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About Us

Making Contact is a non-profit media organization that produces an award-winning, public radio program heard on over 151 radio stations, and via podcast, SoundCloud, and more.  

Making Contact produces radio stories that analyze critical issues and engage with social justice challenges and solutions.  Our weekly 29-minute documentary-style radio program explores issues ranging from workers rights to environmental justice, reproductive health to criminal justice. Programs explore the structural and systemic roots of issues — and highlight solutions, innovations, and organizing initiatives to give people hope and catalyze change.

MC is broadcast each week in 41 states, on 151+ radio stations in the US, Canada, and Australia — across NPR, Pacifica, PRX, university, and tribal networks. Information from radio stations’ statistics estimate 96,000 Making Contact broadcast listeners. Thousands more stream the Making Contact podcast.

Executive Director

[Download the pdf]

About the Position –

The Executive Director is responsible for leadership and direction of Making Contact at a pivotal moment in the organization’s history. Newly transformed into a fully remote newsroom, energized by the creativity of new and longstanding staff members, and eager to step into the next phase of who we are, Making Contact is poised for an exciting period of growth, change and development.

The incoming ED should be a person who relishes capacity building and organizational development, deeply committed to racial equity, who seeks to create equitable and sustainable organizational structures and practices, and who is excited to grow and change with the organization.

We recognize that the traditional Executive Director role asks too much of one person, so we seek to hire a second position in conjunction with this hire, either to take on the role of Senior Producer or that of Development Director, as aligns with the strengths of our selected candidate.

Strategic Direction

  • In partnership with the staff and board, define strategic direction for the organization
  • Develop work plans and organizational development goals to advance the organization’s strategic direction
  • Ensure that all programs, policies, and practices are in alignment with Making Contact’s values and direction

Racial Equity & Values

  • Lead Making Contact’s ongoing racial equity work
  • Articulate organizational values and goals related to racial equity in our coverage and within our organization
  • In collaboration with staff and board, define what it means for Making Contact to be an anti-racist organization

Organizational Development & Management

  • Ensure ongoing mission-centric programmatic excellence and consistent quality of finance and administration, fundraising, communications, and systems
  • Cultivate, grow,  and support a strong Board of Directors
  • Work collaboratively with Making Contact’s small staff, providing staff with clear, regular evaluations; professional development opportunities; and a common sense of purpose
  • Review and refine data systems, ensuring Making Contact follows best practices around data privacy and data maintenance

Financial Management

  • Ensure fiscal health through long-term financial planning and ongoing budget analysis 
  • Ensure financial best practices are followed and realistic budgets are met
  • Develop and manage the annual budget
  • Oversee day-to-day financial operations

Fundraising [possibly in partnership with a Development Manager]

  • Develop and manage the annual fundraising plan
  • Expand and develop relationships with major donors, family foundations, and philanthropic foundations
  • Lead a team of staff and board in grassroots fundraising and major-donor expansion
  • Process donations and manage fundraising database

Production [possibly in partnership with a Senior Producer]

  • Act as story editor for in-depth stories [approx 1 per month]
  • In collaboration with production staff, set editorial priorities and manage calendar
  • Ensure timely production of grant-supported reporting projects

Communications

  • Communicate Making Contact’s mission and vision clearly to supporters and partners and to the journalism community at large
  • Actively engage and energize Making Contact’s board members, partnering organizations, funders, donors and staff
  • Grow the Making Contact community of listeners by maintaining current relationships with terrestrial radio; increasing digital listenership, and increasing social media presence
  • Work collaboratively with partner organizations to increase the impact of Making Contact’s journalism
  • Get creative around other ways to share Making Contact content through collaborations, partnerships, events, and other means

Skills & Aptitudes

The ED should be thoroughly committed to Making Contact’s mission, and the crucial role journalism can play in social movements. Candidates should have proven leadership experience and be excited about the opportunity to build capacity and develop the organization into its next phase.

Preferred Qualifications

We are a social justice organization with a commitment to an internal culture of support and growth. If this sounds like the job for you, and you have much but not all of the skill and experience described, please apply anyways.

  • Unwavering commitment to social justice, and especially to racial and gender equity and justice. 
  • Management experience with the ability to work collaboratively with staff, set and achieve strategic objectives, and manage a 400k budget.
  • Demonstrated ability to raise money; experience with major donors and/or foundations.
  • Experience building new revenue streams for any type of organization.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent interpersonal and multidisciplinary project skills.
  • Action-oriented, adaptable, and innovative approach to business planning.
  • Ability to work effectively in collaboration with diverse groups of people.
  • Passion, idealism, integrity, positive attitude, mission-driven, and self-directed.
  • Media experience preferred. Radio/audio experience a plus, but not required.

Compensation & Benefits

  • Annual salary range: $80,000-$85,000
  • Salaried, full-time, exempt, remote – based anywhere in the US
  • 100% employer paid Silver level Medical, Dental, and Vision benefits
  • 3 weeks vacation to start
  • 10 paid holidays

Remote work requirements (stipend or Making Contact-owned equipment provided to bring your office setup into alignment with position requirements)

  • Computer (laptop/desktop)
  • Webcam or camera phone
  • Stable internet connection

Application Process – Executive Director

To apply, please email hiring@radioproject.org with a resume and cover letter. In your cover letter, please address:

  • What draws you to Making Contact? What do you think we could be doing better?
  • What do you think is the role of journalism in the US?
  • What do you think would be your biggest challenge as ED of this organization?
  • How would you describe yourself as a leader?

Application Timeline

  • Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis
  • Target Start Date: August 1
  • We are currently working with an Interim ED who will support training and onboarding.
  • Position will remain open until filled.

Are you interested in applying but want to know more? Applicants are welcome to contact Interim Executive Director Jessica Partnow for a pre-application phone or Zoom call or with email questions. Please email jessica@radioproject.org.

Equal Opportunity Statement

Making Contact is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, sexual preference, gender identity and expression, national origin, religion, disability, or economic status. We actively recruit applications from women, people of color, LGBTQ folks and people with disabilities. If you need accommodations to support your participation in this application process, please email us at hiring@radioproject.org.