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Sports Editor: Red Wing, MN

Discussion in 'Journalism Jobs' started by Dread Pirate Roberts, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. Well, I guess this answers my own question on the Odessa American thread.


    Sports Editor

    * Date: 06/27/2011
    * Red Wing, MN
    * Category: Media/News

    Cover sports, outdoors and general news assignments.
    Take photos and video for publication.
    Layout sports pages.
    Update online product.
    Drive personal vehicle to meet with new sources.

    Bachelor's degree from a four year college or university in journalism; or two years related experience and or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
    Computer skills with knowledge of and/or experience in Quark.
    Strong organizational skills and excellent communication skills.
    Detail oriented.
    Must have a valid driver's license with a driving record that is insurable by the company.


    Anne Jacobson, Editor
    Republican Eagle
    2760 N. Service Drive
    Red Wing, MN 55066
    Fax: 651-388-3404


    This was my gig from 2005-09 so I'll offer a few nuggets of wisdom here:

    • Beautiful area to live. Right on the Mississippi River. Great area for fishing, hunting and hiking. The population trends older — so people actually read past jumps — so the nightlife is pretty tame/lame. Casino is 10 minutes away and there are about 30 golf courses within 25 miles. St. Paul is 60 miles away and Rochester is 45. Perhaps best of all, your work place is located right next door to McDonalds.

    • The paper has gone through some pretty major changes recently. It used to be called the Daily Republican Eagle, and many locals still refer to it as the DRE, but it was trimmed back to a biweekly publication in the fall of 2009. Circulation was around 7,000 when I started, but it might be down around 3,000 now — that's a total guess. This ad hasn't been posted on JJobs (yet?), which might offer some insight on what financials look like right now.

    • With one notable exception in my 4.5 years, the editor, Anne Jacobson, basically lets you do whatever you want with your sports coverage. She's very hands off and, for better or for worse, generally isn't around when you'll be pounding out sports stories each night. But there's a paginator with a sports background who is usually ready and willing to help you out, particularly with special sections.

    • No editorial staff was cut during the 2009 change, but it appears that it's now in the works. The second sports writer left for another job this spring and I haven't seen that position posted anywhere. The only FT photog was cut back in 2008ish after the paper briefly had two on staff back in ~2002. The arts and entertainment writer retired in 2010 and her replacement is now PT staffer with strong photo skills and little writing experience. All the current employees, excluding the editor, have been hired within the past 6ish months.

    • Sports covers eight local high schools, which is down one from when it was a daily, and about the same number of amateur baseball teams in the summer. The high schools are split between 5 in MN and 3 in WIS. Red Wing is the big draw, obviously. The Winger athletic programs are strong in girls golf, girls basketball, boys and girls swimming, and boys and girls tennis...and weak in most other sports, especially football. There have been a handful of D1 athletes in recent years, including a baseball player and golfer in the '11 graduating class.

    • Past sports editors, myself included, have all used this position as a springboard to 30k+ circ dailies after a few years of grinding. I really enjoyed my time here, but I was also routinely putting in 50-60 hours from August to mid-June. That burden may get even heavier now without the second sports staffer and limited photo help. Seems like an ideal spot for a young buck who is looking to become an ink-stained wretch like the rest of us.

    Not sure what type of interest this will generate on here, but I'll stop back periodically to see if any questions arise. Or PM me, if you prefer.
  2. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Interesting working conditions. I worked at another twice-weekly in the chain and the SE worked 40-45 hours per week and made great money compared to what this likely pays.
  3. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    Dang, that strikes me as an awful lot of hours for a twice weekly publication.
  4. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    You shouldn't have to work that much. As I said, there are other twice-weeklies within Forum Communications where the Sports Editor works 40-45 hours per week.
  5. Stitch may be right, but a lot will depend on the worker, too. The paper prints just Wednesday and Saturday, but if you want to keep the web fresh there's an "opportunity" to work nearly every night.

    Something important that I forgot to mention: the print deadline for Wednesday's paper is BEFORE Tuesday night events finish. I believe it's something like 8pm. Generally not a huge downer for news, but it makes for an odd midweek sports section.

    Also, a few people have asked me about salary range. Honestly, I'm not sure what to even guess. It was on the high end of expectations (relatively speaking, obviously) as a daily, but maybe somewhere between 23-26k now, depending on your experience and all that jazz. I'd bet on the low/mid end of that, but who knows...
  6. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    With a non-daily, I would think the logical emphasis would be features and recaps as opposed to nuts and bolts game stories. I mean, if you publish on Saturday, by that time Wednesday nights games are old news. Ah, thank heavens for the internet.
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