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American Press Institute

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4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 300
Arlington Virginia United States 22203


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Deputy Director of Local News Transformation

Job ID: 61864
Job Views: 643
Location: Arlington, Virginia, United States
Postal Code: 22203
Job Category: Newspapers,Online | New Media,Other
Employment Type: Full time
Posted: 05.27.2021

Job Description

The American Press Institute seeks a Deputy Director of Local News Transformation who will coordinate and oversee communications strategy and assist in managing the Table Stakes Local News Transformation Program, an innovative yearlong change management program supported by the Knight-Lenfest Local News Transformation Fund. More information on the program can be found at


Job Responsibilities

The Deputy Director of Local News Transformation will support the program, working with API senior staff, other API personnel and outside partners. The primary responsibilities are to help monitor and ensure the success of participating news organizations and leaders, and to oversee communication strategies that spread the lessons of this program across the news industry. 

The Deputy Director of Local News Transformation will report to the Director of Local News Transformation and will have high visibility with the executive director, deputy executive director and VP/senior director. 

Ideal candidates for this job must be collaborative, excellent communicators and creative team players, and excel at keeping track of multiple projects and meeting deadlines. 

The key functions and responsibilities of this job include:

  • Help the director manage the core elements of the local news transformation program and be a creative partner in the design of the program. The Table Stakes Local News Transformation has helped organizations drastically increase their digital subscription revenue, fundraise tens of thousands of dollars and form partnerships to reach new audiences. We continuously evolve our programming to incorporate lessons from participants and new industry best practices. In addition to contributing to these updates, this job also involves helping design our transition from all-virtual programming to hybrid virtual/in-person programming as travel becomes safe again.
  • Be the product owner of Better News is the digital home of “best practices” in innovation associated with the transformation program. This person will manage the site with the help of freelance “curators” and a consulting editor and will be responsible for marketing the site and its content. This job involves being a primary player in identifying where news organizations have made creative replicable innovations that others in journalism should learn from; past examples include building relationships with diverse audiences, improving subscriber retention and re-focusing limited resources with a stop-doing list.
  • Function as the primary coordinator of the communications strategy to publicize the program in its different levels, including managing
  • Assist with programming and communications for the alumni community, including writing the monthly alumni newsletter
  • Track the performance challenges of all partners in the program in the Challenge Tracker, developed by the News Catalyst team
  • Assist with the evaluation of partner organizations in the program through survey analysis and other tools
  • Other duties as assigned

All of the above will require learning over time the change management methodology employed in the Table Stakes program, but familiarity with it ahead of time is not a requirement.

Job Requirements

Our ideal candidate has the following skills and experience:

  • Minimum 5 years experience in news organizations, such as a reporter, editor, product or audience role, or as a news entrepreneur
  • Familiarity with developing new products or cultural transformation in newsrooms and/or within other high-performance environments, and experience with or openness to learning design thinking
  • Commitment to and experience in applying principles of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging
  • Excellent communication skills, both internally with team members and externally with partners
  • Demonstrated writing skills
  • Detail-oriented
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Demonstrated ability to plan and execute on multiple projects simultaneously
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively, when needed
  • Demonstrated ability to work with multiple stakeholders
  • Experience working in a team environment
  • Excellent time-management skills
  • Strong curiosity for learning new skills and methodologies in the journalism space
  • Willingness and ability to travel for meetings, when it is safe to do so
  • Interest in or familiarity with the business of news and current issues affecting the news industry
  • Experience with performance-driven change theories or other theories of change management is helpful


We encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including BIPOC, LGBTQ+ people and people with disabilities. We also know there are excellent candidates who might not have all the skills and experience that we have outlined. If that describes you, please apply and tell us about yourself and share your ideas for this role. You may be the ideal candidate.

This is a full-time position with a salary between $85,000 and $105,000, commensurate with skills and experience, and the following benefits:

  • 20 days of paid time off, plus major holidays (9 per year)
  • Medical, dental and vision plan
  • 401(k) plan with a generous matching policy
  • Medical and/or dependent flexible spending plan
  • Generous family leave policies
  • Employer-paid life insurance, short-term and long-term insurance policies
  • Pre-tax mass transit plan
  • Professional development opportunities (for example, conference attendance or stipends for course enrollment)

API’s main office is located in Arlington, VA. Candidates who live in or are willing to relocate to the Washington, D.C., area as well as out-of-the-area candidates will be considered. The ideal candidate will need to be present for monthly meetings once it is thoroughly safe for employees to return to the physical office.


About the American Press Institute

The American Press Institute advances an innovative and sustainable news industry by helping publishers understand and engage audiences, grow revenue, improve public-service journalism, and succeed at organizational change. The American Press Institute is a national 501(c)3 nonprofit educational organization affiliated with the News Media Alliance. It works with and draws on the best ideas from anyone working in news publishing and journalism and anyone interested in its mission of making journalism sustainable.

TO APPLY: Please send an email to, and include “Deputy Director of Local News Transformation” in the subject line. Include a resume and cover letter that tells us about yourself and why you are interested in and qualified for this job. Please include three professional references or be prepared to provide them upon request.

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