Executive Director, Open Until Filled

Rivers & Lands Conservancy
Rancho California, California, US
Jul 27, 2021
Jul 28, 2021
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type
Position: Executive Director, Rivers & Lands Conservancy

Supervisor: Board of Directors

Classification: Full-time, exempt

Location: Riverside, CA

Salary Range: $95,000-$145,000

Applications due: Open until filled (date of announcement: Dec. 30, 2020) Organization Description

Originally founded as Riverside Land Conservancy, Rivers & Lands Conservancy is a private nonprofit corporation, formed in 1989 to help protect Inland Southern California landscapes that provide habitat and open space for wildlife and people for all future generations. During its 30-plus year history, Rivers & Lands Conservancy (RLC) has acquired and preserved more than 12,000 acres of open space and currently stewards a portfolio of 60 properties encompassing 2,600 acres.

RLC's mission is to connect people to natural, wild and open spaces of Southern California through land conservation, stewardship, and education. The organization envisions a future where communities of people value and celebrate a mosaic of conserved lands that provide everlasting opportunities to connect with, care for, and enjoy nature.

RLC strives to conserve and steward an assemblage of open spaces including parks, agricultural lands, sensitive habitats, and large nature reserves interwoven with the growing cities, towns, and rural neighborhoods across Southern California. It seeks opportunities for land acquisition and stewardship through creative and effective partnerships with private organizations, public agencies, businesses and the public. Citizens within diverse communities benefit from land conservation, public access to nature, and educational programs that encourage the management and protection of important natural resources for future generations.

RLC is a solvent and stable organization that now seeks an Executive Director to lead and manage an eight-person staff and an engaged Board.

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Under general oversight and direction from the Board of Directors, the Executive Director manages the affairs of the Conservancy and its day-to-day operations. The Executive Director, (directly and through subordinates), plans, organizes and directs the work of the organization, including, but not limited to:

• Implementation of RLC's strategic plan

• Development and oversight of the annual budget

• Pursuit and development of funding opportunities, including major gift prospect development and grants

• Management and supervision (and necessary growth) of a talented staff tasked by:

o Completing land conservation projects for habitat protection, community engagement, mitigation, and other purposes

o Responsible land stewardship, restoration and easement monitoring o Proposing and organizing community engagement events to connect diverse populations of people with Nature

o Planning and managing organizational finances and budgets

• Effective and timely reporting to and communication with the Board of Directors


Leadership & Management

• Ensure programmatic excellence, rigorous evaluation and consistent quality of RLC's programs and administration.

• Recommend timelines and resources (human and capital) needed to achieve RLC's strategic goals including land conservation, stewardship, community engagement, fundraising, communications and operational systems.

• Manage all human resource needs (employees and contract employees), including recruitment, hiring, supervision, performance evaluation and termination. Support the professional development and needs of the RLC staff consistent with RLC goals and strategic directions. Advise the Board of human resource challenges and needs in a timely manner.

• Develop, maintain and support a strong Board; serve as ex-officio of each committee;

seek and build board involvement with strategic direction for both local and regional operations.

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• Monitor and evaluate RLC's relevancy to the community, its effectiveness and its results with a focus on improving diversity in leadership roles and general membership.

• Negotiate and sign contracts, agreements and instruments to which the corporation shall be a party. This includes, but is not limited to, insurance coverage, consultants, media, employee benefits, payroll management and accounting. Identify and coordinate Board approvals as necessary.

• Monitor investment portfolio and meet regularly with financial advisors to ensure assets are being managed in a manner consistent with Board policy and direction.

• Accept bottom-line responsibility for all fundraising while coordinating closely with Development Director and the Board. Participate in solicitations of major individual and foundation gift prospects.

• Work with Board members to create conditions for success in representing RLC publicly and in building relationships with high-level funders.

• Deepen and refine all aspects of communications - from internal updates to web presence to external branding.


• Work with the Board Vice-President to design and implement a strategic planning process for RLC. Use the strategic plan to prepare annual plans and appropriate budgets for RLC Board approval.

• Seek out and build relationships with partners, funders, and political and community leaders regionally around the annual and strategic goals and objectives.

• Work with the Board Vice-President to design and implement a process for RLC's re-accreditation as a land trust every five years. Ensure organizational compliance with Land Trust Standards and Practices and all organizational policies and procedures.


• Oversee the efforts of conservation staff to research, develop and complete conservation projects consistent with RLC Strategic Conservation Plan.

• Coordinate with Stewardship Director to ensure satisfactory completion of monitoring and long-term stewardship and defense of RLC's portfolio of conserved lands.

• Ensure the design and implementation of a process for renewal of California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) authorization for RLC to hold mitigation lands and endowments. Coordinate with Stewardship Director to ensure organizational compliance with applicable regulatory requirements.

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1. Curiosity about the natural world and commitment to RLC's mission and values.

2. Graduate degree in a natural science, business or nonprofit management, or a related field or bachelor's degree in a related field plus five to eight years of relevant experience (conservation nonprofit experience preferred).

3. At least two years of experience in managing conservation projects preferred.

4. Track record of successful fund raising (major gift development experience preferred).

5. Track record of working effectively under the leadership of a Board of Directors.

6. Excellent leadership and entrepreneurial skills.

8. Practical knowledge of legal contracts, agreements and real estate transactions.

9. Practical knowledge of nonprofit financial operations.

10. Knowledge of local, state and national conservation issues.

11. Ability to work collaboratively with teams, work groups and partners.

12. Effective oral and written communication including effective negotiation skills.

13. Ability to work evenings and weekends as needed.

14. Ability to work well in a small office.


Please email resume and cover letter to:

Rivers & Lands Conservancy

ATTN: Board Executive Committee

Please include the words "RLC Executive Director Search" in the subject line.