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Plant Genetic Conservation Specialist- PTA, Big Island, HI

Colorado State University
Fort Collins, Colorado
Closing date
Jun 26, 2022

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Academic / Research
Conservation science
Botany, Ecology, Biology
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time

Plant Genetic Conservation Specialist- PTA, Big Island, HI


Employee Benefits

Colorado State University (CSU) is committed to providing employees with a strong and competitive benefits package that supports you, your health, and your family. Visit CSU’s Human Resources website for detailed benefit plan information for permanent full-time and part-time faculty and administrative professional employees in the following University benefit areas: &


Description of Work Unit

CEMML is a research, education and service unit within the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University (CSU). CEMML applies the latest and most appropriate science to promote the sustainable management of natural and cultural resources on Department of Defense and other public lands. We provide technical support, conduct applied research, and offer career development and learning opportunities to support resource stewardship. We collaborate with our sponsors and within CSU to resolve complex environmental issues, leaving a legacy of science-based decisions that sustain our resources for future generations.

To learn more about CEMML’s contributions to land management, our mission, vision, and values, visit


Position Summary

A Plant Genetic Conservation Specialist (Research Associate II Special) position is available with the Center for Environmental Management of Military Lands. This position is located at Pohakuloa Training Area on the Big Island in Hawaii. The project team manages numerous rare plant and animal species and their habitats and employs large-scale fencing enclosures and threat management to assist with species conservation and recovery.


The Specialist assists with planning and implementing management actions in the greenhouse and field, including seed collection, propagule banking, propagation of common and federally-listed plant species, greenhouse management, outplanting of federally-listed plant species and common native species, monitoring of project success, and data collection, management and reporting associated with the project. The Specialist is supervised by the Botanical Program Manager and primarily works alone, but collaborates with other staff members and at times may direct a crew of up to 5 employees. The combination of planning, collaboration with other conservation entities, in-situ and ex-situ management, and restoration activities provides for a rich, demanding, rewarding and dynamic work environment.


Required Job Qualifications

• BS/BA degree in botany, biology, horticulture, restoration ecology, or related field.

• Three years of experience managing operations and working with staff in horticultural systems and/or conserving botanical resources.

• Demonstrated knowledge of plant propagation, especially species found in Hawaii, including common native and rare species.

• Ability to hike for 6-8 hours and up to 10 kilometers per day while carrying a field pack over rough terrain, in inclement weather.

• Must have a valid driver’s license or the ability to obtain a driver’s license or access to a licensed driver by the employment start date.

• The successful candidate must be legally authorized to work in the U.S. by proposed start date; CEMML will not provide visa sponsorship for this position.


Preferred Job Qualifications

• MSc degree with a degree/coursework in seed conservation; ecological restoration; rare plant propagation, care, and outplanting; botany or related field.

• Experience with implementing conditions in state or federal permits, especially Endangered Species Act Recovery Permits, for the collection/propagation of seed or other propagules from endangered plants.

• Experience with seed collection, propagation, outplanting, and site maintenance for common native and federally-listed plant species.

• Experience with seed management and storage procedures/techniques, seed/propagule collection management and associated data.

• Experience with plant care in fertilization, plant pathogen and disease control techniques in the greenhouse and field.

• Experience with operation and maintenance of greenhouses including venting systems and irrigation systems.

• Good oral and written communication skills.

• Proficient with ArcGIS, including data entry and management, data summary/analysis, and map creation.

• Proficient with Windows-based computers and MS Office Suite software for database management, record keeping, information retrieval, and report generation.

• Experience with Global Positioning System (GPS) and field navigation.

• Work experience on a military installation or in other highly-structured organizations such as government agencies or other organizations with well-defined lines of authority, procedures, and protocols.


Diversity Statement

Reflecting departmental and institutional values, candidates are expected to have the ability to advance the Department’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.


Essential Duties

• Conduct and direct staff in the field towards meeting seed collection targets for each species federally-listed plant species and common native species.

• Conduct or coordinate seed storage and viability trials.

• Conduct and direct staff in the propagation and outplanting of federally-listed plant species and common native species.

