LION is Hiring a Community Engagement Manager

Join LION to help foster an engaged membership community.

April 4, 2023 by Stephanie Snyder


Status: Full-time salaried exempt (not eligible for overtime), with 90-day introductory period (see details below)

Reports to: Programming Director, Membership Experience

Location: Remote within USA

Compensation: $65,000-$70,000, eligible for benefits (see details below)

Job Summary

If you are a passionate community engagement expert who delights in finding creative ways to move your audience from a passive observer to an actively engaged participant, we want to talk with you about our Community Engagement Manager role!  

LION Publishers is a professional journalism association that serves more than 450 (and growing!) independent news publishers across the U.S. and Canada. Many of these organizations don’t have access to small business services, which is where we come in: We provide members with resources, training and support as they build and develop sustainable news businesses that serve their communities. 

The Community Engagement Manager will play a critical role in our mission by designing and executing LION’s community engagement strategy to retain our members by ensuring they are engaging with LION’s programmatic offerings and their fellow members. We’re particularly focused on reaching publishers who identify as BIPOC, low-wealth, LGBTQ+ or from immigrant communities.

Our ideal candidate has experience with a full range of community engagement strategies, from facilitating virtual peer-to-peer learning and connection opportunities, to leading in-person event planning, to designing outreach campaigns that ensure membership retention. 

You understand that community engagement and membership retention is about building trust, facilitating meaningful connections between LION members, and clearly articulating the value of our programs to ensure our members are actively participating in what LION has to offer. 

The role will report to our Programming Director of Membership Experience, and work closely with our entire team. LION believes that relevant, accurate and culturally competent local news and information helps people fully engage in civic life, make more informed decisions and better understand the world around them. If you’re interested in helping us make this vision a reality and working in a space of optimism and growth, learn more about the job and how to apply below.

Key Responsibilities

  • (70%) Increase membership engagement among LION’s community of independent publishers and news entrepreneurs by:
    • Project managing LION’s in-person events and working collaboratively with LION staff, members and strategic partners to execute LION’s Regional News Sustainability Meetups, LION’s annual Local Journalism Awards, and our bi·en·ni·al Independent News Sustainability Summit. 
    • Facilitating peer-to-peer learning opportunities for members based on LION’s programming and in response to their emerging needs. 
    • Facilitating peer-to-peer connection opportunities among members based on needs, as well as shared interests, identities and geographies. 
    • Testing, launching and iterating LION’s Community Ambassador Program. 
    • Managing LION’s News Entrepreneur Community on Slack.
  • (30%) Increase membership engagement with LION’s programming by:
    • Collaborating with LION’s Marketing Manager, design and implement outreach and engagement processes to ensure members are participating in LION’s programmatic offerings and receiving value from LION’s membership benefits.  
    • Collaborating with LION’s Director of Research & Evaluation, design and implement measurements of members’ experience of inclusion and belonging to ensure retention.
    • Write and produce member-facing communications.
  • Other duties as assigned

LION is an Equal Opportunity Employer

LION believes that a team with diversity of backgrounds and experiences will generate the most innovative ideas and ultimately do the best work in support of our mission. This is why we welcome contractors, vendors, staff and board members who contribute to a diverse, equitable and inclusive work environment. We understand diversity as multi-dimensional and intersectional, encompassing aspects of our identities including race and ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, age, ability, class, geography, lived experiences and more. We welcome and encourage all qualified candidates to apply to opportunities at LION so that we build a team that reflects the diversity of independent news entrepreneurs we wish to serve.

Skills and Qualifications for The Role

  • Creative engagement experience: Can execute creative, efficient and effective community engagement and outreach strategies to ensure member adoption of LION’s programmatic offerings and positive peer connection.
  • Empathy-centered facilitator: Facilitates peer-to-peer learning and connection opportunities in a way that builds empathy and trust, particularly with those from historically underrepresented backgrounds.
  • Event planning and execution: Efficiently project manages execution of in-person and virtual events by maintaining high-level of detail.
  • Collaborative project manager: Efficiently and autonomously manages projects that require collaboration among LION staff, partners and members to ensure successful and timely execution. 
  • Clear, concise and proactive communicator: Crafts excellent verbal and written communication, and is adept at tailoring messaging to diverse member audience styles and needs.
  • Experience in the journalism industry is not required, but is a plus.

