Job Opening (part-time): Editor-In-Chief, Spare Change News
Spare Change News seeks a new Editor-in-Chief to manage editorial operations of the Boston-area's street newspaper.
For twenty years, Spare Change has served as a voice for underrepresented groups and has provided self-employment for hundreds of homeless and at-risk vendors. The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for publishing the biweekly newspaper on time, maintaining and improving standards of content and presentation, and managing the paper's budget. The Editor-in-Chief serves at the pleasure of the Board, collaborating with them and the Executive Director to strengthen and extend the influence of Spare Change News.
The Editor-in-Chief (EIC) commissions, encourages, reviews, and organizes the content published in Spare Change News. The person in this role:
- Identifies and assigns stories, often on topics related to homelessness and social justice. We favor stories and art focused on people and experiences in Greater Boston and written by people who have lived homeless.
- Coordinates the efforts of writers, photographers, artists, and graphic designers. Spare Change has no salaried staff writers. Instead, college students and professional writers generously volunteer their time and talents; some are compensated with a modest stipend. Vendors and other low-income contributors may also receive a stipend for published work, supported by our Writers Fund.
- Directs the work of volunteer copy editors, fact checkers, and proofreaders to make certain the newspaper is as clear and error-free as possible.
- Supervises a layout artist, responsible for graphic design and laying out the newspaper's pages every two weeks, and an editor, assigned to post stories to social media (including Twitter, Facebook, and a blog) and uploads the content of each to our website www.sparechangenews.net and to the Street News service, an international newswire for street newspapers.
- Recruits and hires any additional editorial staff and supervises the work of staff and volunteers, following policies and within budgets established by the Board.
- Leads biweekly Editorial Team meetings and is also encouraged to become involved with the HEP community by attending Spare Change vendor meetings and by holding regular office hours during which to meet with writers.
- Advises the Board on expanding the reach and positive impact of Spare Change News to build public awareness and stimulate action to end homelessness.
The Editor-in-Chief must be an excellent communicator, both to ensure clear, interesting writing in our publications and to relate to individuals of diverse backgrounds, including vulnerable people such as the members of the homeless community who sell and contribute to Spare Change. The newspaper provides a voice to the voiceless, so it is essential to be skilled at working with a diverse team. To succeed, the person in this role also requires the following qualifications, experience, and characteristics:
- Effective organization skills and interpersonal communication ability.
- A strong background in writing or journalism.
- Experience supervising staff or volunteers.
- Proficiency in MS Word, email, and other basic software is crucial; a working knowledge of Adobe InDesign would be a considerable asset.
Hours for the EIC position are flexible, within the demands of publishing every other week. The successful candidate can expect to work 30-40 hours per issue, depending on ability to efficiently coordinate workflow and people's activities. We currently pay a flat rate stipend of $300 per issue (every two weeks).
All interested parties are invited to send a cover letter, resume, and writing samples to Vincent Flanagan, firstname.lastname@example.org. Electronic inquiries only, please. We will conduct interviews in July and August, or until the position is filled; we hope the successful candidate will begin by September 1, 2012.
About the Homeless Empowerment Project
The Homeless Empowerment Project is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation registered in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, with an annual budget of $130,000 and six staff members, all part-time. Since 1992, we have published Spare Change News, a biweekly street newspaper addressing issues of homelessness, poverty, and social justice.
HEP pursues a three-fold mission for addressing homelessness:
- Produce a product that homeless and low-income people can sell with dignity;
- Provide a way for low-income and homeless people to tell their stories;
- Educate the general public about the realities faced by people living in poverty.
The newspaper advances our mission by providing information, encouraging meaningful communication, and building relationships between the paper's salespeople and their customers. Spare Change News, with a circulation of over 16,000 copies a month, gives a public voice and visibility to the homeless individuals who create, write, and sell it.