Position Description

Senior Editor-Audio News
Location Chicago
Job Code 401
# of Openings 1
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About Chicago Public Media

Chicago Public Media is one of the largest and most respected public media organizations in the country.  The organization has a legacy of innovative program development having launched such iconic shows as This American Life, Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me…,Nerdette, Making Obama and the ground-breaking podcast Serial. Chicago Public Media engages with its listeners and users across multiple platforms, including broadcast radio, digital streaming, and mobile apps. Our flagship station, WBEZ Chicago (91.5 FM and wbez.org) is Chicagoland’s premier hub for trusted, fact-based journalism and engaging, entertaining audio programs and podcasts.  WBEZ’s sister service, Vocalo (91.1 FM in Chicago, vocalo.org everywhere), targets a multicultural audience through an urban alternative music and culture format.

The Opportunity: Senior Editor, Audio News

We are seeking a dynamic leader and experienced editor to guide our audio news team during an exciting time of transformation and growth in our award-winning local newsroom. This editor will operate at a high level, setting and executing the strategic direction for WBEZ’s daily and enterprise audio news coverage as it seeks to grow its audience in a multiplatform environment that includes broadcast radio, smart speakers, podcasts, mobile and social.   Our workplace and studios are located at Navy Pier in Chicago, IL.  The services we provide are considered essential, and due to on-going COVID concerns, we continue to support remote working arrangements, as necessary.

Reporting to the managing editor, the senior editor will manage a team, represented by SAG AFTRA, that includes a range of journalistic talent, including reporters, editors and audio producers. Together, they will produce stories, features, interviews and newscast content throughout the broadcast day, shaping the editorial experience from Morning Edition through All Things Considered. The team will work independently and collaboratively to serve our community on a daily basis, working across the newsroom with the digital team, the enterprise news teams, the product team, the programming team, the membership team and the content development unit to support efforts that create outstanding journalism and content experiences that build loyalty, trust, engagement and membership.

The position requires someone with a deep understanding of effective audio journalism, as well a passion for the power of local journalism to inform, connect, reveal and inspire.  The senior editor will have first-hand experience leading a diverse, daily team with a sense of purpose, clarity, and creativity and will know how to grow audience by developing a differentiated editorial strategy that builds loyalty and is indispensable to the audience it serves. They will possess an appetite for adventure and fun, a healthy competitive spirit, and a passion for growth and innovation in a time of dynamic change.

The ideal candidate will have keen editorial judgment, as well as a deep commitment to the mission of public media and the highest ethical standards. We are looking for a leader who can inspire excellence in innovation and is adept at coaching and developing a staff yearning to grow WBEZ’s position as an essential destination for outstanding journalism and news coverage in Chicago.

Key Responsibilities

  • In partnership with the Managing Editor, and the full editorial team, set daily coverage priorities for WBEZ broadcasts with a fluency in the local and national news cycle;
  • Set clear priorities and direct the team in creating compelling daily journalism across newscasts, shows and dayparts, including stories, features and interview content;
  • Help reporters, producers and editors to conceptualize stories, define distinct angles/approaches, and provides constructive feedback;
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues across the news and programming teams, including anchors, editors, reporters, producers and other staff, to deliver outstanding and enterprising daily coverage
  • Help conceptualize coverage plans for major breaking news events and special coverage on WBEZ 91.5;
  • Collaborate with the managing editor and fellow senior editors to build the workflows necessary to ensure WBEZ is responsive to daily news across platforms, while showcasing our distinctive enterprise journalism;
  • Foster and contribute to a culture of continuous learning, development, experimentation and collaboration; Be comfortable as a change agent;
  • Develop goals and metrics that allow us to evaluate progress and success;
  • Be versatile in problem solving and responsive to the evolving needs of the newsroom
  • Challenge, nourish and empower the journalists on staff, furthering a newsroom culture of collaboration, inclusivity and continued editorial excellence.


  • Outstanding news judgment and demonstrated passion for leading, creative daily news coverage that builds a loyal, engaged audience.
  • Ability to conceptualize, plan and edit news stories for content, accuracy, pacing, ideas, narrative and voice;
  • Excellent editing ability and demonstrated skill in working accurately and effectively under deadline pressure;
  • Deep commitment to the highest standards of journalistic ethics and the mission of public media;
  • Strong relationship builder and naturally collaborative leader. Experience leading and inspiring diverse, inclusive teams to excellence;
  • Ability to motivate a high-performing team and to lead through influence rather than solely through authority;
  • Ability to be a motivating change agent in helping people adopt to new processes, systems/procedures, and tools;
  • Demonstrated problem solver with solid analytical and critical thinking abilities;
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills, verbal and written, with the ability to effectively collaborate across the organization;
  • Experience with the clocks of NPR’s drive-time shows is a big plus;
  • Knowledge of the Chicago region’s rich diversity of stories, sectors and communities is helpful.

The essential functions described above are not all-inclusive and may change periodically to meet the needs of Chicago Public Media (CPM).  The information contained in this job description is not intended to create any contractual or other legal commitment.  Chicago Public Media may change the content or format of this job at any time in its sole and exclusive discretion without notice.


Working at Chicago Public Media
Our associates are in service of our mission. Our full-time employee population hovers around 150 people, and approximately half of our team is represented by SAG-AFTRA.  We work at our newly renovated open and collaborative space at Navy Pier in Chicago, IL.  We know it is imperative that our workplace reflects our community so we can, in turn, provide content that connects people.  We are committed to having a workplace that thrives by creating a place of belonging where everyone can contribute their talents.  If you share our passion for public service news and information, join us!  Check out our LinkedIn page for further details: https://www.linkedin.com/company/chicago-public-radio/?viewAsMember=true



Chicago Public Media is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and we actively seek and welcome people from all backgrounds, orientations and life experiences to join our team.


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