Wausau Pilot and Review strives to cover as many governmental meetings as possible. But with a small staff and many communities within the metro area that deserve our attention, attending those meetings is simply impossible.

In addition, we’ve learned that many of our readers are frustrated with a lack of coverage from local media outlets. We’d like to invite you to help us improve our coverage of these meetings and events by becoming a Wausau Pilot and Review Documenter.

The program is modeled loosely after similar programs in Chicago, New Jersey and California. In particular, Chicago Beat’s Documenters Program served as a basis for this initiative.

The Documenters Program was created by Smart Chicago in 2014 and reframed for City Bureau’s civic journalism lab in 2016 to improve oversight of local government by tapping into the public desire to participate in civic reform,” Chicago Beat’s program leaders state on their website.

We found this inspiring.

Now, we’re actively recruiting readers like you who represent a broad base of the Wausau area community. If you’re interested, apply today. We’ll train you and pay you for the time you participate in newsgathering, all in the interest of promoting democracy at the local level.

Our Documenters program is a critical component in Wausau Pilot and Review’s mission to connect citizens with the political realities that exist in the greater Wausau area. As a Documenter, you’ll be invited to attend public meetings and docuement your observations for publication. Sometimes, what you learn at meetings can lead to larger stories from our journalists.

If this piques your interest, fill out our application on our documenters page. We’ll be in touch to set up a meeting and discuss not just our expectations, but yours. All Documenters are required to attend at least one Wausau Pilot and Review training session to become eligible for paid assignments. The rate of pay is $15 per hour for each approved and completed assignment.

This program is made possible through individual donations and grants from several organizations including the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin.