Grassroots Jobsource

Conservationist Posted Jan 11
Highstead , Redding, CT

Highstead seeks a talented, creative individual who thrives in a collaborative environment and has experience in land conservation, land use planning, environmental education or natural resources management—and very much a people-person—to fill the new position of Conservationist.

The Conservationist will bring much-needed capacity to support the landscape conservation activities of the burgeoning Regional Conservation Partnership (RCP) Network. The Conservationist will work with the Senior Conservationist, other Highstead staff, RCP Network members, Wildlands and Woodlands Initiative partners and other key stakeholders to help advance the pace and practice of large landscape conservation in New England and eastern New York.


Highstead is a regional non-profit conservation organization and an operating foundation dedicated to working with regional partners and the best available science to conserve the New England landscape. With Harvard Forest and others, Highstead seeks to advance the Wildlands and Woodlands vision by partnering with and promoting the efforts of other organizations and agencies. Its principal programs include catalyzing the land protection activities of RCPs and the RCP Network, conservation finance, ecological research, policy analysis, and land stewardship. Highstead employs eight staff members and supports many senior fellows and academic collaborators in advancing its goals. Founded in 1982 and located in the conservation landscape of Redding, CT, Highstead encompasses diverse natural areas, long-term studies on ecological dynamics, beautiful office and meeting facilities, and unique collections of trees and shrubs.


The Conservationist will bring strong project management experience and a collaborative spirit to support Highstead staff and numerous non-governmental and public agency partners on initiatives that seek to advance the pace and practice of large landscape conservation in the region. The Conservationist will report to and work with the Senior Conservationist. The Conservationist’s primary responsibilities will be in the areas of:

1. Project Management: Support and lead projects that help RCPs and their members increase the pace and connectivity of land conservation.
2. Coordination: Provide support to and help coordinate a variety of collaborative conservation groups and initiatives including working groups of the RCP Network and the Hudson to Housatonic RCP.
3. Conservation Training and Conferences: Develop, organize, and deliver periodic workshops, webinars and other training for Regional Conservation Partnerships and their members on collaborative conservation topics including new planning and conservation finance tools and resources.
4. Represent Highstead: Attend various regional conservation meetings to foster partnerships that advance the objectives of the RCP Network, Highstead, Wildlands and Woodlands, and emerging initiatives.


1. A Bachelor’s degree (Master’s preferred) in environmental management, natural resources conservation, forestry, wildlife biology, land use planning, or another conservation-related field.
2. In addition to degree programs, 3-5 years of experience in land conservation, land use planning, environmental education or natural resources management.
3. Superb oral and written communication skills.
4. Proven ability to manage projects.
5. Demonstrated ability to manage groups and lead and facilitate meetings and planning activities.
6. A collaborative personality and a willingness to engage with partners who have diverse missions and motivations.
7. Self-motivation and drive with a focus on delivering results.
8. An understanding of and willingness to adopt the role of servant leader in all activities involving RCPs and other RCP Network members and others.


1. Experience working in a land conservation trust or government agency.
2. Advanced GIS analysis skills.
3. Experience working within an RCP.
4. Experience working in the Northeast.


The Conservationist is a full-time position that offers a competitive salary and benefits package. The position will be ideally based at Highstead in Redding, CT, and will require frequent travel around New England and eastern New York.


Further information is available about Highstead (, the Wildlands and Woodlands Vision (, RCP Network ( and many collaborating activities centered at the Harvard Forest ( including the Program on Conservation Innovation and the Science and Policy Integration Project.


Send a curriculum vitae, a description of skills and work experiences in conservation-related work, three letters of reference, and a statement of interest with the subject line “Conservationist Search”. To be considered, applications must be received by March 17, 2017.