Public Safety Reporter

Employer Gannett Co.
Location Knoxville, TN
Type Full time
Apply by Deadline not specified—Apply ASAP!
More details
Posted on October 12, 2021


We’re seeking a reporter who understands that meaningful public safety reporting is about finding solutions, not chasing mayhem. Forget traditional cops and courts reporting — this is connecting how police, prosecutors and judges apply their power, and what people and institutions stand to gain depending on which levers are pulled. It’s also tying in how the ongoing movements for equality and justice ripple through our region, and how people can expect to personally experience large-scale news events.

Knoxville and East Tennessee are home to many of the same fault lines dividing other American cities: great gulfs in employment, housing, education and opportunity based on where you live and what color your skin is. We’re convinced how a community handles public safety illuminates its values.

Our public safety reporter will be a pro at developing sourcing in the community as effectively as they do in courthouses and police stations. Our public safety reporter will be adept at finding out what people are talking about, and finding the sharpest angle to connect with readers. Depth, accuracy and authenticity are vital, as is an innate need to own a beat.
There is some classic urgency reporting required: fast-developing local stories are often the foundation for enterprise. But the focus is on exclusive, original reporting built through deep source-building.

Here are some nuts and bolts: It’s a Tuesday through Saturday gig barring major breaking news; social media fluency is a core requirement; it’s expected you’re comfortable working with journalists at all levels across our local, regional and national network.

Typical Job Duties:
• Creates storytelling that accurately informs, engages and enlightens our audience.
• Explores and reports on public safety in East Tennessee with a focus on connecting with our audience’s passions.
• Works toward becoming the community’s leading voice on public safety with a focus on bringing solutions in front of readers.
• Demonstrates clear concise writing skills and an emphasis on “why this is important to me.”
• Understands that people love to read about where they’re from and what they need to feel secure in their community.
• Works with our content strategist and audience analyst to evaluate what’s working and what’s not and develops ongoing plans to better satisfy audience needs.
• Collaborates with our content team to provide all appropriate elements for stories (i.e. photos, videos and graphics). Captures basic photos and video as needed.
• Promotes personal brand, the brands of colleagues and the institutional brand.
• Provides great customer service, helping readers find answers and solutions.

• Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in experience and education.
• Record of excellence in reporting.
• Strong news judgment.
• Outstanding research skills and ability to build extensive contacts.
• Ability to create trust within your niche community.
• Knowledge of AP style.
• SEO proficiency.
• Excellent communication skills.
• Passion about news and content that will work well with audiences on social platforms.
• Expertise using social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat to enhance reporting and promote stories.
• Deep knowledge of and respect for reporting ethics and sourcing.
• Ability to collaborate well with others and to work within geographically separated teams on the biggest stories.
• Willing to travel on short notice to cover breaking news events.
• Valid driver’s license, reliable transportation, and the minimum liability insurance required by state law.

Click here to apply online.

Deadline not specified—Apply ASAP!