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Partner Conservationist - Easement Technician

American Conservation Experience Staff
Dover, New Hampshire, US
Closing date
Oct 11, 2022

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Academic / Research
Conservation science, Informatics / GIS
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time
Job Description
American Conservation Experience (ACE) is a dynamic non-profit organization dedicated to providing rewarding environmental service opportunities that harness the idealism and energy of an emerging labor force to help restore America's public lands. ACE program has a national reputation for providing young adults and recent graduates with hands-on, professional development individual placement opportunities to work alongside and under the guidance of agency mentors as they apply their knowledge of resource management on their path to becoming the next generation of resource and land managers.

Job Title: ACE Partner Conservationist - Easement Technician, NRCS New Hampshire

Location: Dover, New Hampshire. This is an onsite position.

Department/Division: ACE - Private Lands Division

Status: Regular Full-time, Exempt

Start Date: December 2022

Term: Position is fully funded through September 2025; extension to September 2027 is possible.

Schedule/Hours: ​​ Full-time, 40 hours/weeks with additional hours as needed. Some evening and weekend hours may be occasionally required.

Reports To: Assigned NRCS supervisors; with additional mentorship and administrative reporting to ACE Program Manager, Private Lands Division.

Travel: Domestic (local/regional) travel may be required to various project partner locations.

Position Summary:

​​American Conservation Experience (ACE), a national non-profit, is seeking a qualified Easement Technician to provide direct assistance to New Hampshire Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) agency staff, landowners and partners involved in the easement program. Specifically, the ACE Partner Conservationist - Easement Technician will provide technical assistance through easement planning, implementation, and management, as well as education and outreach for NRCS easement programs.

This opportunity is intended for emerging professionals with a professional and/or academic background in environmental studies or natural resource management, with an interest in jointly advancing their career and the stewardship of private lands conservation through purposeful fieldwork, programmatic support and hands-on experience with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

Program Background and Objectives:

ACE and NRCS have a mutual interest to conserve, protect, and enhance the nation's wetland ecosystems, as required by Congress through the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program- Wetland Reserve Easements (ACEP-WRE) and Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP). The main objectives of an easement are to restore wetland and adjacent uplands in order to provide habitat for fish and wildlife, including threatened and endangered species, improve water quality by filtering sediments and chemicals, reduce flooding, recharge groundwater, protect biological diversity and provide opportunities for educational, scientific and limited recreational activities.

NRCS-New Hampshire has a growing portfolio of easements on private lands acquired for conservation and environmental benefits. Through NRCS training and self-study of available resources, the Easement Technician will assist NRCS in the timely delivery and support of the NRCS-New Hampshire's Easement Program via evaluation, creation, and coordination of easement restoration and management plans. Additionally, the Easement Technician will provide landowner assistance and carry out other easement related duties as assigned.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:
  • The Easement Technician will support the New Hampshire NRCS Easement Program by:

(1) Assisting in the assessment and development of restoration and management plans

(2) Provide landowner support and coordination of restoration and/or management activities

(3) Provide general program support to NRCS-NH easement staff as program needs develop

Specific duties include but are not limited to:
  • Complete site visits and assessments of easements at multiple stages of the restoration process - planning, restoration preparation, construction, check-out, monitoring, etc.
  • Collect field data as trained, and report findings and observations in a systematic and timely way.
  • Familiarize oneself with restoration and management conservation practices to easily communicate methods, goals, and objectives with landowners, NRCS staff, contractors, etc.
  • Assist in the development of easement management plans and wetland restoration plans of operation (WRPO).
  • Develop maps to support easement planning efforts.
  • Enter appropriate easement planning data into NRCS business tools including Conservation Desktop and other tracking databases.
  • Assist easement landowners with existing easement management and maintenance needs, including WRPOs for enhancement and/or repairs, and development of Compatible Use Authorizations (CUAs).
  • Assist in the development of documents that support easement NEPA compliance.
  • Work with local contractors and vendors to get restoration cost estimates.
  • Assist NRCS offices with developing and maintaining easement case files.
  • Manage and track multiple projects at once.
  • Attend and successfully complete training as assigned in order to obtain skills and to meet applicable NRCS standards, specifications and program requirements.
  • Support NRCS-NH with other related tasks as requested or assigned.
  • Work collaboratively with partners (NRCS staff, consultants, scientists, engineers, landowners) and maintain strong working relationships.
  • Participate in regular calls with ACE Private Lands Division Staff.
  • Maintain records of time, travel expenses, logistics, and accomplishments; report to ACE in a timely manner.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Required Experience and Qualifications:
  • Applicants should have at least an undergraduate degree in environmental science/studies, natural resource management, biology, environmental planning, environmental policy, range science, wildlife biology, conservation biology, engineering, or a related field. In lieu of a degree, applicants who can demonstrate a foundation of comparable professional work experience(s) for the duties and responsibilities of this position may be accepted. The applicant must document and describe these work experiences in their application.
  • Genuine interest and/or knowledge in wetland, upland, and riparian resource management.
  • Some field work experience; wetlands and associated upland habitat exposure a bonus.
  • Proficient research, analytical, organization and writing skills.
  • Knowledge of and experience with GPS units and ArcGIS software.
  • Strong time management skills; ability and desire to perform multiple and variable tasks.
  • Strong organizational skills to keep track of workload, tasks, and interactions
  • Comfortable communicating directly with federal agency staff, resource professionals, and landowners.
  • Proven ability to work independently and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
  • Strong computer management skills including experience with databases and email, Google Earth, iOS, Google Docs, MS Office, etc.
  • Ability to work independently in remote outdoor areas; able to hike and walk for extended periods of time, and be capable of moving up to 50 lbs.
  • Ability to prepare and maintain records and reports.
  • Ability to understand and carry out oral and written instructions.
  • Ability to understand and follow ACE/NRCS partner systems and processes.
  • Demonstrate sensitivity, understanding and an ability to effectively interact with individuals (internal and external) from diverse cultural, socioeconomic, ability and ethnic backgrounds.
  • Willing and able to represent ACE and the NRCS in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner.
  • Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.

