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Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Job Description: 

Reporting to the Communications Manager, Stakeholder Strategies, the Writer/Editor develops and creates written content for use in a variety of communication channels to advance First 5 LA’s programmatic and policy goals. This includes the research, writing and editing of core content such as newsletter and website articles, opinion editorials, research briefs, white papers, executive and senior management speeches and talking points, presentations, blogs and other public-facing communications. The Writer/Editor brings a proactive, strategically-minded approach to creating crisp, easily digestible and understandable messages that resonate with internal and external stakeholder audiences and also align with First 5 LA brand voice.



The Writer/Editor should visibly demonstrate the adopted organizational values of collaboration, integrity, respect, accountability, purpose, shared leadership and learning in the execution of their key areas of responsibility:

Key Areas of Responsibility:

  • Writing and editing of internal and external content
  • Development of digital content material
  • Research-based content
  • Relationship building and management
  • Supports stakeholder communication strategies and tactics


Essential Duties:

Writing and Editing of Internal and External Content

  • Writes and edits clear, consistent and captivating content in a variety of formats for a variety of purposes and platforms for internal and external stakeholder audiences
  • Researches, writes and edits news articles for First 5 LA’s newsletters and other publications, such as research briefs, white papers, case studies, blogs, opinion editorials and press releases
  • Researches, writes and edits talking points, speeches and narratives for media events, convenings, and presentations at conferences and at Board meetings
  • Provides editorial support, as needed, including proofreading, reviewing content for clarity, meaningfulness and relevance; coaches storytelling techniques to staff for internal communications and employee engagement purposes
  • Able to vary writing style to meet specific needs of target audiences with a basic understanding of both news writing and content production for a variety of traditional and digital publications; able to internalize and incorporate feedback quickly and iterate based on changing circumstances
  • Creates meaningful, engaging and persuasive content that engages employees, develops culture, and opens up opportunities for collaboration using effective storytelling and exemplary writing skills


Developing Digital Content Material

  • Develops and delivers compelling digital content, including blog posts, feature articles, long-form stories and content series, that advances First 5 LA’s policy agenda, strengthens and promotes First 5 LA’s brand, and highlights the efforts of the organization to external audiences
  • Outlines, writes and edits blog posts and opinion editorials for First 5 LA staff as needed
  • Responsible for maintaining a consistent brand voice and editorial tone across all of First 5 LA’s print and digital publications and optimizing the writing style of content across multiple channels, including social media, web, email and print


Relationship Building and Management

  • Develops new content through research and interviews and establishes relationships with subject matter experts within First 5 LA and with external organizations
  • Initiates and conducts in-person and phone interviews with internal and external stakeholders to help craft content
  • Collaborates with other staff members to develop ideas, create content and ensure the best product possible
  • Oversees the work of contractors assigned to special writing projects, edits copy written by other staff members and freelance writers, including copy for newsletters, websites, biographies and other publications


Supports Stakeholder Communication Strategies and Tactics

  • Supports the Communications Manager , Stakeholder Communications as required on a variety of projects that impact First 5 LA staff; support includes strategic planning, writing, scripting of videos, key messages and the development of content for internal distribution with the goal of informing and engaging staff and other special projects as required
  • Advises internal stakeholders across the organization on internal communication best practices, the most effective channels to communicate, and provides support in the development and execution of effective campaigns and initiatives
  • Provides storytelling coaching and support to staff for internal communications and employee engagement purposes, such as staff-written blogs
  • Works with staff organization wide to understand their internal clients’ short-term and long-term objectives and proactively craft stories and other engaging content that supports those objectives
  • Thinks creatively to develop new and compelling methods for storytelling and develops compelling stories with target audiences in mind


Researched-based Content

  • Translates complex, technical information into readable, easy-to-understand narratives that are easily understood by a broad array of audiences, making structural changes to content to help the narrative flow and emphasize crucial points, checking that research is well-substantiated and clearly delineated; and writing to ensure that the text has the right level of sophistication for the intended audience
  • Writes, researches and fact checks projects including, but not limited to, stakeholder communication campaigns; speeches, letters, and talking points; press releases and outreach communication, internal staff communication, collateral materials and digital content
  • Conducts and coordinates research on articles, briefing and reports, pulling together disparate sources of information to publish compelling original research and articles
  • Supports the organization’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, and values a diversity of perspectives
  • Adheres to policies and procedures to ensure alignment with State regulations, local ordinances and First 5 LA directives
  • Keeps apprised of all laws, regulations, statutes, rules and policies affecting First 5 LA and Proposition 10
  • Supervises contractors and consultants, as needed
  • Collaborates both internally and with external stakeholders to capture, synthesize and share learning and knowledge outcomes from the ongoing execution of all activities as necessary


Other duties and responsibilities may be assigned. The duties and responsibilities listed are designed to provide typical examples of the work performed; not all duties and responsibilities assigned are included here, nor is it expected that all similar positions will be assigned every duty and responsibility.



Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

Organization-wide Competencies

  • Commitment to organizational mission and values: Mission-driven and self-directed, with a demonstrated passion for First 5 LA’s work to strengthen families and improve child outcomes; strives to model organizational values through daily actions and behaviors
  • Possesses Customer-Focused Mindset: Is aware of and considers relevant internal and external stakeholders and their needs (customers); identifies solutions to be responsive to stakeholder needs; considers impact when executing daily tasks
  • Collaborative: Collaborates with peers to drive results in alignment with organizational and operational goals in support of the organization’s mission; is able to work in cross-functional teams; is able to establish and maintain effective working relationships with co-workers, public officials and the general public
  • Communicates Effectively: Communicates effectively both written and oral; demonstrates active listening and comprehension; selects and uses appropriate communication methods to keep others appropriately informed; able to tailor messages appropriately to various audiences
  • Demonstrates Integrity and Judgment: Follows through on commitments letting others know of his/her true intentions; ensures decision-making or recommendations are fact-based and others understand the decision/recommendation before moving forward; considers the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one
  • Demonstrates Critical Thinking: Applies critical thinking, logic and reasoning to effectively think through problems and information; identifies relative strengths and weaknesses of options, solutions or approaches
  • Demonstrates Strategic Thinking: Considers issues and relationships relevant to achieving long range goals or vision; identifies alternatives based on logical assumptions, facts, available resources, constraints, and organizational values to layout several points of view on a course of action to accomplish goals


Job Specific Competencies

  • Role Specific Content: Familiarity with current issues regarding children and families of Los Angeles County, including family support, community capacity-building, early care and education, child health and safety, and a broad enough perspective to recognize opportunities to advance organizational outcomes via communications and marketing activities; ability to calibrate messaging for a wide-range of audiences, including parents from ethnically diverse backgrounds, key partners, opinion leaders and elected officials; understanding of the ethnic, cultural, geographic and socio-economic diversity of the population served by the agency; ability to develop compelling copy in a variety of formats; ability to communicate difficult and abstract concepts in a simple and approachable manner, through polished, professional grade content, regardless of style and approach; demonstrated working knowledge of AP Stylebook as it relates to written communications; exceptional writing skills, including error-free use of grammar, vocabulary and punctuation; ability to develop strong professional relationships and networks externally; ability to write creative, informative and persuasive stories
  • Content Knowledge: Competent in required job skills and knowledge; ability to learn and apply new skills; ability to learn how to operate new systems quickly; demonstrated ability to set priorities, establish clear expectations and execute identified projects; keeps abreast of current developments; requires minimal supervision; displays understanding of how job relates to others; knows how to use technology tools to effectively manage and expedite processes; uses resources effectively
  • Planning and Organization and Project Management: Works in an organized manner with strong attention to detail; prioritizes and plans work activities; ability to effectively manage overlapping projects and deadlines; ability to work under pressure, meet deadlines and adjust to changing priorities; uses time efficiently; plans for additional resources; integrates changes smoothly; sets goals and objectives; ability to manage high performance projects



  • Minimum of five years related experience, preferably in communications, journalism, content marketing, or digital communications preferred
  • Minimum of five years of writing and copy editing experience on a variety of publication purposes preferred
  • Minimum of five years of writing talking points, speeches and other live presentation narratives preferred
  • Experience in strategic, multichannel and multimedia content creation preferred
  • Experience with content posting to web sites, blogs, email newsletters and on social media preferred



  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in the field of communications, journalism, marketing, English literature or a related academic field preferred


Computer Skills:

  • Proficiency in MS Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
  • Ability to use widely supported internet browsers


Certificates, Licenses and Registrations:

  • Valid California Class C Driver License or the ability to utilize an alternative method of transportation when needed to carry out job-related essential functions
  • Valid automobile liability insurance


Travel Requirements:

  • This position requires travel locally, statewide and nationally as needed



Physical Demands:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

The employee will sit, talk, hear and use hands up to 2/3 of the time. The employee will stand and walk up to 1/3 of the time. The employee is routinely required to carry and/or lift up to 10 pounds.


Work Environment:

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.