Now in its second century, Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat that supports them. Audubon’s mission is engaging people in bird conservation on a hemispheric scale through science, policy, education and on-the-ground conservation action. By mobilizing and aligning its network of Chapters, Centers, State and Important Bird Area programs in the four major migratory flyways in the Americas, the organization will bring the full power of Audubon to bear on protecting common and threatened bird species and the critical habitat they need to survive. And as part of BirdLife International, Audubon will join people in over 100 in-country organizations all working to protect a network of Important Bird Areas around the world, leveraging the impact of actions they take at a local level. What defines Audubon’s unique value is a powerful grassroots network of approximately 450 local chapters, 120 campus chapters, 17 state and regional offices, 34 Audubon Centers, Important Bird Area Programs in 50 states, and 700 staff across the country.
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Audubon is hiring a Senior Associate, Coastal Resilience (NY) to identify opportunities and lead efforts to restore, enhance, and manage priority coastal habitats and to increase coastal resilience for the benefit of salt marsh dependent bird species. This position is part of Audubon’s Conservation Department and will be based at the Theodore Roosevelt Audubon Center and Sanctuary in Oyster Bay, NY.
- As part of Audubon’s Coast Program, lead the salt marsh and coastal resilience initiative in New York.
- Identify, plan, and implement new and ongoing salt marsh restoration projects, which will involve:
- Working with NY staff and using the results of a priority salt marsh assessment:
- Developing request for proposals (RFPs), bid packages, and contracts required to implement salt marsh restoration/enhancement project(s).
- Oversee construction contracts and engineering firms completing permitting and design for salt marsh restoration or enhancement project(s).
- Coordinate project teams to ensure regular communication, free exchange of ideas, and successful problem solving to implement projects.
- Lead or work with partners to complete pre- and post-response monitoring (e.g., bird, vegetation, elevation, and hydrology) of restoration sites.
- Work with land trusts and other agencies to protect marsh migration corridors through land acquisitions or conservation easements.
- Co-lead a working group that includes conservation partners and land managers (e.g., landowners, academics, and representatives from state and federal wildlife agencies, non-profit organizations, and Audubon chapters) to foster communication among practitioners, inform best management practices, improve understanding around permitting, and promote implementation of and help secure funding for future projects.
- Collaborate with supervisor and development team to identify, submit, and administer grants and engage donors and foundations to support the projects and overall program.
- Work with Director of Policy to advocate for the protection of coastal habitats, natural solutions to coastal flooding and erosion, and for FEMA and NRCS funding.
- Effectively communicate about coastal resilience issues (including sea level rise as a threat to priority bird species, the importance of salt marsh conservation, negative impacts of shoreline hardening, and natural solutions to shoreline stabilization) to elected and municipal officials, partners, and the public.
- Contribute to press releases, articles, outreach materials, and content for social media.
- Represent Audubon and create and deliver effective presentations at conferences, regional councils, and working groups meetings.
- Provide expertise on restoration or enhancement of priority sites (salt marshes as well as other coastal habitat types, such as beaches and islands)
- Comment on state and federal management plans relating to coastal resilience and sea level rise.
- Collaborate with Audubon’s regional (CT/NY) and national staff, as well as Audubon Chapter leaders to support policy, communications, and network priorities related to coastal resilience.
- Participate fully and productively in staff meetings, planning efforts, and other shared staff duties.
- Other duties may be assigned.
Qualifications and Experience
- Master’s Degree in a conservation, wildlife, or natural resources field or equivalent and one year of relevant work experience or Bachelor’s Degree plus three years of relevant work experience. An equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered.
- Familiarity with coastal resilience and adaptation issues and natural coastal processes required, knowledge of Saltmarsh Sparrow habitat needs and conservation issues a plus.
- Project management experience including fiscal management, managing project deliverables, reporting on progress, and writing grant proposals. Ability to manage multiple projects and prioritize is essential.
- Proven experience with restoration of coastal habitats and managing habitat restoration or enhancement projects required; experience managing a salt marsh restoration or enhancement project highly preferred.
- Familiarity with governmental permit processes for habitat or other related projects, preferably in the state of New York.
- Experience developing proposals and reporting on federal grants.
- Must be a self-motivated, organized and reliable, with the ability to work independently as well as part of team.
- Strong communication skills including public speaking, public presentation, and writing skills and ability to synthesize and communicate technical and complex information to both technical and non-technical audiences.
- Willingness to work occasional weekends and evenings as the job demands.
- Willingness to travel to other locations within New York as well as occasionally to other states.
- Ability to traverse far distances on uneven terrain while carrying a heavy daypack and equipment; with or without accommodation.
- Proficiency in ArcGIS software and ability to use handheld GPS devices.
- Computer skills and proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
- Experience surveying marsh birds and vegetation or familiarity with how to approach it.
- Experience working with or familiarity with NY coastal habitats and conservation stakeholders.
- Experience with or interest in working with local and state elected officials and partners to advance conservation policy initiatives highly preferred.