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Mississippi State Director

The Nature Conservancy
Madison, Mississippi
158,000 - 185,000
Closing date
Jun 15, 2024

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Conservation science
Project Management
Job Level
Senior level
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time

Job Details

Madison, Mississippi, USA

Who We Are:

The Nature Conservancy’s mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that we can create a world in which people and nature thrive. We’re rooted in our Mission and guided by our Values, which includes a Commitment to Diversity and Respect for People, Communities, and Cultures. Whether it’s career development, flexible schedules, or a rewarding mission, there’s lots of reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want a better insight to TNC? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube  or on Glassdoor.  

Our goal is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that all our colleagues around the globe feel a sense of belonging, and that their unique contributions to our mission are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our Mission by hiring and engaging a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we work. In addition to the requirements in our postings, we recognize that people come with talent and experiences outside of a job. Diversity of experience and skills combined with passion is a key to innovation and a culture of inclusion! Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote myriad TNC staff members, “you’ll join for our mission, and you’ll stay for our people.”


What We Can Achieve Together: The State Director functions as manager and conservation strategist for the Mississippi Operating Unit. They are accountable for the OU’s success in implementing TNC’s conservation approach, producing measurable conservation results and maintaining organizational values. They ensure outcomes are achieved in priority areas that fall within the operating unit’s responsibilities, and contribute intellectual, financial, and/or human resources to the formulation and execution of priority cross-boundary efforts.  They support alignment of activities by securing, coordinating, and configuring resources, capacity, and programs to address the most critical organization-wide projects, threats and strategies.  They are responsible for collaborating with others on the procurement and application of resources to address the conservation priorities established by TNC, both in her/his ecoregion(s)/operating unit and in areas beyond her/his span of authority.  They serve as the primary local spokesperson for TNC to internal and external audiences (including staff, volunteers, the Board of Trustees, public and private donors, government agencies and officials, community leaders and other partners) and cultivates those audiences to support and promote TNC’s mission and vision.


The State Director oversees fundraising and marketing for the OU, including approving budgets and setting priorities which dictate private and public fundraising goals. He/she supports philanthropy, resources and external affairs staff in the cultivation and direct solicitation of donors to meet fundraising goals.  They are responsible for a significant portion of the OU’s direct fundraising, sometimes in a major market area. 

The staff comprising the various OU functions may be structured as needed or shared with other units as efficiency dictates to meet the needs of the unit.  The State Director reports to the Division Director and works closely with the local trustees/advisory board.

The Mississippi State Director has the unique opportunity to help create a shared, multi-state vision for how to maximize conservation outcomes within Mississippi, across the Southern Deltas (Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, and Arkansas), and across the broader Southern U.S. Division, comprised of 10 state chapters from Virginia and Kentucky southward to Florida and Louisiana.  Increasingly and fundamentally, the State Director collaborates with others across the Southern Division and beyond to build partnerships and support the most critical organization-wide impacts, strategies, and projects that align and meet the overall greater initiatives of Mississippi, the Southern Division and organization.  The State Director reports to the Southern Division Director.

The State Director leads staff and trustees, cultivates new and existing donors, expands partnerships, and builds a broader constituency for conservation across the state. As a leader in the Mississippi conservation movement, the State Director plays a primary role collaborating with partner organizations, government agencies, elected officials and other key decision-makers to build alliances and shared agendas that advance science-driven conservation outcomes in Mississippi, across the South, and globally. The State Director is accountable for the chapter’s success in implementing TNC’s global conservation approach, producing measurable results, upholding organizational values, and supporting the ongoing work of equity while leading an inclusive workplace culture. The State Director is committed to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ) in the Chapter’s work and culture.

In addition to the state specific responsibilities of the BU Leader, they are responsible for the collective success of the division by being a member of the Divisional Leadership Team, whose focus is on strengthening a culture that collaborates strategically, thoughtfully and aggressively across geo-political and management lines. Through this approach, called Empowering Divisions, it helps shape the strategy, identifies the division’s conservation priorities, and develops, funds and deploys talent to execute cross-boundary initiatives that can deliver the greatest impact to TNC’s 2030 goals across the division. 

