Head of Technology

Administration Santa Monica, California


Who we are

KCRW is a public media leader, creating and curating a unique mix of content centered around music discovery, NPR news, cultural exploration and informed public affairs. We are driven by the spirit of Los Angeles and deliver in innovative ways -- on the radio, digitally and in person -- to diverse, curious communities around the corner and around the world.  

What we need

The Head of Technology at KCRW owns the entire technology landscape for KCRW’s content production and distribution channels including broadcast radio, web and native apps. The ideal candidate will work across the organization to understand editorial needs with respect to assigning stories, scheduling, managing assets, and all other aspects of editorial workflow. Leading a lean infrastructure design and IT/engineering team, you will evaluate our current workflows and data systems and propose long-lasting solutions to be built or implemented and maintained.  You will be responsible not only for solutionizing across multiple technologies but also for gaining buy-in from their users.

This is a full-time, exempt position reporting to the Chief Operating Office

KCRW will have in effect a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all employees beginning September 15, 2021. The mandate is subject to accommodation in compliance with applicable laws and regulations.


  • Lead and grow a team of high-performing engineers, product managers and designers.
  • Coach team members on their day-to-day work and their career aspirations, conducting regular 1:1s for your reports, and evaluating their performance biannually.
  • Manage the cross-functional team’s projects, schedules and resources, fostering a healthy and high-performing team culture.
  • Effectively support a distributed team through virtual and in-person collaboration and culture initiatives.
  • Contribute to the recruitment, hiring and training of new team-members while fostering an inclusive environment.
  • Shape the direction of our tech stack to ensure performance, ethical and scalable non-sponsored and sponsored technology in a rapidly-shifting media landscape.
  • Build the best platform solutions for KCRW’s listener community.
  • Act as a decision maker after going through a process to understand the needs and challenges facing the team.
  • Build platforms that enable DevOps practices so teams’ feature releases can be faster and more stable in production
  • Reduce the cognitive load of ownership and operations so that content teams can devote the majority of their time to creating world class content.
  • Work closely with engineers to offer a "cloud-native" approach on application architecture, infrastructure, and deployment strategies.
  • Establish quarterly team objectives and track performance aligned to overall business goals.
  • Build and manage a quarterly and yearly roadmap that prioritizes impact and improvements to our editorial staff.
  • Create and/or manage completion of all team documentation.
  • Communicate strategy, project status, conflicts, and resource needs to management.
  • Develop internal team processes and resources to improve quality and speed of product delivery.

Skills & Experience

  • Excellent managerial skills and interpersonal skills; effectively communicate and collaborate with all areas of engineering.
  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or similar field, or equivalent experience, in lieu of degree.
  • 10+ years leading platform or core engineering in a technical organization
  • 7+ years of managing teams, managing remote teams is a plus.
  • Proven ability to recruit and retain world-class engineers.
  • Empathy, respect and thoughtfulness for your teammates and direct reports.
  • Proven ability to create and support a diverse and inclusive workforce.
  • Ability to proactively communicate and engage your team across multiple mediums (chat, video calls, email and code reviews).
  • Experience working in a matrixed product organization, closely-coupled with designers and product managers.
  • A comprehensive understanding of back-end development
  • Experience with distributed systems, using standard AWS infrastructure services, such as ECS, Lambda, SNS, and Cloudwatch, or their equivalent in other cloud service providers.
  • Meticulous documentation skills.
  • Strong understanding of engineering software processes, lifecycle methodology, configuration management, release management, and system verification and testing.

Technical experience in the following areas:

  • Cloud - AWS preferred
  • Coding - Java, Scala, Javascript, etc.
  • Data Query/Visualization - Grafana, Kibana, ElasticSearch, etc.
  • Experience in modern microservice architecture and able to build centralized tooling to support highly distributed teams.
  • Expert with CI/CD (Continuous Integration/Continuous Development), cloud native development, public and private cloud capabilities, and Infrastructure and configuration as code.
  • Has successfully enabled service teams to globally scale, preferably by leveraging AWS
  • Experience with broadcast operations is a major plus.

Compensation & Benefits:

  • Eligible for overtime and premium working holiday pay rate
  • Sick leave award
  • Vacation leave accrual
  • Paid holidays
  • Health insurance (including medical, dental, vision, FSA, life and AD&D) eligibility
  • 403(b) with company match 
  • Passionate office environment surrounded by an incredible community of curious and talented colleagues
  • KCRW is a qualifying employer under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program - read more here to determine your eligibility

KCRW aims to be representative of Southern California, and candidates with traditionally underrepresented backgrounds and perspectives are encouraged to apply. KCRW is an equal opportunity employer and actively recruits to promote diversity in our workforce. Qualified applicants are considered for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, pregnancy, status as a parent, national origin, disability, family medical history or genetic information, political affiliation, military service, or other non-merit based factors.