Accountability Reporter

Editorial Modesto, CA Modesto, CA


Accountability Reporter

The Modesto Bee is looking for an energetic, versatile journalist who can shine a light on city governments. How are our city officials spending taxpayer dollars? What decisions are being mulled tied to land use, business development, transportation and housing? We’re looking for an enterprising reporter who can develop sources and contacts while gleaning information from agendas and public records requests. The reporter will break news that makes a concrete difference in the community and tell stories through the lens of impacted community members. The reporter will hold elected officials accountable. A mixture of daily, trend and enterprising stories is expected. We’re looking for a self-paced reporter who can spot and report stories without waiting for the assignment.


The importance of headlines, SEO and lead images and video cannot be underestimated. The reporter must understand how to grow readership in the digital space, using analytics tools such as Chartbeat or, and make adjustments accordingly. Monitoring your story’s performance is a must.


The reporter will be based in the Modesto Bee newsroom but can and should spend as much time in the field as she/he does in the office. You will report to our managing editor and will sometimes work later shifts and weekends.


Modesto is a growing community of 215,000 in Stanislaus County, which is home to 500,000 residents. The downtown area is known for its variety of local restaurants and entertainment. Modesto is home to Gallo, the largest winemaker in the world, and the birthplace of Star Wars creator George Lucas. The city boasts tree-lined streets and parklands with walking and bike trails. We’re 75 miles east of the Bay Area and a 2.5-hour drive from Yosemite, Monterey and skiing.


Minimum requirements:


        Bachelor’s degree in journalism or relevant field preferred

        Strong writing and reporting skills and excellent news judgment

        Unwavering commitment to accurate, ethical journalism

        Demonstrated ability to use social media platforms to reach and engage with audiences

        Demonstrated ability to access and analyze public records, including campaign finance data, court records, property records and salary information

        Demonstrated ability to tell stories using a variety of tools and platforms, including capturing and editing video and data/graphics

        Demonstrated ability to learn new skills and technologies, including content management systems; social media platforms; video editing software; analytics tools; and emerging storytelling tools and platforms

        Strong interpersonal skills, including the ability to take and give constructive criticism. New workflows require constant conversations between reporters and editors and between reporters and their audience as a story evolves

        Demonstrated ability to work comfortably in a job that will be fast-paced, data-driven, shaped constantly by feedback and experimentation and always evolving

        Written and spoken Spanish language fluency a plus