Specific responsibilities as a member of the Divisional Leadership Team include:

Collectively determining divisional conservation targets and committing staff and financial resources to those agreed upon multi-year priorities. Shared development and management of fundraising goals through greater coordination of donor prospects and strategies and an increased focus on the wealth markets with the greatest potential not being realized. Lead in a manner that results in staff and partners addressing the largest scale conservation and the greatest potential fundraising outcomes. Identifying operating models and implementing shared services such as financial management, human resources support, DEIJ strategy and marketing and communications tactics across the division that maximize effectiveness and efficiencies. Purposefully lead toward optimal diversity in the ranks of staff and trustees. Developing greater consistency of approach in budgeting, evaluating risk and utilization of financial resources Aligning their individual Business Unit’s portfolios of work (which includes de-prioritizing/divesting misaligned work)  


  We’re Looking for You:

Are you looking for work you can believe in? At TNC we strive to embody a philosophy of Work that You Can Believe in where you can feel like you are making a difference every day. We’re looking for someone with strong experience in leading a diverse, multi-disciplinary team.


The ideal candidate should have exceptional communication and collaboration skills and experience designing, organizing, and directing complex projects. This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to the ongoing mission of conservation by directing and shaping the work of our team!

What You’ll Bring:

  • Bachelor’s degree and minimum of 7 years of experience as a leader in the conservation arena, non-profit sector, advocacy, or related for-profit area. Extensive and proven management experience including ability to motivate, lead, set objectives, and manage performance of a large multi-disciplinary team. Written and verbal fluency in English is required as well as fluency in the predominant language of the operating unit if other than English. Experience communicating and presenting required. Experience communicating with and presenting to diverse audiences including donors, board members, employees, outside partners, or equivalent. Experience in fundraising and budget management.



  • 7-10 years’ experience as a proven leader in the conservation arena, non-profit sector, advocacy, or related for-profit area, including demonstrated experience producing results and meeting program/department goals.  Experience gained both in and outside the U.S. preferred.  Demonstrated commitment to developing and practicing global literacy a must. Success as an inspirational leader who has successfully motivated staff to achieve and sustain excellence. Proven managerial talent in budgeting, staffing, and performance management. High energy, forward thinking, creative individual with high ethical standards.  Outstanding leadership and visionary qualities and able to work effectively with and through others in a decentralized and geographically dispersed organization. Proven technical skills, analytical ability, good judgment, and strong operational focus.  Demonstrated operational, implementation and detail-oriented perspective. Well organized and self-directed; politically savvy and a team player. Successful experience in marketing or fund raising desired. 


Salary Information: The starting pay range for a candidate selected for this position is generally within the range of $158,000 - $185,000 for annual base salary. This range only applies to candidates whose country of employment is the USA. Where a successful candidate’s actual pay will fall within this range will be based on a variety of factors, including, for example, the candidate's location, qualifications, specific skills, and experience. Please note countries outside the USA would have a different pay range in the local currency based on the local labor market, and not tied to USA pay or ranges. Your geographic location will be confirmed during the recruitment.


  What We Bring:

Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. Through grassroots action, TNC has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff, we impact conservation throughout the world!


The Nature Conservancy offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package including: health care benefits, flexible spending accounts, 401(k) plan including employer match, parental leave, accrued paid time off, life insurance, disability coverage, employee assistance program, other life and work wellbeing benefits. Learn more about our benefits at in the Culture Tab on


We’re proud to offer a work-environment that is supportive of the health, wellbeing, and flexibility needs of the people we employ!


This description is not designed to be a complete list of all duties and responsibilities required for this job.


The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and cultures. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientations, gender identities, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to with Request for Accommodation in the subject line


How to Apply: Please apply to Job 55127 at Submit the required cover letter and separately using the upload buttons. The position will remain open until filled and applications are reviewed in the order in which they are received.Click “submit” to apply for the position or “save for later” to create a draft application for future submission. Once submitted, applications cannot be revised or edited. Failure to complete the required fields may result in your application being disqualified from consideration. If you experience technical issues, please refer to our applicant user guide or contact


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