Congressional Reporter/Correspondent, Washington Desk


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NPR’s Washington Desk produces sophisticated yet accessible coverage of White House, Congress, the federal judiciary, and federal elections. Our focus is on the nexus of politics, policy and culture.  We consider the role of cultural and demographic change as we aim to illuminate elections and governance. We draw connections between the places political leaders come from, the people they represent, and the policies they embrace. Known for our work ethic, the Washington Desk aspires both to great storytelling and to breaking news. Our coverage is featured on Morning Edition, All Things Considered,, and the NPR Politics Podcast. The award winning desk covers the White House, Congress, the Supreme Court, the federal agencies, and national electoral politics. 


This reporter will be assigned to cover Congress and national politics. A passion for politics and policy is required. The reporter should bring experience, energy and sophistication to our coverage as well as the ability to think expansively about content and the best ways to deliver it. The job requires attention to detail, big picture thinking, and concern for craft.  The reporter will be expected to hit daily news deadlines, report longer form feature stories, and have the sourcing and drive to break news. The reporter will also be expected to maintain a robust story list and have the ability to report and produce pieces for all NPR programs and platforms with speed and accuracy. Reporter will be expected to gather all sound and information needed. The ability to live do broadcast interviews and share reporting in a lively social media conversation is essential.


The position is based in Washington. It involves occasional travel, weekend work and a flexible schedule.

Essential Duties Include


  • Develops news and feature story ideas.
  • Conceives, proposes, plans, and researches ideas for stories and program segments.
  • Develops news sources and keeps associated files.
  • Participates in departmental planning for coverage.
  • Works with editors to develop material for
  • Gathers information and materials for reports and programs.
  • Covers stories as assigned by Desk editors.
  • Gathers materials on tape and otherwise, through interviews, press conferences, and direct coverage of events.
  • Travels frequently to produce a variety of major stories, features, and program segments for various NPR programs.
  • Advises editors on technical support required, as necessary.
  • Prepares and presents reports and program segments.
  • In consultation with editors and producers, organizes, edits and produces pieces and news spots including introductory and continuity material.           
  • Collaborates with editors and show producers to shape two-ways and speaks fluently and conversationally live on the air.
  • Fulfills administrative obligations arising from assignments, such as filing prompt and accurate expense records and program information/ summaries; maintaining contact with editors and appropriate producers; keeping editors and appropriate producers informed about assignments.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


Education: Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, English, Political Science or writing-intensive discipline and/or equivalent work experience

Required Skills:

  • At least three years’ reporting experience covering government or national politics.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop, report and write stories of interest to a national audience.
  • Experience producing pieces and two-ways for radio, digital and social audiences.
  • Ability to work quickly under deadline pressure. Must be able to report breaking stories for both newscasts and major programs.
  • Ability and willingness to travel as needed.
  • Ability and willingness to work varied shifts.
  • Proven ability to consistently work well with others, demonstrating at all times respect for the diverse constituencies at NPR and within the public radio system.


Required Skills for Correspondent:

  • A proven track record covering political news and maintaining a creative and evolving story list.
  • Experience covering breaking news with authority and accuracy.
  • At least three years writing and voicing pieces and two-ways for radio;
  • Experience with content management systems and collaboration tools such as Google Docs, Basecamp, etc.
  • Familiarity with NPR member stations and public media system Expertise in writing, with excellence in news writing, copy-editing and headline writing


Does this sound like you? If so, we want to hear from you.  All applications must include a resume and cover letter to be considered.


NPR offers a competitive compensation and comprehensive benefits package including health and wellness benefits, retirement, and work/life balance programs, as well as opportunities for career growth and development.

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NPR is an Equal Opportunity Employer that affirmatively seeks to hire veterans and people with disabilities.  All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex or national origin.

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