Sierra Forest Legacy

Placerville, California

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details $75,000 to $80,000 per year
Deadline Jun 28, 2022
Required Experience 7+ years

Sierra Forest Legacy ( is seeking an executive director to lead our effort to conserve biodiversity and ecosystems in the Sierra Nevada. We seek a dynamic leader capable of integrating the science and policy that forms the foundation for conservation with the ability to work with conservation allies, decision makers, and other stakeholders to protect sensitive resources in the bioregion.

Position description

The executive director will manage the overall program, administration, communications, and fundraising work of Sierra Forest Legacy. The executive director will manage and oversee work of staff and consultants engaged in implementing Sierra Forest Legacy’s mission, which is to engage land managers, scientists, and stakeholders in the management of Sierra Nevada ecosystems to protect and restore the unparalleled beauty and natural values of the region. The program work is focused on forest conservation of National Forest Service lands in the Sierra Nevada and includes the technical and public policy aspects of forest conservation, engagement in collaborative processes with partners and other stakeholders, and communication strategies to engage decision makers, scientists, and stakeholders on the best practices of conservation. Administrative duties include grant writing, donor cultivation, and other fundraising responsibilities, ensuring staff have adequate training, regular performance reviews, and oversight and leadership to support their work. Communications work involves developing campaigns and communication plans with staff and consultants. The executive director is responsible for working with staff and the advisory board to develop and implement the strategic plan and to raise funds to support the strategic plan.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Develop strategies and identify tactics to advance Sierra Forest Legacy's conservation goals. Create and support partnerships with aligned conservation organizations. Establish and maintain effective working relationships with key scientists, agency experts and decision makers. Apply expert knowledge of ecology, principles of land use planning, and public policy to conservation issues. Establish an annual fundraising plan and implement fund development actions to meet fundraising goals, including grant writing and donor cultivation. Other administrative duties include supervision of all staff; management of independent consultants; oversight of administrative and financial responsibilities to The Tides Center; maintenance of regular communication with the Advisory Board; and monitoring and updating the strategic plan as needed. The position currently supervises two staff and oversees paid consultants.

Education and/or Experience

Bachelor's degree in resource management or resource-based public policy or other relevant field and at least 5 years of relevant practical or educational experience desired. Advanced degree preferred.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Familiarity with natural resource management in forest ecosystems, fire management and policy, and the legislative and public policy processes in natural resource management and advocacy. Successful fundraising record in recent work experience, including success securing foundation grants. Documented media and communications experience preferred. Demonstrated ability to work with and manage staff. Experience working in multi-disciplinary teams and with diverse groups in and outside the conservation community. High-quality written and verbal communication skills. Ability to facilitate people with diverse interests to work on a common goal preferred. Ability to work independently but communicate/coordinate with other team members. Basic understanding of internet operations and common productivity software (e.g., Microsoft Office, Adobe products, Zoom, Google tools).

Organizational Relationship

Effective working relationships with conservation groups, agency staff and other stakeholders working in Sierra Nevada bioregion preferred. Ongoing and productive relationships with foundations and other organizations funding forest conservation is also preferred.  

Physical Demands

Requires sitting, talking and listening for 5+ hours per day. Standing and walking for up to 3 hours per day, reaching with hands and arms and keying for up to 3 hours per day, and periodic walking in forested environments up to 5 hours a day. An average of 3 hours per day spent at computer. Lifting up to 10 pounds.

Work Environment

This position is based in Sierra Nevada bioregion. The position will require frequent travel within the Sierra Nevada, modest travel throughout the state, and occasional travel to Washington, DC.


Interested applicants should submit a cover letter, resume, and three professional references via email to Hiring Team at with “Executive Director” in the subject line. This position is open until filled. The first review of applications will occur after June 24.  We are seeking to fill this position in September 2022.

Sierra Forest Legacy, a project of the Tides Center, is an equal opportunity employer. We strongly encourage and seek applications from women, people of color, including bilingual and bicultural individuals, as well as members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender communities.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.