The Better Government Association (BGA) seeks a full-time journalist to conceive, report and write stories on government accountability with a focus on equity issues.

The candidate should have experience using data, public records and shoe-leather reporting to write about how state and local governments have created or perpetuated inequality, particularly in Illinois’ historically underserved communities.

Topics this reporter could tackle include: Examining government’s roles in perpetuating systemic inequality, segregation or racism; exposing how government spending, law enforcement or environmental policies create or perpetuate inequality; exploring how government deals with unfair treatment or lack of opportunities based on race, ethnicity, gender, religion or sexual orientation. This reporter will help expand the BGA’s government-accountability coverage overall, including the choice of stories the BGA tackles and the tone of those stories.

This reporter will work to enhance the impact of our work by participating actively in BGA social media and civic engagement efforts, to more deeply inform affected communities and empower local residents to demand better from their government. These outreach efforts will expand the community’s access to our team and strengthen the BGA’s implicit understanding of the real-world effects of inequality.

The BGA is a nonprofit organization that combines investigative journalism, policy advocacy, and civic engagement to promote good government at the local, county, and state levels in Illinois. Its offices are located in Chicago.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Research and plan original ideas to carry out as BGA investigations and projects;
  • Write stories based on government’s role in perpetuating inequities in underserved communities;
  • Interview people in a range of different circumstances related to each investigation;
  • Build contacts to maintain a flow of tips and enhance expertise;
  • Support and work with the rest of the BGA Investigative Unit team;
  • Produce concise and accurate copy according to the BGA’s style;
  • Assist in the producing of BGA digital content;
  • Create rich content for the BGA’s website, as well as in collaboration with other media, including TV, radio, print and digital partners
  • Use social media and other tools to expand the reach and impact of BGA investigations and public outreach

Job Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Two- to five-year track record in investigations
  • A deep knowledge of and interest in state and local Illinois government and government


  • Excellent writing skills
  • Proven commitment to accuracy
  • Ability to communicate effectively both on and offline
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to work independently and react quickly
  • Ability to work effectively in a competitive yet collaborative environment

Candidates either from the communities this effort seeks to advance, or with a strong understanding and base of sources in those communities, is strongly preferred.

Please forward a cover letter and resume to