Program Director, West Coast Program - Vancouver, BC

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is the nation’s leading not-for-profit, private land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962 NCC and its supporters have protected 14 million hectares (35 million acres) of ecologically significant land across Canada. NCC takes a collaborative, science-based approach to achieve conservation success for the sake of nature and Canadians. With a national office in Toronto and seven regional offices across the country, NCC delivers results you can walk on.

Purpose and General Description

NCC’s West Coast Program stretches from the Lower Mainland to the Tatlayoko Valley, to the southern tip of Vancouver Island. The Program Director will manage a substantial conservation portfolio within the West Coast sub region and oversee new and innovative conservation efforts within this landscape. The objective of this position is the effective conservation of priority habitats within the sub region, focusing on private and public land protection and stewardship, based on good science. The Program Director provides entrepreneurial leadership in developing and implementing a well-funded, community-based conservation program that sustains the significant biodiversity and ecological integrity of natural systems within the sub region. The incumbent will maintain and build partnerships with local communities, Indigenous nations, corporations other non-profit organizations and government agencies. The Program Director will manage and administer NCC projects and activities; identify and develop new opportunities to advance project goals, take a lead role in private and public fundraising within the sub region, take the lead on landowner contact and negotiations; and develop and manage annual objectives and budgets. The position will collaborate with other NCC staff and departments, regionally and nationally, when appropriate.

Duties and Responsibilities

1. Implement the Salish Sea, Central Coast, Haida Gwaii, and West Chilcotin Natural Area

  • Conservation Plans (NACPs), as well as any future NACP’s contained within the program area
  • Oversee the development of partner-based landscape conservation strategies and action plans by working with partner agencies and local conservation groups;
  • Oversee the implementation of strategic conservation research and habitat protection projects and programs by working in consultation with NCC science, securement and stewardship staff and key partner representatives;
  • Take responsibility for and work closely with relevant NCC staff to ensure the long term protection of the viability of conservation targets on NCC- owned properties including management planning, plan implementation and threat abatement;
  • Work with partners on lands transferred by NCC to ensure conservation values are maintained;
  • Coordinate or carry out “ground-truthing” of sites of interest to NCC BC relevant to current ecological values identified as a priority in the NACPs, landowner status, partnership interest, and site/neighboring land use information;
  • Report on conservation success within the sub region.
  • Work with the Director of Conservation, Director of Science and Stewardship, West Coast staff and other NCC BC staff and Board Directors toward excellent landowner and stakeholder relationships, with the goal of successfully negotiated deals, successful fundraising efforts, and sustainable and satisfied landowner and regional partnership relationships which support NCC’s goals.

2.    Community and Partnership Liaison

  • Represent NCC in all appropriate external relations and communications functions relative to NCC’s work in the sub region, including public speaking, meetings, and media relations, to build awareness and support for the conservation programs of NCC and its partners;
  • Represent NCC in Indigenous communities and work to build relationships built on transparency and trust in order to move conservation forward within the sub region;
  • Plan, implement and report on expert workshops and meetings with key partners, to assist in setting conservation priorities as well as in developing and implementing conservation plans;
  • In collaboration with the Communications Manager and the Regional VP facilitate external relations and communications needs and functions;
  • Foster positive relationships with private and public property landowners within priority landscapes in the sub region through personal contact, workshops, program newsletters and other innovative approaches to promoting conservation and nurturing NCC’s relationships and reputation.

3.    Business Development and Fundraising

  • Advise the Director of Development of funding priorities, amounts and deadlines for both new securement initiatives and ongoing stewardship needs;
  • Work with other regional and national staff to ensure funds are available for property closings (to include land costs, associated costs, short term stewardship, long-term stewardship endowment) and other needs of the sub region;
  • Assist the Director of Development, regional staff, and fundraising volunteers to identify, cultivate, and request funds from both existing NCC donors and new prospects, including individuals, businesses, foundations, governmental sources, and non-governmental organizations;
  • Provide the regional development and/or communication departments with background material so that the department can produce appropriate marketing communications materials for properties or natural areas requiring funding;
  • Assist with donor/prospect property tours, provide an NCC media presence as required, speak at local community groups, and other public speaking engagements;
  • Work with the NCC BC philanthropy team to ensure that accurate records of donor and prospect cultivation are maintained.

4.    Manage program and financial administration activities

  • Provide leadership and assist staff and volunteers to develop and maintain partnerships with other conservation organizations and develop plans and agreements for long term management of all NCC owned properties and/or properties where NCC provided financial assistance
  • Lead the sub region in strategic plan process; including developing and managing work plans and budgets
  • Provide overall coordination and management of land use and conservation stewardship activities on all NCC owned properties and easement agreement sites, including compliance with NCC standards and practices
  • Provide timely reports to partners and donors
  • Coordinate staff and direct consultants to complete baseline reports and property management plans on all new NCC properties; including lands secured through covenant agreements
  • Keep up to date records and information on all NCC projects, including easements and transferred lands
  • Hire and supervise, or delegate supervision, any contactors or employees that may be engaged
  • Oversee the effective administrative and financial operation of the sub region

5.    Other

  • Other duties as assigned by the Director of Conservation and/or Regional Vice President

Required Skills and Attributes

  • A Bachelor’s Degree in ecology, conservation biology or related discipline with 5 - 10 years of directly related experience
  • Preference for candidates with a post-graduate degree in a conservation related field
  • Flexibility, reliability, self-motivation, and ability to work both independently and as a leader
  • Comfort working in a team setting and capable of easily communicating with a wide range of people from the public and private sectors
  • Experience in delivering land/resource management programs in a remote and urban Indigenous communities
  • Negotiation skills and experience with conservation real estate preferred
  • Previous experience working with land owners to implement land use / land management changes preferred
  • Project management skills, including excellent problem solving, planning and organizational skills, and attention to detail and timelines
  • Demonstrated ability to manage staff and/or volunteers
  • Proficient with MS Office Suite
  • Demonstrated experience in making public presentations
  • Entrepreneurial, with a strong ability to prepare and manage timelines, goals and expectations wisely
  • Must be prepared to travel and work flexible hours frequently
  • Committed to the core values and mission statement of NCC
  • Use team dynamics to maximize efforts;
  • Set a good example; ensure that others buy into the team mission, goals, agenda, climate, tone and policy;
  • Project a “can do” attitude, be optimistic, enthusiastic, committed to action.

To Apply

NCC is an equal opportunity employer. If you are a passionate conservationist and are interested in making a difference to conservation in British Columbia, please forward your resume and cover letter making sure to note the following in the subject line of your email: Your first and last name – West Coast Program Director (eg. Jane Smith – West Coast Program Director) to no later than 5:00pm on Friday, September 20th, 2019.

We thank everyone who applies for their interest in the Nature Conservancy of Canada; however only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

For positions situated in Ontario:
At the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) we strive to promote diversity in the workplace and encourage applications from all qualified individuals.
NCC is an Equal Opportunity Employer. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the Ontario Human Rights Code, we will provide accommodations to applicants with disabilities throughout the recruitment, selection and/or assessment process. If selected to participate in the recruitment, selection and/or assessment process, please inform Human Resources staff of the nature of any accommodation(s) that you may require.

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