Employment Opportunities | WMUK

Employment Opportunities

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News Director

WMUK-FM seeks a News Director to lead our award-winning news team’s coverage of West Michigan across our broadcast and online platforms.

Position Description

This position of News Director directs and coordinates all activities of WMUK’s news team, including but not limited to: providing editorial oversight, assigning or approving stories, writing news copy, coordinating special coverage, hiring and evaluating news staff, monitoring news developments on a continual basis, and adhering to the highest journalistic and ethical standards.


WMUK-FM is public radio from Western Michigan University and a founding NPR member station. As the Kalamazoo-based NPR affiliate for the West Michigan region, WMUK is on a path to rebuild our newsroom, after instituting a major format change from music to news on our main 102.1 FM channel, and the launching of a new classical service on 89.9 FM.

We're seeking an experienced, growth-oriented journalist who is aspiring to oversee a growth-oriented newsroom. Situated halfway between Detroit and Chicago, our news coverage area covers a large portion of southwest Michigan, and the News Director will lead all local news coverage across all platforms for WMUK-FM.

Our mission is to share knowledge, explore ideas and tell compelling stories that engage listeners and communities across Western Michigan and beyond.  Our vision is to become the regional NPR station of choice for a growing community of public radio listeners and supporters.

Primary Duties

  • Editorial Leadership (25%)
    • Serves as primary news editor, with responsibility for ensuring all news content is accurate, ethical, engaging, and in line with the highest standards of professional journalism.
    • Develops and ultimately oversees the implementation of the editorial focus, process, and design.
    • Works with Content Operations Director and news staff to set strategic priorities and goals for WMUK's news operation, including improving news coverage both on-air and on-line, and content team expansion.
    • Leads daily news and content staff meetings to generate plans for short and long form coverage.
  • Coverage Planning (25%)
    • Sets WMUK's news plans and priorities. Plans daily and long-range news coverage on all platforms.
    • Assigns reporting, coverage and producing tasks including special series and projects.
    • Originates and approves news story ideas and projects.
    • Creates and maintains plans for coverage crises and breaking news, working with other station departments as needed.
  • Management and Administration (25%)
    • Manages news department staff, including full and part-time employees, as well as independent contractors (freelance).
    • Manages news internship program in concert with WMU School of Communication.
    • Provides feedback and performance reviews to news staff as appropriate.
    • Recruits for news and news internship positions and makes recommendations to supervisor on personnel decisions.
    • Works with Director of Content Operations to create news department budget; manages budget throughout the year.
  • News Gathering and Fill-in Hosting (20%)
    • Gathers, reports, generates, and contributes news/public affairs content as time allows.
    • Works with the news team and regional NPR editors to consistently participate in nationalizing a local story.
    • Performs occasional host fill-in work on-air and on-line. Other duties as assigned.
  • Community Engagement (5%)
    • Works with Content Operations Director and other relevant staff to solicit and reflect community input on news coverage priorities.
    • Regularly participates in on-air fundraising and assists with grant writing/reporting as needed.
    • Represents the news division and/or Station as required at board meetings and station-sponsored events outside of station.
    • May include candidate forums and tables at fairs and festivals.
    • Liaise and collaborate with all departments.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Three years' relevant experience.
  • Supervisory or lead experience.
  • Strong broadcasting newswriting skills.
  • Familiarity with AP style.
  • Working experience with editorial functions in a broadcasting organization.
  • Experience in news management or an equivalent expertise.
  • Experience with digital audio editing, both single and multi-track.
  • Knowledge of FCC laws relating to the delivery of news and public affairs content.

Desired Qualifications 

  • Deep understanding of the purpose and mission of public broadcasting.
  • Strong news gathering and writing skills and in-depth knowledge of journalism ethics and practices.
  • Demonstrated experience producing news content on tight deadlines.
  • Strong familiarity with Adobe Audition, with some background using other Adobe Creative Suite applications.
  • One year experience hosting public radio news magazine programs.
  • Superb verbal and written communication skills; strong time management skills.
  • Deep knowledge of journalism practices and techniques, including broadcast news copywriting.
  • Some grant writing experience.
  • Experience with radio hosting.

This position offers market competitive pay ($55,000-$62,000) and generous benefits through Western Michigan University.  See full job listing at wmujobs.org

Application Requirements

Along with cover letter and resume, applicants must a sample of broadcast copywriting, and additionally an audio demo featuring minimum of five-minutes of hosting and/or reporting work (link or physical media is acceptable). 

Reports to: Gordon Evans, Director, Content Operations & Audience Development

For complete description, minimum requirements and application procedures, visit our website at:  http://www.wmujobs.org Only applications submitted through this site will be considered. Posting # 0605823. WMU is an AA/EO Employer. Minorities, women, veterans, individuals with disabilities and all other qualified individuals are encouraged to apply.