Berkeleyside is seeking to hire a senior public safety reporter.

Join our award-winning nonprofit local newsroom and help Berkeley residents better understand how local government impacts their lives — and how they can get involved.

The senior public safety reporter will cover policing and public safety in a city with a population of 124,000. The reporter will help residents better understand the criminal justice system and its impacts, and empower citizens to seek transformative solutions and become more civically engaged. 

The ideal candidate will be adept at both writing longform stories and jumping on breaking news with speed and accuracy. They will have a solid track record in investigative and accountability reporting; be experienced in filing public records requests and covering courts; and will have strong analytical data skills. 

“This is an exciting time to join Berkeleyside as the newsroom is reimagining its approach to public safety reporting,” said Editor-in-Chief Pamela Turntine. “We aim to focus on in-depth accountability reporting that investigates the underlying factors driving crime and other public-safety-related trends.”

The reporter will report on issues of community violence, pedestrian and cyclist safety and public health, and cover the city’s efforts to reimagine policing and its approach to fire safety.

What you’ll do

  • Report and write about three stories a week, including breaking news, in-depth features and service-oriented pieces 
  • Be an authority on your beat, identifying the compelling and important stories, and sharing your knowledge with the Berkeleyside team  
  • Use data-driven reporting techniques to uncover stories
  • Identify which public meetings to attend and cover them live via social media
  • Explore, with your editors, ways to reach and inform people beyond online stories, such as through special newsletters, community events, and text services  
  • Be available for general assignment work as needed
  • Occasionally take photographs or shoot videos to illustrate stories
  • Work with the editorial and audience teams to elevate your work and expand its reach
  • Report to the Berkeleyside editor-in-chief

What you’ll need to succeed

  • Five-plus years of reporting experience
  • Solid understanding of, and confidence in reporting on local government, local politics, and policy 
  • A good understanding of how to obtain and use public records
  • Experience covering breaking news
  • Strong writing, self-editing, and time-management skills
  • A commitment to ethical, accurate, inclusive reporting
  • Experience in building a beat and cultivating sources
  • Social media competencies 
  • The ability to synthesize and present complex information in a highly accessible, engaging and clear manner for a wide range of audiences
  • Ability to identify good story ideas that deliver on our mission and resonate with readers
  • The ability to maintain the highest journalistic standards under deadline pressure
  • A collaborative spirit and proven ability to work well in a team environment
  • Cultural competence: the awareness and knowledge to ensure that our reporting agenda reflects the diversity of Berkeley’s people and communities, and the communication skills to collaborate across lines of difference
  • Openness to public speaking in multiple formats, from radio to TV to live events

The salary for this position is $75,000 to $85,000. You’ll have access to Cityside’s healthcare plan, four weeks of paid leave, and a 401(k) match. You’ll also have a $1,000 annual professional development stipend. 

We’re committed to building an inclusive organization that represents the people and communities we serve. We especially encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply for this position, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people and people with disabilities.

Please use the form below to apply by Jan. 31.

About Cityside

Berkeleyside is part of the nonprofit local news organization Cityside Journalism Initiative, which also publishes Oaklandside. Learn more about our work and our funders at citysidejournalism.org

Berkeleyside staff

Berkeleyside is Berkeley, California’s independently-owned local news site. Learn more about the Berkeleyside team. Questions?...