Regional Director, San Joaquin Valley — Full-time — Modesto, CA
About the Organization
Sustainable Conservation aadvances the stewardship of natural resources using innovative, pragmatic strategies that actively engage businesses and private landowners in conservation. The organization’s climate, air, water and biodiversity initiatives promote practical solutions that produce tangible, lasting environmental and economic benefits for California. Founded in 1993, Sustainable Conservation’s effectiveness lies in building strong partnerships with business, agriculture, and government and establishing models for environmental and economic sustainability that can be replicated throughout California and, ultimately, the nation.
San Joaquin Valley
Sustainable Conservation has been partnering with agriculture and other stakeholders in the San Joaquin Valley for over a decade to improve water and air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This past year, it also launched a new initiative to promote more groundwater recharge in the Kings River basin. The San Joaquin Valley is California’s top agricultural producing region growing a wide variety of fruits, nuts and vegetables and home to the majority of California’s dairies, the largest agricultural industry in California. While vital to the nation’s food production and the regional economy, agriculture production has taken a toll on environmental quality in the region, leaching nitrogen to groundwater and contributing to the region’s poor air quality. In addition, dairies are a significant source of methane, a greenhouse gas 21 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. Sustainable Conservation partners with dairies and other agricultural producers and stakeholders to identify and promote practices and technologies that improve environmental quality while also working economically for the farmer. Sustainable Conservation has promoted adoption of a suite of practices and technologies for managing manure to reduce leaching of nitrates to groundwater. It has also promoted methane digesters, which convert methane from manure into electricity, and conservation tillage, a practice that saves farmers money and reduces air pollution. The organization’s newest initiative aims to help address another serious problem in the San Joaquin Valley, groundwater overdraft. Sustainable Conservation is partnering with a variety of stakeholders to explore whether groundwater recharge on active cropland with flood water during high water years can help address the overdraft issues in the region.
Regional Director, San Joaquin Valley
Sustainable Conservation seeks an exceptional Regional Director to expand our impact and presence in the San Joaquin Valley. The Regional Director will lead the effort to find and implement a regional solution(s) to addressing the environmental impact of dairies. The successful candidate will partner with staff on promoting on-farm practices to reduce dairies’ groundwater contamination and contribution to air pollution. In addition, the Regional Director will partner with the Director of Restoration on Private Lands on expanding the groundwater recharge initiative in the San Joaquin Valley. The Regional Director reports directly to the Managing Director of Programs.
Primary Duties and Responsibilities
The Regional Director, San Joaquin Valley will perform the following and other duties as assigned:
- Evaluate new ideas, technologies and business models that reduce the environmental impact of California dairies while providing profitable revenue streams and/or avoiding costs at a regional scale in areas of high concentrations of dairies. (Please see dairy summit for opportunities being evaluated).
- Build strategic partnerships with key stakeholders, including dairy industry, dairy industry trade associations, dairy consultants, federal, state and local regulatory and technical agencies, environmental and environmental justice organizations and other key influential stakeholders to build support for a regional strategy(ies) to address the environmental and health impacts of dairies.
- Identify and pursue role for Sustainable Conservation in implementing selected strategies.
- Oversee and partner with staff on program strategy to promote broad adoption of on-farm practices and technologies to reduce dairy industry pollution of groundwater supplies and air quality.
- Partner with Director for Restoration on Private Lands and staff on groundwater recharge initiative in the Kings River basin to support expansion program on existing crop land.
- Manage and support program staff in the Modesto office to achieve program and professional development goals; share coaching responsibilities with Senior Program Manager.
- Assist with communication outreach strategy to increase Sustainable Conservation’s visibility in the San Joaquin Valley in order to benefit programs and fundraising efforts.
- Help develop and prepare grant proposals and reports in partnership with foundation and government grants staff members.
The successful candidate will have the following minimum qualifications
- 10+ years experience in a leadership role or equivalent; significant knowledge of the California agriculture sector and agricultural systems. Background in new business development and agricultural finance a plus.
- MBA or advanced degree in a relevant field
- Intellectual agility and ability to analyze, think critically and strategically, both for short-term project goals and for long-range strategic planning.
- Exceptional written and oral communication skills with the ability to share and impart knowledge to others; ability to actively listen, synthesize information, and ask good questions.
- Team management experience and a demonstrated ability to lead, motivate, and inspire others.
- Experience working collaboratively and building effective partnerships with a variety of stakeholders, both externally and internally.
- Demonstrated success in program development, evaluation, and management.
- Demonstrated ability to solve problems and propose innovative solutions.
- Good organizational skills and time management practices, with a demonstrated ability to meet deadlines for both internal and external deliverables.
- Demonstrated project management skills, including ability to develop workplans to execute program goals, oversee budgets, contractors and invoicing.
The following personal attributes are desired:
- Experience working with ambiguity, exercising patience, and remaining flexible and open to new approaches, ideas, and opportunities.
- Approachable demeanor and openness to input from all levels of staff.
- Excellent interpersonal skills, including an ability to listen to others and learn from their best ideas, share best practices and experiences, and contribute to a learning environment.
- Impeccable integrity and trustworthiness, sense of humor, and diplomatic approach to problem-solving.
- Ability to consistently interact with others in a professional, courteous, and tactful manner, maintain a positive attitude and good working relationships, and work effectively in a team setting.
- Ability to work well with colleagues, consultants, funders, and other stakeholders across many diverse cultures and backgrounds.
Compensation and Location
Sustainable Conservation offers an excellent benefits package and a competitive salary that is commensurate with experience. This position will be located in Modesto, California.
To be considered for this position, interested candidates must follow this link to submit a resume, cover letter, and salary requirements. CEA Recruiting is assisting Sustainable Conservation with this search. Please direct all applications and inquiries to CEA Recruiting. This position will remain open until filled.
Sustainable Conservation is an equal opportunity employer.
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