Director of Conservation Innovation

Sausalito, California
Competitive salary and benefits, commensurate with experience
Oct 04, 2019
Dec 04, 2019
Job Level
Senior level
Employment Type
Full time, Permanent
Salary Type

This position represents an exciting opportunity to bring innovative genomic solutions to both long-standing and novel conservation needs. An attractive candidate will have a deep understanding of conservation practice and recognize that the pace of environmental change demands innovation.

The Director of Conservation Innovation is a senior level position within Revive & Restore and reports to the Executive Director to envision, develop and expand the application of advanced genomic technologies for biodiversity conservation and restoration. 

The Director of Conservation Innovation works with molecular scientists, conservation biologists, agencies, and conservation organizations to explore, lead, and develop genomic and biotech innovations for conservation. An important responsibility of the position is identifying and developing the application of cutting-edge techniques to address conservation challenges. Revive & Restore is involved with specific projects to advance the use and adoption of genomic and biotech innovations for conservation. A key function for this position is to bring strategic direction to the selection and development of these initiatives and programs. To that end, the position works with the Executive Director to identify and secure funding to advance program capacity. 

Revive & Restore is a small and dynamic organization that approaches its objectives from multiple sides. This is a fast-paced work environment that gives team members the chance to contribute to the mission in a variety of ways. We seek to recruit highly trained experts that appreciate a diversity of challenges and enjoy expanding their skills outside of their current expertise.

Job Responsibilities 

Evaluate, Design, and Advise Catalyst Science Fund Projects

Revive & Restore’s Catalyst Science Fund awards grants to innovative researchers to advance the science and practice of genetic rescue. The ideal candidate will contribute to these 

activities by:

  • identifying and developing innovative conservation applications for emerging genomic tools;
  • serving as a subject matter expert in conservation biology and practice during proposal review, identifying and evaluating the potential conservation impact for each proposal;
  • initiating and managing any necessary permits (e.g. ESA, NEPA) with relevant government agencies; and collaborating with the Executive Director and Catalyst Science Manager to assemble and manage the team for each awarded project/program

Develop & Expand Partnerships

Revive & Restore has several valuable strategic partnerships throughout the conservation and biotechnology communities. The ideal candidate will work with the Executive Director to leverage those relationships to promote the use of genetic rescue techniques by:

  • exploring/ envisioning possibilities for genomic innovations with various conservation organizations and government organizations;
  • determining the funding requirements and implementation barriers for each project (e.g. social acceptance and regulatory pathways) and designing potential strategies to navigate those barriers;
  • communicating, documenting, and archiving project activities; and
  • acting as a liaison between partners, project management teams, and contractors to ensure the project goal remains aligned with all stakeholder needs and expectations.

Support Outreach & External Relations

Educating others on the potential applications and benefits of genetic rescue is a major part of the Revive & Restore mission. Our Director of Conservation Innovation will have the opportunity to contribute to outreach by:

  • clearly communicating Revive & Restore’s unique organizational role in biodiversity conservation- both with the public (website) and with professional organizations;
  • Participating in key science meetings and conferences to promote the acceptance of advanced genomic approaches to support biodiversity conservation/restoration; and
  • advancing discourse concerning the ethical, regulatory and conservation elements involved with biotechnology applications in conservation.

Strategy and Development

As a new organization, Revive & Restore is still rapidly growing through partnerships with other organizations and private funders. The Director of Conservation Innovation will contribute to the growth and long-term strategy of Revive & Restore by:

  • developing long-range program plans in collaboration with the Executive Director and the Board;
  • working with the Executive Director to identify, cultivate, and steward institutional, individual and agency opportunities for funding;
  • applying for grants requests and soliciting funding from potential donors; and 
  • seeking potential in-kind support for relevant elements of R&R’s work program.

Location and Availability

The ideal candidate will reside in the San Francisco Bay Area to allow for at least part-time work at Sausalito office with the flexibility to work remotely. Travel is expected for speaking engagements, business development, science conferences, and fundraising outreach.


  • The ideal candidate will have an entrepreneurial and problem-solving mindset, matched with significant experience working in cutting-edge science. 
  • We are seeking highly motivated individuals with graduate degree (M.Sc. or Ph.D.) or equivalent qualification (significant relevant work experience equivalent to post-graduate degree experience).
  • A broad understanding of genomics and conservation is essential, as is previous laboratory experience in population or conservation genomics. Field experience in conservation is a plus (working with private land owners, NGOs, local state agencies, and/or federal agencies).
  • Relevant science fields include ecology and evolutionary biology, comparative genomics, population genomics, ancient DNA, bioinformatics, wildlife/veterinary health, developmental biology, reproductive biology, and genome engineering. 
  • The candidate should be a team player with excellent communication skills, leadership ability, initiative, sound judgment, and creative originality.
  • Experience in conceiving, planning, budgeting, fundraising, and managing projects is also required.

Salary:Competitive salary and benefits commensurate with experience.

Location: San Francisco Bay Area to allow for weekly in-person

meetings, with the flexibility to work remotely and travel as needed.

Start Date: As soon as possible. 

How to Apply

Please submit your application to

Applications that do not include the following items will not

be considered:

1) A cover letter addressed to our Executive Director, Ryan Phelan

2) Your C.V. attached as a PDF

About Revive & Restore

Revive & Restoreis a Sausalito, California-based nonprofit. The core team has spent the past six years working with 200+ scientists to develop the emerging field of biotechnology-based genetic rescue, acting as a catalyst, a facilitator, and as a funder. Our mission is to develop and apply genomic technologies for biodiversity conservation, specifically for endangered and extinct species, with the overall goal of enhancing global biodiversity and ecosystem health. To do so, we work with a wide range of professionals ranging from conservation biologists, molecular biologists, veterinarians, to bio-ethicists and communications experts.

Revive & Restore is perhaps best known for advancing long-term projects that aspire to bring species back from extinction by using gene editing techniques—notably the passenger pigeon, the heath hen, and the woolly mammoth. However, the more immediate mandate is to develop and apply genetic tools to help preventspecies extinction and to help enhance species recovery.  These include: “genetic insight” (state-of-the-art genomic analysis for in situ and ex situ population and ecosystem level management and monitoring), cryopreservation of cell cultures from at-risk wild populations, advanced reproductive techniques (mammalian cloning), and advanced gene-editing techniques for population health and facilitated adaptation.

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