Visual Innovation Journalist

News & Observer Publishing Co.   Raleigh, NC   Full-time     Writing / Editing
Posted on January 23, 2023
Apply Now

The News & Observer is looking for visual innovation journalist to join us in shaping and executing our visual journalism strategy. The ideal candidate is versatile, collaborative across the newsroom and is an effective storyteller who produces high-impact stills and video stories that connect with existing and new audiences in digital and print platforms.

The Raleigh-Durham region, home of the state capital, is among the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the country. Known as the Triangle, the area is home to major universities, state government and numerous corporate headquarters and fast-growing startups. Our journalists work in communities with vibrant choices for foodies, arts and music lovers, and outdoor enthusiasts. We’re two hours from the beach and three hours from the mountains.

The News & Observer seeks a visual innovation journalist to innovate and develop the work of photo and video journalism teams and grow visual storytelling and experimentation throughout our newsroom. 

This includes aggressive news coverage, exceptional enterprise work, and effective collaboration across multiple topics and teams. The successful candidate will run towards breaking news but also have the patience to embrace sophisticated, complex projects.

The visual innovation journalist’s mission extends beyond the traditional roles of a visual journalist/photojournalist. This person will work closely with the visual editor and collaborate extensively with other editors; fill a key role in driving innovation in image and video-based visual storytelling throughout our newsroom; build a culture of aggressive experimentation with new storytelling techniques and formats, directly through our visual journalists and collaboratively with our reporters, editors and the growth/audience team.

Some examples of our innovative visual storytelling include:

Sound of Judgement:

Journey Across the 100:

 Basketball, not bullets: Can Kinston prevent its kids from becoming victims of violence?:

 Our journalism focuses on our local communities, and in that role we have the ability to spotlight problems, highlight solutions and truly make a difference -- all the reasons you got into journalism. And we are part of McClatchy, a digitally driven company focused on innovation, with newsrooms in 30 communities in the United States, 

You’d be joining a newsroom that takes pride in its supportive culture and living in a region that routinely gets listed in “best places'' rankings.. The Triangle -- Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and surrounding communities -- is one of the fastest-growing and most diverse regions in the country. In addition to the universities and their offerings, there are art museums, music venues and world-class restaurants. Anchored by three large research universities, the region’s economy also includes manufacturing and high-tech. More diverse than the country as a whole, the region includes large Black, Latino, and South Asian populations. We are home to J. Cole’s Dreamville Festival every spring and the country’s largest bluegrass festival (the IBMA World of Bluegrass) every fall. We’re a day trip away from the ocean or the mountains. We have a diverse array of dining and entertainment, walkable neighborhoods and miles of greenways for biking, hiking or running. 

Candidates must be at the top of their game but never satisfied with being “good enough.” They should have a minimum of three years of experience. Candidates must understand how to use social media to improve and share stories. Candidates must have reliable transportation.  Must have valid driver’s license and vehicle insurance required (at least minimum insurance required for the state in which the employee works).

Key responsibilities:

  • Identify live and enterprise visual storytelling opportunities from throughout the newsroom and community and collaborate closely with reporters and editors to deliver themEstablish and maintain a balanced mix of responsive news coverage and impactful enterprise storytelling
  • Pioneer new storytelling approaches and evangelize for visual and audio storytelling as a critical tool for audience diversification and growth
  • Create a culture of learning and experimentation with the visual staff, exploring new storytelling formats and approaches for our sites and social
  • Develop, test and iterate initiatives to grow audience through visual storytelling; use those learnings to develop and communicate best practices


  • 2 + years experience collaborating with teams of journalists, as well as the lead on multiple in-depth visual projects
  • A record of coaching, innovation and forward-thinking
  • Comfort working between digital, print and social platforms
  • Aptitude in current tools and trends with stills and video
  • Adaptability in learning new skills and programs
  • A strong grasp of audience metrics and how to use them
  • Strong editing skills, from stills and video to sound and captions
  • The ability to manage multiple projects or stories at one time
  • Thorough understanding of newsgathering issues including privacy, libel, access, trespass and ethics
  • College degree or equivalent experience 

What we’ll bring: As a journalist at McClatchy, you will join a supportive, flexible, collaborative team. McClatchy strives to be an employer of choice, and our benefits package is made with this goal in mind. With a focus on health, well-being, wealth and daily life, our package options include healthcare coverage for employees and their families, financial protection from expected and unexpected expenses, multiple no-cost wellness resources and even coverage for four-legged friends. 

Our overall benefits package also includes a 401(k) with employer match, competitive paid time off and corporate holidays, and a variety of mental health benefits. With an excellent support team and with focus on your well-being as a top corporate strategy, McClatchy provides benefits to support you and your family in achieving your health and wellness goals. For more information on McClatchy's benefit plan, please visit  

To applyApplications should include a cover letter, three references and links to a portfolio. Applications without cover letters will not be considered.

About McClatchy:

Our impact is growing every day. 30 growing markets. Over 65 million monthly readers. 56 Pulitzer Prizes. A strong portfolio of dynamic partnerships and smart investments. Our award-winning journalism, digital reach, and commitment to innovative growth have never been stronger. 

As a member of the McClatchy family, you are part of a flexible, empowering, and exciting culture dedicated to creating a work/life balance and consistent opportunities for growth—a place where you have a voice and the ability to impact our future. It’s an exciting time to be here. Our company is experiencing the most transformative period in its history. We’re growing rapidly in the digital space and delivering award-winning journalism in innovative ways.

News & Observer Publishing Co.

421 Fayetteville Street, Suite 104
Raleigh , NC