The American Journalism Project (AJP) is seeking a Vice President, Growth Investments to join our Growth Investments team to steward our relationships with the nonprofit news organizations in which AJP is investing growth capital while building their capacity and ability to grow their revenue and impact. You will steward AJP’s return on our investments, participating in grantmaking due diligence, leading one-to-one venture support and business coaching with our grantees, and contributing to AJP’s efforts to partner with our grantees to build a movement for local news in their markets.
Additionally, the VP, Growth Investments will be responsible for generating insights and building a learning community for content areas in which they have particular expertise.
This is a unique opportunity to join a growing, national movement to rebuild local news in communities across the country in a way that allows these organizations to better serve the public, while being sustainable and independent. The American Journalism Project has raised over $150 million for the cause so far, and aims to catalyze enough investment in nonprofit local news to create a more than $1 billion sector by 2040, full of thriving, equitable, public service-oriented newsrooms that increase civic engagement and make communities work better for their residents.
Who we are
We’re an entrepreneurial team that’s passionate about journalism, civic engagement, and how local news plays a unique role in shaping our democracy. We help build and grow sustainable local news organizations all over the country — through financial investment, venture support, and movement building — that are governed by, sustained by, and look like the public they serve. Since 2019, the American Journalism Project has committed more than $45M of investment in over 40 nonprofit news organizations across the United States. Learn about our grantees.
Our team is deeply connected to our mission and supportive of each other’s goals and overall well-being. We aim to be an organization where everyone feels heard, respected, and valued. We are an entirely remote, distributed team and strive to maintain a healthy, fun, and productive workplace, working alongside smart, energetic colleagues who enjoy one another and the work. Meet our full team.
- Local First: We know that local journalism must serve and be led by local communities. We make a practice of listening to, and making decisions with – not for – those communities, and connecting them to find strength in each other.
- Bold Leadership: We understand the severe economic challenge facing local news and thus democracy, and we embrace a sense of possibility with courage, urgency, and perseverance.
- Constant Learning: We recognize the unknown in front of us. Therefore, we operate with humility and a commitment to continuous improvement and collaboration.
- Commitment to Equity: We commit to creating a better, more diverse, and more inclusive news media that advances human and civil rights. We actively fight against injustice and racism, and that starts with doing the work ourselves.
- Integrity: We accept the responsibility of earning trust every day. We operate with honesty, transparency, dignity, and respect, and without allegiance to party, ideology, profit, or power.
The Growth Investments team is committed to strengthening the nonprofit news sector across the country. We constantly search for excellent nonprofit news organizations across the United States who have the potential to grow in scale and impact in their communities, invest capital in those organizations targeted at supporting their revenue growth, and coach and support those grantees to maximize their revenue potential. Our goal is to set all our grantees on a path to become best-in-class local nonprofit institutions with the sustainable resources to more adequately meet the information needs of their communities.
The VP, Growth Investments will serve as a key senior leader on this team charged with assisting in the selection of grantees; providing excellent coaching, support, and leadership development to senior leaders in their portfolio of grantees; and ensuring we are building community, insights and resources from across our grantee portfolio. You will also work directly with grantees to assist in building the movement for local news in their markets and will be accountable for ensuring that grantees meet their revenue goals.
Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to:
- Navigating strategic conversations with grantee leaders about maximizing their organizational assets and overcoming challenges to growth, including staffing, organizational structure and culture, fundraising, earned revenue, board leadership, and local movement building
- Effectively designing strong support plans that leverage AJP staff (including yourself), consultants, peer organizations, and others to provide best in class support for grantees in one to one or group settings, virtually or in person
- Actively networking in the local journalism ecosystem, building external relationships and a pipeline of current and future grantees, and pursuing strategic opportunities for new Growth Investments
- Onboarding the leadership of new grantee organizations in a way that meets all technical requirements, builds a trusting relationship, and sets clear expectations for both the grantee and AJP
- Collecting examples, stories and learning from your grantee portfolio that will benefit the larger grantee portfolio
- Serving as the content lead for a prioritized area of revenue generation, ensuring that we have excellent resources available to all grantees and we build strong learning cohorts or targeted learning experiences for our grantees in those areas
- Working with other members of the Growth Investments team and consultants to build community across content areas and build learning experiences to advance grantees’ knowledge and skills
- Developing resources either by yourself or collaboratively with other experts
Background & skills
We know not all strong candidates will have all the skills we list. That’s OK. Research shows that women and people of color are less likely to apply for a position if they don’t meet every skill listed. At the American Journalism Project we are committed to creating a better, more diverse, and more inclusive news ecosystem, and that starts with doing the work ourselves. So if your past experience doesn’t align perfectly, but you know this is the role for you – please tell us!
An ideal candidate will have…
- Experience diagnosing assets and challenges to organizational growth and creating plans to maximize growth potential.
- Experience in working in or with nonprofit news organizations and a track record of finding and delivering sustained financial resources for those organizations.
- An understanding and fluency in donor relationships from both sides of the donor/recipient relationship is preferable, but not required.
- A specialist understanding of revenue generation with an emphasis on earned revenue.
- Management experience in the context of either a news organization or a nonprofit organization is required; management coaching experience is preferable.
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to synthesize large amounts of information and clearly communicate key insights, with a strong grasp of business concepts and numbers; must be a persuasive communicator.
- An understanding of the value of diversity, equity, and inclusion in workplaces, newsrooms, and coverage; willingness to learn and coach others through operationalizing equity and inclusion.
- Meticulous attention to detail and accuracy in documentation.
This role is a fit if you are…
- Excited about gaining experience growing sustainable news organizations, while putting your unique revenue generation skills and experience to impactful use.
- Enjoy the act of coaching leaders to achieve ambitious scale targets.
- Enthusiastic about tackling challenges in a fast-paced startup environment and continuously experimenting and seeing projects to completion that help news organizations succeed.
- Willing to think outside the box to solve problems for which there are not always blueprints for solutions.
- Highly empathetic; you have an affinity for collaborative work, love for mentoring and inspiring others, and doing whatever it takes to get them to successful outcomes.
- Accustomed to working in environments where feedback is liberally given and taken.
- Intellectually curious, a strategic thinker and an innovative problem-solver, including a proven ability to create and manage organizational change.
- A person with strong personal responsibility and accountability, results-oriented, adaptable, skilled at situational management (including being able to manage up, laterally, and down).
- A person with passion for making the country a better, more equitable and just place for its residents by helping to build a new local news ecosystem across the U.S.
Compensation & benefits
Our total compensation package is competitive in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors, and we are committed to supporting our team with what they need to show up every day, ready to bolster the local press our democracy deserves.
We benchmark our salaries against similar organizations, and use a scale that considers job complexity and magnitude of responsibility to determine role levels and corresponding base salaries, as well as offer regular opportunities for salary increases. The salary range for this position is $162,727 – $179,000. Read about our benefits here.
What to expect in the hiring process
Our approach to hiring is to create a consistent and transparent process for all candidates. We hope to fill this role as soon as possible, though the hiring process can typically take from a few weeks to several months. We will do our best to communicate with you about timing expectations throughout the process.
Candidates who advance to later rounds of this process can expect multiple interviews with members of our hiring committee. Semi-finalists will be asked to complete a hiring exercise designed to help us understand your thinking and approach to the role, and you will be offered an optional prep session to ask any questions that will help you put your best foot forward in this process. We aim to truly get to know you, to help you fully understand the role you’re applying for, and to get to know your prospective team.
Please submit an application through our portal. Download the full job description here. If you have any questions please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org with “VP, Growth Investments” in the subject line.