Job Description:

The Chief Original Content Officer (COCO) is the highest-ranking original content creation executive for Arizona Public Media (AZPM), an editorially independent non-profit media organization that produces and provides radio, television, and digital programming as a community service of the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona. The COCO will lead the development and execution of original content strategies for AZPM radio, television, and digital original productions. The COCO will be responsible for overseeing the creation of compelling, high-quality content across various genres and platforms. The COCO’s leadership will be critical in driving AZPM’s Audience Engagement Strategic Initiative, expanding its original content portfolio, and solidifying its position as a leading and trusted media organization in the region and in the public media system. 

The COCO will directly supervise and mentor the News Director and Series Manager, independent contractors, and is responsible for a large team of professionals in addition to student employees. The COCO is an accomplished storyteller with the ability to work creatively under deadline pressure on multiple media platforms simultaneously. They will have an established history of mentoring and coaching students, journalists, and media professionals. 

The COCO is responsible for developing and advancing the overall look, style, and journalistic content of AZPM’s original local productions, which include newscasts, regular (daily and weekly) series, documentaries, and other long-form and short-form content; growing AZPM’s original production portfolio; expanding content offerings; and increasing program appeal, consumption, impact, and, ultimately, audience loyalty and support. 

This position is a member of the AZPM Executive Management team. Peers include the Chief Development Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief Technology Officer. The COCO reports directly to the Chief Executive Officer. 

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Content Strategy

  • Develop and implement a comprehensive content strategy that aligns with AZPM’s brand, target audience, and strategic business objectives.

Creative Vision

  • Set a clear and inspiring creative vision for the News and (non-news) Content departments. Foster an environment that encourages creativity, innovation, and risk-taking in content development and production while meeting the performance delivery requirements of AZPM’s original productions.

Content Development

  • Oversee the end-to-end process of original content creation, from ideation and pitching to production, post-production, and distribution. Work closely with content creators, producers, journalists, and talent to ensure the delivery of journalistically sound, high-quality, relevant, and compelling original content.

Genre & Platform Diversification

  • Expand AZPM’s original content portfolio by exploring new platforms, genres, formats, and content types. Analyze audience research data and market trends to identify untapped opportunities for growth.

Cross-platform Integration

  • Collaborate with other AZPM/UA departments, media organizations, NPR, and PBS to ensure seamless integration and promotion of AZPM original content across various platforms and distribution channels.

Budget and Resource Management

  • Develop and manage the News and Original Content Production budgets and expenses, ensuring efficient allocation of all resources and delivering cost-effective and sustainable original productions to AZPM audiences.

Talent Development

  • Oversee the recruitment, development, and management of AZPM News and Content Production staff. Nurture and develop creative talent within the organization and community. Provide mentorship and guidance to content creators, journalists, on-air talent, and students, empowering them to reach their full potential.
  • Provides constructive feedback to Production Services staff (videographers, editors, etc.) which are supervised by the Technology division at AZPM.

Quality Control

  • Maintain the highest standards of original content quality and ensures that all original content produced by AZPM adheres to AZPM’s Editorial Policies and Standards, Code of Ethics, values, and legal guidelines.

Partnerships and Acquisitions

  • Identify strategic original content production and distribution partnership opportunities and independent content co-production opportunities to strengthen AZPM’s original content portfolio.

Audience Insights

  • Use data-driven insights and independent audience and contributor feedback to refine content strategies and improve content relevance and appeal.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: 

  • Ability to motivate and manage creative staff and journalists.
  • Understanding of significant issues affecting Southern Arizona.


  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent advanced learning attained through professional level experience required.
  • Minimum of 9 years of related work experience, including 5 years of managerial experience, or equivalent combination of education and work experience.
  • Experience leading a team, project, program, or function is required.

Preferred Qualifications: 

  • Experience in multi-media work environments (print, TV, radio, digital). 
  • Bilingual (English/Spanish).
  • Master's preferred.
Job Location: 
Tucson, AZ
United States
Job Category: 
Job Type: 
Full time
Send Application Materials To: 

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(520) 621-2061