Executive Director

Northeast Wilderness Trust | Flexible, Vermont


Northeast Wilderness Trust is an accredited, non-profit land trust founded in 2002 with a mission to protect forever-wild landscapes for nature and people.  Northeast Wilderness Trust is responsible for stewarding over 24,000 acres of forever-wild lands across a six state region (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Eastern New York).

Job Summary

Northeast Wilderness Trust seeks an inspired, experienced and passionately-focused leader to build and sustain the Nation's only regional land trust dedicated to forever-wild stewardship of private land.  Our next Executive Director will have significant experience in land conservation campaigns, fundraising, and organizational development, firmly founded on a commitment to advancing wilderness as a significant component of the conservation landscape of the Northeastern United States.  The Executive Director will be the public face of Northeast Wilderness Trust and a full partner to the Board in defining and achieving the Trust's vision.

Northeast Wilderness Trust seeks to accelerate the pace of forever-wild land conservation in the Northeast.  We are on track to meet our strategic goal of adding 10,000 acres by 2020.  We also aim to double the funds available to steward and protect these lands and to empower others to expand forever-wild conservation in our region.

Reports To

Board of Directors


Vision and Planning (10%)

  • Oversee strategic planning and prioritization of conservation projects and focal areas.
  • Work to implement Northeast Wilderness Trust’s strategic plan; monitor progress.
  • Assess and adjust business model to advance organizational sustainability.
  • Develop strategic direction for Northeast Wilderness Trust into the next decade.

 Fundraising (30%)

  • Assume primary responsibility for raising annual operating budget.
  • Design and lead land project fundraising campaigns up to $2.5 million.
  • Develop and lead major donor program; engage board in cultivating major donors.
  • Lead semi-annual appeals for unrestricted operating funds
  • Work with the Director of Development & Operations to identify and apply for local, private and federal grants.
  • Provide support and direction to the Board development and finance committees.

Outreach and Communication (20%)

  • Develop and sustain positive relationships with project funders, landowners, stakeholders, and other key partners.
  • Maintain strong relationships and represent Northeast Wilderness Trust’s mission and values at regional events, policy roundtables, and conservation conferences.
  • Conduct outreach to diverse audiences, including partners, landowners, community leaders, policy makers, and others.
  • Oversee and contribute to the creation of communication materials, including social media outreach, project and marketing materials, press releases, annual reports, etc.

Management and Supervision (30%)

  • Work with the Conservation Director to advance land projects with negotiating and technical support as needed.
  • Manage and support conservation team in achieving conservation and stewardship goals.
  • Develop and monitor the annual budget in collaboration with the Director of Development & Operations and Board Treasurer.
  • Develop and monitor land project budgets in concert with the Conservation Director and Director of Development & Operations.
  • Coordinate regular and quarterly financial reporting to the Board of Directors.
  • Ensure compliance with internal policies and procedures, including accreditation requirements and financial standards, and support the re-accreditation process.

Board and Staff Leadership (10%)

  • Work with board leadership to recruit and engage board members.
  • Support staffing of Board committees and participate in committee meetings.
  • Create a positive work environment, lead 3 full-time staff members, and promote, train and recruit new staff as needed.
  • Oversee development and implementation of annual work plans keyed to the strategic plan; manage assignments to optimize productivity, success and professional growth.
  • Conduct and document annual performance reviews for staff.
  • Ensure staff are connected to professional development and training opportunities.


  • Passion for and commitment to wilderness and forever-wild stewardship in the Northeastern United States.
  • Proven success in fundraising, donor development, and outreach.
  • Ability to raise $500,000+ annually for operations.
  • Five years minimum experience in the design, development and leadership of land conservation programs or other programs in a non-profit, agency or similar setting.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Strong financial planning skills, including the development and management of budgets.
  • Proven effectiveness as a leader of professional staff.
  • Strong organization skills, including the ability to manage multiple projects.
  • Experience in grant research, writing and administration.
  • Willingness to travel extensively (up to 50%), primarily within the Northeast.
  • Ability to carry out job requirements that include working some evenings and weekends.
  • Bachelor’s degree (Master’s preferred) in non-profit or business management, natural resources management or a related field.
  • Valid driver’s license.


Northeast Wilderness Trust is an equal opportunity employer.  The Trust offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience ($80,000 or above).  Benefits include: health care, 401K (with small employer match), travel reimbursement, paid-time off for holidays, sick leave and vacation, short-term and long-term disability.  Flexible and collegial work environment.

How to Apply

Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and three references (preferably in a single PDF file) to jobs@newildernesstrust.org.  Please include ED position in the subject line of your email.  No phone calls please.  Applications will be accepted until May 31, 2017, or until position is filled.  Start date: August 1, 2017; negotiable.  

Northeast Wilderness Trust