downtown Denver, that represent a wide range of non-profit and public-interest news outlets. Additionally, COLab involves a substantial number of non-tenant partners representing the state’s largest statewide newsrooms and journalism membership organizations.
Through topical networks/collaborative projects and partner services, COLab works to increase capacity (journalism, collaboration, mentorship), sustainability (business models, succession planning, revenue diversification) and innovation (technology, audience, community engagement) in independent local newsrooms throughout Colorado.
Personal Characteristics and Attributes
The ideal candidate for this position is an experienced journalist who has worked as an editor and/or business leader in a range of local media, and is familiar with operations in both commercial and nonprofit news outlets. You are familiar with the current trends, issues, opportunities, and challenges surrounding local media. You have experience building coalitions, identifying common motivations and goals for a range of parties, and leading collaborative efforts that increase positive impact. You have a passion to preserve journalism for future generations. You are motivated by the public service mission of journalism and believe in its potential to increase civic participation and strengthen communities. You are dedicated to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in local news coverage and workplaces, to better meet the needs of Colorado’s increasingly diverse residents. You are flexible, adaptable, creative, and seeking a position that brings professional fulfillment and the opportunity to help shape the state’s media landscape.
The COLab Executive Director is responsible for the overall management of the organization and the COLab Newsroom including: executive leadership; strategic and overall planning; board and funder relations and fundraising; budgets and finances; strategic partnerships and business development; public relations, marketing, communications and brand management; human resources and staff management; partner collaboration and vendor relations; facility operations; program execution and project management.
Organizational Leadership and Advocacy
Embraces, articulates, and promotes the mission of COLab through personal outreach, public communications, speaking engagements, peer group participation, and more
Develops and maintains relationships with national, regional, and local partners to identify opportunities and draw appropriate resources to Colorado newsrooms
Develops and maintains effective partnerships and two-way communication with civic news organizations statewide
Funding and Sustainability
Demonstrates leadership in achieving COLab’s fund development plan through foundation grants, events, individual contributions, government grants and contracts, and earned revenue and sponsorship opportunities
Ensures compliance with all grant guidelines and donor restrictions
Creates, communicates, and implements an annual budget to ensure financial sustainability
Maintains strong and healthy relationships with the funding community
Works with board members to execute fundraising strategies and goals
Organizational and Board Development
Fosters an active and collaborative partnership with board members to meet the organization’s programmatic, operational, and financial goals
Identifies opportunities to bring and maintain diverse perspectives on the Board of Directors, and offers suggestions for committee and Board composition and succession
Develops and strengthens the organizational structure through board development and long-range planning efforts
Ensures board composition meets the requirement of reflecting the state of Colorado such as racial, ethnic, gender, economic and geographic diversity.
Ensures organization operates within proper legal and fiduciary requirements
Provides editorial leadership for collaborative reporting, data journalism, and other editorial projects involving multiple newsrooms across Colorado
Regularly seeks input from COLab partners to identify common newsroom needs and develop programming accordingly
Works with COLab partners to develop innovative and creative solutions to meet their needs, including revenue generation and financial sustainability planning
Serves as the on-site point-person for COLab Newsroom partners:
Hosts regular meetings among COLab Newsroom partners to share priorities and plans, and address opportunities and concerns
Develops and supports member and public events
Provides a single, welcoming point of contact for COLab Newsroom, including hosting tours, troubleshooting partner requests, overseeing the physical space, building and supporting the culture and community of COLab partners
Oversees the coordination and communication with partners around building maintenance, cleaning staff, safety and security, common area management, and meeting room scheduling
COLab is launching in 2020 as an initiative of the Colorado Media Project, a community-led, grant-funded organization operating under fiscal sponsorship of the Rose Community Foundation. By 2021, COLab will become an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a community-led COLab Board of Directors.
The COLab Executive Director reports to the Colorado Media Project Executive Committee in 2020, and to the COLab Board of Directors from 2021 forward.
The COLab Executive Director oversees all contractors and employees of the COLab, including two collaborative journalists/editors, a data journalist, and a development manager.
Qualifications and Skills
Senior leadership and management experience in leading nonprofit and/or commercial organizations, especially start-ups
Practical current and ongoing knowledge of civic news organizations in Colorado and nationwide
Proven ability to lead, manage, and complete fundraising campaigns
Proven ability planning, tracking, and adhering to an organizational budget and maintaining financial sustainability
Experience developing and managing a budget of at least six-figures
Familiarity with technology solutions for nonprofit operations
Excellent verbal and written communication skills
Strong interpersonal skills: an approachable, personable, good listener who enjoys brokering multi-stakeholder partnerships/relationships, social networking, and motivating others to participate in community events
Ability to work effectively with competing priorities
Ability to lead a hire and manage a team as well as facilitate productive group interactions in a deadline-driven, partner-centered environment
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
The Colorado Media Project is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in our staff, volunteers, programs, and partners. We encourage applicants of diverse abilities, backgrounds, and life experiences to apply. CMP also is committed to equal employment opportunities and prohibits the unlawful discrimination against applicants or employees based on race, color, national origin, ancestry, creed, religion, sex, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation, marital status, gender identity or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law.
HOW TO APPLY
Interested candidates should email a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Executive Director: Colorado News Collaborative.” Applications received on or before Thursday, May 8, 2020, will receive priority review.
About Colorado News Collaborative (COLab)
Putting the power of the media and technology in the hands of the people.