Forest Preserve Experience Assistant Crew Leader

Friends of the Forest Preserves

Chicago, Illinois

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $16.75 per hour
Required Experience 0 - 1 years

Assistant Crew Leader, Forest Preserve Experience Program

Reports to: FPE Crew Leader

Open until filled | Start Date: June 17, 2024

Salary: $16.75 per hour

40-50 hours paid training June 17, 18, 20, 21 & June 24- June 27

8am - 3pm, Monday - Thursday

30 hours per week July 1 thru August 2

July 4-5 off, unpaid

8:00 am to 1:00 pm, Monday-Friday


Mission: We unite people to protect, promote, and care for the forest preserves in Cook County. 

Our community advocates for the responsible management of the nearly 70,000 acres of forest preserves in Cook County through advocacy, engagement, and stewardship of the land. Some of the best natural areas in Illinois are right here in Cook County, right outside your urban backdoor. Join our team and help us ensure they are here for the next 100 years.

Friends is an organization that gets things done with our members, volunteers, staff, board, and partners. We believe in work-life balance and are here for the marathon, not the sprint (not that we don’t sprint on a regular basis).

Operating Budget: $3,750,000

Summary: Friends of the Forest Preserves seeks Assistant Crew Leaders to be part of the Forest Preserve Experience (FPE) leadership team. FPE is a five-week summer program focused on job skill development, restoration training and work, environmental education, and exposure to the forest preserves and jobs in conservation. For many participants, this program serves as a first job, so Assistant Crew Leaders excel in relating to and guiding youth through the program. Successful candidates have great communication skills, outgoing personalities, and the desire to build their leadership skills.


  • Support Crew Leaders with supervising, motivating, coordinating, and mentoring 12 high school youth (ages 14-19) employed in the FPE program. 
  • Co-lead a variety of hands-on ecological conservation and restoration projects (such as invasive species removal and litter pick-up) in forest preserves in Cook County
  • Plan and lead team building exercises and games with Crew Leaders
  • Assist in leading educational activities
  • Assist Crew Leaders with administrative duties such as tracking attendance and encouraging appropriate crew member engagement and behavior
  • Demonstrate safe tool usage and teach basic invasive plant identification to crew members and ensure safety procedures are followed.
  • Positively represent Friends of the Forest Preserves at work site and while participating in recreational activities

Required Qualifications:

  • 18 - 20 years old
  • Must have participated in Forest Preserve Experience as a crew member previously 
  • Ability to arrive at meet up locations in south suburbs of Cook County on time
  • Must be able to attend a mandatory training  June 17 - June 27 in addition to the entire length of program
  • Experience working with diverse groups of youth and strong interest in working with and mentoring youth
  • Ability to maintain inclusive, safe, productive, and enjoyable work environment
  • Current Basic First Aid and Adult CPR certifications or willingness to obtain (Training provided)
  • Willingness to obtain an Illinois Alternative Herbicide license (Training provided)
  • Ability to lift and move heavy objects (50 lbs.) and work outside in inclement weather and extreme temperatures.

Dates of Employment:

Local Program Training: June 17, 18, 20, 21 & June 24- June 27 from 8 am to 3 pm 

Program Dates: July 1 thru August 2 (5 days a week for 5 weeks)

July 4 and 5 off, unpaid
Assistant Crew Leaders work 8:00 am to 1:00 pm, Monday thru Friday 


To apply: Submit cover letter, resume, and two references via the Friends’ website at https://fotfp.org/who-we-are/jobs/. Incomplete applications may not be considered. Please NO calls, faxes, office visits, or emails.

Friends of the Forest Preserves strongly encourages people of all identities to apply. We strive to include people of every race, color, religion, creed, gender, national origin, age, disability, marital or veteran status, and/or sexual orientation. Friends is an equal opportunity employer, in addition to observing all legal protections of special status, promoting diversity in the conservation community.

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

Category Environmental Education , Restoration