Ecosystem Restoration Scientist

Franklin Grove, IL
Oct 02, 2017
Dec 08, 2017
Ecosystem Restoration Scientist
Job Level
Senior level
Employment Type
Salary Type


The Ecosystem Restoration Scientist (ERS) will be the on-site lead for providing technical and scientific support for habitat management and restoration at Nachusa Grasslands, a 4,000-acre landscape of native and restored prairies, savannas, streams and wetlands in north-central Illinois. Nachusa Grasslands has emerged as the premier location for ecological restoration and management. The success of the project has also attracted significant scientific interest from faculty and students from numerous universities throughout the country as well as state and federal agencies. The ERS ensures that the most beneficial, applied science is conducted and that it is executed in a manner that maximizes its value to Nachusa Grasslands and TNC over the long term.


The Ecosystem Restoration Scientist coordinates with external scientific partners, TNC staff, and stewardship volunteers to design and implement a high-impact research program that supports/enhances on-site management and restoration efforts while further developing Nachusa‚Äôs status as the premier site for tallgrass prairie restoration research.  The ERS will oversee scientific surveys of endangered, threatened and unique plant and animal species at Nachusa Grasslands, collect and manage long-term monitoring data, and will be responsible for tracking and evaluating the results of multiyear research projects.  S/he will report findings throughout the relevant science community by publishing in peer-reviewed journals, attending conferences, workshops, etc. While essential functions of the ERS are focused on science, s/he will also assist with prescribed fire, bison management, events, and engage with volunteer stewards, donors, neighbors, and the general public. 


  • Supports TNC science goals and Nachusa Grasslands program objectives through design and implementation of scientific experiments to benefit stewardship efforts on site and abroad.
  • Assists with the development of adaptive management plans, conceptual models and designs of restoration and management strategies.
  • Administers and enhances Nachusa Science program.                                 
  • Maintains electronic data bases for scientific tools, biodiversity data, field services and training for staff and partners.                                 
  • Provides fieldwork and logistical support for research, project development and monitoring.       
  • May lead staff, interns or volunteers on a project basis.                      
  • Writing grants, the management of grants, contracts and requests for proposals.                      
  • Assist with prescribed fire, bison management and other preserve functions. 
  • Willing to work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, in hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances.


Communications   Effectively communicates verbally and in writing.  Actively listens to others.  Fosters open exchange of issues.  Is timely with information.

Flexibility & Innovation  Flexible to changing circumstances. Takes innovative approaches towards work.  Takes calculated risks and makes dependable decisions in the fact of uncertainty.

Interpersonal Savvy  Maintains positive working relationships.  Contributes to productive partnerships inside and outside the organization.  Understands team member roles and values the contributions of others.  Effectively deals with conflict.

Open to Learning  Versatile learner and committed to self-improvement.  Employs strengths effectively.  Willingly shares knowledge with others.  Seeks coaching on areas needing improvement.  Adjusts behavior/performance as needed.  Views mistakes as learning opportunities.

Organizational Awareness  Understands the basics of our business.  Knows how local job relates to the big picture & contributes to the overall strategy.  Knows how/why things work inside TNC.  Easily moves through internal networks and channels for success.

Produces Results  Takes Initiative.  Focuses on priorities.  Strives for excellence.  Is dependable and accountable for results.  Persistent in the face of obstacles and meets deadlines.


  • Graduate Degree in science related field and 2 years of experience or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience and deep skillset in experimental design and implementation, statistical analyses, synthesizing, interpreting, and communicating scientific information.        
  • Strong knowledge with statistical software applications.
  • Record of peer reviewed publications in scientific journals. 
  • Experience preparing reports of findings. 
  • Experience working and communicating with a wide range of people.


  •     PhD Degree in science related field such as Plant Biology or Ecology and 1-3 years of experience.   
  •     Strong botanical skills.
  •     Strong knowledge of common software applications.
  •     Proven interpersonal skills.
  •     Teaching experience.
  •     A willingness to learn other taxa besides the focus of MS and PhD research.


Please apply online at and search for Job #45753

Closing date 12/8/2017