Director of Innovation and Growth

  • Full-time
  • Seattle, WA
  • Applications have closed

Website grist Grist

A Beacon in the Smog

Grist is seeking a Director of Innovation & Growth to lead product innovation, audience engagement and growth, and the exploration of new content formats, products, and distribution channels.

With nearly twenty years experience reporting on environmental issues, Grist is entering an exciting new chapter. We’ve deepened and grown our editorial work, and launched a brand new program called Fix, focused on connecting and elevating the leaders building a just, sustainable future. The way we see it, the next few years really matter for the future of the planet (and all of us on it). To seize that opportunity across our work, Grist seeks an experienced, passionate, mission-driven Director of Innovation & Growth.

This position sits on Grist’s leadership team, reports to the CEO, and works as a partner across the organization. The Director of Innovation & Growth will manage a growing team initially composed of 5-7 individuals, and be charged with product, creative, audience engagement and growth, social media, and analytics.

The ideal candidate brings leadership experience in digital media and newsroom or editorial experience. Candidates with a track record of building and leading creative teams, launching innovative products, engaging and growing audiences, and building innovative content partnerships are encouraged to apply. The ideal candidate is just as comfortable rolling up their sleeves to optimize newsletter performance as they are thinking big about content growth ideas like long-term video strategy. This role has a combination of strategic, managerial, and operational responsibilities, requiring both a strong ability to strategize and manage, as well as an eagerness to dig into implementation.

Grist is a mid-sized and growing organization, and depending on your background, there are also opportunities to dig in beyond these core areas, from experimenting with new revenue opportunities to implementing brand awareness strategies.

Primary responsibilities

Product innovation

  • With a keen eye to innovation and attracting and retaining audiences, set a direction for the product team to deliver on Grist’s strategic goals (e.g., Lead the conversation on climate progress; Grow and diversify our audience; Grow our membership, etc.)
  • Set the strategy and execute the plan for big-picture projects, initiatives, and priorities that touch on product, creative, and audience development.

Audience engagement

  • Oversee and set organizational KPIs related to audience.
  • Define and deploy audience engagement and retention strategies, such as retargeted ads, newsletters, social media, etc.
  • Deploy Grist’s new audience team in integrating audience engagement best practices throughout the organization.
  • Manage a team of three directly, including a growth and engagement editor, data analyst, and engagement fellow.

Audience growth

  • Explore and define new audience growth strategies, on the organic side through new product offerings (e.g. launching a video strategy, or exploring other formats), SEO, social, etc.
  • Develop and oversee organizational marketing strategy to leverage organic and paid opportunities to reach a larger audience
  • Explore and define a strategy for off-site audience growth through third-party platforms and other distribution partnerships.
  • Build Grist’s newsletter list size through website optimization, acquisition, etc.


  • Track-record of building and leading innovative content initiatives focused on audience development
  • Track-record of leadership in editorial and/or media organizations
  • Strong familiarity with editorial and business functions of a media company
  • Proven track record of achieving sustainable audience growth for a media or content brand
  • Experience managing a growing, nimble, results-oriented team in a growth-stage or start-up context
  • 5+ years people management experience
  • Passion for Grist’s mission and vision
  • Strong preference that this role is based in Seattle, WA

Grist will offer a competitive compensation package commensurate with the candidate’s experience and market analysis of similar leadership roles in the national nonprofit media sector.

To apply, please send a resume and a cover letter to with “Director of Growth & Innovation” in the subject line. We are looking for a thoughtful, personalized cover letter that displays your qualifications, enthusiasm, and communication style. No phone calls, please.

Grist’s commitment to a diverse, inclusive staff reflects our vision of a just, sustainable world. We do our best work when we embrace differences and thrive when we explore them. We’re interested in hearing from people who can work with diverse colleagues of varied experiences. We are committed to equal-employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, gender identity, or veteran status.