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Director, Allegheny Highlands Program


The Nature Conservancy


Hot Springs, VA


United States

Last Date to Apply:

04 Feb 2018




The Nature Conservancy is the leading conservation organization working to make a positive impact around the world in more than 30 countries, all 50 United States, and your backyard. Founded in 1951, the mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. One of our core values is our commitment to diversity therefore we are committed to a globally diverse and culturally competent workforce. Visit www.nature.org/aboutus to learn more.




In Virginia, The Conservancy has had a hand in protecting nearly 350,000 acres of lands, and much of that is not only open to the public to enjoy, but as Virginians, we share in its ownership. These cooperative projects help meet Virginians’ needs for outdoor recreation and generate substantial economic benefits through nature-based tourism. In the Allegheny Highlands, the Conservancy works to conserve the mountain forests and streams of Western Virginia not only for the myriad plants and wildlife they harbor, but also for the millions of people who depend on them for natural services ranging from outdoor recreation to drinking water for Northern Virginia, D.C. and Richmond. We are seeking a visionary leader who will be responsible for government and community relations, land protection and management, education and outreach, and science and research in a six-county region of Virginia, including stewardship of the 9,000-acre Warm Springs Mountain Preserve. S/he provides leadership and support for the program’s conservation planning and establishes overall conservation priorities in the Allegheny Highland program area.





The Director of the Allegheny Highlands Program establishes the Conservancy as a major conservation partner within western Virginia and the Central Appalachians, defines conservation priorities in the region, manages a team that implements conservation strategies, and builds strategic, scientific, and technical capacity in the field. S/he collaborates with other TNC staff in the fields of conservation, government relations, marketing, philanthropy, and operations, along with chapter leadership, and is the principle contact with the local community, landowners, corporations, donors, government agencies, the academic community and local elected officials. The Director develops key partnerships with public and private organizations to identify and resolve complex technical issues and to widely communicate lessons learned and best practices, develops innovative scientific methods, analyses, tools, and frameworks to address system-scale needs, implements high-impact strategies, and engages community support for local and regional conservation efforts. S/he negotiates complex and innovative solutions with government agencies and landowners to conserve and protect natural communities and develops and implements conservation strategies that are good for people and nature. Current priority strategies that the Director will lead include: 1) working with partners to advance the restoration of fire-adapted forests, 2) positioning Warm Springs Mountain Preserve as a flagship preserve for outdoor recreation enthusiasts, donors and researchers while modeling responsible stewardship and demonstrating sound ecological management, 3) working with community partners to advocate for the Conservancy’s mission in the Allegheny Highlands program area; and 4) advancing the science and management of private working lands to improve habitat for golden-winged warblers and other species of greatest conservation need.




  • Inclusive leadership skills and experience managing teams with a commitment to respecting team dynamics, and a strong ability to understand and credit diverse perspectives, and synthesize multiple perspectives to achieve the best outcome
  • Prepares long-range business plans, annual work plans and budgets.
  • Develops and presents proposals to raise public and private funds in support of program and partner activities.
  • Works closely with the fundraising team to identify, cultivate, and steward donors.
  • Oversees all aspects of project management including contractual obligations and grant administration.
  • Oversees strategic management of the program including development and implementation of conservation strategies and projects to achieve programmatic goals.
  • Negotiates complex agreements, in a political environment.
  • Facilitates workshops, trainings and shared learning experiences for collaborative planning efforts.
  • May be responsible for leading or co-leading a broader regional program or strategy.
  • Frequent travel regionally and domestically, evening and weekend hours.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, and under physically demanding circumstances.
  • BA/BS degree and 7 years’ experience in conservation practice, leadership, business or related field, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Fundraising experience or proposal development and writing, including relationship building, donor identification and cultivation.
  • Experience directing a major program or project of strategic importance, including management/supervision of multi-disciplinary teams and meeting deadlines.
  • Supervisory experience, including hiring, motivating, leading, mentoring, setting objectives and managing performance.
  • Experience developing partnerships (conservation partners, community, government.)
  • Negotiation, facilitation and conflict resolution skills.
  • Must have valid driver’s license and safe driving record per TNC’s Auto Safety Program.
  • Experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation policy and plans or building relationships with conservation partners.
  • Multi-cultural, cross cultural experience or background an asset
  • Knowledge of current trends in conservation, landscape ecology, land management and effectiveness monitoring, including fire management and restoration.
  • Familiarity with National Forest System land management and policy.
  • Communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English.
  • Politically savvy and experienced in partnership development (partners, community, government).
  • Current certification or ability to obtain NWCG Firefighter Type II qualification.


Go to www.nature.org/careers, click Search Careers and search by the position title and/or location, then click Apply Now to submit an online application. It is necessary to complete the application in its entirety. In addition, submit resume (required) and a letter of interest that includes salary requirements in separate documents. For assistance with the online process, go to:


Application deadline is 11:59 PM on Feb. 4, 2018.