Director of Conservation
POSITION: Director of Conservation
REPORTS TO: President/CEO
STATUS: Full time, Exempt
The Director of Conservation develops, implements or oversees an innovative conservation management program with the goal of improving and maintaining the biodiversity and ecological health of Santa Catalina Island using an adaptive management approach and comprised of all aspects of wildlife, vegetation, rare species and habitat management, small- and large-scale restoration projects, wildlife and plant community monitoring, invasive and introduced species control, plant conservation and propagation and installation, rare and endemic species survey and management and/or other habitat restoration projects related broadly to Santa Catalina Island, other Channel Islands and Southern California.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
- Develops and implements an innovative, integrated conservation management program for Santa Catalina Island with the goal of improving and maintaining the biodiversity and ecological health of Santa Catalina Island using an adaptive management approach and comprised of all aspects of wildlife, vegetation, rare species and habitat management, small- and large-scale restoration projects, wildlife and plant community monitoring, invasive and introduced species control, plant conservation and propagation and installation, rare and endemic species survey and management and/or other habitat restoration projects related broadly to Santa Catalina Island, other Channel Islands and Southern California.
- Aggressively identifies and pursues funding opportunities from foundations, organizations and government agencies to assist in financing education programs and projects, research, and appropriate data collection.
- Hires and supervises permanent and seasonal staff, maintains payroll and implements safety policy and procedures for assigned areas.
- Develops and manages operating and capital budgets, including purchasing services and materials, preparation of capital equipment specifications, and coordinates budget expenditures.
- Recommends to President/CEO practices to improve the ability of the Conservancy to accomplish the mission of Conservation, Education and Recreation.
- Effectively communicates project and program results through professional organizations and publications, staff training, presentations and external media.
- Coordinates with government agencies, NGOs, universities, and colleges in planning and implementing ecological education programs and projects.
- Works closely with other Conservancy Directors on project implementation.
- Updates and enhances knowledge by continuing education for professional growth, i.e., attends relevant conferences, seminars and certification programs.
- Submits a yearly work program and performs other duties as needed or assigned.
- Demonstrated experience in designing and implementing innovative conservation management programs.
- Experience in all aspects of conservation and land management.
- Strong experience in project and grant management.
- Strong management experience in supervising professional and non-professional employees, and volunteers.
- Demonstrated experience in budget management and grant writing.
- Strong natural history field skills (wildlife, birds, plants, geology, etc.) and familiarity with Southern California flora, ecology, indigenous cultures and natural history desirable.
- Able to think critically and creatively to develop solutions to complex environmental education, cultural change, conservation, facility operations and land use problems
- Ability to adapt and respond to unexpected or unplanned educational, ecological (e.g. fire, drought, new invasions) or programmatic (e.g. changes in organizational priorities or funding) circumstances while still progressing towards core program objectives.
- Excellent communication skills (verbal and written), visioning, and problem solving.
- Ability to analyze diverse facts and develop clear, concise reports and recommendations.
- Solid understanding of the social, legal, and ecological basis for land management policies that influence ecosystem restoration and management decisions.
- Ability to function flexibly and effectively in a complex organizational environment with a range of different departments and operations.
- Ability to work both independently or as part of a team.
- Strong management experience in supervising full-time and part-time staff and volunteers required.
- Strong customer service skills (internal and external) extremely important.
- Ability to function and thrive in role of internal consultant within a complex, multi-goal (conservation, education, recreation) organization with diverse professional staff (scientists, operations professionals, visitor experience managers, marketing and public relations) is crucial.
- Excellent written and oral communication skills are needed.
- Ability to work both independently or as a part of a team is essential.
- Masters degree in relevant discipline (conservation management, environmental management, wildlife biology, plant ecology, etc.) or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
- Several years of progressively more complicated and more responsible supervisory and applied conservation management experience expected, especially within conservation or governmental land use or similar organizational environments.
WORK ENVIRONMENT/ PHYSICAL DEMANDS:
The Physical demands describe here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job or that an employee encounters while performing the essential function of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Employee must desire to live and work on Catalina Island and be comfortable with the major aspects of island life including schools, medical care, housing, shopping, and transportation
- The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. The office environment has moderate noise levels and is a non-smoking environment. Field conditions are strongly weather-dependent and may be hot, dusty, cold, muddy, and/or wet depending on season and degree of exposure. Smoking is allowed only at limited designated locations on the island. Work may be conducted independently or with groups of staff and volunteers. Hiking conditions include steep, rugged terrain with unstable rocky substrate and cactus. Wild animals, including bison and rattlesnakes, may also be encountered in the field and pose some threat.
- The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Position involves functioning in both field and office environments. The office environment has moderate noise levels and is a non‑smoking. Field work involves manual labor, hiking long distances over rugged terrain and through dense scrub, and routine handling of plants. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus