Southern Maine Regional Steward
Under the general supervision of the Director of Stewardship or Regional Stewardship Manager, oversees the care and use of the organization’s preserves and conservation easement properties in a designated geographical area in order to protect the ecological and aesthetic value of the land, legal restrictions and requirements, public benefit opportunities, and outreach. This position will be based in our Topsham, ME office.
Essential Job Functions:
- Actively participates in the development of management plans and plan updates for each property.
- Works with the Project Manager prior to acquisition to evaluate properties and develop a project stewardship budget.
- Monitors preserves, writes reports, and rectifies issues regarding property condition, including invasive plant control, needed land restoration projects, boundary line maintenance, garbage clean up, fire, etc.
- Monitors public use of preserves and develops and implements strategies to resolve related issues, including conflicts between different users, overuse of fragile areas, illegal activities and encroachment on the properties such as timber trespass, theft, structures, etc.
- Develops and coordinates volunteer opportunities
- Hires and supervises seasonal staff and work crews, developing job descriptions, and organizing and assigning tasks.
- Coordinates and leads programs and/or events in selected areas in order to build public understanding of and support for MCHT’s preserves. This may include walks, talks, boat trips, and workshops and may involve school groups.
- Develops and maintains relationships with neighbors, town officials, other organizations, and a wide variety of community members. Coordinates meetings and other interactions as needed to accomplish goals.
- Plans and implements annual work plans, maintaining compliance with annual budget. Examples include: marking and maintaining boundaries, building and maintaining trails, conducting and overseeing forest management activities, conducting or overseeing natural resource inventories and management, developing maps, posting signs, building and maintaining structures, ensuring the safeguarding of sensitive resources, and showing properties to various contractors, and others.
- Contracts with construction, scientific, and maintenance vendors for various projects. Oversees and facilitates work performed,and ensures quality outcomes within budget.
- Develops and maintains complete records for each preserve, including information on ownership, communications, monitoring, and work performed. This includes populating both the Stewardship database and paper and digital property files in a prompt and ongoing way and collecting and utilizing GIS data
- Develops, implements, and monitors data collection plots for scientific and carrying capacity studies at selected sites.
- Helps in the preparation of preserve related written materials.
MCHT Easements (not all Stewards)
- Compiles and maintains detailed written and photographic records about the condition of each easement property.
- Conducts regular monitoring visits, including meeting with landowners, walking the restricted properties, and preparing and distributing monitoring reports promptly.
- Maintains excellent relationships with easement landowners and collaborates to maintain compliance.
- Maintains thorough records of all information and communications to ensure that MCHT’s easement program is sound and defensible. This includes populating the Stewardship database with easement related data, and paper and digital files in a prompt and ongoing way.
- Exercises affirmative rights on eased properties where appropriate. Works with landowners and other staff as easement issues arise or upon landowner request. This may include approvals, violations, amendments to/of the easement.
- Works with Project Managers and the Director of Stewardship on new acquisitions, including developing a steward budget.
- Reaches out to communities in their region to determine how MCHT lands and staff can benefit the community. Develops partnerships to this end and may implement programs to engage people, benefit local health, economic and recreational opportunities, and education.
- Initiates and sometimes leads walks, field trips, events on MCHT and partner properties, including celebrations, beach clean ups, bird walks, citizen science projects, etc. Often works with other staff on some of these.
- Some Regional Steward positions include additional programs or tasks. Examples include: coordination and responsibility for the completion of all MCHT Preserve Management Plans, coordination of MCHT’s Invasive Management Program, coordination of MCHT Volunteer Program, coordination of MCHT’s Internship Program, chainsaw training for all staff, equipment purchase, coordination of regional meetings, other staff trainings, etc.
- Works with the Director of Stewardship to develop and maintain budgets for properties and special projects.
- Coordinates and works with other staff as necessary, on land and other projects, public outreach, programming, fundraising and community work.
- Serves as a member of MCHT’s Stewardship Team and takes on specific assignments as requested, including attending meetings, serving on committees, helping with events, assisting other organizations, or developing areas of expertise that will help the organization.
- Serves as a resource to landowners, local governments, local land trusts, and other staff by providing technical natural resources information and giving occasional presentations.
- Participates in the maintenance of stewardship related equipment, vehicles and boats, and stewardship equipment work and storage areas.
- Assists with the annual Land Trust Conference.
- May conduct special research projects, including primary literature research and summary for other staff.
- Utilizes GPS equipment for property mapping, including trails, unique natural features, and human created features.
- May perform other unique functions as assigned, such as pesticide application (which includes maintaining a commercial pesticide applicator’s license) or acting as boat captain (which includes safely transporting visitors, staff, contractors, volunteers, and materials, and facilitating and overseeing boat maintenance).
- Performs special projects and other related duties as required, directed, or as the situation dictates.
- Regular attendance at the workplace is required.
- Adherence to organizational policies and practices is required.
Provides supervision to volunteers, interns, and/or seasonal staff, including interviewing and selection, training, scheduling, and work plan development.
Education & Experience:
Bachelor’s Degree in a natural resource related field with three to five years of direct work experience, preferably natural resource related (i.e. conservation planning, land trust/land protection work, natural resource management, environmental education, natural resource management, forestry, trail design, etc.)
- Excellent field skills, including working with map, compass, and GPS systems, handling and maintaining tools and equipment, reading terrain, and identifying/understanding natural resource sensitivities/constraints.
- Familiarity with the region and its communities, both on land and water.
- Working knowledge of Maine geography, culture, flora and fauna.
- Basic carpentry skills and familiarity with land management tools.
- Requires boat handling skills with small and medium sized boats, including navigation and basic boat mechanics. If necessary, training will be provided.
- May require forestry or arborist training, pesticide application and invasives management experience.
- Strong organization, problem-solving, and multi-tasking skills with attention to detail and deadlines.
- Good physical fitness required to perform duties.
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, preferably including public speaking skills.
- Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.
- Ability to effectively operate computers and assigned software, including MCHT’s Stewardship and Lands Database, Microsoft Office, Excel and other applications.
Working Conditions & Physical Demands:
Field work is performed outdoors in all weather conditions and requires climbing, walking, bending, crouching, lifting heavy objects (over 50 lbs.), reaching, and other physical capabilities. Operates GPS, compass, camera, boats/marine vessels, trucks, tractor, trailer, lawnmower, chainsaw, table saw, and related power tools, hand tools, and equipment, often in remote locations that can require long hikes carrying equipment. Regular travel is required. Weekend and night work is common.
Some work is performed in a normal office environment not subject to extremes of noise, temperature, odor, etc. Operates computer, printer, and other office equipment.
This is a permanent, full-time position with a benefits package including insurance, vacation time, and a retirement plan.
The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to do this job. The above is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required. The omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if the work is similar, related, or a logical assignment to the position.
*External and internal applicants, as well as position incumbents who become disabled as defined under the Americans With Disabilities Act, must be able to perform the essential job functions (as listed) either unaided or with the assistance of a reasonable accommodation to be determined by management on a case by case basis.
This job description does not constitute an employment agreement between the employer and employee, and is subject to change by the employer, as the needs of the employer and requirements of the job change.
Maine Coast Heritage Trust does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law. We are an equal opportunity employer dedicated to creating an inclusive culture where employees from diverse backgrounds can thrive and support our mission.