Preferred but not required:
  • Competitive applicants for this position can hold or be pursuing a minimum of an associate's degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as civil or other engineering methods, energy management, sustainability, or related disciplines.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate both verbally and in writing in a way that is clear, concise, and grammatically correct.
  • Demonstrated ability to organize and coordinate work within schedule constraints and handle emergent requirements in a timely manner.
  • Experience and/or knowledge in the mission of the FWS.
  • Experience identifying and addressing challenges on a project before they become issues.
  • Strong desire to enter public service as an engineering, science, or conservation professional.

Other Requirements:
  • Must be authorized to work in the U.S.
  • Valid driver's license and an insurable driving record; ability to complete ACE and government vehicle operation trainings, and comfortable driving ACE and/or government vehicles as needed.
  • Proficient in English.
  • Ability to pass a federal criminal background check.
  • Willing to abide by ACE Policy and Federal Drug Free workplace policies and laws. ACE reserves the right to drug test at any time.
  • All ACE members and staff must verify that they are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by the time they start their term/position or request a medical or religious exemption.

Physical Demands, Work Environment and Working Conditions:

  • Physical Demands: Requires frequent sitting, standing, walking, hiking, carrying, using hands to handle or feel, reaching with hands and arms, talks and hears. Manual dexterity required for use of hand and power tools, computer keyboard/mouse and other office equipment. Required to stoop, kneel, climb stairs, and/or crouch. Ability to hike over rough terrain, and camp overnight under field conditions.
  • Vision Requirements: Requires close, distance, peripheral and depth perception vision as well as the ability to focus.
  • Weight Lifted or Force Exerted : Frequently moves up to 20 lbs., ability to lift up to 50 pounds.
  • Environmental: Outdoor and indoor conditions. Work environment conditions can change frequently; working under adverse weather conditions and in various climates.
  • Noise Environment : Moderate noise such as in a business office with equipment and light traffic.
  • Travel: This position requires domestic travel as needed.

Compensation: Starting annualized salary range of $50,000 to $55,000, based on experience and qualifications (40 hours/week for 52-weeks), paid bi-weekly.

Benefits: ACE offers competitive medical and ancillary plans (health, mental health, dental, vision and other supplemental benefits). ACE Staff members are also eligible to participate in ACE's retirement plan with a 1% employer contribution.

Holidays, Vacation, and Sick Time: As an ACE staff member, you will be eligible to accrue up to 80 hours of paid vacation time annually during your first two years of continuous employment, then it increases to 120 hours annually. ACE observes 13 paid annual holidays (floating holiday flexibility). Additionally, ACE full-time regular employees also receive paid additional holiday time for any normal work days that fall between the observed Christmas Day and New Year's Day holidays. ACE provides 10 days (or 80 hours) of paid sick time annually.

Additional Benefits:

Outdoor Perks - As an ACE staff member, you will be eligible to receive pro deals which include deep discounts on outdoor gear providing 30 - 50% off retail prices on 100s of established outdoor gear brands.

Professional Development/Training : Additionally, this position offers emerging professionals the opportunity to gain professional experience within the Natural Resources Conservation Service, attend training, and be mentored by both NRCS and ACE staff.

To Apply: Please submit a resume and cover letter describing why you are a good fit for this position, as well as contact information for three professional or academic references. Qualified applicants will be contacted by email to arrange an interview.

Deadline to apply: October 30, 2022. Accepting applications and interviewing on a rolling basis. Expected start date December 2022

Individuals who identify with groups typically under-represented in the conservation industry, including women, non-binary individuals, LGBTQ individuals, and people of color are particularly encouraged to apply.

American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.

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