Skills and Expectations for Teamwork at LION

  • Work in a way that upholds and reflects our organizational values: Being data-informed, equitable and inclusive, people-centered, systems thinkers, transparent and iterative
  • Use digital tools and platforms to stay organized, communicate transparently, and collaborate with team members remotely 
  • Collaborate strategically with others, clearly defining processes for decision making
  • Give and receive constructive feedback to help the team produce its best work
  • Celebrate our wins and learning moments
  • Take on an experimental mindset and demonstrate flexibility to iterate on our work, systems, and processes 
  • Be willing and able to ask for help when needed, and demonstrate an ability to learn and grow in the role

Physical Requirements and Environmental Conditions

  • Must be able to remain in a stationary position, at a desk or similar, 90% of the time. Time spent in stationary location includes operating a computer and relevant peripherals and communicating via phone.

Travel Requirements

  • Available to travel for staff retreats 2 times per year (approx. 2–3 days per retreat)
  • Available to travel for LION member meetups and LION-hosted events (approximately 1-2 times per year for up to 6 days total including travel).

About LION

Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit professional journalism association for independent news publishers. While most of our 400+ members across the U.S. and Canada run local news businesses, we also have members who serve larger regions and specific identity-based communities across geographies. LION provides teaching, resources and community to independent news entrepreneurs as they build and develop sustainable businesses. One of our core values is being people-centered, and here are some ways we build that culture for our staff. 

90 Day Introductory Period

The first 90 days of employment is an introductory period, during which the new hire has clear goals, criteria for successful work product, and regular feedback from their manager. As a result of the new hire’s 90 day self-reflection and manager’s assessment, the two will discuss whether the new hire will stay on with LION and whether it will be in the role as originally scoped.


  • Medical PPO, Vision & Dental fully paid by employer; 50% paid for dependents
  • Short-term disability, long-term disability, life, and worker’s compensation insurance paid by employer
  • Flexible Spending Account and Dependent Care HSA
  • Paid Time Off (including sick days) is 20 days per year 
  • Paid holidays (including week of July 4 and Christmas Eve through New Years Day) is 17 days in 2023
  • Up to 12 weeks fully paid family/caregiver leave
  • 401K with employer match up to 3.5%
  • Flexible working hours
  • No-meeting Fridays
  • Annual professional development budget
  • Monthly work-from-home stipend
  • For new hires: Health insurance stipend until eligible for employer medical coverage to begin
  • Eligible for year-end, surplus-dependent bonus

How to Apply

Applications are now closed.

  • Your resume
  • Any online links that show your work (a Twitter profile, a portfolio page, etc.)
  • Answers to the following questions:
    • Tell us about a time when you designed  and executed a successful engagement initiative that led to increased engagement between your organization and your audience. What was the goal? What strategies did you implement to successfully move members of your audience from passively aware to actively engaged? Include details on how you incorporated data, your major challenges and successes and what you learned.
    • Tell us about a time when you managed the logistics and execution of a successful in-person event. How did you stay organized and collaborate successfully with your team, prospective audience, contractors and vendors? What challenges did you face? What did you learn?
    • LION Publishers has a commitment to building a diverse community that is inclusive and welcoming of all members, particularly those who identify as coming from an underserved community, including publishers who identify as Black, Indigenous, or as a person of color; LGBTQ+; or coming from a rural or low-income community. What is your approach to understanding the perspectives of audiences from diverse backgrounds in order to inform your community engagement strategies?
    • Why are you interested in this role? How does it fit into your long-term career ambitions?

If you have questions about this role, reach out to Stephanie Martinelli at [email protected] to learn more.

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