Copy Editor/Proofreader

Cato Institute
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career / Mid Career
  • Posted
    Aug 29

Position description

he Cato Institute is seeking applications for a Copy Editor/Proofreader. This position is responsible for reviewing print and electronic copy for grammar, punctuation, clarity, style, and flow, ensuring accuracy, completeness, and adherence to established formats.


The Cato Institute is a public policy research organization—a think tank—dedicated to the principles of individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peace. Its scholars and analysts conduct independent, nonpartisan research on a wide range of policy issues.

Founded in 1977, Cato owes its name to Cato’s Letters, a series of essays published in 18th-century England that presented a vision of society free from excessive government power. Those essays inspired the architects of the American Revolution. And the simple, timeless principles of that revolution—individual liberty, limited government, and free markets—turn out to be even more powerful in today’s world of global markets and unprecedented access to information than Jefferson or Madison could have imagined. Social and economic freedom is not just the best policy for a free people, it is the indispensable framework for the future. Cato Institute is an EOE.


  • Checks for grammar, punctuation, clarity, style, and flow
  • Provides guidance to authors and scholars regarding style questions
  • Adheres to established deadlines
  • Copy edits and proofreads shorter public documents, such as event invitations and website copy
  • Copy edits and proofreads policy reports, including figures and tables
  • Ensures accuracy, completeness, and adherence to established formats
  • Follows Cato style manual
  • Directs style content to senior editor/publications directors
  • Directs content questions to authors
  • Applies or checks Word styles in copy-edited documents to prepare reports for InDesign formatting by the production team
  • Provides editing support for monthly, quarterly, and annual organizational reports and newsletters
  • Communicates with authors at various stages of the editorial process
  • Responds to submissions and queries for the publications team and tracks assignments and workflow
  • Assists with special projects and performs other duties as assigned


The position requires a bachelor’s degree; at least two years of experience in writing and editing for corporate, nonprofit, government, marketing/communications consulting, or news organizations; proficiency in Microsoft Word, Outlook, and Adobe Acrobat; and a working knowledge of Excel. A familiarity with the Chicago Manual of Style and Adobe InCopy and InDesign is a plus. A copy-editing test will be given to qualified candidates.

  • Initiative: Demonstrated ability to evaluate, select, and act on a strategy for solving problems and meeting objectives before being asked or required to do so.
  • Organizational Skills: Demonstrated ability to allocate appropriate amounts of time for completing work, to adhere to timelines and milestones, and to identify more critical and less critical activities and assignments to adjust priorities when appropriate.
  • Adaptability: Demonstrated ability to adapt to changes in the work environment; to manage competing demands; to change approach or method to best fit the situation; and to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events.
  • Analytical Thinking: The ability to synthesize complex or diverse information in order to follow the sense of a paper being edited and make proper queries to the author as needed.
  • Research: Ability to navigate websites and other resources to check spelling of names, organizations, and other terms as needed; ability to assess validity of sources is necessary.
  • Follow Through: Ability to connect with others to ensure the timely completion of tasks and establish a system to follow up on projects, tasks, and assignments.
  • Problem Solving: Demonstrated ability to identify and resolve problems in a timely manner.

Application instructions

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