Prairie Restoration Specialist (Shared Crew)

Center for Natural Lands Management

Thurston County, Washington

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details $22.54 - $24.79 hourly – DOE; with benefits
Required Experience 2 - 6 years

The Center for Natural Lands Management (CNLM) is a nonprofit 501(3)(c) organization, created in 1990, whose mission is the perpetual stewardship of natural and created conservation lands, sensitive species, and their resident ecosystems. Stewardship activities are currently divided between California and Washington. In the State of Washington, CNLM's South Puget Sound Program focuses on conservation of one of the rarest ecosystems in the United States, the prairie and oak woodlands of Cascadia, especially those lands and habitats within the South Sound Region. In that Region, the Program aims to protect, restore habitats, and support recovery of rare species that are candidates for federal listing.

Currently in California, more than seventy-five preserves, encompassing over 30,000 acres throughout the state, are within CNLM’s portfolio, with new preserves added regularly. The preserves vary in size from three to thousands of acres and are managed under direct ownership, conservation easements, or contracts.

Central to the CNLM’s mission and fundamental to its success are the principles of rigorous cost estimation for managing conservation areas in perpetuity and application of appropriate scientific information for conservation and restoration. CNLM has a well-established practice of selecting for and investing in excellent staff to fulfill its mission. Currently, CNLM is headquartered in Temecula, CA, although most senior staff resides elsewhere and communication is more often by phone and email than by in-person meetings.

The Prairie Restoration Shared Crew Specialist will work with a team in the maintenance and restoration of prairie sites in the South Puget Sound region of Washington. Maintenance and restoration efforts include monitoring and control of pest plants, monitoring native vegetation, collecting seed of native plants, planting and seeding native plants and conducting prescribed fire. The position entails strenuous physical activity and operation of heavy equipment. The Prairie Restoration Specialist is a full-time, non-exempt position supervised by the Pacific Northwest Project Manager.

The Shared Crew Specialist will represent CNLM on a crew consisting of members of partner organizations, including but not limited to Ecostudies Institute and the Chehalis tribe. This position entails a high-level of responsibility and interpersonal skills, sound work ethic, and positive attitude during long field days. The ability to coordinate and lead a crew of workers is critical to this role. This crew will work on conservation partner lands implementing restoration projects. These include: CNLM, WA Dept of Fish and Wildlife, WA Dept. of Natural Resources, and other private landowners. Development of positive and effective relationships with volunteers and partners is critical. The South Sound Prairie Program is science-based and the Specialist will be required to document and appropriately file all data pertinent to the operations on a regular basis.

The Specialist is expected to be an integral member of the CNLM’s South Sound Program. They will become a staff information source on the effective and efficient implementation of restoration actions. The Specialist will need to effectively communicate with partners, volunteers and the public concerning their specific work and the work of the South Sound Program and the Center for Natural Lands Management.


  • Work with personnel, equipment and other resources to successfully complete prairie restoration projects.
  • Operate equipment such as tractor with rotary brush cutter, engine powered chipper/shredder, chain saws, hand-operated gas-powered brush cutters and other heavy and light equipment.
  • Conduct routine maintenance of all equipment used while performing work duties.
    Maintain state-of-the-art knowledge of the prairie restoration techniques utilized by the prairie restoration team. Communicate the correct and safe implementation of these techniques to other crewmembers, partners and volunteers.
  • Conduct quantitative monitoring of pest and native species under the guidance of Prairie Restoration Team members and partner’s scientists.
  • Assist with other natural resource management operations as requested including tree planting, herbicide application and controlled burning activities. Must obtain appropriate Washington State pesticide license and firefighting certification (training provided).
  • Work collaboratively with resource agencies, consultants, and other conservation organizations.
  • Prepare reports, proposals and plans as needed.
  • Fulfill other duties as assigned.


  • Bachelor of Science (or Arts) degree in Natural Resource Management, Wildlife Ecology, Botany, Conservation Biology, or related field, or compelling evidence of equivalent experience and self-education.
  • Experience working with or knowledge of natural systems. Ability to recognize plant and animal species as required to complete preserve management activities. South Sound flora identification is preferred.
  • Ability to operate various types of equipment in a safe and efficient manner (ATV, chainsaw, tractor, two-way radio, etc.).
  • Ability to follow instructions from colleagues.
  • Ability to perform physical work, sometime under adverse conditions or in inclement weather.
  • Proven self-starter, able to work efficiently and effectively with minimal supervision and able to appropriately use initiative to meet restoration goals. Able to structure time effectively and meet deadlines.
  • Effective and professional communication skills—written and oral; able to prepare succinct and cogent reports and plans
  • Possession of working knowledge of GIS and GPS technologies and associated software and a working knowledge of Windows 7 operating systems and PC applications such as Microsoft Office Suite
  • Possession and maintenance of a valid driver’s license and safe driving record.
  • Ability and willingness to obtain a Washington Pesticide Applicators license, become certified in First Aid and CPR, obtain appropriate firefighting certification


  • Regularly works in natural areas and at native plant nurseries and seed production fields.
  • Hikes across, and conducts work within, native habitats and uneven ground.
  • Regularly sits or stands at a desk or computer workstation.
  • Regularly required to operate a CNLM vehicle.
  • Frequently works alone.
  • Responsible for some evening and weekends including travel.
  • Uses or supervises the use of pesticides and or other chemical substances.
  • Uses or supervises the use of powered equipment such as weed trimmers and chain saws
  • Uses hand tools and operates nursery equipment.
  • Regularly lifts, positions, or otherwise moves objects weighing up to 50 pounds.

The working conditions described here are representative in part of those that will be encountered by an employee in this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to successfully function in these working conditions.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature of the work being performed by people assigned to this work. This is not an exhaustive list of all duties and
responsibilities. CNLM management reserves the right to amend and change responsibilities to meet business and organizational needs as necessary.
CNLM is an Equal Opportunity employer. Personnel are chosen on the basis of ability without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, marital status or
sexual orientation, in accordance with federal and state law This position description does not constitute an employment agreement between the CNLM
and the employee and is subject to change by CNLM as the needs of the CNLM and requirements of the job change.


TO APPLY: Qualified applicants must provide a detailed letter of interest, current résumé, and three professional references (names, affiliations, and contact information only). All applications will be acknowledged.

Email these materials to: careers-prs@cnlm.org

If email is not possible, the application can be mailed to:
Center for Natural Lands Management
Attention: Human Resources
27258 Via Industria, Suite B
Temecula, CA 92590 

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

Category Botany , Restoration
Tags GIS