• Conduct and direct staff in monitoring and maintaining plants at outplating sites.

• Maintain ex situ collections of genetic material and accession records for each of the federally-listed plant species.

• Conduct and direct staff in maintaining the greenhouse, interpretive garden, and living collections.

• Field work in high hazard areas to include live-fire impact area and dudded impact areas (escorted by Explosive Ordnance Disposal personnel or like contractor).


• Maintain genetic conservation database records in accordance with permit conditions to establish a clear provenance and fate for all propagule collections of protected plant species. Perform QC measures monthly.

• Maintain accurate records of propagules in storage.

• Maintain records of propagation events, resultant seedlings and plants, and outplanting activities in accordance with permit conditions and to generate reports of success and status/fate of plants.

• Input data and conduct quality control of data entered by staff. Analyze and report data to support a variety of reporting needs and formats.

• Assist with development of in-situ and ex-situ plans and tasks/projects, including site-specific planting plans and targets as directed by the Manager.

• Assist with the development of protocols and Standard Operating Procedures as directed by the Manager.

• Assist in training field staff in field techniques and duties, data entry, and equipment use and maintenance.

• Schedule and direct personnel in the office, greenhouse, and field to achieve program goals.

• Coordinate team members to ensure all required data, maps, equipment, supplies, and vehicles are available and prepared for the field day.

• Implement established safety regulations and provide feedback to develop any emergent policies.

• Flexible in assignments as well as work schedule. Meet with staff to coordinate activities and solicit input on project plans and schedules.

• Provide feedback to Botanical Manager on performance of field crew members. Direct activities of field crew when they are assigned to support genetic conservation and outplanting tasks.


Special Instructions to Applicants

Applicants must meet the minimum qualifications in the announcement to be considered for hire. Apply no later than June 20, 2022, for full consideration at Mailed or emailed applications will not be accepted.


Upload each of the items below individually as a Word Document (.doc), PDF (.pdf), or Rich Text Format (.rtf). Please note that incomplete applications cannot be considered. Please remove social security numbers and birthdates from application materials. A complete application consists of:


Statement of Qualifications (one-page letter addressing each qualification described in the announcement) uploaded in the ‘Cover Letter’ slot.


References – please include within your application contact information for 3 professional references including at least one supervisor.


References will not be contacted without prior notification of candidates.


Conditions of Employment

Pre-employment Criminal Background Check (required for new hires), Valid Driver’s License - U.S. state


Search Contact

Nikhil Narahari


EEO Statement

Colorado State University is committed to providing an environment that is free from discrimination and harassment based on race, age, creed, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, sex, gender, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, or pregnancy in its employment, programs, services and activities, and admissions, and, in certain circumstances, marriage to a co-worker. The University will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. Colorado State University is an equal opportunity and equal access institution and affirmative action employer fully committed to achieving a diverse workforce and complies with all Federal and Colorado State laws, regulations, and executive orders regarding non-discrimination and affirmative action. The Office of Equal Opportunity is located in 101 Student Services.


The Title IX Coordinator is the Director of the Office of Title IX Programs and Gender Equity, 123 Student Services Building, Fort Collins, CO 80523-0160, (970) 491-1715,


The Section 504 and ADA Coordinator is the Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity, 101 Student Services Building, Fort Collins, CO 80523-0160, (970) 491-5836,


The Coordinator for any other forms of misconduct prohibited by the University’s Policy on Discrimination and Harassment is the Vice President for Equity, Equal Opportunity and Title IX, 101 Student Services Building, Fort Collins, Co. 80523-0160, (970) 491-5836,


Any person may report sex discrimination under Title IX to the Office of Civil Rights, Department of Education.


Background Check Policy Statement

Colorado State University strives to provide a safe study, work, and living environment for its faculty, staff, volunteers and students. To support this environment and comply with applicable laws and regulations, CSU conducts background checks for the finalist before a final offer. The type of background check conducted varies by position and can include, but is not limited to, criminal history, sex offender registry, motor vehicle history, financial history, and/or education verification. Background checks will also be conducted when required by law or contract and when, in the discretion of the University, it is reasonable and prudent to do so.


To apply:


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