Sahan Journal is the only 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to providing authentic news reporting for and about immigrants and communities of color in Minnesota. Credit: Mukhtar M. Ibrahim | Sahan Journal

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About Sahan Journal and the work we do

Sahan Journal is the only independent, nonprofit digital newsroom dedicated to providing authentic news reporting for and with immigrants and communities of color in Minnesota. 

We chronicle the struggles and successes of Minnesota’s immigrants and people of color:  communities whose stories are often overlooked, ignored, or poorly represented in legacy media. We create journalism that represents the changing face of Minnesota and recognizes that democratic engagement and power belong to everyone. We believe that local journalism is a unifying force that can inform and connect us all.

Sahan Journal’s editorial team has produced original and influential coverage of important issues, including teacher diversity, policing, COVID-19 and health equity, environmental justice, and political participation. Our photojournalists and multimedia producers have created innovative videos and digital journalism for our website and across social media platforms. We’re constantly experimenting with how to listen to the communities we cover and reflect their news needs in our work. Sahan Journal exists to find new, better ways to provide news and information.

Since its founding, Sahan Journal has emerged as an innovator in the field of digital nonprofit journalism, with strong community support and a young, diverse readership. We work intensely and collaboratively. Our eight-person newsroom constantly produces stories that shed light on the lives and experiences of Minnesota’s communities of color. Everyone on staff wears multiple hats to get the work done. We are a diverse newsroom with a mission to elevate the voices of communities of color and center the narrative on their lives. That means, among other things, we insist on building a culture of deep respect, mutual support, and equity in the workplace.

Our journalism has been recognized regionally and nationally for its excellence and distinction. Our stories reach audiences online, across social media, and through media partnerships. Sahan has received funding from the Racial Equity in Journalism Fund (REJ) at Borealis Philanthropy, Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundations, McKnight Foundation, Knight Foundation, Google News Initiative, Facebook Journalism Project, Emerson Collective, and others. 

The opportunity

Sahan Journal is seeking a high-energy, versatile, and experienced senior editor to manage daily news and enterprise coverage and join our editorial director in shaping the future of this distinctive nonprofit news organization. You’ll help maintain Sahan Journal’s high standards for journalistic quality and community service. Launched in 2019, Sahan Journal is poised to move beyond its startup phase, and to build a news operation that will make Sahan Journal a major player in the media ecosystem of Minnesota and the nation.

Position description

Sahan Journal is looking for a full-time senior editor to help shape our coverage of immigrants and communities of color in Minnesota. You’ll be joining a diverse team of reporters and a thriving nonprofit news organization that’s committed to producing excellent journalism in new ways. 

The senior editor will help assign and edit daily stories about education, health, local politics and government, policing and public safety, labor and entrepreneurship, arts and culture, immigration, and more. Sahan Journal’s reporting reflects and prioritizes the lived experiences and information needs of immigrants and people of color.   

The ideal candidate will have advanced reporting skills and at least five years’ experience editing news pieces for substance, readability, accuracy, fairness, sensitivity, storytelling—all the important stuff. The senior editor will collaborate closely with the editorial director to shape coverage plans and assignments, and work with reporters on daily briefs, profiles, investigative pieces, features, Q&As, and more. The senior editor will also help guide some less experienced freelancers through the reporting and writing process.

Sahan Journal wants to publish news where our readers want to be. The senior editor should be skilled at editing fast-moving coverage for our homepage, Instagram and other social media, newsletters, video, and other formats (Messenger/SMS/WhatsApp?). This job demands excellent copy-editing skills and a knack for search-friendly display copy (headlines and subheads, etc). The ideal candidate will be able to translate our news coverage into compelling and accurate social media posts.

This job will be central to Sahan Journal’s rapid growth into a leading news source in Minnesota. But not every job candidate arrives with every skill and professional experience nailed down. Our organization values experimentation (without fear of failure) and continuous learning. Across the organization, we encourage our journalists to develop their skills through classes, workshops, webinars, mentorship, peer-training opportunities, and more.  

If this sounds like a job you can do well—and learn to do better—we want to hear from you! 

We’ve seen how journalism can offer a distorted picture of communities of color and how newsrooms can reproduce those destructive dynamics. Sahan Journal believes that great journalism starts with a workplace that lives its values. Practically, that means good pay and comprehensive benefits: Though our journalism is mission-driven, we’re doing this for a living and a career. It means an equitable, respectful, and deeply inclusive work culture. And it means we hold ourselves accountable for fulfilling our mission. 

We are a Black-, immigrant-led news organization with a highly diverse staff. The successful candidate will join a full-time staff of 11 and help supervise the Sahan Journal newsroom. 

Primary responsibilities include:

  • Edit daily and weekly news converge, including briefs, profiles, newsletters, features, social media packages, and more.
  • Execute substantive edits that account for sourcing, balance, news value, insight, and equity.
  • Line edit for readability, engagement, accuracy, legal concerns, adherence to style sheet.
  • Create effective, accurate, and search-friendly headlines and packaging.
  • Help write, adapt, and post news coverage for other platforms (including social media, newsletters, and more).
  • Collaborate with editorial director on news assignments and coverage plans.
  • Work supportively with staff writers and freelance journalists.

Knowledge/experience required:

  • At least five years’ experience leading and managing in a news environment.
  • Proven track record editing stories and helping staff to grow and develop as journalists.
  • Superior editorial judgment and the ability to identify great stories and quickly react to breaking news.
  • Deep familiarity with the reporting process and journalistic ethics and standards.
  • Proven ability to write concise and web-friendly headlines.
  • Experience with editing multimedia or social media content.
  • Familiarity with social media and other engagement platforms to find sources and story ideas.
  • Ability to use social media tools and platforms to reach audiences and amplify impact.
  • Knowledge and experience of the changing media landscape.
  • Experience working with diverse communities and bringing to light their stories.

Knowledge/experience desired:

  • Familiarity with editing in Google Docs and using tools in Google Drive
  • Website management and posting. Familiarity with WordPress.
  • Fluency (or competence) with languages spoken by the communities we cover (Spanish, Somali, Hmong, Karen, Oromo, or other)
  • Ability to identify and conceptualize potential stories in a variety of areas (education, politics, health, arts, environment, immigration)

Salary and benefits

  • The salary range for this position begins at $75,000 and will be based on prior experience and skillset.
  • Sahan Journal pays 100 percent of the employee’s medical and dental benefits; family members can be covered through employee contributions.
  • Sahan Journal staff currently work primarily from home. We anticipate resuming weekly, in-person meetings in late 2021/early 2022.
  • Flexible work hours.
  • Sahan Journal does not offer standard holidays (Eid, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.), reflecting the diverse preferences of our staff. Instead, this position will receive four weeks of PTO to be used at personal discretion.

Application process

To apply, please send a resume and a cover letter, describing your experience and what excites you about editing and working at Sahan Journal. If you have many of the requested skills and experiences, but not all of them, please apply! Send resume and cover letter to jobs@sahanjournal.com.

If you’d like to chat about the job before applying, contact Michael Tortorello at mtortorello@sahanjournal.com. Please put “senior editor” and your name in the subject line.

Deadline: Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Apply early!

Sahan Journal is the only independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit digital newsroom dedicated to providing authentic news reporting for, by, and about immigrants and communities of color in Minnesota.