Eastern Program Development Director

  • Full-time

Company Description

The Forest Stewards Guild, a national organization of foresters and allied natural resource professionals, is dedicated to practicing and promoting responsible forestry. For nearly three decades, we have worked across private, public, and Tribal lands to steward forests and learn from each other. The Guild has roughly 600 members, over half of whom are professionals who manage over 42 million acres of forestland in the United States and Canada. The Guild maintains regional offices in New Mexico, Maine, Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Oregon, and Washington.

Job Description

In collaboration with other Guild Directors and staff, the Eastern Program Development Director will drive the vision for implementing the organization’s mission in the eastern U.S. The Eastern Director will be responsible for programs, personnel, budgets, and organizational management. Directors are expected to exhibit skills and core qualities at the highest level of performance.

The successful candidate will have excellent organizational, communication, and writing skills. This individual will have professional experience in forestry, ecology, fire science, natural resource management, or a related field. Previous leadership experience, particularly in a non-profit, is highly desirable. The successful candidate will demonstrate experience in advancing ecological forestry in the eastern U.S. The Guild has a strong base in this region, and the ideal candidate will display the drive to sustain and strengthen the Guild’s regional presence and impact.

The Eastern Program Development Director will lead program development in areas that meet ecological forestry needs in the region, including woodland owner outreach, forest climate adaptation, ecosystem resiliency, and fire science in management. The Eastern  Director will also be responsible for growing the Guild’s Northeast and Southeast programs through strategic planning and fundraising. This position will work closely with our Northeast and Southeast region staff and will collaborate with Guild staff in other regions of the country. Current program areas include bird-friendly forest management, outreach to women woodland owners, forester trainings on climate adaptation, fire adapted communities, and fire science exchange. The Guild is also creating avenues for workforce development focused on implementing climate adaptive treatments.

The successful individual will:

  • Lead the Guild’s Northeast and Southeast teams in collaborative projects that advance the Guild’s mission of ecological forestry.
  • Perform program administration, grant writing, and reporting to a variety of funders, including government grants and private foundations.
  • Track program budgets, match, metrics, and deliverables, and be the go-to for external communications.
  • Supervise staff, including supporting workplan and professional development.
  • Manage project workflows and collaborate with teams using software such as Asana, SharePoint, and Microsoft Teams.
  • Maintain relationships with diverse partner organizations and agencies across multiple states.
  • Convene and facilitate collaborative meetings with agency and NGO partners.
  • Serve as a facilitator or subject matter expert for educational activities for private landowners and natural resource professionals.
  • Represent the Guild at professional conferences or events (virtually and in person) and give public presentations.
  • Engage Forest Stewards Guild members through conference calls and Guild Gatherings.
  • Projects may require work in variable weather conditions, in remote locations, on difficult or hazardous terrain, and in other physically demanding environments.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Knowledge and professional experience in eastern forest ecosystems
  • The vision and drive to strengthen and expand forest stewardship in the eastern U.S.
  • An open and inclusive mindset that values diverse perspectives
  • Demonstrated skill and experience in program administration, particularly for non-profits 
  • Strong organizational, management, and verbal and written communication skills
  • Supervisory experience
  • Grant writing expertise
  • A proven record of successful, independent remote work
  • Valid driver’s license

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in a natural resource field
  • Leadership experience in shaping and implementing a vision through a multi-year project or program
  • Experience working in the nonprofit sector
  • A forester’s license, if applicable to candidate’s state
  • Experience in a related field such as wildland firefighting or invasives treatment

Additional Information

The position pays $36 per hour, and the Guild offers a competitive benefits package. Paid leave is accrued hourly from the first day of employment. Employer-sponsored comprehensive health and dental care coverage is available after 30 days of continuous employment with the employee contribution at 20%. Short and long-term disability policies, accidental death/dismemberment, and life insurance are paid by the Guild after 60 days of employment. Participation in a retirement plan with an employer match is available after 90 days. Family medical leave is available after 12 months, including 12 weeks of protected leave, with up to six of the 12 weeks being paid. The Guild offers 12 paid holidays per year.

The Guild is dedicated to providing an open, transparent, and just organization and workplace. We are committed to recruiting, hiring, mentoring, and supporting practitioners from underrepresented communities. We foster a work culture that recognizes the inherent value of our employees, supports a healthy work-life balance, and fosters personal growth.

The Guild is an equal opportunity employer. We believe that a diverse workforce reflects the strengths of all members of our community.


The position will ideally be located within easy driving distance of the Guild’s Hallowell, Maine office or Asheville, North Carolina office. Other locations will be considered on a case-by-case basis. A proven record of successful, independent remote work is required.

Contact Us

Interested applicants should visit the job posting on SmartRecruiters.com, and click “I’m Interested” to submit a one-page cover letter, resume, one-page writing sample, three professional references, and earliest available start date. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis with reviews beginning May 30, 2023.

Note: After clicking “Next” on the initial application page, you will have an opportunity to upload the cover letter and reference documents. Also note: The one-page writing sample format is flexible. It can be on a natural resource subject of your choice; it can be a research brief, newsletter article, or other sample of your writing capabilities.

Questions can be directed to Amanda Mahaffey at (207)432-3701 or amanda (at) forestguild.org, or Zander Evans at (505)603-2550 or zander (at) forestguild.org.