Stewardship Director

Downeast Coastal Conservancy

Opening posted: 09/02/2021 | Expires: 09/26/2021

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Downeast Coastal Conservancy (DCC) is a nationally accredited local land trust conserving land in coastal Washington County, Maine since 1987. Based out of Machias, DCC is responsible for the stewardship and preservation of 7,000 acres and more than 72 miles of shoreline in Downeast Maine. The organization is overseen by an active Board and managed by a staff of 3: Executive Director, Stewardship Director and Membership and Outreach Director.

With over 30 years of history, DCC is focused on continuing to evolve and this position will aim to improve existing land management and stewardship programs. The Stewardship Committee is an active volunteer group that currently includes diverse skills and knowledge in land conservation, ecology, trail management, and community outreach, and provides regular support to this position. 

The DCC office is open frequently Monday to Friday, but staff are regularly in the field. For more information about DCC, please visit

Position Title: Stewardship Director

Position Type: 40 hours per week; salaried; 13 paid holidays; earned/accrued Personal Time off; flex time; some evening and weekend work

Report to: Executive Director

Location: Machias, Maine (with travel within Washington County)

Salary range: $36,000 with opportunity for growth

Position Description

The Stewardship Director reports to the Executive Director. The position is full-time (40 hours/week) including some required evening and weekend work. The employee works with the Executive Director and the Stewardship Committee to identify, assess, and prioritize stewardship needs at DCC properties and to develop and implement plans to address those needs.

The Stewardship Director will work independently or with volunteers, contractors, and vendors to monitor easements and fee lands; oversee habitat conservation; coordinate volunteer management of invasive species; coordinate volunteer or contractors to create and maintain trails; organize work parties; work with community groups to expand volunteer capacity; create GIS maps; oversee seasonal property maintenance; develop and execute property management plans; support staff in stewardship related grants; and perform other tasks as requested to support the mission of DCC.

The Stewardship Director oversees the management and requirements of 41 easements, one of which is a complex easement with 35 individual landowners, and 45 fee properties, 15 of which have public access. The Director follows the stewardship practices and policies outlined by DCC and maintains compliance with the land trust accreditation commission.

Field work is performed outdoors in all weather conditions and requires climbing, walking, bending, crouching, lifting, reaching, and other physical abilities. Some work is performed in a normal office environment involving use of a computer, printer, and other office equipment, particularly during winter. Some job duties may be performed at home upon approval. The Stewardship Director is required to use a personal vehicle to access the various properties.

The position requires a working knowledge of conservation biology and land management, proficiency in GIS, excellent volunteer management skills, strong organizational skills, and a passion for the outdoors.

The Stewardship Director is in communication with the public regarding DCC stewardship and responds to public inquiries related to stewardship activities and community needs. The Stewardship Director will be a team player who is an effective communicator, is comfortable working with many different constituencies, can manage multiple priorities and volunteer work schedules, and is self-directed.

Basic Responsibilities

Conservation Easements (40%)

  • Monitor each easement annually with the assistance of DCC staff, board directors, stewardship committee members, or other designated volunteers
  • Annual easement landowner outreach including monitoring notifications, joining landowners on monitoring visits when they so choose, mailing easement monitoring reports and report letters, and working constructively with landowners to address issues or answer questions about their easement as needed
  • Respond to landowner inquiries in cooperation with ED
  • Document and pursue violations in cooperation with ED
  • Develop and foster healthy landowner relations
  • Ensure annual monitoring reports are filed per DCC’s Records Management policy for each easement
  • Assist the ED with establishing easements, including: planning, producing baseline reports, environmental hazard assessments, developing maps, collecting natural resource information, working with landowners and other stakeholders, producing project evaluations and presenting them to the Lands Committee

Preserves (40%)

  • Monitor each preserve annually, or ensure that trained volunteers complete the monitoring
  • Perform and coordinate trail and visitor area stewardship, including, but not limited to: trail building, trail maintenance, keeping trails clear of debris (blow downs, encroaching vegetation, broken or dislodged bridges, etc.), marking trails, assessing and managing visitor use as necessary
  • Manage the design, commission and installation of preserve signage
  • Work with contractors on stewardship projects
  • Recruit, organize, train and supervise volunteer preserve monitors and stewardship volunteers, and maintain the volunteer database
  • Assist the ED in acquiring fee property, including: planning; producing baseline reports; environmental hazard assessments; developing maps; collecting natural resource information; working with landowners and other stakeholders; producing project evaluations and presenting them to the Lands Committee
  • Use of power tools as necessary to complete these tasks
  • Oversee the development, updates, and implementation of management plans for each property

Administration (10%)

  • Ensure annual monitoring reports are filed for each preserve and easement
  • Provide assistance and support to the Stewardship Committee
  • Track mileage, expenses, comp-time, and PTO time accurately
  • Track time for specific projects and properties for audit compliance
  • Prepare an annual Stewardship Budget
  • Assist the Executive Director with grant development
  • Participate in intern management and supervision as needed
  • Coordinate volunteer management, time tracking, training, etc.
  • Other duties as assigned for outreach, development, and office administration

Qualifications – Required

  • Background (direct work experience or degree) within a natural resources related field (i.e. conservation planning, land trust/land protection work, natural resource management, environmental education, forestry, trail design, etc.)
  • Education or Experience in trail maintenance
  • Knowledge and ability to operate a chainsaw and hand tools safely – certification is a plus or willingness to obtain with DCC support
  • Valid First Aid or Wilderness First Responder certification or willingness to obtain with DCC support
  • Knowledge and ability to navigate off-trail using a map and compass and GPS
  • Familiarity with ArcGIS, Google Earth and GPS
  • Ability to hike over rough terrain carrying up to 40 pounds of gear and equipment
  • Proficiency with basic Office software including Word and Excel — ability to use PowerPoint, Publisher and Access are a plus
  • Knowledge and ability to do basic carpentry and construction
  • Valid vehicle driver’s license and personal vehicle with proof of insurance; with the willingness and ability to transport or trailer stewardship equipment (DCC provided trailer is available with willingness to attach hitch to vehicle)
  • Interest and ability to recruit, organize and supervise volunteers for diverse roles within DCC
  • Ability to communicate clearly, professionally and accurately, both in writing and orally
  • Ability to work effectively with town and state officials to accomplish DCC’s goals
  • Ability to attend regular Stewardship Committee meetings and occasional Board of Director meetings as needed
  • Ability to manage work time efficiently with minimal supervision

Qualifications – Desired

  • Experience writing and administering grants
  • Science and/or educational background
  • Familiarity with the region and its communities, both on land and water desired, as well as knowledge of the region’s geography, culture, flora and fauna.

To Apply:

Send a resume and cover letter to: or Downeast Coastal Conservancy, PO Box 760, Machias, ME 04654 by Sunday, September 26, 2021, 11:59pm. Desired start date November 1st, 2021. For more information, call 207-255-4500.

Downeast Coastal Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer